WE MAY HAVE ALREADY LOST THE PLANET

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/climate-change-tipping-points-amazon-rainforest-antarctic-ice-gulf-stream/

WE NEED A SECOND GREEN NEW DEAL.

”...the removal of carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere at a massive scale.”

It is either Pearl Harbor time with 5 Manhattan Projects, or you can kiss this planet (and your children) goodby.

“Avoiding the worst impacts of climate change will require not only steep reductions in emissions but also the removal of carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere at a massive scale.

The United States needs to make large-scale investments in carbon removal in the coming years— up to $6 billion per year in federal funding over the next 10 years, with continued support for scaled deployment beyond 2030—if the country is to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050.” World Resources Institute

I am an engineer (MIT 63, 65, 67), and almost a scientist. I have followed climate change for 20 years and done my own calculations. See caringfortheearth.com.

I have observed the failure of humanity over and over again to take seriously the needs of our planet. The calamities in the west and Europe and all over the world, and the failure of our goverment, the stupidity of our politics, the timidity of our scientists have led me to the edge of suicidal depression.

Time Magazine has quoted me as saying we are an “insult to the universe.” And we are.

The greenhouse effect was discovered by Joseph Fourier, a physicist in 1824. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Fourier

On its 100th birthday in 1959, Edward Teller warned the oil industry about global warming.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/2018/jan/01/on-its-hundredth-birthday-in-1959-edward-teller-warned-the-oil-industry-about-global-warming

Exxon Knew about Climate Change almost 40 years ago.

A new investigation shows the oil company understood the science before it became a public issue and spent millions to promote misinformation.

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/exxon-knew-about-climate-change-almost-40-years-ago/

Global Warming Has Begun, Expert Tells Senate (James Hansen 1988) Sononu kills program. https://timesmachine.nytimes.com/timesmachine/1988/06/24/350088.html?pageNumber=1

We are at death’s door. It is open. We have placed our right foot on the threshold. Our left foot has been lifted.

And humanithy dwaddles.

It is the most desperate moment in human history.

And the NY Times, Congress, governments around the earth are ignorant, afraid, deaf, dumb and blind. We will ALL get what we deserve.

OP ED piece submitted to the New York Times, and rejected.

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FOR PART I CLICK HERE

TRUTH: PART II

sine qua non

Accepting truth can be extraordinarily difficult. It can lead to a major costs and disruptions of life. In the case of the climate and its insane complexities it is so easy to convince oneself that the job can be left to others.

Others here would mean scientists, but confronting congress and billion dollar businesses might require a triumvert, say of Churchill, Lincoln and FDR.

It is hard to imagine James Hansen onfronting congress in 1988, with billion dollar businesses throwing money in every direction...not to mention the complexity of the science, and even with some success with the president, a stona well it did not happen is is just begging to happpen now.one man against the president and congress, well the courage of a thousand men may not sufficce.

Lies then beome permanent descptions and so institutioalize the harm. Then, apparently powerful solutions such as solar cells and windmills give the illusion of a solutionjjn

The truth of the climate requires a depth comprehension that few can make and its slow and distant early effect, although ominous to a few, were easily put aside by most and made it easier for oil barrons to have their way or even believe their way was not so harmful.

But truth puts demands upon us, it demands that we want to find it. Lies throw baubles at our feet and lead us to death.

Accepting truth takes courage and may lead to confrontations.

Today we are living the consequences of lies, and may pay the dearest of prices. It is becoming more likely that we will not have a place for our children to live and find beauty and joy, for the earth is nearing a possibility of no longer supporting life.

And this is purely the result of a lack of truth and its concomitant requirement, honesty.

Honesty creates its own demands for it requires we look not just outside but inwardly so that we do not deceive ourselves.

Forces surround us urging us to be truthful or to lie. The meaning of life is to find truth and to live by it.

Life has been given to us in a most curious way, for we receive it with the promise that it will be taken away. This is hard to understand until we ask ourselves what we would do if death did not await us. It is quite imaginable we would do nothing. But it also brings fear, for we do not know what it means to die.

Ah, you say you have no fear of death for your god has promised you a life of eternity but god is just the name of the promise.

Many have gone to war thinking that if they conquer in the name of their god it will prove that theirs is the true god. But their wars are just a way to convince themselves, and not a search for truth.

The earth has suffered monumental destruction as we have confused wealth with well-being, and so we have destroyed, pillaged, burned, scarred, killed and scarred because we would not see the lies behind wealth. And why would we not see it? Most often it depends on whom we choose to ally with, for the power of a tribe is many times the power oneself has and tribes often exist for proving they are of higher stature than other tribes, and this leads to a race to conquer or to acquire and both lead to destruction.

I play difficult music on the piano and enjoy it. But when I hear a true artist, who has spent a lifetime finding and creatimg the truth in the music I exhalt and despair. It is one of lessons of my life, for though I may have played a composition 10,000 times I experience again and again the beauty found in the music by a composer spending a lifetime finding the truth that reveals the beauty.

WE MAY HAVE ALREADY LOST THE PLANET

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/climate-change-tipping-points-amazon-rainforest-antarctic-ice-gulf-stream/

California Wildfires
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BELOW IS AN OP ED PIECE SUBMITTED (and rejected) TO THE NEW YORK TIMES

PREFACE


When I want to understand something important and complex I prefer to go to the most basic fundamentals known. Here, I would like to understand the meaning of existence, or for that matter, what existence is. This may sound hopeless, but I believe there are some things that can be known, or are at least plausible.

First, why do we exist? Second what is existence?

We are the most advanced form of life of which we are aware. We are conscious, sentient (able to experience) and have the ability to be intelligent.

A part of the argument is how remarkable these capabilities. There is no path to understanding sentience or, even more remarkable, how you, looking around you, experiences all there is from two small images on your retnas.

There is no way to reason from fundamental knowledge (e.g. why did the Big Bang happen) so I ask what is the best part of existence and I conclude it is beauty and joy. It is curious that scientists insist fundamental equations must be beautiful and they get infinite joy from discovering such equations. (See Einstein, Clerk Maxwell, Issac Newton.) However, I assert there is an implication that beauty and joy imply working for each other’s ability to experience beauty and joy. Why? The very idea of beauty and joy imply they must be shared.

So war and destruction are out as is prejudice.

Beauty and joy are not what you might think for they must include death, accidents, illness and other unavoidable sadness and loss. However, they must exclude all kinds of harm humans can inflict on others, and that all humans deserve the same human treatment from other humans. In other words, all humans are treated equally by other humans. Thus the forming of tribes to assert any kind of control, dominance or claim (e.g. chosen, or superior) are out. That leaves unanswered why a good portion of humanity acts like jackasses (e.g. by harming others or the earth or lusting after excessive wealth) whether as individuals or groups. My guess is that it is a leftover of evolution, that it was necessary in hunter-gatherer tribes and carried over when agriculture was invented.

So I want to understand why do we hate and kill each other and why are we killing the earth without which we would not exist. This is where the difficult work begins, but there is hope although there will be gaps in our understanding and ultimately we all must assert that this is the way existance must work.

Our tasks are to save the earth and our souls.

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The Great Human Mystery


Reciprosity Inverted

Every religion (as far I know) has incorporated some version of the golden rule. If taken seriously we would be a family, caring for each other. Yet a strange state-of-mind posses certain people. But the essencce is that at some point in their lives, certain people become hoarders. A good example is Mark Zukerberg who while at Harvard developed the idea of Facebook and thought it should be free and did not expect to make money from it until the cash started rolling in a billion dollars was no longer enough and in testimy to Concress he lied to protect his ability to expand his fortune. What happened is the question that affects all of humanity.

So...You Want To Save The Earth

So you want to save the earth my friend,

so you want to save the earth.

But there is so much to know, before you can know.

So much to think about before you can think.

You can begin at the beginning or at the end

but you must think about both in either case.


So what is so remarkable that we must do?

What is so remarkable that it has ruined my life

is the knowledge that those that knew and what did they know.

They knew, from the beginning of their business that

the carbon they made would act just like the glass

that in the greenhouse lets no heat pass and so warms

and warms and warms and catastrophes form all

over the land, and fires swallow, and drought slays

and scientists act surprised as they so often did before,

for their computers failed them.

So what must we do?


WE MUST CLEAN THE SKY.

I have had a good long life and I remember dreaming when war was cold,

when all we had to fear was nukes, and one or two brains put on hold.

I was probably eleven or twelve and would imagine how we would progress

over the years of my life and eventually would grow

to live in peace for there is no human reason to war.


But, despite some interludes, we have warred as much as ever

and my heart sinks for there is a religion here we do not recognize as such

for it hides from view as “free market capitalism.”

And so we have of, by and for the rich.

Ah! and Ah! again. The great divide, perhaps the greatest divide.

Perhaps from hunter-gatherer days, to accumulate beyond need

and so to covet no matter the cost, be it poor or rich, dead or alive

and so to live without Life.


CLEAN THE SKY?


of course you are NUTS.

Just 60 BILLION tons of carbon has to go.

I am fortunate beyond my comprehension

for every day I look up and out and see...infinity

laid out for me to enjoy I think, but the sadness is infinite too

for death is everywhere not by chance

but by those who know not of...beauty and joy

unaware of the mortal price paid

by those who cannot bring themselves to stop killing the earth,

when it may already be....dead.


But there was a difference with nukes, something we do not have now,

we had seen the pictures, we had seen the cause that made

two cities disappear, almost, for at the edges there were

survivors, who regretted they were chosen, for the pain was more

than their minds and souls could bear.


For me, I did not dream there could be such a surprise in

two thousand plus perhaps another five.

It is so strangely odd, so incredibly strange to have the nukes

reappear scattered in our back yards, all but invisible

except for my own mind that reads of CO2

and the ferocious thunder replaced by something silent,

a photo of tundra, yes my friend of tundra melting and burning

and quietly giving back, giving back what, you say and it is too much

for the joke, if one would call it that, is completely upon us.


The flame, it is so small, just a flicker, much less than a campfire

yet portentous, such an uppity word is so completely

not enough to wake the few among us, who could recognize the flicker

for oddly it was called positive, a joke, a joke a joke of, I know of no other word, a joke

not just on us but the flicker was of something burning

that would make whatever created us cry.


And if you should not know your chemistry (which is so infinitely likely)

that flicker was of the gaseous methane, so ironically tiny,

but in the play it was assigned a part, oh my god, a part of one

off stage, in the shadows, no light shining on the star that would do

infinitely more, yes infinitely more that those nukes

once feared, it would be just like your morning toaster seemingly

without consequence but only because we had not learned from that narrow escape,

to watch our backs for the flicker could take

every thing that mattered, all matter of a punishment,

that I am sorry to say, fits the crime.

SO, MY FRIEND, WHAT WILL IT TAKE?


EVERYTHING WE HAVE

FOR WE HAVE BEEN SO DAMN BLIND

we have stones for eyes, logs for ears, and selfish slime between our ears.

We cannot face the fact that we are an insult to all that Einstein found,

we may have in our care the miracles that bring us joy,

at least if we care for more than money.


I watched in 1959 when it was told to the men of oil

that their smoke was of a house that trapped

that which has destroyed already most all the earth

and still they brag

that they pursuaded that the great green deal

be eviserated...

My god, my god I never in my 80 years thought

humans of miracle minds, miracles that are so made

that the greatest students of the brain cannot

explain the miracle that can

create from nothing—

infinite

beauty and joy.


So yes, my friend it is filthy lucre

that men of oil collect far beyond their needs.

But they are not alone for humanity divides itself

into those who give and those who take

and are blind to it.


But there is even more infinite sadness

for I cannot bring myself to believe that living men are so dead

they cannot hear or see the great creations of humanity,

who even know of Michaelangelo or Chopin.

So you have a hint of what I mean, we are going to travel and see and hear.

I had the stunning luck to be in the Sistine Chapel as it was being restored.

It was as if I were watching Michaelangelo paint

and you can see my experience HERE.

Or you can click on the performance of Chopin below,

and listen until it penetrates your soul and

these are but waves in an ocean

we rarely visit.

Their lives have given whatever god created us to be but now it is

a reason to weep, perhaps to fill our oceans with

waters so sad

that those blind and deaf in spirit will find

no home for their bodies or their souls.

Is there a chance?

not to return it to what it was.

So what is needed and what could be? Ha! Face this my friends, for never has it been imagined, but just this week they rubbled a part of Miami and they would have to rubble All of it and move inland. No point leaving a ratty skyline.

New York? Perhaps a trillion or multi-trillion dike. Or more rubble.

But before that max 20 years emissions zero then trillions to sequester carbon and methane to the equivalent of 350 ppm carbon. Then rubble, move, wait, die, cry, sob, weep. And regret.

If all this is done, in a time I could not guess, we might recreate the spirit that saves and shares and creates and enjoys. A spirit now in only a few, but eventually, possibly in many, taught by those few.

TRUTH


hyprocacy

All the religions of the world have reciprocity or some form of the Golden Rule at the core of their mission. But for all intents and purposes, none practice it.
We evoled from hunter-gatherer tribes that kept the peace in order to survive. Then it has been said often the worst happened and agriculture was discovered which lead to two things: a far worse diet (corn, wheat, rice) and men with hunter’s genes now footloose, so of course they formed tribes that did not have to raise their own food, nor did they have any idea of the nature of existance, so they each invented their own. Ostensably the land of the free and the home of the brave committed genocide and slavery and it has not yet shed those sins, but it may be forced to.

There is no way the earth can support a tenth of its current population, so there is hell ahead.

Of course some will glory in the “end times” but will be just one of the major cycles in human education. Even the destruction of the earth will leave the universe intact.

There is the famous quote from John Greenleaf Whittier about the sadest words being it might have been. But that was and is not in the nature of humanity. What may be in the nature of humanity is the ability to grow.

How hellish the hell remains to be seen. It all depends on what comes up Trumps.

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Spring Morning After Storm

This is precisely what was happening. The trees were budding. There was a storm overnight and the horizon in back of me had cleared so the sun was shining under the clouds.

And a minute later they began to clear. We can only hope.

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PROGNOSIS


Huanity 2.0


1.The Dark Ages

2. The Earth Nearly Destroyed

3. The Second Renaissance

4. A New Earth

5. A New Kind of Life

6. Truth Reigns

7. Reciprocty rules

8. A new epoch for humanity

And as the storm clears perhaps we will recognize a few of the infinite miracles the creation of consciousness gave us and which we so seldom embraced. It is symbolic of how life can change and the new Epoch Of Earth will have begun.

Chopin: Andante Spinato and Grand Polonaise, Evegney Kissen


Perhaps a new spring.

Ipswich Sunset

IT IS LONESOME


The big bang will be lonesome without us.

The two most remarkable things in the universe are the big bang (or the Grand Singularity, as I prefer to call it) and the collection of living matter between our ears.

The big bang began as the smallest thing there could be, billions of times smaller than an atom, only to become the Universe.

And the universe took its own sweet time to make a solar system and an earth suitable for life.

Suitable, you say? I suggest The Goldilocks Enigma by Paul Davies, for “just right” means not one atom, not one elementary particle could be different, or there would be no you or me, and so no joy, or beauty or...anything alive. And Professor Wilchick makes one think: suppose there were no one to see, no one with sentience, the universe. You cannot imagine not existing. But he contends that it is consciousness that creates the universe and the universe that creates consciousness. Put that in your pipe and smoke it.

And if it is something distant we don’t understand, try to comprehend what happens because of what is between your ears. An infinity of thinking, and we do not have a clue how. An infinity of the experience of seeing and hearing and we don’t have a clue how.

I think it is good to think how collossal are our gifts, for how we use them is beyond words both for good and evil.

Why?

Existance


The Three Miracles

1. The birth of the Universe (commonly called the big bang) occured 10.78 billion years ago. Why? No one knows. God is the name of a cause, not a cause. I suggest watching Jim Holt’s TED Talk “Why is there something rather than nothing.” Or read The Goldilocks Enigma by Paul Davies. From the smallest thing that can exist, vastly smaller than a proton, emerged the entire universe. If this doesn’t make your brain spin you are not thinking. It is collosal to the nth power.

2. Follow the time-line of the universe in the wonderful NASA ilustration below.

The fact is that humanity as a whole is not aware of how miraculous is its existance and so is killing its own existance and planet.

3. The evolution of us from the dust of space.

There is considerable discussion these days that we are not alone, that there are millions of other planets. Perhaps. But I don’t think so. A simple argument that there are 14 or so requirements for higher forms of life and each has a 1% probability leads to a probability of 10-28 for existance of another planet like ours.

But it doesn’t matter because we have been given the third miracle: the human mind. I swear no one thinks about how ultra collosal it is and this is the same mind (with minor variations) for all humans. So we war on each other rather than learning about the universe and creating beauty that gives us joy.

So where do we go from here? If we don’t get our act together within days, and devote everything we have to take CO2 OUT of the atmosphere you can kiss the earth goodby.

Whoever or whatever is behind this must be weeping.

The history of the Universe: the birth of the earth, the evolution of homo sapiens (all of us); the biological nature of human-kind, the history of human-kind, and how we act toward each other and toward the earth is a disaster. Nations, religions, politics form tribes and war and kill for nothing.

It is up to you. I am nearing 80 so this is my best.

One more thing, and it may be the biggest one.

4. No one understands how two little images on our retinas and two little flaps of tissue at the end of our ear canals give us the experience of all of life.

Whoops! Still one more.

5. You white supremisists are from Africa just like everyone else. You just moved further north and your skin bleached out to give you more vitamin D with less sun.

The green egg is the leftover radiation of the big bang.

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What Is Left Of The Big Bang


Its Called ”The Cosmic Background Radiation

The best education about the CBR is here: Cosmic Backbround Radiation.

Below: The earth from space taken a few decades ago. Would you believe that the human quest for money has chanced how it looks from SPACE. And below that one of the commentaries about carbon sequestration.

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CaringForTheEarth.com


The Atlantic Council, May 14, 2021

“While moving to new energy sources and capturing carbon emissions at the source will play a major part of this, much of the solution will still need to rely on removing carbon directly from the atmosphere. Time is of the essence and getting there will require bold, radical technology innovation and scale up, beyond just limiting emissions or capturing at the source, but also removing CO2 already in the air and oceans.”

“THE WORLD DOES NOT “GET IT.”

We are in a vehicle moving at 90 miles per hour and just over the horizon is a four foot thick 400 foot high concrete barrier. Everyone knows about it.

And everyone expects we will fly right over it.

GET THIS: If we do not realize the crash is real we will insult the Creation by making this planet almost totally or totally unlivable. Someone or something must get this to penetrate the minds of the people of this planet.

The graph below shows my predictions based simply on the past temperature rise. We are following it. It predicts the death of the planet.

EARTH TEMPERATURE 5.xlsx
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Rembert’s “All Me II” (2005). The chain gang was ruthless, he observed: “I had to take on all these personalities. I only wanted to be one of them, but the one I wanted to be I couldn’t be. ”Art works © Winfred Rembert / ARS

The picture above is from the New Yorker. It was made by a “nigger” who spent years in a chain gang.
Here is the link:

An Artist and How He Survived the Chain Gang.

On March 31st, the artist Winfred Rembert died, at the age of seventy-five. He was born in 1945 and grew up in Cuthbert, Georgia, where he picked cotton as a child. As a teen-ager, he got involved in the civil-rights movement and was arrested in the aftermath of a demonstration. He later broke out of jail, survived a near-lynching, and spent seven years in prison, where he was forced to labor on chain gangs. Following his release, in 1974, he married Patsy Gammage, and they eventually settled in New Haven, Connecticut. At the age of fifty-one, with Patsy’s encouragement, he began carving and painting memories from his youth onto leather, using leather-tooling skills he had learned in prison. I met Rembert in 2015, while I was working on a book about criminal justice. He told me he wanted to share his life story in his own words but needed help writing it. From 2018 to 2020, I visited his home every two weeks or so to interview him. I transcribed and arranged his reflections and then read the pages back to him. Each time we met, we dug deeper into Rembert’s thoughts about what he had lived through. —Erin I. Kelly ©New Yorker



The Climate: A Real Catastrophe


Making the pandemic seem like a minor inconvenience

This is really hard to write about. Actually, it may be impossible.

Above I talked about curiositers. If we applied that idea say 60 years (give or take) ago and knew the kind of problems we would face, we might have a chance.

Now, we are on the edge of a cliff. Do you believe me? No. I know you don’t. How do I know? Because if you did the following would be happening:

1. A thousand people marching on Washington every week.

2. The New York Times would get off its ass and stop burying climate news (Hmm. Maybe burrying is appropriate.)

3. The nation would be mobilizing as if it were World War III.

BUT. ...The climate is the hardest thing to understand since....12,000 BCE (or Donald Trump; take your pick).

Do you know what amorphous means? Well just in case....

ADJECTIVE

Without a clearly defined shape or form.

‘an amorphous, characterless conurbation’

More example sentences ‘amorphous blue forms and straight black lines’ ‘Stretched along the umbrella's base, a large, pale gray, amorphous shape could be a shadow, a sack or a lifeless body.’

Got it? Makes no sense whatever. Right? That is just what it is like. The scientists have 80 computermodels to work with. How in bloody helldo you make sense of it. Here is how.

You ask this question? How bad COULD it get. Stop the damn arguing of how we will learn to live with it.

I was quoted in Tie Magazine that what we are doing is an insult to the universe. Why? We are crushing a rare precious jewell, but it is too amorphous an idea for us to get. So we are failing.

Nations Must Drop Fossil Fuels, Fast,
World Energy Body Warns


May 19, 2021

I said I was finished with this, then I read this in the NY Times which still burries it.

THE EARTH IS GOING DOWN. IF AFTER ALL THIS TIME THE Chinese are still building coal fired plants, WE ARE SCREWED.

This is from today’s NY Times. I said this 20 years ago but did not know how to get it out. And I still don’t.

A landmark report from the International Energy Agency says countries need to move faster and more aggressively to cut planet-warming pollution. 

A coal-fired power plant near Bergheim, Germany. The magnitude of changes needed is “still not fully understood by many governments and investors,” the head of the International Energy Agency said. ……

To reach that goal of net zero worldwide by 2050, every nation would need to move much faster and more aggressively away from fossil fuels than they are currently doing, the report found. ……

“But there’s still a huge gap between the rhetoric and the reality.” ………..

To reach that goal of net zero worldwide by 2050, every nation would need to move much faster and more aggressively away from fossil fuels than they are currently doing, the report found. to steeper cuts but China, India and Russia did not. China still has plans for dozens of new coal-fired power plants….

Enough.


Humanity doesn’t know how.


We Are Screwed


Tuesday, May 18, 2021


In 1959 Edward Teller warned of the dangers of ongoing carbon emissions. The oil companies ignored him and, for all intents and purposes, so has the rest of humanity.

I doubt anyone reads this stuff so it is time say a few final words (just in case).

When something as valuable as the earth is in mortal danger you don’t sit on your ass and see how it is going to turn out. And hope for the best.

You pull everything together to insure that it cannot come to harm. Somehow, the world doesn’t get it and MIT is one of the worst examples. So nuff said. We either go all out starting now, or humanity will have to deal with crazy heat, drought, flooded coastal cities, and chaos. I feel sorry for our descendants.

Evolution prepared us for a world that has disappeared over the last thousand years or so. It had millions of years to do it, and we have had only a couple of hundred to learn something new.

It will appear that with all the wind mills and solar cells and other programs that we are progressing. But the progress is too slow and there is still all that carbon that needs to be removed.

We need Pearl Harbor, Roosevelt and Churchill and several Manhattan Projects to scrub the air. We have the devil already doing his worst.

There is no more to say.

John

The Most Dangerous Words


“It will work out.”


Monday, May 17, 2021


1. The Republician Party will steal the next election.

2. That will lead to the destruction of the earth.

Heather Cox Richardson is a professor of history at Boston College. She writes a regular web column.

This is her most recent free part.

To learn more about her click here.

Then (or first) read her column below.<å/p>

TOMORROW: How the Republicans will (or have) destroyed the earth.

And, why I was quoted in Time Magazine.

May 16, 2021 Heather Cox Richardson May 17   

Representative Liz Cheney (R-WY), whom the Republican House conference dumped as chair last week after she refused to kowtow to former president Trump, said some interesting things to Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday this morning. She reiterated that House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy has information about conversations with Trump surrounding the events of January 6 and should be subpoenaed if he will not talk about those things voluntarily (and, by implication, under oath).

Cheney is bringing back into the media cycle a number of things we heard between the election and January 6, but she has said that McCarthy should be subpoenaed enough times that it’s hard to believe she is talking generally.

On ABC’s This Week, Cheney also repeated the information she gave last week: that Republicans were afraid to convict Trump in his second impeachment trial because they were frightened for their lives. You may recall that the chair of the House Intelligence Committee, Adam Schiff (D-CA) said something similar in his closing remarks in January 2020 at Trump’s first impeachment trial, and Republicans claimed to be outraged. Senator James Lankford (R-OK) told reporters: “That’s insulting and demeaning to everyone to say that we somehow live in fear and that the president has threatened all of us.”

And yet, sixteen months later, here we are.

Cheney is not the only Republican who is turning on the former president and his loyalists. Last night, Trump posted a statement claiming that “the entire Database of Maricopa County in Arizona”—where the bizarre “audit” is underway—“has been DELETED!” The statement goes on to make sweeping claims about “this unbelievable Election crime,” and so on.

But, in real time, the Republican recorder of Maricopa County wrote on Twitter in response to Trump’s statement: “Wow. this is unhinged,” Stephen Richer wrote. “I’m literally looking at our voter registration database on my other screen. Right now.” He went on: “We can’t indulge these insane lies any longer. As a party. As a state. As a country. This is as readily falsifiable as 2+2=5. If we don’t call this out….”

And Maricopa County did call it out. In a remarkable Twitter thread, the Maricopa County official account destroyed the effort by the private company Cyber Ninjas to recount the 2020 votes in that county. “The 2020 elections were run w/ integrity, the results certified by the county & state were accurate, & the 2 independent audits conducted by the County are the true final word on the subject,” the account said. “We know auditing. The Senate Cyber Ninja audit is not a real audit.” The account went on to list all the many ways in which this audit is simply a propaganda effort to shore up the Big Lie that the election was stolen.

This weekend we also learned that Joel Greenberg, the former tax collector for Seminole County, Florida, will plead guilty to six charges in federal court tomorrow. Greenberg is the man Florida Representative Matt Gaetz, a Trump loyalist, used to call his “wingman,” and Greenberg has worked his way down from the 33 original charges against him by promising to cooperate with prosecutors, presumably to offer information about people above him in the food chain, possibly including Gaetz. On Friday, media reported that witnesses could place Gaetz at a party with Greenberg, as well as lots of cocaine and sex workers, one of whom ended up with a “no-show” government job.

Gaetz has compared the accusations that he has been “falsely accused of exchanging money for naughty favors” with congressional earmarks. I’m afraid I have no idea what point Gaetz is trying to make, but I’m flagging all three of these stories because they illustrate an important point: that a one-party state is bad even for the party that holds a monopoly and that, together, these stories reveal that the Republican Party is nearing the end of its dominant run in our democracy.

One of the key functions of a strong opposition party in a functioning democracy is oversight. Human nature being what it is, there are going to be bad eggs in every organization, including governments. It is in everyone’s best interest to expose the Joel Greenbergs of a party long before they hit 33 federal indictments and threaten to torpedo a highly visible lawmaker. But by marginalizing the Democrats through voter suppression, gerrymandering, and media attacks, the Republicans undermined that oversight and grew some terribly outsized scandals.

Manipulating the system to gain power without oversight, a party can close ranks even to the point that its members are afraid to speak out. The contrast between the fury unleashed when Schiff said lawmakers were afraid for their lives and Cheney’s acknowledgement of that fear illustrates what a closed circuit the Republican Party became under Trump. It could be, of course, that their fear is entirely new, but it seems more likely that they rejected the oversight that would have helped them throw off Trump before it got to the point that party members were afraid to speak out for fear of their own safety.

This sort of political domination might seem like a great victory, but it is actually suicidal in the long run. The party becomes so extreme that it finally alienates even its own members, like the Maricopa elections officials or Representative Cheney. They turn on the party leadership. And if they join with the party’s opposition, they can empower the regime’s opponents, enabling them to restore voting rights, end gerrymandering, and make the playing field level again. This restoration of fairness swings the pendulum away from the dominant party pretty dramatically.

The fear that the American people will end the Republican Party’s dominance, of course, explains why Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has declared that his primary goal in this Congress is to make sure the Democrats cannot pass the For the People Act to make voting easier, end partisan gerrymandering, and end the influence of big money in politics. McConnell and the Republicans want to protect Trump’s corporate tax cuts, and to do that, it is imperative that they regain control of Congress. And for that, they need the tools they have developed over the past generation, tools the For the People Act would take away.

It’s a Catch-22. To win, the Republicans need to hamstring the opposition. But as they did that over the last generation, they undercut the oversight that would have kept the party healthy. Now the Republican Party runs the risk of alienating voters it desperately needs as it faces a scandal of sex and drugs, a profoundly troubled election “audit,” accusations that party members are afraid to speak out because they fear for their lives, and suggestions from the former third-ranking official in the House Republican conference that the first official in the conference should be subpoenaed.

—- Notes: https://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/cheney-sunday-show-interviews-gop-leadership-ouster https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/2020-election/gop-senators-incensed-schiff-head-pike-remark-impeachment-trial-n1122761 https://www.cnn.com/2021/05/14/politics/liz-cheney-republican-party-cnntv/index.html  Stephen Richer—Maricopa Cnty Recorder (prsnl acct) @stephen_richer Wow. This is unhinged. I’m literally looking at our voter registration database on my other screen. Right now. We can’t indulge these insane lies any longer. As a party. As a state. As a country. This is as readily falsifiable as 2+2=5. If we don’t call this out...  May 15th 2021

No Ordinary Time


Saturday, May 15, 2020: Are there true heros yet to appear?

Doris Kerns Goodwin wrote an extraordinary book about Elinor and Franklin Delano Roosevelt called No Ordinary Time. It brings to mind so many memories: William Manchester’s The Last Lion about, of course, Winston Churchill who with Franklin, some luck, infinite heroics intelligence and commitment won the most dangerous war in history. That would take a book just to list the heroes.

Joe Biden might pull it off, but I joke that the devil has already vacated hell obviously to avoid being there when DT arrives.

To jump to the top of the list, what is at stake is the earth. Time Magazine quoted me recently in “Conversations” that humanity is an insult to the universe based on how it treats the earth. I think this is true. A monumental icon of Creation and we treat it like a play pen. I do not believe it can be rescued.

The president of MIT just announced MIT’s latest program on the climate.

Below was my response, slightly edited. There is a simple way of putting it: when the risk is such that the worst case is utterly unacceptable (the wings fall off the airplane) you put everything conceivable into fixing the problem. It is inconceivable that we are not doing that, or even close. Good night and good luck...

(See MIT’s New Climate Plan.)

“This strikes me as hopelessly “ambitious” yet diffuse to the point of uselessness. You seem to want to take on everything without recognizing the virtually hopeless position the climate is in.

The sense of ultimate urgency that is essential is missing.

NY Times Opinion: Climate Disasters

Any engineer who has ever applied risk analysis asks first for the worst case possibility. This is now the melting of the Antarctic Ice Sheet and a sea level rise of 190 feet.

This IS going to happen. Because of self-interest and limited science comprehension the present attitudes, around the world, will modify slowly which means that progress toward targets will be, as it has in the past, far slower than necessary.

Next. Even if targets are met we are left with a thousand years of gasses in the atmosphere that will continue to warm the planet.

Projecting long term (2100) a reasonable estimate puts the inhabitability of the planet to 1/10 of what it is at present. Sea level rise plus temperature maximums plus storm intensity will be catastrophic.

Yale: Negative Carbon Emissions Needed

Title: “negative carbon emissions needed to meet 2 degree warming targets.”

2° C has been considered a disaster, yet by 2100 we will be far higher than this.

Below is a simple extrapolation of NASA temperatures based on data to 2017. The new temperature point I have added for 2020 makes my worst case guess optimistic. The dashed blue line shows 2020 temperature at 1.27°C rather than my original worst case of 1.1°C. I am not a climate expert but an engineering estimate---well getting more frightened is not good for me.

What we need is a WW II type investment in “Manhattan” projects to create negative emission capability to reduce the risk ) of calamity plus an ultra urgent effort to get present emissions to zero.

Putting such projects before the world with the weight of MIT behind it could frighten nations and populations to get serious. The colossal scope of what is necessary to bring greenhouse gasses back to say 350 ppm should create deep fear and hope at the same time, and change the behavior to something such as Pearl Harbor did to ignite action in America in WW II.

It could well be the equivalent of a thousand(s) of nuclear reactors running air scrubbers.

I was responsible for quality control and reliability at Bose Corporation in its early days, and developed a sense of what risk meant in terms of total product failure or even burning a house down. The same came with some work I did for NASA under contract to Bose.

I was quoted in Time Magazine “Conservations” recently that our treatment of the earth is “an insult to the universe.”

We are the only known planet that is inhabited by “intelligent” beings, and we are destroying it.

It is a crime for eternity and any significant worst case risk is unacceptable.

Yet as homo sapiens, we just don’t “get it.”

Reading the early history of civilization it strikes me that our thought processes are still mired in the first millennium. Our dismal teaching of science results in deep comprehension being non-existent. The simple fact that attitudes split entirely along political lines testifies to tribalism rather than open-minded intelligence.

MIT needs to create an education effort that will make the world realize this and act accordingly. Then it needs, rather than reducing its own trivial footprint, to develop negative emission plans that bring us hope.

I have no sense of this urgency from the current “Plan.”

John Wawrzonek VI ’63. '65, '67.”

WHY?


To Know Truth, my Friend, to know Life.

Since the shooting of 20 children in Connecticut where my niece’s pastor husband counseled the first responders; since as an engineer discovering the insane threat of global warming; since our former president threw rationality into the trash, since we have started two major wars for no reason, since my beloved America showed itself to be a country of, by and for the rich I have been haunted by reality creeping in.

I will present what I have learned in diverse reading and thinking. I want to know why humans exist, what is our true nature, how the universe came into existence, why “righteous” people kill others, wholesale, why we believe what we believe and why we have not learned from history. So the running question is simply “Why?”

If there was ever a critical point in human history it is now for two monumental issues hang in the balance: will democracy survive and will the earth survive and why we are letting this happen.

A supreme warning is the support our former president has received from so many individuals and especially evangelicals. The contrast between belief and behavior is astounding, although the Billy Graham side of evangelicalism and its publication, Christianity Today, have denounced our former president although they represent about 20% of evangelicals.

I usually like to begin at the beginning which here would mean the big bang, but good novels often begin in the middle and then back-track.

To avoid visual boredom I will intersperse my “LightSongs” or natural landscapes. Clicking on the image will take you to the appropriate gallery on my photo website.

Volume 1 No. 2 Early May 2021

IDIOLOGY


The Invisible Scam

This would fit well under the "big lie" heading.

As I find in so many situations, common usage of names and concepts can be hugely misleading and can cause enormoous harm. So I begin with two of the biggest.

What is an ideology? Lexico defines it as “A system of ideas and ideals, especially one which forms the basis of economic or political theory and policy.” However in practice it clears the way for solutions to problems without defining the problems. Hence “low taxes and small government” has huge misleading implications. Without thinking carefully it sounds good, especially to those less well educated. In practicce it has fostered an enormous redistribution of wealth from the middle class to the already rich, while decieving the rest of us. A good overview is The Top 1% of Americans Have Taken $50 Trillion From the Bottom 90%. Click on it. It’s a great overview in Time magazine.

This is plain robbery and it began with Ronnie Regan and “trickle-down” economics. It goes along with America’s real religion, the “free-market economy” whose name is just as deceptive. A free market sounds good, but what it really means is that business can do whatever it wants to, such as clobbering labor unions and generally killing regulations. Which then means it can kill people.

The Question of Questions


What Should Life Be?

If one cares about humanity. If one realizes what impossible gifts that make our lives possible. If one realizes that the human mind is the greatest thing in the universe?

Let me repeat that. Raise the curtain. Step out onto the stage, the stage of all of humanity and scream with every ounce of energy you can put into your voice:

IN ALL THE COLLOSAL UNIVERSE—

THE HUMAN MIND IS THE CREATEST THING THERE IS.

FROM WHOMEVER OR WHATEVER CREATED US, WE ARE THE PURPOSE FOR THE EXISTANCE OF THE UNIVERSE.

And we don’t believe this. We act as if Life were cheap. In all the discussions about democracy, liberalism, conservatism, racism, I have heard one, I repeat, one discussion about the nature of human experience.

He is 92 years old. He is a professor emeritis at MIT. His name is Noam Chomsky. And he knows the soul of human kind. You can read the interview in the New York Times but I will give you the essence in my own words.

The human mind has infinite capacity for learning and creating beauty and joy. It consists of billions of neurons, countless interconnections, synapsis, between the neurons and no one has a clue how it can think. As far as I can tell from my own experience no one even thinks about what it does and is doing for you and me this minute.

From two small images on your retinas it is creating the experience you are having. It is called sentience. And no one knows how it happens.

And from two small pieces of tissue at the ends of your ear canals vibrating you can hear a symphony, know every sound around you, decipher languages. And no one knows how this experience happens.

Study the examples below: my grandaughter, a fabulous pianist, a picture of trees. And I will give you one more. The image above was created from a photograph of one, I repeate one, saxophone. Look for a minute and you will find them.

So what does this mean for politics, government, society, liberalaism, conservatism? Do we argue for the ideology of low taxes and small government. Do we do so much advertising of commercial products that we create an alternate reality.

Ideology is the straightjacket of the mind, a way to get what you want and to avoid having to think. It solves problems without knowing what the problem is. It has moved trillions of dollars from the middle class to the very rich.

What do we do? We think. We use this fabulous gift to figure out what we should do to make a life FOR the people, not for the rich. So we must abandon the tribalism that forces upon us a compressed life. Conservatives argue that social programs are redistributing wealth. What the hell have they been doing since Ronald Regan, but moving money into the pockets of the already wealthy. The give us trickle down economics, which means licking crumbs off their boots. They give us Sam Brown destroying Kansas. The give us dead coal miners. They give us the free unregulated market where all that matters is shareholder wealth. And if jobs disappear, tough shit. Figure it out yourself.

And they elect a total asshole as president who would sacrifice the earth for his own benefit. Who comprehended nothing but the flow of money into his pocket and who sacrificed aat least 200,000 American lives by not telling the truth about the virus or dealing with it with a bit or intelligence. He is guilty of genocide and treason.

We were first warned about global warming in 1959 by Edward Teller speaking to an oil association dinner. I think we are going to loose the planet. We will never do what needs to be done for the task is collosal and there is no one to teach what global warming really is. To teach the science.

I could create that picure above and many more like it because my basic needs were taken care of. And I worked hard. Please read on, and I hope you catch my drift.

Oh! One more thing. The picture below is also made from one straight shot of one saxophone.

Untitled photo

Look


But do you see.

There are three lessons below. They are about issues I think important for they will determine our future.

The first comes from my experience as a photographer and is about learning to see. There is a counterpart about hearing and for that I have put my favorite Chopin below. If it doesn’t move you a good lesson in hearing is to listen to it as if it were a lesson for how to get into heaven.

The second is about the color of our skin. Not knowing that it is a trivial result of the latitude of our early migrations gives us so many reasons to look down on others.

Thirdly, I have been reading Karen Armstrong’s book about the Bible, and I realize that we have never thought about ourselves as one family and whether or not we are depends on your outlook. However, our genes tell us that we are and not thinking so makes life a horror for much of the planet.

We also fail to think of our planet as a gift of a home, and even more importantly, we haven’t a clue about the miracle between our ears and so do not use it as we should.

Finally, just saying the words is just repeating things already heard that have not registered. So instead of preaching, I am trying out poetry for the first time in my life. The poems feel like songs to me and the melodies keep ringing, so consider it as if it were my homework for Poetry 1.01.

However all this strikes you, for me it is a bit of help in retaining my sanity as I become more and more aware of the insanity that surrounds me.

Beyond this short introduction are the leftovers of earlier versions of this website. If I can I will try to make use of some of them.

End of Volume 1 Number 2



Spring Flowers

From the Pike: Weston, Massachuseetts




So try to hear the cries my friend, so try to hear the cries—

and wonder why they come so much, they come in with the tide,

they come with codes of color, of black, of white or brown.

I scream that we do not ask—

Why?

With minds miraculous we always need

a triumph of our banner

over some other be it green or blue or red

and although the dead lay dying on the cold

and bloody ground we do not think to ask—

Why?

Our minds, oh our minds, to any scientist of pride,

he and she will testify there is no greater miracle

in all the universe, than that which sits

on our shoulders, but cannot answer—

Why?

For those awake enough to ask from where the color came,

they learn it’s from our travels as we all left Africa

with about the same shade

but mom nature prescribes:

you must move into the sun and the vitamins it provides

less ye die.

Still, we learn or are taught to crush, any color other than ours

knowing and still not knowing—

Why?

The migrations that brought color.

Untitled photo

An island lost to warming.

Untitled photo

As I try to gather my wits after another night of screaming

I know the tide is rising of water and fool’s pride

for I know, I know, I know that none is better than thy

or those that laugh or sob or cry but I still do not know—but then

I read the twisted tales the scriptures tell of gods and souls in years BCE

no wiser than thee or thy or I, still my god oh my god still

millenia go by and scientists exhault of quanta and with blossoming pride

yet new tribes still war and war and war...

only to invent new kinds it now feels silly to ask again—

Why?

We have between our ears, the greatest of all creations but

it is blindly hidden from us, for it is too nearby, nay,

it is the most nearby that any thing of any kind could be.

Why?

Hah! You have got to be carefully taught the sailor said, you’ve got to be

carefully tought to ignore beauty and learning and joy just look down, look down,

so those below know the weight of crushing, laughing, exhaulting

Pride.

Spring Sunrise, I-90, Millbury, Masschusetts

So You Really Want To Know My Friend


You really want to know

I am reading a book (or rather was reading) by Karen Armstrong about the Bible, and suddenly everything becomes clear. The machinations of 500 to 1000 BCE fortell the circumstances we live with. Of coarse it was much worse then but the tribal warfare, the championing of this god or that god, the idolizing of kings, the wars give me the same feelings as our politics and relations between nations today. I am tempted to say it was much worse then but that is an impossible comparison. We likely have much more stability, but have multiplied our population without concern for the earth and developed armaments capable of infinite destruction.

We like to think our technology and study of history give us an advantage, but in our own way we have created a risk far greater than anything in the Old Testaament.

For decades I have followed global warming and we have blown it. What is happening today will not save us, for the programs have no teeth, the risks are not widely enough understood and from the lessons of the past 40 years tell us we simply do not have our act together for that would mean a broad and deep understanding of science. Instead we have anti-vaccine elements, right wingers who want to start a war, and conservatives who say we are taking away their rights by making them wear masks. I don’t know of a way to say it, but how bloody stupid can you get. I hear a five year old “you can’t make me to it.” And of course our former president abdicated his responsibility to the tune of at least 200,000 deaths.

There is much more, but the futility has gotten to me. And that’s the way it is. —April 26, 2021

hr>

Below are various parts of my images of life.

There are two poles and neither can be explained by science. The first pole is what life should be, which to me is learning, creating and joy. Joy has many components but the most important is that it is profound. It is NOT getting your jollies from firing a gun, it is getting deep pleasure from the most joy-full parts of life. Following are two examples.

The first is a series of about 180 pictures, in sequence with none edited out, of our grandaughter on one of here visits here playing with her grandmother and my taking of a series of rapid stills.

The second is a performance of the Chopin Ballade No. 1, Op. 23 by the Polish pianist Krystian Zimerman. It is perfect to me and I have played Chopin for 67 years or so.

In my mind I have slowly formed the concept that is essential, that this all began with an inexplicible event, The Grand Singularity (my name for the big bang), the smallest thing that can exist, progragressed through evolution of the universe and then to the evolution of humanity. It resulted in the most astonishing thing in the universe, the human mind. Life consistists of appreciating this and then the decisions we make of how to use our minds.

Below, two of my most joyful experiences.

History


The Short and the Long of It. And the proof.

It seems to me that all of human history for which we have written records (beginning about 1000 BCE) has been affected by the absence of knowledge of how we came to exist combined with a lack of understanding an apprecition of what we are. That in turn leaves us ignorant of what we should expect of ourselves. Sufficiently far back, prior to the inventure of agriculture, we lived as tribes of hunter-gatherers. In my readings this was a stable, successful culter for about 500,000 years. Tribes were constrained by the need to hunt and gather and evolved a culture that worked comparatively well, at least as far as we can know.

Some of our knowledge comes from studying and living with the last of these tribes that had not been assimulated and in a few cases apparently not significantly influenced by modern life. Incorporated in the tribal culture were rules intended to preserve a stable, mutually supportive lifestyle. It all changed between 10,000 and 5,000 BCE by the introduction of agriculture. In my view, the hunters needed new roles and their genes prepared as least some of them to be leaders of new kinds of tribes, eventually influenced greatly by the invention and evolution of religion.

I have not read of wars between huntert-gatherer tribes, likely because they did not have either the technology nor the time, being occupied with feeding themselves or with uprooting as necessary to maintain sources of food.

However, with farming being so much more productive and the human mind fully developed, war, power, domination, usually in some connection with religion began the evolution of new kinds of society.

When I read the history of the Bible, it ominously rings bells of modern life with constant warring in an effort to achieve supremicacy, and so reveals the consequences of concepts of god: a unifier around which tribes were formed and a source of conflict (think evangelicals supporting Donald Trump).

What seems to me to be the great failing is an inability to use the creativity of our minds on a large enough scale and the knowedge of science to embrace the joys of life which minimizing the need for one society (or tribe) to dominate others. A fundamental need to hoard (think Bill Gates worth 100 billion dollars); to dominate (America‘s invasion of Iraq) and multiply these over and over again and you have terrorism slaughter interrupting and destroying better ways of life.

Noam Chomsky, in his interview by Ezra Klein for the New York Times asserts the infinite creativity of the human mind and the need to provide a kind of anarchic socity in which it can thrieve. On the other side are conservatives who, it seems to me, withdraw into a ridgid rule-based shell agressively asserting that the rest of society join or be subjugated. The flip side is artists and scientists that are free to create and exault in it. At this moment (April 2021) we are sitting on a knife edge about how things will go complicated enormously by a pandemic and the earth pushed to be edge of destruction.

Above: The cosmic background radation proving the existance of the big bang.

Utterly Unacceptable Truth.

Pristine, Supreme, Whitness Began as Black or Brown.
And the genome is still there. In you, me and everyone else.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5772775/

Nielsen, R., Akey, J., Jakobsson, M. et al.

Tracing the peopling of the world through genomics. Nature 541, 302–310 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1038/nature21347

Abstract

“Advances in the sequencing and the analysis of the genomes of both modern and ancient peoples have facilitated a number of breakthroughs in our understanding of human evolutionary history. These include the discovery of interbreeding between anatomically modern humans and extinct hominins; the development of an increasingly detailed description of the complex dispersal of modern humans out of Africa and their population expansion worldwide; and the characterization of many of the genetic adaptions of humans to local environmental conditions. Our interpretation of the evolutionary history and adaptation of humans is being transformed by analyses of these new genomic data.”

How do we know?

You want to know what science is? Well here is one (my) EXPLANATION. Try it. You might get it. It’s pretty much seat of the pants (you’ll see).

One of the best things about scientists is that they do our work for us. The LOVE to prove each other wrong, especially if someone has come up with an idea they disagree with. And so we get a kind of scrubbing of information and data and evidence. Then the layman: “Well, prove it to me.” And I can’t. The only kind of “proof” that means anything is logic, like you may have done in geometry class, when at the end you wrote Q. E. D., the latin "quo erat demonstrandum,” or "that which we sought to demonstrate." Sience is evidence. Evidence piled on top of evidence until doubt slowly disappears and it becomes beyond even unreasonable doubt.

Why am I making this fuss. Because the whole world is going down right know because we never taught this at all, or thoroughly enough even to PhD lawyers, or economdists. And so civilization is on the brink.

At this moment in 2020 the race is tearing us apart but we don’t understand it. We don’t understand a white mans’s urge to kill a black man. Or why there is a caste system in India, or why my tribe is better than your tribe.

I suggest you click on EXPLANATION and then ponder. Man, is that a great word because it means you have to open your mind, and in a sense that is what this is all about. Most of humanity walks around with brains behind closed doors. Solid core, heavyweight, steel plated doors. Once you believe it you own it. If scientists did that you wouldn’t be here.

Well, what do you know?

To the right is a “time map” or a time line. It shows the evolution of primates from 60 million years ago to about 100,000 years ago by which time we had our full-size brains (1.4 lieters) and for reasons not clear started to migrate north. ALL OF US are descendents of these dark skinned (coal black to brown) homo sapiens (the “wise ones”.)

The map above shows where we went: from deep in Africa to the tip of South America. The evidence is there: archeological and genetic. If you are white like me, it is only because as we went north we needed more sun to get more vitamin D. That is it. Plain, pure and simple. Vitamin D and sunligt is white superiority. Except there is more to the story, which is why we made it into superiority. I suggest reading: THE CASTE SYSTEM.

The Situation

This young man has lost his island to global warming.

Within this catastrophe are mysteries and miracles that are fundamental to understanding human tragedy and triumph, and yet are rarely if ever discussed.

Fifteen years of thinking about guns, shootings, pollution that destroys, politicians and a public that does not try to understand, and above all an education systme that does not teach. And what teaching is done is not to the people that need it most.

The causes of global warming, racism, gun proliferation have been known, in some cases for hundreds of years, but mainly by a few scientists.

The greatest mystery to me is that human beings seem to be programmed to harm other human beings, as well as the earth that gave birth to them.

The outcome has come to a precipice, or rather as begun a terrifying descent.

One of the greatest of the mysteries is that macro America is often American. But America itself has been a myth and a lie from day one.

America is not alone, but it is a terrifying disappointment to those of us who think about it and have loved it from the time we began to read. In combination with the covirus, it is terrifying, disappointing and depressing.

In this website I try to share what I think is important to know and understand. But I cannot answer the ultimate question: Why?, with one exception. How a president could cause so much harm, be so reluctant to learn and yet have the support of more than a third of Americans is a collosal: How is this possible?

Humanity Was Born Black


Could it really be?

So I have three engineering degrees from MIT. Does that make me a scientistc Yes. You had to have been there.

Heck, I learned science at home as a kid, watching my projects go up in smoke. Science and engineering intertwine like croheting. It goes both ways. You can’t have one without the other. But science is the concrte under everything and I rely on it. In fact, everything we have is because of science (and some engineering).

There are many things in this world that I try to explain to people, and they just don’t “get it.” This is one of them.

Donald Trump 1: I need to look like I know something. 2. Trump has only smiled once in his life. For his portrait. Genuine? I don’t think so.
3. In Putin's pocket. 4. Portrait of a politician as an empty man.

Learning, Creating, Sharing


Is what life should be

Why do politicans never debate what life should be?

Because living by ideology is easier.

Why is there not a consortium of scientists to save the planet?

Because they can hide behind their tenure.

Why is there no consortium of the rich to save the planet?

Because more is never enough.


1. Why do we not have a president of the United States?

Because we cannot recognize a king or a fool.

2. Why is our eduction so shallow?

Because scientist are afraid of politicians.

Our politiians debate and never mention Joy and Sharing.

3. In his pocket. Scientists hide in their bastions instead of joining and teaching as one.

4. The President of MIT, my alma mater, wrote me of another climate program. The last accomplished nothing. I asked "what took you so long?"

5. There should have been a Consortium for the Planet 50 years ago.

6. There should have been a Consortium For The People 50 years ago.

7. Universities, lawyers, politicians, think tanks are all isolations within which egos flourish instead of reaching out.

8. Tenured scientists can agree on nothing. There is no passion to their words.

Tenure is a wall 5 feet thick. Behind it, faculty can hide forever.

9. Gravity waves are more important than saving the planet.

10. Exploring Mars is more important than teaching people on earth.

11. Instead of teaching the meaning of life, we put a few men in orbit.

12. Our wealthly people want more.

They carry hundreds of billions in their pockets, while children die for lack of care.

13. Ideology is more important than Life. Where has our species gone wrong.

14. Hunter gatherer tribles care more for their own than our leaders care for their own.

15. We follow the devel into his den and come out devils.

16. Choosing the right god is more important than caring.


Here is one from when Amelia, our grandaughter, was 2 1/2 and playing soccer with her father, our son Greg. My wife Susan took the videos. Watch carefully. It’s the little things that matter.

This is Life.

What’s happening? The ball obeys the laws of physics. They are engaging each other. They are both learning without realizeing it, about themselves and each other and about the psysics of kicking the ball around. Susan showed me the videos and, very uncharacterically said “this is the meaning of life.” There is really no explanation. If you watch and listen and stop your own thinking, just “be” for a few minutes, you will know. Unless you see and hear only what you want to see and hear. That is a kind of mental death.

If there is one thing that is important about having meaning in your life it is learning, with an open mind.


And then there is Amelia. I photograph her a lot. Here is one visit. (click on the two arrows for full screen)

Evolution

Mysteries. This little chart actually begins a few billion years ago, but I am interested in primates and that started about 60 million years ago. You can follow the diagram. It the real highway from Australopithecus about 3 million years ago because that is when our branch happened. Homo habilis, homo erectus an homo sapiens 160 thousand years ago. Seems like a long time but as cosmology goes, its a second. But that second was important, for we went up the ladder and our brains became like the ones we have today and we started to move.

Migrations In Black and White

If there is one thing I would like to be taught in every school in the world is that we are all Africans, we are all genetically pretty much the same and our color came from too much or too little sun. That is what being black or white means.

Homo sapients who went north didn't get enough sun so evolution started to take mellin out of their skin and we became white, only beause humans with lighter skin got more Vitamin D, and their survival was a bit better. That's what being white means. Being white is just like taking your vitamins at breakfast.

What’s Right, What’s Wrong

I learned something a long time ago in raising Greg. He pulled something that was not o.k.

What do I do? First I tell him how great he is. Slowly, I remind him of different things about him. It’s the only way. To be better you have to start from how good you are.

That, in my book, is one of the secrets of life.

How do I know that it could “really be.”

Scientists put there lives on the line to gather “evidence,” yet most be don’t have a clue what that means. Science committee chairman in congress say they don’t believe in science. I have tried to expain it:

Above. The migrations from Africa that populated the world.

In The Other’s Shoes


Reciprocity

Tell me what you love about life?

Tell me what is hard for you.

Tell me what brings you joy.

Tell me what makes you afraid.

Tell me what makes you want to dance.

Tell me what makes you want to run away.

Tell me what you want me to know.

Now, it is your turn to ask me.

We will be wearing each others shoes. And be friends.

And more understanding.

How Could This Have Happened


Hunting and Gathering to Chopin in a Cosmological Second

I don’t want a movie. I want to be able to dwell, and I often come close to crying. How did we get so lucky. She was like this from the day she was born.

And here is the ticket take time and really see her.

Intermission


There are times when you want something to sink in. Go get a cup of coffee, I’m going to change keys. I would like to discuss the important truths not mentioned. Some have surfaced recently. Others are just mysteries.


I play the piano and mine is a great instrument. How well? Medium amateur. Almost every day I play the Chopin B-flat minor scherzo. It is medium hard and I wanted to hear and see how the pros play it. So I got on You-Tube of course and tried all the big names. Great! And then I got to Krystian. He is Polish like me. He won the Chopin International Competiton at age 23. So I watched and listened and could not believe what I was hearing and seeing. I had never heard every single exactly right. Within milliseconds. I will give you another exanple below. Then since I was studying evolution I started wondering. How did we make the leap from hunter-gatherers. Same brain as far as we know. What did hunter-gatherers do that gave their hands this kind of control. But we now know if we work really hard at something our brains change, and our fingers develop skills they never had before.

How much practice. Perhaps 5 hours per day from the age of 5 or 6. But look and listen to what happens.

What is so great about this. Homo sapiens could move from hunter-gathering to incredable and beautiful skills. And Zimerman is one of the very best. Listen to the ballade. It’s 9 minutes. Watch his hands and fingers. Could you imagine this was possible? Not me.

I think of this as one of the gifts to humanity. Just one. There are more. Another one is your ears so you can hear this and your mind givees you the experience. I emphasize the gift part, because few of us know what we have been given and this is just the beginning and how many of us make use of these gifts.

We prefer getting rich and powerful and playing dirty politics and poisening the earth. Evolution and the big bang were incredibly generous to us. Why don’t we appreciate what we have. I don’t know why.

Zimermane tunes his piano himself. And Chopin who invented several new kinds of music. It almost makes me cry and I have heard it many times. Of course, besides our brains our ears have an amazing design. Altogether it is one of the marvels of life.

I think of all of this as gifts. It did not have to happen this way. It is also a mystery why more people do not listen to classical music. One reason is that just as Krystian’s brain changed, so does ours. We must listen enough so that we hear the music and not just the soud.

One more thing.

Frankly, there are so many things that make up human life, enjoyment and creativity I don”t when to start and stop. This comes to mind because I recently visited my otolaryengologist a the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary. I sat in somthing like a dentist’s chair and saw this illustration about two feet from me. Being an engineer I get a sense of how well things are designned and having studied hearing and psychoacoustics I know roughly how hear works. And yet this illustration, which I have seen many times, bowled me over. O.K. so it took a few million years and lots of false starts, but what resulted is a marvel, pure and simple.

Sound comes into ther ear canal and vibrates the ear drum which in turn moves first the malleus, the the incus and finally the stapes. Then the real work begins. TYhe cochlea is an analog to digital converter that sends nerve impulses to the audio section of the cerebral core tex. So I can hear. Someone or something has gone to a lot of trouble, at least that is how it seems to me.

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The Children of the Universe Movement


I don’t think you can figure out the meaning of life without knowing where we came from, what goes on around us. Its the bigger and then the biggest picture.

Why? It’s collosal like knowing you are descended from royality, on both sides. It might change how you think about yourself.

To the left is a galaxy like ours. We can’t take a picture of ours, so we are using a substitute. It will surely change what you think is possible. Its a very rough guess, but it contains 250 billion stars.

The universe contains about 100 billion galexies or 2.5 x 10 22 stars.

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A 17,000 Singer Virtual Choir

Why sure! Piece of Cake

Well, not exactly, but here it is. Just Click.

The Grand 17,517

Religion And The Big Bang

We are searching for the meaning of life and I think this may be the hardest issue. Science gives us some profound evidence from some astonishing space telescope observations. Most people have heard of the “big bang” but do not have a sense of what it was.

Describing it is difficult because in effect it is saying that everything all 10 to the 22nd stars were created from nothing, and that statement would raise some eyebrows. The best answer I am aware of is that the unverse was created from a “singularity” and a singularity is the smallest thing that can exist, far smaller than an atom or ever a proton and that leads to two reactions: Impossible or unbelievable. It did happen. The is plenty of evidence (see below).

Religion? The is no science in the Bible.

What to make of all this plus a few other things.

1. How we got here plus what we are is plainly stupifying.

2. Once the big bang happened everything seems to follow in logical order. Physics has taken over and the result to date is a very,very big universe full of unblieveable astronomical objects and events.

3. The bodies we got with the capabilities we have: seeing, hearing, thinking, experiencing, feeling, touching are also off the charts.

What is the point? I think we should have a reverence and astonishment of the gifts we have receive. But the big point is what we can experience and how much control we have over that.

The Biggest Leap

We make the bigggest leap there is. From the big bang, though 10.78 billion years to this performance.

About 5 billion years ago the earth began forming.

The combation of conditions for making the earth I have estimated as 10 to the -14 (7 conditions each with 1% probability). A similar estimate has been made for making evolution possible which gives a total probability of 10-24 for human life. It turns out that with enough practice the brain changes: it specializes in piano playing. Chopin specialized in writing. Steinway specialized in pianos and so we get this performance with 7.1 million views on U-Tube.

Where Did It All Come From


What were Hunter-Gatherers Like


There is more inforation than I ever imagined. There are dozens of primitive hunter-gatherer tribes to study, but I would like to provide a long quote from Psychology Today, because it surprised me so much.From Psychology Today“

“During the 20th century, anthropologists discovered and studied dozens of different hunter-gatherer societies, in various remote parts of the world, who had been nearly untouched by modern influences. Wherever they were found—in Africa, Asia, South America, or elsewhere; in deserts or in jungles—these societies had many characteristics in common. The people lived in small bands, of about 20 to 50 persons (including children) per band, who moved from camp to camp within a relatively circumscribed area to follow the available game and edible vegetation. The people had friends and relatives in neighboring bands and maintained peaceful relationships with neighboring bands. Warfare was unknown to most of these societies, and where it was known it was the result of interactions with warlike groups of people who were not hunter-gatherers. In each of these societies, the dominant cultural ethos was one that emphasized individual autonomy, non-directive childrearing methods, nonviolence, sharing, cooperation, and consensual decision-making. Their core value, which underlay all of the rest, was that of the equality of individuals.

“We citizens of a modern democracy claim to believe in equality, but our sense of equality is not even close to that of hunter-gatherers. The hunter-gatherer version of equality meant that each person was equally entitled to food, regardless of his or her ability to find or capture it; so food was shared. It meant that nobody had more wealth than anyone else; so all material goods were shared. It meant that nobody had the right to tell others what to do; so each person made his or her own decisions. It meant that even parents didn't have the right to order their children around; hence the non-directive childrearing methods that I have discussed in previous posts. It meant that group decisions had to be made by consensus; hence no boss, "big man," or chief.

The earth was ravaged and global warming upset a million years of stability. It is in the New York Times of August 2, 2020.

The cause: one fertility vs impotence. The fertility and food supply meant more children, but the impotence was mental. Hunter gatherers had a conception of time and space that was limited and no intellectual experience with large scale planning. Modern humans have failed dismillay.

Food and shelter came easily for a long time beginning just aafter the middle ages. The result was a popopulation that outran the moral and intellectual capacity of humanity. The best things in life went unappreciated, money

Tribalism in Animals ~ Tribalism in Humans ~ Political Tribalism Under Trump ~ Human Behavior

Challenging Evolution

When I began studying global warming some 20 years ago it was clear that the earth was heading toward the greatest disaster in human history: an environmental disaster that could concievably case, leave the earth uninhabitable. Yet efforts to address the problem, while substantial, have fallen far short, to the point that, by most scientific evalutaions, we act now in a way inconcieveable to most people and leaders, or we invite catastrophe. Yet that has become only a portion of the problem. Ignorance of science, globalizaation, nationalism, racism, and now the corvid virus and the American President, Donald Trump have brought us to a pivotal point in human history, a point that even 50 years ago, we would have considered impossible.

Yet it has happened and divisions among nations, races, political movements, ignorance of science, and the actions of American politicians and hostitlies or buttering up with dictatorships leave us at terrible risk with no plan in place and no guessing what the outcome might be.

On July 23, 2020 the president of MIT addressed a letter to the MIT community from which I quote:

“With this letter, we invite all principal investigators (PIs) from across MIT to help us define a new agenda of transformative research. The threat of climate change demands a host of interlocking solutions; to shape a research program worthy of MIT, we seek bold faculty proposals that address the most difficult problems in the field, problems whose solutions would make the most decisive difference.”

I responded with a not very cordial: “What took you so long?”

This is, despite the virus, the greatest problem facing humanity. It has been known since the mid-1800s that this was likely, and in the mid-1900s that disaster was almost certain. Yet America is in a stranglehold that is a reflection the totality of its history. Its present problems that leave it in no position to answer the call. So many failures and so much greed, such collosal ignorance of the science, and, with Donald Trump, putting politics ahead of everything, it is impossiblre to get one’s arms around the problem. The New Yorker in Tribalism Under Trum[ characterized the situation:

”We live in a time of tribes. Not of ideologies, parties, groups, or beliefs—these don’t convey the same impregnability of political fortifications, or the yawning chasms between them. American politics today requires a word as primal as “tribe” to get at the blind allegiances and huge passions of partisan affiliation. Tribes demand loyalty, and in return they confer the security of belonging. They’re badges of identity, not of thought. In a way, they make thinking unnecessary, because they do it for you, and may punish you if you try to do it for yourself. To get along without a tribe makes you a fool. To give an inch to the other tribe makes you a sucker.”

Scientists from across the nation should have occupied the capital 20 years ago, but there is an impotence that may be terminal.

It is the nature of tribalism, of groups whose necessity is in our genes, to be powerless to change no matter the evidence. Collective beliefs effectively constitute a religion to the point that disagreement is not concievable.

Conservsatives have coopted parts of the electorate and are challenging the very foundations of the democraccy. The president has plan to pack the Supreme Court. Nothing I can do here can summarize the confluence of disasterous breaks in the functioning of our lives, local, political, world-wide, that could do justice to this time.

We are left with just the one question: is there hope. Even if Trump is not relected, the jumbled mess left over still terrifies. So what do we do?

I’ve Got a Little List

What seems to me to be true:

1. Science, that discipline that confims knowledge, is beyond the comprehension of most people in all nations. Comprehension means to understand deeply.

2. The consequence is that religions and ideologies determine what people believe. Essentially, our belief system is, in practice, mideval. the enlightment and modern science not withstanding.

3. Explaining what has happened and will happen is nearly imposible.

4. Our politicians understand even less than the general public.

5. The gifts of creation: the earth, consciousness, sentience, intelligence are not appreciated. 6. Beliefs such as creationism and the supernatural bias most people.

6. The most educated people do not get a grounding in science yet

But if you don’t, or your nuturing gives you the short end of the stick, something truly dreadful may happen, and I have to answer what and why.

The what that comes immediately to mind is, of course, Donald Trump. His father gave him the most consciously limited nurturing that I had ever known about and to me the President is an empty, profoundy unhappy man. I feel monumental anger, but I also feel pity. What has this man missed, and what have so many other humans missed and why. It is the question of all time, and the question that goes along with it, is it too late to answer ituh

I feel sorry for Donald Trump. All of us are dependent on nurture in addition to nature, and apparently he got the short end of the nurture stick. He does what he does and says what he says because he doesn’t know any better. He really is today, at least, the equivalent of a five year old, without self-awareness.

The irony of this situaton is that humanity as a whole, has not done much better and that is the (new) topic of this introeduction.

I have felt for a long time that in his sub-conscious he is terrified of being found out. But now, he has an inkling of it and so goes to the only thing he knows, which is self-praise, which is also a begging for praise.

Where is our leadership?

The question before us is “what is life.” The problem is that it seems so obvious we do not try to answer it and we have not had to for the past 10,000 or so years.

With the advent of agriculture for the most part food was plentiful and the population of the earth exploded. Then, with the invention of the calculus in 1665 by Issac Newton, science was put on a foundation that has never stopped growing. Its effect was to make war still more terrifying and food still more plentiful, as well as building the industries and made modern life possible and began the destruction of the earth. Then came the perfect storm: A population ignornant of the most basic science, an industry that valued profits more than the destrruction of the earth, but the perfect storm was made by Donald Trump and the coronovirus. And one more thing.

American, the nation that had saved the world in two world wars, that had jump started modern technology revealed itself as a moral catastrophe: the last of the slave-holding nations, with the ravages of slavery continuing. America to people like my self who grew up saluting the flag, reciting the prelude to the constitution, singing God Bless Ameria, The Start Spangled Banner, and America the beautiful, found a tyranny of slavery in the form of white supremism and racism, and a government coopted by an ideology: low taxes and small government, all in parallel with a desperately shallow educational system with textbooks bleached white by being written in the south.

The America I believed in never existed. The meaning of life I thought I knew I could not articulate, and neither could anyone else I knew. But read on, I have changed my opinion about Life.

Civilization began someplace around 5000 to 1000 BCE with the beginning of agriculture, the invention of writing and the end of humanity liveing in huter-gatherer tribes. Scientific knowledge was non-existant and so knowledge depended on beliefs. Beliefs are a form of faith. They cannot be proven jsust as the existance of god cannot be proven. God is the name we assign to what we thinkks is a cause. But if you open the book of this bible, the pages arte blank.

They are not open to learning. Most commonly they are prisoners of ideologies, that vicious idea that quells the need to think but satisfies the need to feel special.

Reciprocity

How many know the meaning of reciprocity? It must be the foundation of civilization and yet I never hear the word. I have read arguments that this is a failure of evolution and that is a possibility but there is a trail from hunter-gatherers where what we know about humanity is not taught and so 3/4 of the world (or more) is ignorant of who we and they are.

I think the essence of the problem is that technology has made feeding and housing us too easy. Hunter-gatherers had to find a balance with nature to survive. And as the author of Sapienshas said, agriculture was the worst thing that happened to humanity. A healthy diet of great variety was replaced by two or three grains and a few animals all chosen because they could be raised in capativity and so a few of us are saddled with farming and the rest turned loose. The agressive ones went to war and have never stopped. Tribes wage war on tribes and that includes Americans. America is not exceptional and never was for it was built on the backs of blacks and we are not taught this. Worse, blacks are still slaves. Where do we go from here?

What it means to be white

Racism is a corrosive underlayment to our society. It provides a target for frustrated, angry whites, and yet they do not know what it means to be white, and no one is telling them.

The science is incontrovertable. We are all Africans. All (and I mean all) our ancestors migrated north. Some then went east into Asia. Those that we call European went north, and the simple fact is that as they went north the was less sun and evolution favored those with lighter skin because their skin generated the vitamin D they needed. That is it. If your ancestors went far enough north they were pure white, just because of less sunlight. But in our ignorant society that becomes white supremacy. Ha! So I am white. I sun burn. And that supposedly makes me superior. That needs to be driven home.

Global warming

It depends on the people and the planet. Will the combo work out a deal for survival? I certainly don’t know, but we have pushed it as far as we can. Even Joe Biden’s two trillion dollars won’t do, as Greta Thunberg has pointed out. Not even close. Fifty or even twenty years ago pretty straightforward to deal with, but the mystery of why we can keep on ravaging is a mystery. All the rallies are too late, I fear. There are too many people with what in reality is a fifth grade education, even with a degree from Harvard or MIT. There were no courses in human nature.

Psychology is the easy way to a degree and it does not teach the reality of human nature. Why have we not taught Fourty percent of America thinks this man is right. He isn’t right or wrong, he just isn’t. You can graduate from something in America knowing just enough to get a routine job. Those are mostly gone only to be replaced by...nothing.

Education needs a world wide revolution

Education must teach the true nature of humanity going back to the singularity that created us, the miracle that created stars and the planets, the miracle that created the earth, the miracle that gave us intellect, conscious and sentience. How many people know the glories of the experiences that are their for those that use all of their minds. Virtually none because we don’t teach it. We teach lies instead.

The remainder of this unfinished website elaborates on the issues sometimes more than once. It needs far more work than I am able to do.

Chapter 1, July 16, 2020

An Overview


America was the last developed nation to permit slavery and it continues to practice a form of it today. America is the wealthest nation on earth and the most selfish to its citizens. It escaped the life under an unjust king only to create a nation no more caring than that under the king.

Americans do not understand the processes in their minds (intellect, sentience, consciousness, introspection and self awareness) that make life possible, satisfying and potentially full of joy. They do not understand that their minds are incredible gifts from the universe with a stunning capacity for thinking and experience.

Americans act as if they do not know what living a joyful life could mean.

Americans prey on each other through ideologies that steal wealth and power.

The result is the wealthest, most poweful and most backward nation on earth. Its cruelity to its people and the peoples's cruelity to each other is incomprehensible.

The consequence, a failure of attention, awareness and comprehension, will be a succumbing to the ravages of the warming of the climate. A result of having only a desire for wealth and power ignorant of the meaning of life is a tragedy that is an insult to the powers that created us.

The Context


The creation of the universe 10.88 billion years ago from nothing was a feat of all that the universe holds. Cosmologists and astronomers have discovered the essence of what happend nearly eight billion years ago.

The intellectual power that should have excited all of humankind never happened. Other than a Nobel Prize it passed unnoticed.

The discovery of the calculus, a foundation for understanding the physical earth is unknown except to scientists and mathamaticians. The disovery, by thinking alone, by Albert Einstein of relativity is the domain of a sacred few.

Instead, the world is still divided into tribes that continually war on each other and kill millions of human beings for no justifable reason. Yet within this ignorance groups small and large make miracles of care. Selfless groups care for the sick, homeless, and hungry.

These are just a few of the gifts, joys and illnesses of the soul. I describe some of the others elsewhere in this website.

Now I wish to begin exploring some of the accomplishments, the beauties and joys of our creation, while searching for the reasons we are attempting to destroy it.

Below this young man is puzzled and distraught because the sea rose and took the island that was his home. He did not need to know this context to continue life nor will he need to know it when the sea begins to swallow his kin, companions, and finally itself. Only the universe needs to know its own creation is a failure, at least to this day in the year 2020 AD.

This young man’s island is gone. The ocean has risen and washed it away.

CO2 continues to rise. More land will become uninhabitable.

Untitled photo

This is a look I have seen often. It says
“I don’t have a clue what is going on but I have to look as if I do.”

It Is Time To Open Our Minds And Think.


It is our last chance.

If it were only one perfect storm instead of three. If there were a rock bottom.

I grew up in Polish America. Everything in my life was Polish until I went off to grammar school. We were oddballs. The Polish National Catholic Church had no allegience to Rome. Its leader, Bishop Francis Hodur got into an argument with Rome over cemetary funds, got excommunicated and so started a new church. In his 80s he presided over my Confirmation on the church’s front steps. But what comes to mind is confession and the phrase ”examination of conscience.”

When have you heard aanyone ask us to all look inside, and then explain what we have missed.

I was ready to blame this mess on evolution. But it’s not a mess everywhere. There is something called intllectual honesty. And if we taught it, things might be very different. And they are in countries with good leaders. Why not here?

We have a president who won’t read his briefing papers. He might as well be illeterate. Like a big chunk of America he sees what he wants to see, hears what he wants to hear and does whatever he wants to do. He would not comprehend ”examination of conscience.”

America has never lived up to its billing. Slaves arrived in 1619. “All men are created equal,” but Thomas Jefferson owned 600 of them. Our economy was based on slavery. Our industrial might was built on the profits of slavery.

Tribal politics is destroying us. It’s great to be better than someone else, so we kill George Floyds by the thousands.

Ideology of our kind is a scam. Low taxes and small government sounds good to Trump’s base, but it is a scam. It makes billionaires. It takes from the poor and gives to the rich.

Where the hell was American education. It was based on an ideology. Low taxes and small government as it reads today. Ideology is a license to do whatever you wish. Set the strategy before you know what the problem is. Ah! But you know the goal. Keep slavery going. Separate but equal. Red lining. Gerrymandering. And Newt Gingrich telling us all the best words to demonize Democrats. Where the hell did this come from. Conservatives have stolen America. Billionaires by the bushell. 5.4 million Americans loosing medical care.

To be human you have to think. To be joyfull you must connect will all people, and not just white superiors.

I have wondered for a long time why no one discusses what made whites white. Genetics proves it. We migrated further north where there was less sun. And evolution took care of us. It took the darkness from our skin. We live in the shade, so to peak, and didn’t get enough vitamin D. That is it. Completely. Except that poor white supremists, like so many in America are neglecteed more than the poor in any other developed country. Abe, Franklin where are you when we need you the most

Let’s begin with The Donald and a former Republicin, George Will, who resigned from the party with the election of Trump. He recently wrote the following for the Washington Post.

Sizing up where there is no rock bottom.

It is time to see and to hear, but we are we prepared for it?

Revelations in the age of Trump, the virus and global warming.

"This unraveling presidency began with the Crybaby-in-Chief banging his spoon on his highchair tray to protest a photograph — a photograph — showing that his inauguration crowd the day before had been smaller than the one four years previous. Since then, this weak person’s idea of a strong person, this chest-pounding advertisement of his own gnawing insecurities, this low-rent Lear raging on his Twitter-heath has proven that the phrase malignant buffoon is not an oxymoron.

Presidents, exploiting modern communications technologies and abetted today by journalists preening as the “resistance” — like members of the French Resistance 1940-1944, minus the bravery — can set the tone of American society, which is regrettably soft wax on which presidents leave their marks. The president’s provocations — his coarsening of public discourse that lowers the threshold for acting out by people as mentally crippled as he — do not excuse the violent few. They must be punished. He must be removed.

Social causation is difficult to demonstrate, particularly between one person’s words and other persons’ deeds. However: The person voters hired in 2016 to “take care that the laws be faithfully executed” stood on July 28, 2017, in front of uniformed police and urged them “please don’t be too nice” when handling suspected offenders. His hope was fulfilled for 8 minutes and 46 seconds on Minneapolis pavement.

What Daniel Patrick Moynihan termed “defining deviancy down” now defines American politics. In 2016, voters were presented an unprecedentedly unpalatable choice: Never had both major parties offered nominees with higher disapproval than approval numbers. Voters chose what they wagered would be the lesser blight. Now, however, they have watched him govern for 40 months and more than 40 percent — slightly less than the percentage that voted for him — approve of his sordid conduct.

Presidents seeking reelection bask in chants of “Four more years!” This year, however, most Americans — perhaps because they are, as the president predicted, weary from all the winning — might flinch: Four more years of this? The taste of ashes, metaphorical and now literal, dampens enthusiasm.

The nation’s downward spiral into acrimony and sporadic anarchy has had many causes much larger than the small man who is the great exacerbator of them. Most of the causes predate his presidency, and most will survive its January terminus. The measures necessary for restoration of national equilibrium are many and will be protracted far beyond his removal. One such measure must be the removal of those in Congress who, unlike the sycophantic mediocrities who cosset him in the White House, will not disappear “magically,” as Eric Trump said the coronavirus would. Voters must dispatch his congressional enablers, especially the senators who still gambol around his ankles with a canine hunger for petting.

In life’s unforgiving arithmetic, we are the sum of our choices. Congressional Republicans have made theirs for more than 1,200 days. We cannot know all the measures necessary to restore the nation’s domestic health and international standing, but we know the first step: Senate Republicans must be routed, as condign punishment for their Vichyite collaboration, leaving the Republican remnant to wonder: Was it sensible to sacrifice dignity, such as it ever was, and to shed principles, if convictions so easily jettisoned could be dignified as principles, for . . . what? Praying people should pray, and all others should hope: May I never crave anything as much as these people crave membership in the world’s most risible deliberative body.

A political party’s primary function is to bestow its imprimatur on candidates, thereby proclaiming: This is who we are. In 2016, the Republican Party gave its principal nomination to a vulgarian and then toiled to elect him. And to stock Congress with invertebrates whose unswerving abjectness has enabled his institutional vandalism, who have voiced no serious objections to his Niagara of lies, and whom T.S. Eliot anticipated:

We are the hollow men . . . Our dried voices, when We whisper together Are quiet and meaningless As wind in dry grass or rats’ feet over broken glass . . .

Those who think our unhinged president’s recent mania about a murder two decades ago that never happened represents his moral nadir have missed the lesson of his life: There is no such thing as rock bottom. So, assume that the worst is yet to come. Which implicates national security: Abroad, anti-Americanism sleeps lightly when it sleeps at all, and it is wide-awake as decent people judge our nation’s health by the character of those to whom power is entrusted. Watching, too, are indecent people in Beijing and Moscow."

“TRUMP MUST BE REMOVED. SO MUST HIS CONGRESSIONAL ENABLERS”

II. It is so close we forget it is there.


It is time to see and to hear, but we are we prepared for it. Evolution has blown it.

Revelations in the age of Trump, the virus and global warming.

In his popular book Sapiens, Yuval Noah Harari gives a long harangue about the word “equal” as it is used in the American Declaration of Independence, that there is no such thing. We are obviously not equal and the idea of equality only exists in our imaginations.

It is not unusual to dodge this issue, as physicists do it all the time in leaving emotion, intellect and sentience out of their “theories of everything.” The impliction of Harari’s harangue is that the Declaration of Independence is meaningless and he is clear that that will leave many very uncomfortable. I don’t agree with him.

He seems not to have realized what “equal” means. But he lost the argument a million or so years ago for we are all of the same species. We breed and our offspring are not sterile and that is all the Declaration can mean despite what the slave holder Thomas Jefferson had in mind.

What put us here? We may attribute it to god, that god is just a name. There are many gods and no eplanation.

There was a time when a singularity (or something like it) happened. Our science is good and we can calculate with fair certanity that it was 10.78 billion years ago. After that the universe seems to roll on through stage after stage one inexorably following another, or so it seems to me. We can even take a peek. The green egg is a masterful feat of science as it is a picture of the after glow of the big bang.

This sudden event created everything including this earth and the earth as best as I can tell was unlikely, and we even more so.

Psysicissts have determined at least seven unlikely conditions for the earth to exist. At a chance of 1% for each we arrive at a probability of 0.01 to the seventh power or a millionenth billioneth chance. Evolution was about the same which gives us 10-28 as a rough guess as the probabality of our existence. And that was just the beginning.

Click for the collosal story of this collosal piccture.

What We Give For What We Got


The hidden world of the nearby.

Have you ever thought about what LIFE is? What it is that goes on inside your head that gives you intellect, sentience (the experience of the world), joy, emotion and a few thousand other things.

Stop. I preseume you are sitting down. Now close your eyes, say for 10 seconds. Oblivion. A faint glow and nothing else. Now open your eyes. What is happening is that your eyes form two tiny upside down image on your retinas. From these two images your brain builds the most realistic, three dimensional, motion picture of the world. Look out the window. Look at your wife. Look at the piano across the room. Not only do you know where they are but they stay put when you move. When they move, even rapidly your brain keeps track of everything.

Science has only the vagest clues how this happens. And, lest we forget the ears do this too.

We get to hear and listen to an infinite array of experiences. What do we do in return. Well that depends on who you are, but few people think about it. But a large number hate and kill and an even larger number are destroying the planet we are sitting on. Some of that rain falling may be god’s tears. (if there is one; something else may have caused this)

In America the Declaration has never applied equally to everyone. This inequality is enshrined in the Constitution and even with the Bill of Rights the inequality continues to exist. At the beginning it was male landowners who ruled and, of course, slaves had no rights whatsoever. Women were excluded from voting. Yet Chopin was reincarnated in black music, the only American art form. We need to hear and see it now.P.P But the real problems rested with the ability for “freedom” to take a toll on ”freedom” and by concepts, such as States Rights, to leave all sorts of injustices in place. At this time, July 2020 we are in the clutch of what has been a defacto coup by consertavies to own the country and its government, and this has happened, Democratic presidents not withstanding. With minimal opposition by Deocracts tax laws have shifted wealth to a startling few in just a few decades. Accompanying this has been an assault of voting rights that has set the stage for a takeover, even if Trump is not relected. The conservative courts, the rules of the senate, the accumulation of wealth in conservatibe hands, the anti-labor laws, the low minimum wage, the ability to run stunningly profitable businesses with virtually slave labor and you have the most socially backward country among ths so-called industrialized nations.

The big question is why were some people driven to make it happen while others were lax in allowing it to happen. It may just be evolution that has created mankind in its image. How could that be.

Harari declares that the invention of agriculture was the worst thing thaat ever hhappened to humanity. It broke up the hunter-gatherer tribes in which we evolved to our present selves. When these tribes were brokend up there were (and this is my opinion) two kinds of people left to deal with the consequences of relying on wheat cultivation as the primary food source. Thus some, because they had no choice but to grow their own food found themseles at the mercy of the more agressive former hunters who simply taxed by taking food and using their free tie to (jumping over a few things) build empires and human nature was that empires, no matter how large, feared each other. Or perhaps justr wanted to be bigger and wealthier.

Some of this has moderated in Europe, at least for the time being. It has not moderated in America as witnessed by two wars it has started and by the concentration of wealth.

A country that had slavery written into its constitution cannot be a great country. A country that permits the after effects of slavery to corrupt racial relations is not a great country. A country what was captured by an ideology to make a few people wealthly is not a great country. A country that puts the planet at risk may not have room to exist. And the list goes on and on.

Freedom has a bit of an odd interpretation is some quarters. Being asked to wear masks by the top health agency in the country is an infringement of freedom. Perhaps in a nuclear attack some would imaagine the arrage of neutrons would miss them.

Turning down Abama Care aid and thus denying children medical care is a sin no matter which god you follow.

In smaller countries, Gernmany, South Korea for example the virus was brought under contro.

Our president’s leadership is to encourage white supremacy and to praise himself for what a beautiful job he has done. Killing tens of thousands of people by untter and total ineptness. Genocide. Crimes against humanity. The people should try him in a symbolic court and here at one time in one place the crimes committed by the worst human being we have ever known. But now he is not the problem. Saving people and the earth will take a miacle.

IIWe are faced today with several problems that threaten American democracy and the future of the planet. However, the focus is on events rather than probing more deeply into causes. This make finding solutions difficult or impossible. It can also cause solutions to fail over the long term.

Overcoming racism is not just a matter of laws and changing of behavior. Fundamental underpinnings must be corrected even if it takes a long time, otherwise the problems will simply reassert themselves.

Some of the issues are broard and apply to nearly every situation. Others are more specific and dealing with a problem that affects fewer situations or people, but must be dealt with within

Problems in a society need more than one person lighter colored is known scientificlly and, in my experience, not discussed in society in general.

Being “white” is taken by supremisists as a sign of superiority, yet the reason some of us are lighter is simple and has no significance except genetic history.

Homo sapiens first evolved in Africa and reached the rest of the world by migration north about 70,000 years ago, although there may have been several migrations spread over a period of time.

The knowedge to back this up is from fairly rescent analysis of genes found in ancient bones. In combinztion with archeology it presents what is to me, an earth-shaking revelation.

Our ancestors were all some shade of brown or black, the color coming from a pigment called melinon that protects skin from the sun. However, skin is where vitamin D is made and it requires some amount of sunlight. As our ancestors migrated north the amount of sunlight decreased as did the making of vitamin D. In less sunlight, humans with lighter skin were healthier and survived longer. By the time we reached Sweaden the melinen was gone from our skins, but with considerably less sunlight vitamin D was still made. Hence there is no meaning to whiteness escept for how far north we walked. There is nothing whatever that is “superior” about white skin, except it is a temptation to rally aound when a group of people have a need to feel superior. It is hugely complicated by the history of darker skinned people in Amerca being brought here directly from Africa and sold as slaves.

Our heritage, likely from hunter-gatherer times, is to sizze opportunities to make money. Cotton was in huge demand world wide and growing it was labor intensive. Blacks from Africa werr free labor.

The profits from growing cotton were enormous. Production by individual slaves was monitored closely and poor performance punished. Good performance simply meant the quota was raised. The need to keep track was so important it led to the invention of double entry booking, the core of modern cost accoun .

The profits from growing cotton laid the industrial foundation of America. It took the civil war to end slavery in its original form, but it did not prevent a new form of slavery. Southern states made it virtually impossible for blacks to do anything but work in the cotton fields for very low wages. Segration was endemic, and separate but equal was a fraud. Blacks were kept in their place, a practice that extends to this day and extends to the north. People of color attend schools supported by property taxes. Their low ownship of property condemns them to a lesser education. The tendency to tribalis means cultural differences keep class divisions in place and so the leadership of America stays white and male.

Myths about inferiority are deep and sometimes unconscious. Names on internet resumes are a givaway. and has included murder since the end of the civil war. For a long time it was lynchings. More recently it has been police practice and there is a large motivation to change police practice. But if the perception of people of color as less intelligent (educztion is inferior), less employable, and of a different culture. They are not like us and in the abscence of an overall socital change attitude towards people of color, predicue will continue, and possibly (or likely) make reform difficult and will cause it to erode over timer.In parallel the neglect of working class whites by white liberals will keep white supremacy alive. It is a deeper problem than a reform of police practic.

III. Tribalism: Wealth and Power


American Myths

Since the introduction of slaves to America in 1614 racism has been a fundamental issue that runs counter to the supposedly free society we were building. Blacks were monitized (made into property) and used to build wealth from supplying the world with cotton at very high profits. However, descriminization on the basis of biologicl issues has now come to include LGBTQ, with violence a continuous problem. LGBTQ has even become a problem in the world of commerce when religious beliefs are claimed to give the right to refuse service. This strikes me as insane just as there is an insistance that "freedom" allows one not to wear a mask, to deny medical care because it is supplied by the government.

The religious problem is fundamental because it has shapedd thinking for centuries and does not distinguish belief from knowledge. Although there may be much wisdom in some religious writings, everything must be characterized as a belief rather than knowledge. The wisdom (or dogma) cannot be confirmed. If one chooses to believe it is a belief based on faith.

With thinking based on religions with only a tenuous connection to reality left the rich powerful to control the rest of the population because of a failure to understand and deal with the fundamental equality of all people.

Finally, with the introduction of the steam engine around 1850 and the increased prodution of agriculture able to support a large population, the impact of humanity on the earth began to take on dangerous proportions. Simultaneous major advances in technology requiring much more scientific thinking made a very large population possible without requiring a rethinking of the relationship of the powerful with the poor or of industry with the earth.

Now, because of the ubitiquitous presence of phone cameras, the abuse of people of color has been documented and the George Floyd murder, fully czptured on video, has so arroused people that there appears the possibility of fundamental reform. However, in my opinion, progress is unlikely in any of the problem areas. A scientific view of reality is rare and is difficcult to acquire. Taking a single course is not enough and without the benefit of the reality that doing experients provides, perceptions do not go deeply enough and with the convictions this supplies and especially with a vicious conservatism ready to pounce, anything the appears to be getting firm really is not.

Even more fundamental is an understanding of what life should be. Its purpose and nature is not part of the discussion. On top of all this, racism and especially white supremacy are based on a false understanding of what makes humans have skin of different color with the principle factor being lack of sunlight as populations migrated north. Evolution selected for lighter skin in order to provide sufficient vitamin D for health.

An enormously important side effect of race problems, the pandemic, and very shallow understanding of science, and conservative ideology that favors the accumulation puts the fate of the earth at the bottom of list of problems. This may well be catostrophic.

Finally, there is almost no appreciation of the process that created the universe, the evolution of modern humanity and the stunning powers of the human mind for creative lives of satisfaction and enjoyment. We are, I believe, at a tipping point in the history of humanity.

And this is by no means everything. Humans need tribes for compaionship and idendity. Idendity may be based on things innocuous such as a sports team, a shared interest, or it may be fased on a set of beliefs, either true or false. Tribal idendity often invoices a kind of acquired sense of superioity. Religios invoke the approval of god. Political partities provide idendity and support for an ideology. One of the most insidious exaples is "low taxes and small government." This corruption of humanitarian thinking has resulted in a tax structure that sucks money into the pockets of the already rich, creating the stunning disparity where 1% of Americans own 80% of America. The truly insidious side is the superficial appeal to lower income people. It all sounds good but does the opposite of the apparent promise.

Intermingled with this is a people of stunning generousity as can be seen from the response to the current health crises and the free market as allowed for great creativity. However, this creativity has put up to one hundred billion dollars in each of several different pockets while children die from hunger or a result of health car. Simultaneously, the reliance of school funding on property taxes means the rich get smarter and the poor stay poor. My impressions is simply that conservatism is cruel and that ideologies of any kind that tie ones hands before the problems are known is extremely counterproductive.

Along with race, tribalism, religion, and who knows what else causes enormous violent discrimination, the LGBTQ issue being one of them. A compassioate socity would conclude that if a relation causes no harm there is no reason to interfere. Also, sexual oriention is a biologically complex process and virtually unknown among the general population. Righteious indignation, religion and just a reason to lord it over some group or category of people has caused infinite sufferig, with no benefits whatever.

Instances like the murder of George Floyd suggest a mounsterous lack of what it means to be human.

Tribalism, Skin Color And Ideology


The problems rising to the top

Scientific thinking or, separating knowlege from belief, is hardly better that it was hundreds of years ago. Science is not taught widely enough nor thoroughly enough and its importance is not appreciated even by the well educated.

2. Most people do not even know what science really is and so cannot appreciate its importance.

3. The meaning of race and of skin color is not known or understood.

4. We still divide ourselves into tribes and often need to find a tribe we can feel superior to. The less education, the greater this need.

5. Darker skin color is associted with inferiority.

6. Vestiges of slavery polludes towards blacks especially in law enforcement.

7. Our political leadership is the perfect storm of stupidity, prejudice, dishonesty and immoriality.

8. The combination of our lack of science and the devestation of the admisnstration has cost hundreds of thousands of lives. It is not possible to imagine a person less suited to lead a country than Donald Trump.

9. Trump is now egging on white supremistists.

10. Virtually no one knows the causes of different skin colors.

1. We are all Africans, descended from tribes of homo sapiens that migrated north about 70,000 years ago. Our ancestors were all some shade of brown.

Those who had lived near the equator had large amounts of melinin in their skin to protect them from the sun. Migration was north eventually reaching Scandanavia. The further north, the less sun, the less vitamin D and resulting poorer health. Hence, lighter skinned people survived.

In other words, white supremeicy means whites stayed out of the sun. Peroid. Light skin confers no benefits except the ability to live further north of the euqltor.

1.

The beliefs of virtually all Americans are based on ideas laid down hundreds of years ago.
Science education is almost non-existant and even professionals with PhD degrees often have not probed the most important issues whether they are scientists or not. That these professionals consider themselves educated is a major impediment to progress.

Moreover, a single science course, unless it is thorough and intense and aimed at problems government officials would face are virually useless. The news today June 27, 2020 is catastrophic, a result of governers opening the economy while infection rates are still rising. Goverment leaders including heads of science committees have stated they do not believe in science and meanwhile the vice president is congratulating himself and the administration on what a great job they are doing.

At some point in the 1600s science began to be recognized as important. Yet in the twentieth century it is not a fundamental requirement of educztion and consequently hobbles intelligent decision making zt every level. It now has and it is so bad that it feels to me like a nuclear stike had been launched against the whole country.

I originally began this website in response to the shooting in Sandy Hook, Connecticut. After reading about global warming I changed course. I was worried at the time that we were not taking warming seriously and that major publications such as the New York Times were doing a poor job of reporting and that Republicians were urging scientists to reduce severity of their predictions.

My assessmenbnt now is that the utter incompetance of the administration and the catastrophic rebound of the virus simply spells doom in America. My hope is close to zero, but I have time to keep writing and so I will.

What can be done? Elect an administration of stunning energy and intelligence and a comparable congress and declare that a state of war exists between America and stupidity.

Marshall every resource and fight.

If policies and actions are not changed to the full extent possible, America will become fully a third-world country with perhaps 25% of its population dead and its confidence shattered.

And as if this were not enough, our ideas of what it means to be human are wrong. Our ideas of race are totally wrong. Our ideologies of wealth and compassion are wrong.

We have divided ourselves into warring tribes that will unequavilically destroy each other.

We are way overdue in applying the learnings of science and the best thinking about the purpose and meaning of life. We have no choice but to get to work. And no one, not one person no matter what education, status or wealth should presume they are not part of the problem.

Our only option is to join our minds, rich and poor, educated or not, any color of skin, any gender preference and think on the basis of the equality of every human spirt.

However, even this, as impossible as it may seem is not enough.

Our abuse of the earth is an unmitigated disaster. Our failure to teach and understand science has led us to collosal neglect. We are already condemned to incredable suffering, but we must avoid what is destined to be far worse.

Perspective


The longest view

The primary cause of our problems, in my opinion all of them, is a failure to understing how and why we were created. Our minds are miracles yet are rarely applied. Our senses are miracles yet the beauty of our existance is rarely recognized.

Whatever god, or force, or mysterious process that created us must be in morning.

Our destiny was not preordaned. It has been left to us too make our lives based on compassion, understanding, beautiful, creative and joyful. The alternative is collosal suffering and injustice. There is infinite work to be done.

The singular cause is our failure to learn what is known, where we came from, our inherited nature, our fundamental equality and our reason for existing. We must learn.

We do not know why we are here. We do not know why the universe is here.

We do not know why there is something rather than nothing.

We do not appreciate there is a miracle lodged in the space between our ears.

But perhaps above all, we do not appreciate that a miracle happens every time we open our eyes.

It is all a gift to us that we cannot explain, why evolution has made hands that create miracles

and eyes that see joy in a sunset, and that we do not wonder why.

And so we are destroying these miracles.


My Approach Is A Tour Of Beauty, Destruction, Wonderful Creaations, and False Knowledge, of Failure And Success.

However, most important is the story of our creation. What I have learned is that the process of our creation is an infinite wonder. And my believe is that we owe our creation a commitment of all we are capable, to save ourselves, for we are the infinite wonder that is the outcome of the creation. So what follows is my attempt to bring to this website examples of everything important that I could find to set the stage, to begin to fill in the gaps, to teach science to PhDs that know no science, to all who have not experienced the greatest art, to everyone the destruction we have cause, to everyone the product of hatreds, misunderstanding and just plain failure and neglect. Fasten your seat belts.


OURSELVES

Our government, our educational system, our philosophy of how we treat each other, our knowledge of ourselves, have brought us to a precipice.

Not only is our civilization at stake, but the planet itself may well become possibly totally uninhabitable.

At one time we lived in small tribes in harmony with the earth, but our thinking and our love and our responsibility disappeared. As it became easier to populate the earth we ignored the damage we are causing.

Our thinking is medieval. We may blame it on god, but there are many gods. We do not penetrate the depths of thinking.

Our eyes only look foward today, when looking to the side would show doom.

The Meaning Of Our Existence


The Birth of The Universe

Beginning, Science, "Miracles," Purpose, Life, Joy

Most of what follows is usually attributed to god. However, I view god as not a cause the the name of a cause. There are supposedly many gods each resulting from the experiences of whomever whote the relevant scripture. I don’t claim it is all false, because I don’t know but I will rely on science and leave the unknown as unknown.

Below is an image of the cosmic background radiation. We are looking back as far as we can to the beginning of the universe. The colors are galaxies and are caused by very small temperature differences in the radiation. We are looking back in time some 10 billion years.

This radiation is the afterglow of the big bang which ironically was the smallest thing there could be. Why it happened we do not know, so our existence is a mystery.

Details are best studied on Wikipedia. My point is that it seems to me that that the creation went to a lot of trouble to get us here and we do not appreciate it nor make use of it. In fact we are doing our best to destroy it.

The Greatest Story Never Told


From the Grand Singularity to Us

My education was at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and I left one dissertation short of a PhD. Yet in all that study, although it was a superb foundation, there was not a hint of what is necessary to think about today.

I give the credit for feeling compelled to think to my two fathers. The first, my biological father Joseph, was much like my MIT father, Amar Bose. They both were, a bit extreme for what they expected of me.

My biological father, my Dad, was a superb engineer although he did not attend college. When I explained what I was studying and told him of the unbreakable laws of physics, such as the conservation of energy, his reaction was “well you should be able to break them.” When I told him my high school report card was all As, he said “What, no A plusses.” Dad, they don’t give A+s. “For you they should.” I just walked away for there was nothing to say. And at MIT I was a good student, surrounded by geniuses. I was doing well, but every exam made me tremble.

Professor Amar Gopal Bose was something else altogether. He really did revolutionize the audio industry. It was luck that my love of music and my hobby as an audiophile led me to his office one day in 1964 and I eventually became the 5th employee of a nascent Bose Corporation.

And when I was working at a growing Bose Corporation and working half time so I could photograph nature he gave me the job of introducing a small, all-in-one music system costing $495 that would usually be called a “boom box” and cost $69.95. It was my job to introduce to the world The Acoustic Wave Music System. And, one more thing. My job was to “Get the best set of reviews ever for any piece of audio equipment.” I had been prepared by that time. I thought for about 5 seconds and said O.K.

This attitude is what made me want to understand what is happening to us and why I am proposing something crazy.

I learned this craziness in many one-on-one conversations with Dr. Bose but in reality I had known him for so long I knew his attitude about breaking fundamental laws. And then another "one more thing." I had the unspoken privilege to spend any amount of money without even my initials on a piece of paper.

And still another thing: I had two geniuses to help me, the two most creative people I have ever known.

But whatever. This is pretty small potatoes compared to a couple of other efforts I could think of.

Apollo 8, the first attempt to fly to the moon and go into orbit was decided on three months notice in order to have a prayer of meeting John Kennedy’s goal of a man on the moon within the decade. Four hundred thousand people worked for the three months and it was a perfect flight.

And then there was one of the greatest experiments ever: the detection of gravity waves. And having read the book and the accounts in the Times, I found myself in a small room at the St. Botolph Club in Boston with perhaps 50 other people listening to Rainer Weiss, the father of the project, give his superb account of the fifty year effort. And then sat next to him at dinner. The account of the first detection, two large black holes spinning around each other at 30,000 rpm and then coalescing a few hours after the detectors were turned on, makes your hair stand on end. (I think they just e-mailed the Nobel Prizes.) This will be a bigger job than all of these put together. It is crazy to think of stopping a pandemic, cooling the earth, and curing racism all at once, but perhaps we can find a way that they reinforce each other.



A note of explantion.

There is a wonderful website called Quora where individuals can answer questions asked by anyone on almost any subject. Some are about music, pianos and composers and I answer some of these and some of the answers are accepted. Others are about physics that are far over my head. However, there was one about how to deal with global warming and my long answer was about a very ambitious program involving a great deal of education and it provoked a comment that it was too ambitions and we just should accept that coastal cities would all be flooded and so forth.

I replied based on the experiences I discussed above. This may be the only populated planet in the universe (more on that later) and we are insulting the creation, whatever it may be, by not doing every thing concievable to stop it, and concincievable here means revolutionary. God damn and son-of-a-bitch! When your house is burning down you do not think about being reasonable and I except that I got an attitude like this partly naturally and partly from my two fathers. So our house is burning down because the perfert storm has struck it by lightening a hundred times or so. However....

In the course of writing about global warming I did a simple calculation. What are the odds of another earth like ours?

The article I was reading listed seven essential requirements having to do with the size, kind, and distance of the sun; the size and composition of the earth, the tilt of its axes, the need of a moon to stabilize the earth and so forth. So I said, suppose there is a 1% chance of each of these, what would be the odds of them all happening together. We the math is simple: 0.01 raised to the 7th power or

There are infinite questions about life, but who asks them? Who has the courage to try to answer them? Me. I will answer them. My father told me I could do anything if I tried, including breaking the laws of physics. “Dad. You can’t do that.” “Well you can.” He was wrong, of course, but just possibly not wrong in another way.

I started at the age of 11, thinking I would try to “understand.” I am nearing 79 and think I have something called perspicacity. (You can read more about me in my biography).

Perspicacity is a penetrating discernment —a clarity of vision or intellect which provides a deep understanding and insight. It takes the concept of wisdom deeper in the sense that it denotes a keenness of sense and intelligence applied to insight.

I had a professor at MIT, Amar Bose, who was like my father. He was my advisor and when I said I was leaving without doing a PhD dissertation because seven years was enough, he said “Do you want a job?” and I became the fifth (as in 5) employee of a very nascent Bose Corporation. I was a student, comrad, colleague and friend with Amar Bose for over fourty years. He had perspercasity. I had more in some ways because I ventured in many more directions, becoming an artist among other things, but most of all I think I know what is not knowable but yet essential. So we have to leap chasms to get to places from which we can see. Here is what I am thinking about.

Everything

Scientists discover what seems infinite knowledge, yet know (or forget) there is another infinity waiting. They dream of theories of everything, yet those theories do not ask why is their pain, love, joy, fear, beauty, terror and love, life and death.

Scientists (and I consider myself one of them), know they have discovered so much, but do not understand how much they are leaving out.

And so we go about life blindly. And get into the mess we are in: a real plague and a president plague, trying to solve many monumental problems, while letting the earth go to hell.

Why do we do this? Because we neglect ourselves. We don’t stop to think long enough to realize what is this thing between our ears, so we let it atrophe. It feels like every time we ignore a part of our brain, someone or somethings pays a price. Now in June 2020 we are just beginning to realize some of the greatest costs, and ironically we are being educated by a president who uses less of what is between his ears of any adult I know.

The Slave Trade

“From the middle of the 15th century, Africa entered into a unique relationship with Europe that led to the devastation and depopulation of Africa, but contributed to the wealth and development of Europe. From then until the end of the 19th century, Europeans began to establish a trade for African captives.”

Untitled photo

An illustration of the hold of a slave ship.

I. Civilization: When Will It Begin?


Tribes. Dominance. Freedom.

I believe the Bible set the tone a very long time ago in Genesis: “God said ‘Let us make man in our image, according to our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth.’ And God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.

God could have meant that man should be a creator, but instead he gave humanity a blessing to be powerful, a blessing that turned out to be destructive in many ways, including the worst way possible, by threatening the destruction of the earth.

To be god-like, one must be free to be creative, to make the most of the phenominal minds that give meaning to our lives. Those that yearn to control others, or even to take away life, are those empty of the hope to create. This is the grand division of humanity, and the grand challenge of Life. I believe, with no proof other than my reasoning, that this is how the creation works: it is an ongoing struggle between hope and dominance.

Is There The Possibility of A Different Future?

We call ourselves a civilization. Well, when did it begin? Or rather when will it begin?

Did hunter gatherer tribes not fight? Perhaps. We do not know.

Yuval Noah Harari, the author of Sapiens calls agriculture the worst thing that ever happened to humanity, for instead of what were stable family-like tribes life was divided in a disasterous way. Nutrition became poorer with a smaller variety of edibals; a few individuals were left to farm: boring, strenuous, dawn to dusk. But worst of all were the most agressive of the tribal leaders now unemployed, what would they do with their time. They were leaders in a world that did not need them, for they were agressive and by necessity insatiable and so began the building of mega-tribes, first cities and them countries and eventually empires. And to build empires meant annexing countries, cities, or even other empires. This behavorior has not stopped yet.

The Role of Religion

The dominant motivtion for humanity has been fear propelled by ignorance. Death was and is a complete mysstery. Thunder, lightening, drought, plagues were disasters with no knowledge of causes so causes were invented.

Gods, of course had been playing a role since time immemorial, but there reach was limited, as was their power. Now human imagination created gods of ever expanding juristiction, threat and blessing.

Gods could do whatever wonderous human imagination imagined. Bless, curse, give live or death, unite, divide, but above all the direction was the melding of gods of limited juristinction into gods of more and more power until they became supreme, and all powerful. Then humanity, in its great imagination and wisdom gave supreme beings the power to annoit, to bless and to choose a people, a people who of course had invented gods for just this purpose, but with one inevitable problem: there were numerous “supreme” beings and fear of not being blessed and chosen led to wars between consituients, adding to the other reasons for wars, territorial being primary.

So fear drives the incredible human imagination, lust for power creates warriers, and it goes on. America, land of the free and home of the brave, finishes wars but is lost without them and starts others.

Europe has achieved some stability, but deep thinking has not yet reached America, and it only recently reached Europe. Without wars, nations like America begin to feel a pent up energy, a need to be “great” or perhaps great again.

Why should it be like this? It is possible that it is the only kind of life that has meaning. Take away the challenges, the fear of death, the tribes that threaten and we would lay down our pens and pencils, lie in the sun and wait for another time which will never come. Stasis would become the norm.

II. Scatterings of Civilization


Chorusus, Keys, and Harmonies

In my life of thinking about life and searching for its meaning, the creativity that humans invented gods seems extraordinarily inventive, powerful and beautiful. One has only to walk through the cathedrals of Europe or listen to Christmas from the chiors of England. It is as if all the energy, imagination, and coaalesing of spirits of quarreling individuals transcends all. It sends shivers down my spine and through my mind. And when it reaches beyond the church to express the deepest spirit that it brings tears to my eyes.

What is this that has suddenly risen, it seems, from the ashes of tribes, wars, hatred, lust to become something beyond all these and beyond all words. Now a hundred musicians, instead of a warring tribe conspire with composers, instrument makers, and artists of dexterity that we could not have imagined coming from the evolution of hunter-gathers. Could humans have acquired the impossible skill to articulate Chopin or Beethoven from the skills needed to survive in the savannah hunting and gathering. It is a leap of a chasm of seemingly infinite breadth and depth to have hundreds of individuals devote their lives to making their fingers engage an instrument that also took a lifetime of skill, with an almost god-like creator, an individual that composes and repose, enchantement, an excitement of spirit that makes one want to do nothing but make music. A miricle? Yes but one of many, for the mind needed to accomplish all this manifestided itself a million years ago. But there is a catch, a need for recognition of the miracle and a life devoted to the miracle.

It is not the only sign of civilization. The arts and sciences have given birth to many. But there is also a tragedy waiting in the wings. On the same stage of performance the tribes still wait to fight and destroy.

It is freedom removes the shackles, be they police, poverty, poor education or a freezing culture or above all, fear that makes civilization possible along with a depth of understing of the nature of humanity. Yet our teaching, learning, in the year 2020 might just as well for the most part be the year 202. Drop one zero and the essence of what we teach and believe has not changed. Just read the news, watch the tribes in a battle without weapons, except an insidious corruption of the mind and a blindness and deafness to the sproutings of beauty and joy that scatterings of civilization make possible.

Where will we go from here. There are reasons for optimism, but the fears that bring pessisism are almost overwhelming for we cannot even agree that joy and beauty make it worthwhile to avoid destroying the very planet that gave everyone possibilitieis.



This is how dictatorships work: security for the dictator, loss of hope for the people. This is what Donald Trump is striving for, for control may take the edge off his fear. But knowing dictatorships, there is no end to the need, just as there is no end to another kind of control, the accumulation of wealth. So dictators come with oligarcs in their tow, each threatening the others place.

We have been given minds of incredible power, imagination and creativity, minds to build relationsips, raise children and compose symphonies. To let these minds work there must be the freedome to hope that efforts will not be stymied by oppression.

Some time ago, in trying to understand the meaning and purpose of life, I stopped studying the creation of the universe and rather asked what were the best experiences I had had. An image of my granddaughter came to mind, or conversations with my wife over breakfast, or a late Beethoven string quartet that Susan and I would listen to together.

This is to start with, the day to day wonders of joy. But there is more.

The sign that we do not know very much is how and why the earth was created.
I think that needs to be in our minds, but it is too soon to tell the story.

III. The Hope Of Things Unseen. The Sound Of Things Unheard.


To hope for reality, for that which is just imagined.

It is a very sad story to live in fear, whether it is of hunger, shelter or lack of medical care when there is an abundance of resources. To have a state governor turn down free Obamacare for an ideology is a crime, for people will then die, if not physically, then it is hope that will die. This is a crime not just against humanity, but against the Creation itself. If you believe in god, it is a crime against god and if you study history, it has been almost always the norm until the beginning of a most ironic adventure.

In the New World an extraordinary group of men, chosen it seems almost randomly, conspired to write two documents: a declaration of hope, and the rules of an organization that would see the hope realized. The first was the Declaration of Independence. The second was the constitution.

Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, while not perfect was the best yet conceived.

Free elections and a separation of powers, fought over, agonized over and ultimately compromised with the hope that it might be realized, and in many ways it has been. But the irony was that it was for some men and not for others, and the only difference was sunshine.

At the time, in the 16 and 17 hundreds, there was no way of knowing that we all originated in Africa, and those whose ancestors migrated north lost the color of their skin so they might have enough vitamin D to live. And that is the grandest irony of history. The grandest experiment in a new way of life, was compromised by too little (or too much) sunshine.

In different societies dark skin means different things, but in Europen cultures in became to mean inferiority and became the excuse to enslave. Tje irony is that the slavery and the Constitution and a commody called cotton perpetuated slavery in different forms and crushed hope for millions whose skin had remained dark.

Whenever you might be reading this, the time, June, 2020. when I am writing this seems to be a historic divide. A people who want hope, a president without hope who is trying to become dictator, and all visited by a plague, as if god had said “a pox on both your houses.”

However, rather than leave it to see what the future brings, I think we should think with all our minds, what we would like, and what the creation has ordained as best, for the future to bring.




believed this for a long time. And now I read the words rather than just having “in his image” floating in my memory.”

I do not think of the Bible as having been inspired by god but certainly inspired by life and by a belief in an unseen power. So the fears of belief without knowledge lead to creating a view of civilization by power.

These words may be the origin of the most fundamental problems of our civilization. Whoever wrote them was reflecting the fears of early man, for early man had no knowledge of the cause of most of the things he feared: violent wind and rain; thunder and lightening; drought and deluge; plaguesof locusts and of death. At some early time I wonder if there were even words to have a conversation, but any conversation had to lead to images of frightful things that threatened.

If I think of the dictators of our time, I see the goose step, thousands of soldiers marching in perfect unison and catapaults able to sling collosal death to the opposite side of the world.

I see the dictator creating his dominion, something perfectly controlled and powerful, ready to subdue unruly mobs and any other threats, and to establish rules that no one dare break. Mobs, such as those demonstrating today, even if perfectly disciplined, were on the road to the gulag.

America 1719: escaping the dominion of kings.


Being the king.

I expect that finding tribes of blacks in the jungle was part of or contributed to cololnialism. Whichever, dominion was the outcome. Countries were enslaved and slaves were monitized. It was known as the “slave trade.” Blacks were assigned a value partly just for being black and partly for their value as machinery. Project 1619 beginning in the New York Times Magazine of December 2019 brought me a stunning new perspective on slavery.

A slave is a comonidity, a machine whos output, the amount of cotton picked, that provided the wealth to industrialize America. Precise quotas and double-entry bookkeeping.

Dominion goes on.

Hope

Hope is the motivation for creativity. Hope was the motivation for concieving of a different kind of nation: free from the dominion not just of the King, but of all limitations. Freedom to be.

It is difficult to understand how fundamental this was. The first formal organization of humanity that recognized the fundamental equality of all human beings. Except blacks, but this does not take away from the good side, but makes the downside all the worse.

Freedom to be, and freedom from fear. It was against the law of the land to make others afraid and that is very different from feeling more or less sure there is not a hostile tribe about to come over the hill. This is civilization, as long as you are white.

Creating a nation that is founded on the idea that fundamental to the concept of being human is the protected right to be free to create, a life or an institution or a machine or whatever. Thre freedom to create is an explosion of hope, an explosion that built a nation from sea to shining sea and joined the seas with a railroad. And on an on. With funding by Cotton, Inc.

IV. Hope is the beginning of everything.


Hope is why the universe and humanity were created.

Hope is being able to imagine, to see something that does not yet exist, to use the power of the mind to (as engineers like to say) integrate, to sum up all of life’s experience and thinking to take the next step, be it recovery from tragedy to the building of that first coast to coast railroad. And ironically, it is what those who want to build more railroads want to extinguish, for hope is also dangerous, for hope will fight to the last man, for hope.

However, hope is, ironically, as dangerous as no hope for it dependss on how it is used. It is often if not always threatening to lead in the work direction.

Hope realized must benefit others, and then another generation of others. For hope can just as well lead to lust and that makes seeing swivil to places that should never be seen. And so perpercasity becomes necessary. What, ultimately, are we hoping for. And what can lead us to the precipice.

Caution to the winds.

When a composer composes, a painter paints, a writer writes the completion of one work may lead to an excited optimisism, or to a look over the abiss. Can I do it again? The answer is simple, you won’t know until you try.

It is not like sitting at the right hand of god. And a condition of stasis. An artist (or businessman or scientist, etc.) commits to a kind of strange joy: freight, uncertainty, what’s next. Or is rewarded with another sun on the horizon and another and another. To my mind there this is number one among many such uncertainities that constitute Life. Go for it Girl. Or Boy. Or Woman. Or Man. Assuming there is not a conservative, a zealot, an unfulfilled ego, or even a mad-man in the way.

If you are empty, if what is between your ears atrophied or never developed, you may choose acquisition over letting freedom ring.

The Roman Emperors who went all the way to England, could not stop just as the tycoon todaay worth $100 billion dollars cannot stop, nor can he feel for others sitting on a different precipice, those with nothing. Or those with something like a road paver that the tycoon needs for his business, but forgets the operator.

American has suffered the tragedy of a nation of the rich by the rich and for the rich. And death comes stalking the soul and the spirit of everyone.



The fundamental question of living is to answer what Life (yes a capital L) is.

I assert (for there is no proof) that the greatest part of life is joy, which comes from relathipships with earh other or with the universe, from learning about the universe and from creating beauty and joy.

“Conservatives,” by which I mean essentially all Republicians, are preoccupied with accumulating and controlling. China is a good example. What is wrong with this is that it denys the value of what the Universe has given us, and consequently puts conservatives at war with the Universe.

We were created in order to create which requires learning. Conservatives do not study the Universe and so know nothing of its grandeur and beauty. By not studying the universe they are using only the animal portion of their minds. They do not create beauty and joy.

To create beauty and joy requires the mind, in all its incredible complexity and creative abilities, to be free to explore the infinite possibilites of sharing with other creators. This is a catastrophe of infinite sadness, ruthlessness, pain and crueiity. It also takes a far greater intellect.

The only reason I can think of for the creation of conservatism is to provide a contrast to a free life. The more we read of Trump and his cohorts, the more we appreiate what we have. It is an ongoing struggle and it will never end until the conservatives, with their cruel ruthlessness, destroy the earth. It may well be that the reason no radio signals from other civilations have never been detected is that conservatives have destroyed all life on other planets.

Conservatives will take pride in their ability to control, loot, lie, destroy and laugh at the poor people yearning to be free. We can only pity them for what they are missing.

Donald Trump: A Man Without Hope.


George Floyd: An Infinite Tragedy Of Infinite Hope.

Donald Trump is a man without hope, for he cannot create anything. His joy is to find a thousand dollar bill just waiting to be pocketed, or a headline praising him for the good he has not done.

Deep down he knows he is without hope for he had to draw on his uncle to enable him to claim knowledge.

I believe that any man with an intact brain at some level wishes to be a man with the hope to create. So I believe that life for Donald Trump is unconsciously a crushing experience, but that makes it all the more dangerous for there are no limits, just as Hitler and Stalin had no limits. However, in this tragedy of tragedies, it still remains to be seen if Donald Trumps view of George Floyd can bring hope to humanity.

Perhaps a new understanding of hope.

Every human begins being human with hope, a vision of something better: a friendship, a family, a child, a business, a work of art, or just a sunny day.



I have wondered how this feels. I am imaging hearing my mentor praising me for something I did not dolar

It is probably too late.

On this day, May 9, 2020, my peace of mind is destroyed by four people: Donald Trump, Newt Gingrich, Tom Cotton and Mitch McConnell.

All these men want unlimited power or they want to destroy. Together they could destroy the earth and neither care nor realize what they are doing. They present the greatest mystery of the human race: why are some humans impervious to understanding who they are and how they relate to the rest of humanity.

The manner of relationship between two humans must be governed by the rule of reciprocity (a more formal word for the Golden Rule). Its meaning is presented in this way in Wikipedia, I quote a large section since a want to make its meaning clear and easily accessble:

”In social psychology, to a positive action with another positive action, rewarding kind actions. As a social construct, reciprocity means that in response to friendly actions, people are frequently much nicer and much more cooperative than predicted by the self-interest model; conversely, in response to hostile actions they are frequently much more nasty and even brutal....”
Reciprocity makes it possible to build continuing relationships and exchanges. Fukuyama states that “If the institutions of democracy and capitalism are to work properly, they must coexist within certain premodern cultural habits that ensure their proper functioning.” ... He goes on to say “Law, contract, and economic rationality and prosperity... must as well be leavened with reciprocity, moral obligation, duty toward community, and trust…. The latter are not anachronisms in a modern society but rather the sine qua non (latin: "without which not") of the latter’s success.” .... According to the sociologist Alvin Gouldner (1960), this norm is nearly universal, and only a few members of society—the very young, the sick, or the old—are exempt from it.
Reciprocal actions differ from altruistic actions in that reciprocal actions only follow from others' initial actions, while altruism is the unconditional act of social gift-giving without any hope or expectation of future positive responses.[4][5] Some distinguish between ideal altruism (giving with no expectation of future reward) and reciprocal altruism (giving with limited expectation or the potential for expectation of future reward). For more information on this idea, see altruism or altruism (ethics).”

The great mystery of humanity is why some people love and others hate or destroy.

I have looked at hundreds of pictures of Donald Trump and never seen him smile except for this his formal portrait. It is a smile for the camera, not for an expression of pleasure or joy.

The full stories of these four people are plainly incredible. They represent the bottom where we would never think to look.

The best summary I can think of is this list of words by Newt Gingrich from an article inThe Atlantic Monthly, “How Newt Gingrich Destroyed American Politics.” These are the most important words to use against Democrats:

decay, failure (fail) collapse(ing) deeper, crisis, urgent(cy), destructive, destroy, sick, pathetic, lie, liberal, they/them, unionized bureaucracy, "compassion" is not enough, betray, consequences, limit(s), shallow, traitors, sensationalists, endanger, coercion, hypocricy, radical, threaten, devour, waste, corruption, incompetent, permissive attitude, destructive, impose, self-serving, greed, ideological, insecure, anti-(issue): flag, family, child, jobs; pessimistic, excuses, intolerant, stagnation, welfare, corrupt, selfish, insensitive, status quo, mandate(s) taxes, spend (ing) shame, disgrace, punish (poor...) bizarre, cynicism, cheat, steal, abuse of power, machine, bosses, obsolete, criminal rights, red tape, patronage

Truth stands for nothing. Dirtying language will accomplish anything.

Tom Cotton wants the military to shoot protestors.

Mitch Mconnel wants to stop anything good.

Donald Trump wants to be a dictator. That’s my four. Together they can destroy humanity and the earth.

V. Why Is There An Is?


How engineers think.

I have spend 2 1/2 years on this web site. Most is hidden. What is on the home page is what is left after I deleted more material to make way for something new. I start on guns: in anothershoes.com; then global warming: caringfortheear.com; and now Donald when what is crawling out from under the mouldy carpet.

It used to. be terror. It is now terror to the nth power. I am going back to try to make up flost time in photography for I have decided that is a way of comunicating something different. The following is not proof read or spell checked. As it goies on it is left overs from somehting much longer. Might make good put to sleep reading or there might be a kernal here and there. It has been fascinating but not enjoyable. I am too disappointed in humanity, or at least a big part of it.

But I have been elated by another part. And you wil bump into that if you go further. I am taking the off ramp here.

Why Is There A Universe Like This One?


I have spent a lifetime thinking about this.

About the age of 11, I was reading Funk an Wagnells Enclyclapaedia likely looking up something electronic, when I ran into a Russian name I couldn’t handle. I have always remember my reaction: ”well the name doesn’t matter, as long as I understand." That is what some 70 years later I am still trying to do. Only the now the problems are much harder.

Electronics has slipped into the background, and Life (with the capital L) has jumped to the front and it will not leave me alone.

This site, with several false starts, is my attempt to anyswer that question. Perhaps there is a contribution and perhaps not. I turn 80 (hopefully) next year and this is my last and best shot. This particular shot, after 2 1/2 years of a kind of satisfying torture, is a beginning from scratch. The more things get confusing, the less editing does any good.

An engineer having something intelligent to say about the universe?

You get whomped into shape at The Institute.

I just saw a T shirt: “I’m an engineer. Let’s just assume I’m right and get on with it.” Ask Susan (my wife). No matter what she says my instant rejoinder is “No!” and then I repeat back what she said or some minor revision. A good part of the blame is seven years at MIT. It’s not that you might flunk out. Hardly anyone ever does. If they admitted you, they did it because they thought you could do it.

No. It’s the competition, the oneupsmanship. I hung in for 14 years. Seven at MIT and seven at Bose Corporation, an MIT outpost if there ever was one and then went into marketing. I had one other competitor, Professor Amar Gopal Bose, my former faculty advisor. When I told him seven years was at MIT was enough (and god only knows how many years to do a dissertation to get my PhD) enough he blinked and “Would you like a job?” And I became the 5th employee. Two other engineers whom I knew: Sherwin Greenblatt, future president and Tom Froeschle, present and future genius. It is possible that nuclear subs are driving around with his electronic reactor controls. He one-upped their engineers by designing a whole new system in two weeks so our first review meeting was presenting a whole new, and better way, of doing it, along with a fully operating demo. That was Bose Corporation. And that was and still is MIT.

I often wonder how I got admitted, but being tagged a “stong candidate” during my interview was promising.

Big questions about the universe require physics. I’m an electrical engineer.

1. MIT electrical engineering is almost all physics.

2. My MS is in solid state physics.

3. I have studed astronomy and then cosmology since I was a kid.

4. I have followed the field my whole life.

5. I learned how to think from Dr. Bose. I had the glorious luxery of many one-on-one long wide-ranging meetings. He taught me how to think and to him “outside the box” was conventional thinking.

So that is how I began. And to save time and to make it easier to understand what follows I will tell you why.

Belief Versus Knowledge

What is the difference?

Belief is what you choose to be true .

Knowledge is what has evidence to back it up, which usually means science. And this is a problem because few people learn science at all, and of those that do few realize how fundamental and important it is.

What’s The Point Of It All?

The short version of the story.

I think few people realize how extraordinary the universe is, how it was born, how planets like the earth were created and (I suspect) how rare they are.

Then there is us. People with brains that can do so much and are so little used.

When I got through the last round of reading about the creation (see the diagram below), I looked at the various steps and it struck me how natural and logical was each step. A special example: in the early stages after the big bang the only elements that had been made were helium and hydrogen. This was enough to make stars, but not much else. However, certain kinds of stars burned out their fuel quickly then impoloded and eploded. There were called super novae and were visible in daylight. They lasted about a month and then slowly vanished. However, they were central to the entire future of the universe (including making us) because when they exploded they made all the other elements, 97 of them, and we were on our way to a totaly different kind of universe, one where life-including human life-could be created and live.

There are many things about the universe that should blow your mind and this is one of the most important. Eventually, 10.78 billion years after the big bang, life began and eventually we were the product of evolution.

But is was the beginning that boggles the mind the most. Sciencetists do not know why it happened but out of the energy of an otherwise empty cosmos appeared a singularity. In mathametics (by the way, electrical engineers were using singularities before mathameticians recognized their validity) a singularity lasts for zero time but is infinitely high. In the big bang the singularity was the smallest time there can be and the smallest size there can be, far smaller than a proton, and stored infinite energy. Our laws of physics did not work durin ghis infinitetesimal time, but immediately after began a series of events called the time-line of the universe. A NASA versin is on the right.

Evolution is a controversal subjet and I discuss it elsewhere so not to interrupt this story. However, should you have any doubts, I can assure that the scientific evidence is so good I would bet my life on it. But WHY still remained a complete mystery. Why humans with all the intellectual and emotional qualities. I hadn’t a clue so I asked myself if the universe could be reverse-engineered. That is a technique that is often used when you want to copy someone’s product and you want to know how it is made. So I started thinking, not from the beginning, but from the end, which is now. And to my way of thinking the big question was to identify what are the absolute best things about Life. And quite a few things came to mind and my conclusion was that the best things were so spectacular and that they had to be inherent in the big bang itself. I had not a clue how and no physicist would even try to think why human creativity was in the big bang so I just decided to jumpt to the conclusiong. I can hear the physicists, if anyone of them should read this, having a big laugh. And so I just ask if anyone has a better answer.

So we have to look at the best of Life, but we have to look at the worst of life, but I will start from the best. There are many examples, but the ones I will use for illustration all come from my life, because I can then be confident of them. So I begin with pictures of our grandaughter that I took.

Trump Medal of Honor
Untitled photo
Untitled photo

Putin is smiling for he knows he has Trump under his thumb.

The Donald John Trump Virus

Civilization has never faced such a peril.

In the entire history of humanity, such dangers have never come together at one time.

Before Donald Trump and the virus came along, global warming was on the verge of taking over the climate. It is possible that it already has. President Trump has suspeded regulations, fired dozens of people people important to the preservaton of the planet and necessary for the safety of all citizens. The earth might have become uninhabitable without Trump’s help. A second term would seal its fate.

There are few faults as dangerous as not knowing what you do not know. Donald Trump of course knows no science. Worse he does not know what science is. And the frosting on the devil dog cake is that he does not know that he does not know.

Early in the crisis, President Trump spoke of his “natural ability.”

"You know, my uncle was a great person. He was at MIT. He taught at MIT for, I think, like a record number of years. He was a great super genius. Dr. John Trump. I like this stuff. I really get it. People are surprised that I understand it. Every one of these doctors said, 'How do you know so much about this? ' Maybe I have a natural ability. Maybe I should have done that instead of running for president."

I attended MIT for seven years and have three engineering diplomas including as much physics and math as a typical physics major. I left one dissertation short of a PhD. Enough was enough. It took me eight years before I was able to walk its halls without feeling anxious. I suspect the air in the foyer at 77 Massachusetts Avenue would have stopped Donald.

What Makes An Empty Man

A human is made by nature and nuture.

My father’s brother earned a PhD. My father was chief engineer making complex machinery almost the day he walked into the door. I learned that learning was the most important thing and that doing at every opportunity was just what you did. It got me into MIT.

Trump was raised without regard for humanity. He was taught to bully, deal, lie and lust. And no more. For those who are knowledgable and creative an empty man is a great sadness for without learning and creating, there is no life. In the picture on the right, it is possible something the President has begun to feel something of his loss. The full truth is beyond his understanding.

In situations such as we are facing, I try to look from the broadest perspective. It is possible that history books will eventually look at civilization as before Trump and after Trump, for I believe we will yet see consequences we cannot imagine.

A long history of shallow education.

A different kind of shallow education plagues mankind.

As technology has made the need for deep knowledge unnecessary by giving us proposperty so freely, we have not learned to see through the fog of mideval thinking.

Two tragedies rule our minds: The remnants of religion and of slavery.

Religion was always the explanation for what we did not understand, and yet was only a name for an explanation. Slavery permeated thinking since its introduction in 1619. Its monitization of humans is the root of the Floyd tragedy. We cannot shake a contempt for dark skin, nor do we know why it is dark.

Raceism and religion both seduce and corrupt. Both provide roads to feelings of superiority, of being chosen and better with no substance for eiather.

As scientific knowledge as advanced its meaning has not been taught or appreciated. We do not understand the world nor each other. Underlying attudes are reminiscent of the dark ages. Donald Trump is a perfect example. We have been fooling ourselves that we are an “advanced” civilization. Most tragically we treat each other as warring tribes. The attitude toward minorities, the lack of concern (safety nets) is the sign of politics out of control. Trump and conservatives play each other for suckers to the detriment of all.

The ownership of American by less than ten people is incomprehensibel and is flat out the consequence of conservative ideology.

Donald Trump is the perfect fool to aid in the destruction of America and its values. Trump cannot say a word that is not a lie and in the face of the virus threat he does not lead, for he doesn't know how. He is the most dangerous person in the history of humanity.

The forces of history.

Thinking is shallow no matter the education. Scientists do not know the meaning of life any more than anyone else. PhDs in any field other that science do not grasp the significance of what science knows. And the average citizen harding knows the meaning of the word.

An astonishing number of people believe in the devil. The principle source of understanding of the universe is religion which is mostly fiction. A major force like Christianity is fragmented so much it might as well be 1000 different religions, and so an all powerful god is doing a poor job of communication. Christianity has some good messages from Jesus about how people should be treated, but we had the inquisition and now we have the prosperity gospel.

The underpinning of thoughts about life are science and the best philosophers. However, the substance of how we treat each other i a leftover from a country that relied on slaves to create its wealth.

The combination of Trump, the virus and global warming has a good chance of civil war, a drastically reduced inhabitable land area, and that will lead to a population less than half of what we have now.

How could this happen.

The original villian was the introduction of agriculture in about 8000 BCE for that freed the most agressive males of hunter gatherer tribes free to do what they pleased. So they began wars to claim land, and more wars to create empires. u

seldom ranges widely enough to began an understanding of humanity. In the present (May 2020) when knowledge of man, evolution, the cosmos, psychology and more have advanced enormously, seldom, if ever, are findings made taking from all relevant fields. Furthermore, beyond these aspects of human experience that have not been touched by any of these fields. Furthermore, the singularity that is our President, has shaken humanity to a point of frustrution and confusion that despair becomes the norm. Yet such a shaking may offer some insights no likely to happen without the shaking.

Since the dawn of ciilization perhaps 8000 or so BCE, humanity has, from my perspective, been in constant turmoil. War has often been the norm, rather than the exception. Science, althouth revelatory is usually ignorned. Scientists, even under threats of extreme catastrophe have not mobilized. Non-scientists, despite great education (along with those with lesser education) do not sense the deep urgency that science has revealed.

Under these conditions, the combination of the pandemic and the President seem to me impossible to survive in the long run. Before either, the threat to the planet of rising temperature had in all likelihood passed the point of no return.

Writing an exposition of this situation requires far more knowledge than I can bring to the table and is, infact, the challenge for whatever remains of civilization. Yet my interest in a wide range of fields sounds the most clanging alarm bells I have ever heard. The dissonances, contorted melodies, jumbled keys put all composers I have heard to shame. However, hoping to shed a flashlight with virtually depleated battereries forces me to continue something almost certainly futile.

sk

If I step back it seems that for most of history since the introduction of agriculture at about 8000 years BCE that humanity has found ways to divide itself. Rich vs poor, one religion vs anotherm one political concept vs another. Yet we are created with stunning abilities for learning and creating that bring enormous pleasure and satisfaction. Why do we not as a society recognize this? Scientific theories of the universe (thories of everything) never mentioon emotion or sentience. Liberal arts PhDs miss out on science. And when a monster like Trump comes along we almost lay down as if dead whie he neglects his duties resulting in tens of thousands of unnecessary deaths.

Something is fundamentally wrong in the way we look at life. Political systems create governments of the rich, by the rich and for the rich.

How is it possible for total idiots (Trump is not alone) to become leaders.

There is a fundamental failure in America’s political processes. Trump should never have gotten to first base and that tells us there is something fundamentally wrong with how we educate.

In my ideal world there would be a set of values that are taught the same everywhere and prospective leaders, in order to run for election should have to take one or two years at a leadership institute. Of course the world could never agree on what should be taught and we will ccontinue to get morons as eeuiuhhh

their work. The experiences that make life worth living are missing. These absences are dooming us.

As the world heads to a precipice there is no massed presence of intellect seeking to occupy Washington. We need a new million man march of the human intellect.

Saving the World, After It’a Too Late

Donald J. Trump has brought us to a modern, long delayed, precipice. His disrupting presence has exposed many old-world dividing traits. The history of humanity will depend on its ability to finally deal with religious, racial and political divisions and the limitations evolution has put into our souls.

Homo sapiens evolved in Africa as a separate species of primate most closely related to chimpanzees, gorrilas, and bonobos monkeys. European homo sapiens interbred slightly with Neanderthals who eventualy died out likely due to the superior organizing intellect of homo sapiens. Asians followed a slightly different path interpreding with slightly different early humans.

Skin color has been a deviceive force almost everywhere that blacks and whites have coexisted, depite the fact that both have the same African ancestors who migrated north into Europe and east into Asia. Skin color is simply the result of how far north our African ancestors migrated. The further north the more harmful was the pigment melonomin in their skin for with less sunlight insuffiient vitamin D was produced. So Scandanavians are pale, mid-latitude settlers brown and Africans who stayed at the equator may be coal black.

We reached our present state of intellectual capability about 200,000 years ago and existed as hunter-gatherer tribes until the introduction of agriculture about 10,000 BCE. HRT, author of Sapiens considers this a great disaster. Evolution had created a species and a format of life that worked. A beautiful picture can be found in The Old way.

It took time, but agriculture like a nuclear weapon.

Argiculture freed hunter-gatherers from the cohension of small groups of humans. The alpha type agressor-hunters were fredd from a well-adapted roll.

They began creating what we now call civilization and, in my opinion, were unsuited to this roll.

They suffered from two debiliting characteristics: an inability to stop expanding empires and acquiring wealth and an inability to form peaceful relationships among political entitives. This has not changed.

Religion became a uniting and disrupting force. A controlling, saving entity that was named god evolved , or rather was created, under the same name, but in many different forms. This continues to this day, an example being the evangelical support of Donald Trump and the corruptive disruptiong of the prosperity gospe.

Tribal fears and the need to acquire power continue to this day in many parts of the world. Religion continues to separate when the idea of a “chosen people” modifies behavoir creating jealosies.

The United States was formed in a noble attempt to esczpe the old world with its remants of empires and divisions of many kinds especially religions ones. However, the curses and blessings of homo sapiens came to the new world.

The great sin of mankind, slavery, came to the new world very early. In 1619 the first slaves arrived. Their capture in Africa by supposedly civilized Europeans tells us that mankind stopped evolving in morarity and intellect and that stagnated vision became pzrt of America.

America is a combination of the idealism of the founding fathers and the dark side suited best to small tribes, except that the dark side owns Americal. One percent of the popultion owns 80% of America. This is a fundmental issue that controls the welfare of the lower, middle and even parts of upper middle classes.

Europe has, to a degree, evolved by forming relatively small states where a cohesive political organization is at least possible and, after much fighting, has somewhat settled in the European Union. However, it will be a long time before this reaches solid stability.

America is too large. Its red and blue state dicotomy and the attitudes that go along make rational government nearly impossible. In the present virus crisis New Zealands leaders were able to get all 5 million of its population on the same page and the virus was tamed. Not only does the American book have countless pages it has an evolving, revolving, dissolving, absolving, and compassionsion group of authors. Chapters, pages, phrases and random blocks of text are rewritten, sometimes in private. A clause can be snuck into a bill and the world turned upside down. And that is not nearly the end of it. Conservative and liberal my joust for power, but minorities of many kinds are at their mercy. Black and browns. Natives and immigerants are whole classes that may be mercelessly subdued or catered to depending on the needs of the reds and the blues.

Overiding and underlying blankets smother or fan flames.

Religion runs by its own rules aligning with one political entity or another or neither. Conservatism has benefited enormously from the Prosperity Gospel. Although it has no basis in scripture it appeals to the dream of financial success. Evangelicism, hanging its loyality on the single issues of abortion also runs conservative and as followed Trump straight into hell. The idiociy of useing the questionalbe doctrine of “grace” to forgive every Trump sin as it happens is beyond understanding, except within the idea of a cults. Cults abandon rationality to reacha promised land. Once the cult is established no behavior is bizarre to break through the promise. The illogic of believing what you want to believe in the face of almost anthing takes over.

The Fate of The Donald.

Post war and depression economics.

Post World War I America become accustomeed to prosperity. The the depressiona and the rescue of World War II.

World War II was a double edged sword on America. High paying jobs, unions, and the Roosevelt safety net set up a complacency that even Joe McCarthy, Korea and the Cold War could not upset for several decades. But technology was changing the rules in a fundamental way and education was not preparing the way, either because the problem was not recognized or if it was, the attitude was to let it be. So education stayed shallow, not dealing with fundamental issues be they race, automation, the widening gap between rich and poor, or the two horrendous wars: Vietnam and the second gulf war that were fought for no reason.

A shallow education leaves a public that cannot reoognize problems up to and including global warming and the potential diestruction of the earth. So the earth decays, the middle and lower classes stagnate, and we are not equipped to pick up on The Donald until it is too late.

I picked up on Trump fairly early although I could not bear to listen to him. But I read “I've been hearing things,” about the birther issue.

A presidential canidate does not spread rumors, hearsay about such a fundamental issue. He assigns an aide to investigate and only with real evidence does he open his mount. So this was a sign of a modus operandi that would come to characterize the administration. Say what you wish to say, deny it, make it a flat out lie, a frabrication, but above all, be sure it has no content. But of course The Donald is empty, so there can be no content.

I contend that Donald Trump, with the exception of an extreme need for approval, is the most abscent human being we know. Not quite: there are some policies, some fights, but they all wash out, except they leave a trail of droppings. A few are picked up and worshipped. The rest are just confusion. And the confusion it a truly monumental tragedy. Donald Trumps hesitation to act on the virus has cost to date (Memorial Day, 2020) likely 80,000 lives. Murder by incomprehension, inaction, lack of any kind of compassion, or knowledge. A a dismissing of experts.

The Hoax that is America

Rotten at the surface. Rotten in government. Value in the heated citizenery.
Future: Unknown.

Post war

or has not been united in values and politics. The most divicive characteristics are the tribalism of the old world, the insistance on empire and a willingness to destroy the native population.

Tribalism and a failure to develop a deeper sense of civiliation led American into two costly wars (Vietnam and the second Gulf war) and has failed to overcome the attitudes instilled by slavery.

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Religion and Ignorance.


Entrenched attitudes and ignorance of reality.

Donald Trump wants to make America great again. America has never been a great country. She and her people have done great deeds and many of them are comming through now in the face of the virus as risk to their lives. Over 100 doctors and nurses have died as a result of exposure. Trumps administration has hindered treatment in a major was primarily as a result of Trumps six week delay in starting active work. This has been a catastrophe and I estimate Has cost 50,000 lives.

Unfortunate that is the tip of the iceberg.

Education and attitutudes that are a holdover from the days of slaery still permeates our culture. The fundamental principle of reciprocity is anathama to conservative ideologues. So the devious ideology of low taxes whioeuipuui..

He is in a category all his own. He is nothing. No knowledge, no plan. But he is capable of doing anything rash and has believers, because his need for admiration is infinite. Zero divided by zero is anything.

I am astounded that we have let him get this far. The constitution, the congress, the supreme court nor the public cannot stop him. I cannot imagine what could happen if he won this fall. I can imagine him declaring the election valid and declaring martial law. We could have civil war no. 2.

Of course this sounds ridiculous, but there has never been anyone else like him. He has already caused more harm than previous American presidents combined. And he has a cult-like following.

1. A man of few words, ”beautiful, hoax, finished......” understands nothing about those he describes other than whether they lick his boots. Then they are beautiful.

2. Donald licks boots too. Check out the picture with Putin below.

3. A vessel containing nothing can be mistaken for anything, so we see what we want to see, or if we fall for his lies, what he wants us to see.

4. Perhaps even worse, an empty vessel has no compassion. He cannot put himself into another’s shoes. He likes the rich and the powerful. Yearns to be like them.

5. He is virtually a dictator now and so he is leading us to a precipice.

6. If we ever get beyond the virus global warming is waiting. It had put us near the precipace, and The Donald may have let us slide over it. He is not only destroying America, but the planet too.

What does civilization do when its putative leader is a man of no knowedge, no self awareness, no compassion, but infinite need.

A man in power who cannot hear, who cannot see is infinitely dangerous.

He has fooled many. His speech is propaganda. If you say it often enough and loudly enough some people will believe you.

An empty man given power is the most dangerous man in all the history of humanity, because he will purge the world of intelligence.

There is terror when a man has nothing to give, but has infinite needs.

Donald Trump dumps on or praises but never explains.

Donald Trump is empty. This is the look of a puzzled man. He fires anyone he does not understand, for he is terrified he will be found out.

Anything he needs he makes up. He is the most dangerous kind of man.

Most people do not know what I mean when I say life with a capital L.

I am talking about what we experience: pain, terror, joy, beauty, happiness, sadness. We don’t even realize that no one knows how ”experience” happens in our brains. Scientists don’t even want to touch it, it’s too hard. They do have a word for it and it is called sentience.

What is happening today is a turning point in human history.

I have been looking to find a trace of Life and and I find it among the sick and dying.

And death has been caused by one man who has no Life in him.

His face is asking a question: ”I wonder what they are talking about. It is not about how great I am, so I must stop it.”

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This smile is Putin’s. He looks like the cat who ate the canary for he knows he has Donald by the balls. Donald wants to be like this man who trained with the KGB. Donald is not yet toilet trained. He soils all that he touches.

A formal portrait. A forced grin.

A smile reveals much about the inner man, for a real smile cannot be faked and requires a man to be experiencing joy.

I have never seen Donald smile.

A knowing look. Useful when you don’t understand what is being said.

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And it all began with the big bang. No god stepped in. This was the universe doing its thing and there is much much more, a virtual infinity that only a tiny number of humans know.

And our nemesis, Mr. Trump has no clue, so he wants to rip it to pieces.

That’s all. That is my point. From the smallest thing that can exist, almost 11 billion years later we are given this and a mind that can experience it. Tell me why, unless this is the real purpose of our existence.

s

A Vile Vapor Engulfs A Pitiful Man


Donald Trump is showing us what he is made of. His poisonous brain is dismantling America. An insatiable longing for recognition, a monster who knows he is worthless is eliminating every competent, moral man or woman within his reach. He will violate every legal and moral principle to get what he wants. If the supreme court does not stop him it will be the end of America and possibly the destruction of the earth. Already he is responsible for tens of thousands of deaths.

He will stop at nothing, to fill the void that is his soul.

Pretty much what has already been said. The singularity that was the big bang lasted (according to the latest theories of which I am aware) the shortest time and the shortest distance possible. It is theorized that time and space are quantized like everything else (with the possible exception of gravity for which no theory exists). A single quanta of time is the Planck time which (from memory) is about 10 to the -45 seconds and for space it is about 10 to the -34 cm. During that time the laws of physics as we know them are unknown. IMMEDIATELY after space and time come into existence and according to known (pretty much) laws of physics the time-line of the universe inexorably plays out. My own reaction to this is that it feels very logical. It leads to super novae that created the heavy elements, our solar system and the earth (which by my calculation is a very unusual creation despite what is often said; too many requirements must be met for the earth to be inhabitable). Then comes evolution and then us. The specialness of humanity is rarely discussed. Our ability to experience (sentience) is unbelievable. When we eventually arrive at us, we have the ability to look back in time and see the green egg, the cosmic background radiation that is the glow left over from the big bang. So, in effect, we have figured out how to see our own birth (at least the energy part of it) and at least back as far as light has reached to be visible to use. The purpose of all this is that I believe it is necessary to start with this picture before going any further. Despite the string theorists, and the multiverse theories, the only part I accept that is on reasonably solid footing is the illustration below (and btw, modified means I Photoshopped a horizontal version of this into a vertical version and made it easier to read). Then I ask WHY? No answer anywhere. God is the name of a presumed cause and the stories around god are easily imagined at a time when no science was known. So we know nothing about why or the relationship to our death, purpose, meaning and so forth. So I asked myself if we could reverse engineer this thing and no, we cannot but it suggested to me to ask what is the greatest part of the place and time that we have come to, which to me is when we experience life and I ask what are the best experiences and there are many. For me they are relationships with other people and great art, especially music (if someone asks I will give a bunch of links). Following is a bit like the questions of why go to MIT which is that you get to do some incredible things (if you are lucky too). I spent 40 years or so with Amar Bose and another 40 years (overlapping) photographing nature (lightsongfineart.com), and adopting a young boy from Russia. Then comes so what does this all mean. Is this the meaning of life. The only option I can think of is it is our job to take the best there is and ASSERT that this is life, grab it and run with it. Yesterday there was a question of why graduates of Harvard, MIT etc. do so well. My answer is that those I have known embrace life and use their whole brains and whatever they are doing if it is beautiful, joyous, or connected with the real parts of other people that is MY definition of LIFE. When tragedies happen it is putting yourself in the other persons shoes. Reciprocity. If you create something that affects others like the picture below (exposing. 20,000 4x5 transparencies over 40 years hauling a view camera around) you are touching the universe through the making of the image and through relating to others who enjoy your work. Etc. it goes on forever. But the universe is full of tragedy, tribes that wish to be blessed (chosen) by god, or refuse relationships with people who are different. A rich man and a poor man. Dr. Fauci who was challenged by the AIDS virus and many were turned off by the wild looks of the gay victims. So he thought he should put himself in their shoes (the golden rule, or reciprocity) and it was a revelation to him and it helped start serious research. Religions cause more trouble than almost anything because we all want to be special, to be chosen. Tribalism (conservative vs liberal) is the same. People either will face reality and see and hear what is in front of them or they will hear and think what they want to, and that is a disaster. Trump is the utter epitome of a closed (locked, walled, etc.) mind and has already killed tens of thousands. This is how I answer questions about god, meaning, etc. Why? Don’t have a clue except that the experience of the creation, discovery, creating, relating is it. Why? I have no idea except it is good when you have it and a tragedy if you do not reciprocate and help everyone have it. My prediction is that thanks to the Donald, we have a good chance of wrecking this place before we get to know each other. Top picture was made a few feet from Walden Pond in 1991. The floating leaves are water-shields. I published a book on Walden. This was my first visit to this vernal pool known as Wyman’s Meadow. I visited every year for the next 11 years until the book was finished. It never looked like this again. Go to lightsongfineart.com (under construction web site) and see much of the rest. As Malcolm Gladwell said, you have to be lucky.  

All my life I have trusted that what I needed to do would cross my path. I often joked that I just did what came next. Then came the shootings that were ravaging our civilization. A pastor in my family had counseled the first responders in Sandy Hook, Connecticut and we talked at length about the violence and the suffering and it shook us both.

I thought that nothing could be worse but I began to read of the destruction of our planet by burning of fossil fuels. A lifetime of study about the earth and its place in the universe gave me no choice but to try to inform a blind world. For two years I worked on my website about caring for the earth, often for 13 or more hours per day counseled against hope that it would make a difference.

Then an unbelievable series of improbable events made a man without a soul or intellect president of the Unite States.

His nurturing was as shallow as a thin sheet of paper. Its purpose was to teach wheeling, dealing and bullying in order to make money. There was no knowledge beyond this. Even trivial comments about science were ridiculously off the mark. He claimed that his uncle attending MIT gave him the intuition to deal with the covid virus. It is too absurd to warrant comment.

Donald Trump has dismissed science and intelligence of every kind and he is purging the government of every watchdog and obstacle in his way. He is destroying every bit of good he finds. He yearns for the recognition that illudes his incompetence.

And then came the pandemic, creating the perfect storm to mate with the Donald for death and destruction.

Donald Trump is a new kind of human being, or perhaps more accurately an imitation human. His danger to us is complete. If not stopped he will destroy humanity and then the planet. He has already eliminated every regulation and institution within his reach.

The founders of America struggled to create a government that would not permit a Donald Trump to infiltrate but they could not imagine an imitation human being, and so we are loosing the battle. The carnage will be beyond what we can imagine.

Stealing Power


A Path to Kingship.

Donald Trump is a whole new kind of villain. He is causing great harm but it is a mystery just how this affects him. Is he totally unaware? Are other needs so important that it doesn’t matter?

We know he has an unlimited need for praise. We also know he cannot deal with complex issues. He will not sit for a briefing. He fires his best people. It seems that his upbringing created expectataions of great success and an accompanying addoration. However, it seems that all he learned was dealing: no competance or intellectual capability and that was accompanied by no limits on lying, deception in getting the adoration. Hence, a man who would be king, with not an iota of what it takes to be a king.

Had this been in virtually any other position than president of the United States, the damage might have been finite. But I believe that his Presidency colliding with possibly the most demanding challenges in history in the virus and, in the background, global warming. It could prove in the long run that a limited nuclear war would be preferable to the destruction of American democracy combined with terminating changes of keeping an inhabitable earth.

It is already clear that tens of thousands of deaths are a result of his irresponsibility. However, should he be relected without a congress to override his vetos, it will be the end of the world. The only possible salvage is a very competent and honest new government. Pray.

It Could Not Happen In America


Loopholes in the greatest document of democracy.

There are no limits on what he will do or say. His smarts are limited to dealing. He is not a scientist nor does he listen to scientists almost certainly because his upbringing was so narrow he knew nothing but dealing, lying, deception, and bullying. In fact I suspect that listening to a scientist terrifies him because he doesn’t have a clue and his ego can’t take it.

So the turnover in the White House has eliminated people of experience and solid knowledge. Donald’s terror led to a six week delay in dealing with the virus and then the plans were disastrous. An intelligent man looks for people more expert than he and follows their advice. Donald virtually eliminated science from the White House, and when he had to turn to it he waffled, spun, and had this trail of ”beautiful; definitely; I am sure of it; it’s pretty likely; we’re hoping,” followed by blaming it on someone else.

Of course he had accomplices, those who were willing to lick his boots got the prizes. Mitch had just had his serving of caneries for the picture below.

I will never forget the round table cabinet meeting. One after another they stuck their tongues out and licked. But for one. This took just a few minutes but was a performance for the ages.

But that is far from the worst of it for Lucifer has accomplices. Evangelicals. Conservatives. And, of course, Mitch. I have it on good account that Lucifer is taking early retirement.

I could not imagine anything affecting me like this. The scientists in Washington State jumped on it from day one. Trump’s emptiness will cause the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people. And he keeps spreading bullshit about vaccines.

I am wondering what this summer will be like. Exponentials my be a little slower but I think the openings will be faster. There are so many things humanity does not know or appreciate. Read on.

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The “Look what I just got away with look."
A striking resemblance to the cat that just ate the canary.

The earth is at risk too.

The ”I don’t have a clue but must look like I do” dlook.

The most dangerous man in human history?

The Worst Decisions by Anyone. Ever.
The destruction of American Democracy.
Killing hundreds of thousands of human beings.
Killing the earth.

If left in power he will destroy the earth.

He understands nothing.
He helps no one but the rich and himself.
All he wants is to feed his ego.

The virus plus the donald plus conservative ideology
is the worst thing that has ever happened to humanity.

I. This Way or That Way


To Think, or Not to Think.

Risk comes in many forms. Some are hard to avoid. A one in a million chance that a part breaks.

But other kinds of risk are more complex.

When the Challenger was on the launch pad and it had been unusually cold, well below freezing, the engineers argued that the rubber rings that sealed joints in the solid fuel rocket were not rated for such low temperatures and they already had been giving trouble. But a senior manager asked: ”Can you prove to me that it will fail,” knowing full well that failure meant disaster.

We don’t teach the fact that proofs apply only to mathematics, and we write Q.E.D. at the end. So dwell on that question a bit. You do know that ”Challenger Disaster” is now in our dictionary.

More recently a new CEO at Boeing, faced with an expensive design change getting potentially more and more expensive, brushed off with contempt the opinions of engineers indoctronated that Boeing stood for safety and that had made Boeing a great company. The 737, the most popular plane in the world was getting an upgrade. ”Stay with the plan,” the CEO said and replaced senior engineers with less experienced engineers who would do his bidding. You know the story. That was over a year ago. Two crashes, three hundred and fourty six lives and the MAX is still on the ground.

Virus. The leaders of two great countries did not comprehend “exponential.” It is just 2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2...Pick any number you choose. Start with one person and have that person infect two people. And let each of those infect two per day. Not much as gatherings go. How many after 30 days. One month.

1,073,741,824 is equal to two to the 30th power. One billion, 73.4 million. Exponentials are real beasts. A penny doubled every day for 30 days is about five million dollars. And the corona virus is a truly vicious doubler, and dealing with it requires simple, but clear thinking. Chairman Xi Jinping waited six days. Donald Trump waited six weeks. Six days was a catastrophe.

Those six weeks will go down in history as the worst decision by anyone in the history of mankind.

There is a fundamental rule of leadership. Find people smarter than you and listen to them. If Trump finds anyone smarter than he is (which is almost anyone out of high school) he fires them. We are in the most dangerous time in our history and we do not have an administration. Trump won’t let his top people testify. Behavior like this in any other position would merit the death penalty.

Jump to THE WORST DECISION and then return to this HOME page.

II. And That Way


In another’s. Not on my life.

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This is where America stands on safety nets. It is the work of conservatives. Why are we at the bottom? I have asked myself this question at least as much as any other.

Is it cruelity? It it not paying attention? Is it a decision that family doesn’t matter?

I cannot be sure, but one intriguing paper I read said it is a failure of gratitude, which I expect would mean that the rich did not appreciate what they had.

I don’t think it is appreciation so much as not knowing what they have, going back to the beginning, and also not realizing what they are missing. I was also told by an investor in my tiny photography company that the only thing that matters is shareholder value. When conditions caused us to shut down, bills were left unpaid. These were so-called “angel investors.”

There is no way to know when it started or if it always was. Always is likely true. But it exploded after the invention of agriculture and the demise of hunter-gatherer tribes.

I have read that a billion dollars is not enough because we lack a sense of gratitude. Perhaps. But I think a real answer is more complex and perhaps even built into the nature of the universe.

We are created as a temperary consciousness and sentience and we know it and so the anticipation of non-extinence wheather we are conscious of it or not affects our lives.

The core of most (or all) religions is an omni-potent diety that overcomes all and we sit as his elbow on golden chairs and view streets paved with gold for infinity. Sounds supremely boring and I think the lodging place of a fundamental missreading of existence. Whether it is the prosperity gospel (which has no basis in the Bible), or just tribalism, we seem to have a need to be a chosen view. If we are chosen we obviously have an advantage of sorts. So we divide into tribes, some innocuos, others fundmental, others to how we live.

In the land of exceptionalism we are very unexceptional. Our religion is the free market economy. We are free to gather as much money as we can (a hundred billion at the top of the heap) and to not give a damn about the rest.

Now this is not true of all, for sure, but in the sense of the concept of reciprocity we cannot bring ourselves, with a billion bucks in the bank, to identify with a mother holding three jobs to feed her poorly educated children who then end up repeating because the low way has no exits. And so we invent ideologies. Ideas that seem to promise, but in reality destroy. Low taxes and small government sound good even to the poor, but is in fact the definition of injustice.

Perhaps some of us are spin-offs of the leaders of hunter-gatherer tribes and, without the responsibility of that kind of tribe, form another kind: the private club of billionaires. And even the comparatively generous Bill Gates was apprehensive of a tax on wealth.

In the few presidential debates I have read (and for that matter in the scientific theories of everything) there is no mention of what the goals of life should be: the joy of learning and creating, of relationships, of beauty, of being able to be at peace enough to enjoy life. The world has the wealth and the means to make this possible for everyone. But not if Jeff Besos has $100,000,000,000 and pays no taxes, not to mention employing indentured servants in his warehouses, and squeezing tax rebates and buildings out of towns that need his jobs. That is enough to explain the graph below. America has always been two Americas. It was written into the constitution and the track with a high rail and a low rail is carrying more and more passengers.

II. Hoping Against Hope


To stop believing, to begin thinking, to start knowing.

So the virus tears at whatever seams are left. The medics and docs are heros. The government can’t even buy face masks when they are offered. And they go to China instead. The medical system to fight pandemics has been torn apart or eliminated. Science has been fired since The Donald doesn’t have a clue what it is. His uncle went to MIT and gave him intuitive knowledge. I cannot believe I am writing this. The Donald’s hopeless lack of comprhension will kill thousands and likely hundreds of thousands and a government that should lead is absent or interferring, surrounded by ad hoc groups of panicked researchers. But there is more.

Imagine the donald getting relected and my some unimagineable twists and tears of fate, gets both houses of congress. You can not only kiss America goodby, you can kiss the earth goodby. However, let us assume the opposite happens. What then?

I kept looking for someone to talk to about the goal. When you start a business you have a goal, an objective and a plan. And, if you have your head on tight, you have a mission.

Many decades ago during the period when I was working one half time at Bose, a direct sales division was being formed. The idea was to sell the $500 Acoustic Wave Music System Door to Door. The chairman of Electrolux was put on the Bose board of directors, and some ex electrolux saff was hired to build the Bose operation.

I worked in that division as a kind of consultant, filling in where I thought I might do some good. The division had some sucess but was eventually disbanded. However, the experience shook me up a bit as I got to know some of the ex Electrolux people. The upshot was that, being a half-timer with a great deal of freedom, I decided to write a mission statement for Bose. I conceived it as something that would be engraved in brass and put wherever necessary for it to be seen. The point had to do with the kind of people you hired, how you treated your employees and your customers and what it should be like to work at the company.

In reality this was a small issue within a much larger company, but I also knew what kind of a company Dr. Bose wanted, and the direct sales operation was not it, and I wanted to be sure everyone understood this. Eventually I presented the mission to most of the company’ management.

The mission was not quite what I have just described and was a bit unusual:

“Bring the experience of superb music superbly reproduced to every potential customer.”

In other words don’t sell until your customer experiments the benefits. It is surprising what a little twist like this can do. However, the fact is that Bose was already doing it. I just felt it was a good idea to put it in writing.

A great country needs a mission towards its own people and to the rest of the world. I have not heard of such an idea in some time, certainly not from the donald and that places us on the very edge of tragedy.

You can see it in Donald and Barak. Barak Obama makes he happy just watching him, for it feel like a joyous smile. Donald Trump as far as I can tell must fake his smiles. And his puzzled looks are a disguise. Look like know when you don’t know a damn thing. We will see the consequences as we go. '

III. In Another Persons Shoes.


The meaning of life is on the line.

I love Elizabeth Warren, but “I have a plan for that” suggests too much an ad hoc program. If you have a plan, it has an umbrella mission that covers all the bases including a philosophy about life. We need that kind of guidance. Elizebeth, you have the satisfaction of accomplishment at Harvard, of learning, the joy of discovery. What are we offering Americans with lousy education.

Ask Dr. Fauchi what it was like to confront AIDS where the sick were gay, and dressed strangely and violated the bible. Then he put himself in their shoes and was changed and now there is at least medicine for AIDS. A great man for sure. He saw what he did not want to see, and did something about it.

Donald Trump only sees and hears his name praised or defiled and so further rots what was once at least a torn fabric of America. Donald wants to do away with any fabric altogether. Kill the Post Office, ObamaCare, Social Security. The promise of infrastructure improvement went down the drain and the rich cheered. Three people now own 40% of America.

A sinful goal was The Wall. Well know the story but he thinks a section of wall was built. It was a fence and I just saw a video of a man with a rope ladder climb over it. The fact is there is no wall high enough, thick enough, deep enough that cannot be got around without guards with machine guns.

I have heard the donald make some ostensibly scientific comments. They were a laugh that could have made me cry. A man who knows nothing but thinks he intuitively knows everthing, in the wrong place, is a nuclear weapon.

The essence of today (05 12 2020) is Doanld Trump wanting to be king and the integrity of John Roberts whose legacy is on the line.

Mr. Trump wants no oversite, no criticism, lots of acclaim and adoration, no science and as much money for himself and other billionaires as possible. He also has a brick wall in his mind no one can penetrate including himself. He knows however, that there is nothing behind the wall. No compassion, no humanity, no competance, no depth of understanding. And what he does not know consciously is the deep fear of being found out. So he doesn’t take advice and doesn’t stick to the script.

How we can elect and keep a president when the only time we can believe him is when he is reading something prepared by someone else.

IV. Smiles.


There are smiles that make us happy,
There are smiles that make us blue,
There are smiles that steal away the teardrops
As the sunbeams steal away the dew,
There are smiles that have a tender meaning
That the eyes of love alone may see,
And the smiles that fill my life with sunshine
Are the smiles you give to me.

I grew up playing on the piano ”The Great American Songbook.” The music was often open and simple. Straightforward life and love. Above was a song called Smiles.

A smile tells me a lot. It tells me if there is Life behind it. I have seen it often, and the best ones are a reading on Life. I don’t know what else to call it.

Some time only the brain smiles, and you have to look closly. Sometime there are hugs or a handshake. Many stick in my mind and they all have a certain history. A smile with history? Yes. A historic smile means we have touched the universe.

Why do we exist? why do we not ask that question every day. Or every hour or minute.My sense of life is that something went to a great deal of trouble to get us where we are. I simmply call it the creation. Others would say god, but god to me has baggage. A smile happens when we make a discovery. It could be a new planet, or it could be a childs happiness. It could be a wondeful conversation, or a perfance of a chopin ballade. Ecconomics is essential, and we are miserable at that.

The good ones come when your guard is down and they reveal a great deal. If you can’t see the difference between Trump and Obama, don’t bother reading any further. Barak Obama makes me happy just looking at him, because he is genuinely happy. I wonder if Donald has ever been genuinely happy, because that requires understanding and accepting life. And liking yourself. Donald cannot admit to himself who he is so he cannot smile.

V. Belief versus Knowledge.


Everything is on the line.

He grovels before dictators (see the picture with Putin Below). There are not enough canarys in the world to suit Putin’s smile. there is a picture of Barak Obama looking Putin straight in the eye. Its a straight look of don’t mess with me.

If you want to save America from its shortcomings, you need a very bright, very elequent human being able to communicate by puting themselves in the other persons shoes. It is simple, and nearly impossible. Churchill, Franklin Roosevelt, Abraham Lincoln come to mind. And it is a long slog.

How do you begin? Here is how it looks to me.

You must know what is known to those who study the universe, the creation. You must accept that there is something called truth and that science is simply working harder, more methodicly, and eventually mathamatically to be sure you know the truth.

Most answers begin with religion and that gets you into trouble because you have to begin with assumptions made by the writers of two thousand years ago. This can get you a some great truths, but not the foundation of reality that you need.

Ask the question “why?” and the answer is God, except that god is the name of the answer and nothing more. God has filled in overtime whenever fear stared us in the face, for there was no one to help. Read Robert Wright’s The Evolution of God.

What scientists have discovered with the incredible minds we have is stunning and if you study it well enough to understand the ideas, it will change you.

In a nutshell, science tells us how the universe began and evoled until it created us. It is the beginning of truth and a fabulous reflection on the good side of humanity. But the great thread that runs through civilization needs an upgrade. It is a leftover from hunter gatherer days.

The thread is a lust for power and money. In America it first showed its face in 1619 with the arrival of the first Slaves. American proposperty was built, almost literally, on the backs of blacks tending cotton crops, supplying 60% of the world’s cotton with free labor. Double entry booking was developed to keep track of the productively of slaves to the second decimal place. Their backs were tatoos of beatings for not measuring up. Thomas Jefferson mortgaged his 48 slaves to build Motecello.

In the 1850s there began a kind of instuitionalization of power and wealth in what is commonly known as the ”prosperity gospel,” the idea that outspoken fidelity to the Christian god guaranteed health and wealth. It helped engrave into the American consciousness the ideal of American prosperity. It has clearly influenced the evolution of the conservative ideology of low taxes and small government and cast a spell of evil over a goverment that interferred by providing safety nets. But also a legacy of slave holding was a mindset of discouragment of programs that would break the cycle of poverty and racism reflecting a contempt for the underclass. Lyndon John’s safety nets and cival rights accomplishments were the end of the sttruggle.

Hands-off capitalism has been elevated to the status of a religion. The war on monopolies by Theordore Roosevelt has been forgotten. The rescue of America from the Great Depression by Franklin Roosevelt has been branded socialism and the handcuffs have been removed from Wall Street. Taxes on the rich were slashed in the name of trickledown economics.

Benefits that would help the poor and middle class have been destroyed even to the point of states turning down free medicare because it encourages dependence on big government, never mind the suffering and death of small children. Programs such as Head Start are anathama. It is inconcievable to me that billionaires walk the streets (the Walmart family is worth about $128 billion) while children die as a result of no health care. And Trump has vowed to kill Obama Care Completely.

By accident and by intent the election of Trump was for all intents and purposes rigged. Russia was in Facebook, Comey of the FBI dumps an unproven allegation a few days before the election. And the Democrats contribute too. Who is Hillary? Wellesley? Did I ever hear a passonate speech. Her advisors smothered her in butter.

None of that should have made a difference. If you cannot tell that The Donald is Sham Man, then something is seriously wrong either with our culture or education.

Out foxed ’em again. It’s fun having all this power.

Got ‘em, just where I want ‘em.

VI. Well, Hell. Things Could Be Worse.


No. They could not be worse.

The donald has hit the sweet spot. Just shy of bad enough to get impeached, but just right to cause more damage than I could have imagined. I try to think of people I have know. Ah! There is one. Just thought of him. A door to door salesperson named Lenny.

How was your weekend Lenny? Sold 56. Really. Wow. That many. Well, maybe it was 46, or 36. I heard it was 26, Lenny. Oh, yeah. I was including last weekend. Not the full Lenny there, he was really considerably worse, but same personality. Told you what you wanted to hear and nothing connected with reality. It was the last straw and so I wrote the Mission Statement about, among other things, the kind of people we should hire.

Of course things could be worse, but Donald’s sweet spot includes some unbelievable characters.

I am having this thing about smiles. The eyes are supposed to be windows into the soul, if so, smiles are windows into mischief and tragedy.

The donald, with the help of liberal intellectuals has conned many of those feeling left out. They hear his promises, and ignore his retractions. And they don’t pay much attention to accomplises. Take Mitch. This is one of the smiles that has stuck with me. It is the smile of a 10 year old boy who was always being bullied, never making it. And a new bully comes along. Big, frightening, and gullible. So Mitch sees his chance, to become a favorite of the POTUs. The President. It was what Mitch wanted all along. To hell with the voters, I'm gonna keep the Pres. happy and I can, because I am the bill keeper, the door stop. In some ways the most powerful man in government. And the smile. He knows who he is and like most of any opposition, as soon as the shoes switch feet, he hops the fence. A good example: .

Donald Trump becomes president with no qualifications except for part of American culture he is anti-establishment. The swamp that isn‘t. His Sham Caring. Promises and promises but not a sign of accomplishment except his father’s bank account. His early attempts to use his style of dealing fall flat, but he can put the goverment into serious dept with still more tax cuts for the right. As it is his modus operandi, promises are made to the middle class and poor that he has no intention to follow through on. They are tiny and they expire.

Already every part of nature is an opportunity for more mischief. And now the corona virus permits war on anyone Trump and his cult of incompetant boot lickers, chief among them Mitch McConnel, sees fit to punish. The virus is being put to use to continue the assualt on America, the climate, the planet, American values, and on science itself. Scientists are fired or ignored and do not have the stomach for a united rebellion. I have just heard that he is trying to fire Dr. Fauchi.

An odd pivot point in American culture has contributed to decay. Television as introduced in the 1950s has provided a diversion that has made learning and teaching less important. The learning time that propelled singular men such as Abraham Lincoln was trivialized by situation comedy. Science, the backbone of learning, was set aside for scientists and in place of true knowledge, religious beliefs continue to deminish a deep understanding of the creation.

The vital experience of science virtually no one comprehends, even the well educated. What science really means as a path to deep and solid truth is rarely understood. However, the evolution of technology continues to grow the wealth of the already wealthy. Liberals like wealth too and it saps their determination to aid the less well off. Even Barack Obama of Obama health care is now a multi-millionaire and contrary to what we would hope, plays a minor role in fighting Trump. The passionate pulpits of Franklin Roosevelt and the Great Society of Lyndon Johnson are gone and there is not an orator within site or earshot to bring truth from the back to the front.

VII. A Thin Veil of Education


A solid block of ignorance.

Science has made our lives possible. It heals the sick, grows food, allows us to zoom, and provides countless other benefits. Virtually nothing we touch or do during each day could be there without science. Yet belief in science is tenuouis. We turn down vaceens for our children. The New York Times gave scant coverange for deades to the warming earth. Well educated does not mean having a grip on what science really is. That comes either from inspired teaching or better still from doing.

An experiment that goes up in smoke can teach science better than a text book because it demonstrates consequences that might raise the question: I wonder what made that happen? Nothing could be better because then your mind has to form models inside your head of what went wrong and then these models must be tested to see if they fix the problem. And then...if you are supremely lucky a teacher or professor will ask: what did you learn from that? Or for your own reasons you continue experimenting, building , theorizing, and above all, testing. This brings knowledge rather than belief. And over time a confidence settles in that this is a process for confirming knowledge. Then when you read about experiments you have no hope of doing yourself, you know what the ring of truth is. And when this green egg shows up with an almost unbelievable explanation, you read lingering over every word to know what discovery it reveals. And when you realize it is an image of the energy that gave birth to you, and to everything else, and that you are looking back in time 10 billion years, it sends shivers through your brain. The egg is the residue of the big bang and when you realize that you are seeing your own birth it changes you. It places you in a different relationship to the creation, a greater wonder in the greatest of wonders.

I have been reading Dorothy Kerns Goodwin stories of four great American leaders. All became president: Theordore Roosevelt, Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt and Lindon Baines Johnson. Their lives and challenges were very different, but their impact on our lives was similarily positive and great. I am struck by how all had great ambition to benefit our world and by how all were, in different ways, great teachers. I have wondered how they learned.

Now I am wondering how we lost these qualities, not just reduced them, but actually turned them on their heads so that learning from our president may well be a death sentance. It is so remarkable that I cannot comprehend it. Nor, had someone told me it could happen, would I have believed them.

Yuval Noah Harari in his great book Sapiens, A Brief History of Humankind, contends that the development of agriculture and the destruction of the tribal hunter/gatherer way of life about 10,000 years BCE was the worst thing that has happened to humanity. In my view it set free the hunters to fulfill what had become a genetic need to gather and control, so they built empires but for reasons I still cannot comprehend, no empire was ever large enough, just as no amount of wealth is enough today. Now three people own 40% of America.

The invention and adoption of agriculture was a technological revolution. It made some, the farmers, slaves and freed the rest to make serious mischief.

In the 1800s their began a second techological revolution which has not yet stopped. Our industries have the capacity to satisfy our needs at least in industrialized nations, with less and less need for human labor. In America the economy has been hijacked, over the last 50 years or so by a new religion, a prosperity ideology that somewhere near a majority buy into. The ideology is small government and low taxes.

As technology evolved it provided for a wide broadcast and then a telecast of the PROSPERTY GOSPEL. It is even seen by some as a significant contributor to the recession of 2008 by fostering the removal of all shackles to prosperty.

Late in my life (I turn 80 on 9/11/2021) I have begun to realize and be terrified by what we are, and what we are not.

Around the world, no better than for thousands of years, we go to war for nothing. Because of our color, we can be hated. Because of our religion, we can have our heads cut off.

In America in the last century we have started two unbelievably costly wars. Today, we give them lip service. The body count in Iraq is about 200,000 civilians and 88,000 soldiers with the outcome a destroyed middle east. In Vietinam the total Allied and Asian deaths was over two million. When president Bush presented the evidence (aluminum tubes and a rumor of mining for uranium) and was asked for backup, his staff took the same information and changed the presentation. Colin Powell eventually changed his vote.

The same president listened to presentation after presentation by Richard Clark warning him of impending terrorism and did nothing. Why? Because Clark did not say what to do. Nine-Eleven was my 60th birthday. Now I find that level of inexcusibility to be minor.

Through the ages over 200 million people have been killed in in the name of religion.

Human nature, all by itself, may well be the primary motivator for power and wealth. However, there is also the strong thread of rejection of power and wealth. However, this side of the Christian religion and of America’s ideologies have fought a loosing battle.

Cheny and Rumsfeld felt like demonstrating ”shock and awe” and so we can be a ”great” country. Do you, who are reading this, have any comprehension of the sins we have committed while being fooled that we are the land of the free and the home of the brave.? And peace loving? We kill, cause suffering and lie: small goverment, low taxes and now three people own most of the country. In plain English....I don’t know any that suffices. Here is a tiny example: caring for children injured in Iraq.

A tiny few of the children injured or killed in Iraq.

For nothing. We fight each other to divide ourselves. We legislate to pile money in the pockets of a few. Billionaires by the hundreds let children die because we will not spend a pitifully small sum for health care.

America is a land primarily of wonderful people but a silent coup has been staged by Republician conservatives. Most have a viciously selfish view of life. Not all, for sure. But meld Mitch McConnel and Donald Trump and the devil will run for his life. Throw in the prosperity gospel and the lust for more becomes the domenant modus operandi.

We do not have the intelligence to avoid a president of zero compassion and intelligence, because wealth has been an American preoccupation since the arrival of the slaves in 1619 and we can no longer see ourselves in the mirror of Life.

Now, in the face of economic collapse resulting from the corna virus, we have parts of government (above all Donald Trump) fighting to loosen isolation to “save the economy” and groups of Americans rioting in support. In a sense, the chickens have come home to roost when lfie has put in the middle of the table the choice between wealth and death and wealth chokes the life out of us.

We do that because we have little comprehension what Life could be. Education of children relies on property taxes and so damns the poor to continue being poor. However, in the conservation conscious people get what they deserve and a feeling of superiority replaces compassion. What must be the core of a surviving civilization is ironically a form of “family values.” We are all in this together. We cannot exist without each other for a host of reasons, phychological, economic, and moral.

Neither religion nor science forces compassion, creativity and beauty upon us. The big “why” of the creation is not answered either in the Bible or in an advanced physics book. It is left to us to hear and see, but most of all to experience life openly. The overwhelming attitude is to beieve what you want to believe and that is death. You will never fit in anothers shoes, feel the sorrow of a child lost, hear the glory of a Beethoven sonata, or even feel a spring breeze with a sense of the awsomly pleasant feeling it engenders.

In hunter-gatherer tribes, values developed that would surpise us. I recommend reading The Old Way a result of years among a tribe in the Kalarahi and you will be amazef at what they had decivered about life.

VIII. Cheap Thrills. And Shots.


The nadir of Life. And the joy.

This website began as a result of my closeness to the killing of 20 children and six adults at an elementary school in Sandy Hook, Connecticut.

I used to travel to Sandy Hook because of a craftsman named Warren Condit who made precision equipment for my photogrphy. He was the only person who could do it. Driving through the town square left me with an imprepression of a quintessional and peaceful New England town. Then came the shooting, and a conversation with my niece’s huband.

Craig is a pastor at a small evangelical church in that part of Connecticut. He is also a fabulous human being. He became a councellor to the first responders and it shook him to the core and it shook me.

I have a problem with people and guns, but it is a problem that goes far beyond shooting.

I played with guns as a kid. I owned a 22 calibre rifle for killing the woodchucks that were devasting our vegitable gardens. My friend Jim and his father owned many guns and I got to shoot some of them and to play with them. Jim and I went fishing one day with our rifles in a small stream in the woods behind his home. We laughed our heads off, probably not hitting anything. But shooting did not catch on with me. I was too busy with other things.

I think of two kinds of pleasure pursuits in life. Those that are creative and occupy your whole brain. And those that require pulling a trigger or the equivalent. I call these “cheap thrills.” They give sense of power and significance and perhaps even accomplishment. But I throw down the gauntlet. You jackass. Show me your balls. Learn to do something that uses as much as possible of the incredible mind you have been given. Given I say. Free. It comes with the body, and yours works. Not all of them do.

So why don’t you use it? Because in America we do not teach about the gift of the mind and the incredible satisfaction of using all of it. We teach money. Prosperity. Wall street. Billionairs. And then lie about small government and low taxes as if it is going to make a great life.

The religion of free market capitalism is a big con. A giant con. We take away unions. We work at Walmart as contractors so there are no benefits. Just stay under 40 hours per week. And then we subsidize Walmart $1,000,000 per store with food stamps so you can stay alive. This is America Mr. Jones. The taxes go down, for those making millions per year, if they haven’t found an off shore dodge like Amazon and pay nothing.

Then come the schools. Many of the text books are written in Texas. They lie. They talk about creationism, about the virtures of slavery. They do not teach about the satisfactions of a life well-lived. They do not teach about the injustices of conservative ideologies.

Work, work, work your ass off and make something beautiful that makes me cry with joy rather than tragedy.

In our wild-west culture we do not teach what Life is. That we were created with an intredible capability for creating beauty and joy. But we have to know that is how we were created.

Some decades ago, through amazing luck, I became a member of a club in Boston for artists, scientists, people of accomplishment. My photography got me in.

This was not a club for causal get-togethers. Every meeting had a program. My wife and I particularly attended those with music and had some stunning experiences. An acapella chorus from Yale. Pianists, classical and jazz that you could hear and feel, because you were close to them and because they were masters and were playing a $100,000 Steinway, another artistic masterpiece. Some of the pianists became close friends and performed recitals, “house concerts,” in our home. There were jazz ensembles of world class quality. But one instant is burned into my mind.

A few decades ago Isac Stern traveled to Israel on behalf of the New England Conservatory of Music (just around the corner from the Club). He went to choose four young children, in this case about eleven years old, to come to the conservatory and to study and play as a string quartet. They came, studied and played, and one evening, then in their early twenties they, played at the Club, string quartets by Mozart and Brahms.

I happened to go without Susan that night and I sat in the second row, perhaps 10 feet from the players. After an appropriate introduction they took their places and tuned, just as one would expect. I closed my eyes, to hear better. They played one long sustained note, the beginning of the Mozart.

The thought flashed instantly through my mind that I had gone to heaven. Nothing quite so beautiful had ever struck my ears. And then they continued playing, with the skills and love that eleven years of study had given them, but with the joy and passion of the young. It was one of the most memorably evenings of my life. I tried to send the sounds to Susan with my cell phone hoping she could get a small sense of my experience.

That was not the only time the St Botolph Club thrilled me. I had an exhibit there. I heard dozens of fabulous performers had dozens of illuminating and exciting conversations. I reconnected with a wonderful jazz pianist I had met on an airplane while returning from Russia with a new member of our family, young Zhenya. During my last visit to the club I heard Rainer Weiss, lead discoverer of gravity waves tell a story I was already familiar with because I had read a book about black holes. It turned out we had been at MIT at the same time, working not far from each other. But most memorable was something I had experienced myself, and which other scientests and “learners” lived their lives for. The joy of discovery, finding a new truth about the universe in this case with an experiment emplloying a thousand scientists and taking 50 years and certainly one of the most difficult experiments ever done. The Nobel prizes came as fast as the committee could work.

Dealing with our present “isolating” and the criminal behavoir our our president and the tens and perhaps hundreds of thousands of deaths happening because of his negligence, I had to turn the coin over, and remember there was a head on the other side. And that head was a miracle, and not one miracle, but thousands, and millions.

It is a deep thrill of life to discover and create, but there are many other ways, perhaps even more profound, and certainly more necessary, to touch the univerise.

Doctors and nurses and EMTs and health aids, and who knows what others have come from far and wide to cities like New York, the most desperate and dangerous of hell holes, to aid, comfort, and give life, salvation and themselves. They have come from near and far to try to stem the piling up of caskets and body bags. Only to occupy one themselves.

The scope of the heroism, the breadth of sacrifice, the grieving are beyond measure. It is hopeless. I know only the sketist of the details, for I cannot stand to read and see more. And to have an elected president aid and abet in a way more miserable than my imagination could imagine imagening. It is a premanent black tatoo on my brain.

IX. Where do we go from here?


The best rule in the Bible.

It means we are in this together, all of us fighting for each other. Or rather we should be.

We are destroying our planet without knowing what a miracle it is.

But destroying our planet is one thing. Destroying its people is another.

We have been doing the latter for a long time. In America we spend less on helping those who need help than any industrialized nation (on a per capita basis) and less than many third world nations. This is Exceptionalism. This is the Great America. Why? Because 47% of the nation’s wealth is in the hands of 0.7% of its people. It began with the trickledown economics of Ronald Regan and has continued through the collosal tax breaks of the Donald. And I wish that were the worst of it.

I urge you to read this article in The New Yorker and watch this episode of FRONTLINE.

At this time (05 04 2020) it is not possible to pin down the number. My guess is that it will be in excess of 100,000 people that the Donald is responsible for. Why? In these two sources you will find compared the responses of Seattle vs. those of Washington. It is a crime of neglect, stupidity, and...there are not words for Trump’s inaction followed by sabotage. It is more than historical. It is Biblical in its audacity, stupidity and criminality.

I am fighting to avoid it destroying me, so I am trying to wrap this up, but there is more to be said.

There are now millions of pictures of Donald Trump. For me, only a few capture the real person.

I am a photographer and a scientist, and there is one look that frightens me more than any other. It is a “knowing” look that means I need to look smart because I don’t understand a word you are saying. He said he was an expert on the virus because his uncle went to MIT. This is too stupid to comment on. However, I have three degrees from MIT. Thinking that knowing someone who went there makes you an expert, makes you worse than an idiot.

He has already destroyed America and now he is burying its citizens.

This is the look of a man who is puzzled but doesn’t want to show it. There are many pictures like this and it doesn’t suprise me. Every time the president has made a comment to try to show his expertise, he has been so wrong it appeared he was speaking on a different topic.

I wish this were the worst of it, but it is the beginning of many disasters the worst of which is a two month delay in dealing with the virus, no preparation, a dismantling of the government medical system and no compassion whatever for the death and suffering.

But the president’s incomprehension leads him to destroy everything good he does not understand, and everything that does not feed his ego. And he has accomplices, none worse than the leader of the senate. Another vile smirk confirms that he has done incalculable harm to get the praise of an evil man. And so, together with many others who claim to make a great country great again, he destroys.

And now we forget that he began by accelerating the destruction of the earth and that acceleration continues.

The earth is dying and he cannot admit that it’s our doing. Why? Because if he is in a room of oil barons he knows they will skin him alive if he deserts them.

The bad news is coming faster than at any time in the 15 years I have worked on global warming. And if you are a scientist you are trembling. When I first read of all this 15 years ago I said “we’re screwed.” Well we are.

The Greenland Ice Cap is melting, 2000 or so years early. Yet if you look over the entire planet, there is not one person who can stand up and command the attention of national leaders. Not one. And explain to them what thermal runaway means and how we are part of it.

Note: Why Americans Continue to Deny Scientific Facts.

This is the look of a man who is puzzled but doesn’t want to show it. There are many pictures like this and it doesn’t suprise me. Every time the president has made a comment to try to show his expertise, he has been so wrong it appeared he was speaking on a different topic.

I wish this were the worst of it, but it is the beginning of many disasters the worst of which is a two month delay in dealing with the virus, no preparation, a dismantling of the government medical system and no compassion whatever for the death and suffering.

But the president’s incomprehension leads him to destroy everything good he does not understand, and everything that does not feed his ego. And he has accomplices, none worse than the leader of the senate. Another vile smirk confirms that he has done incalculable harm to get the praise of an evil man. And so, together with many others who claim to make a great country great again, he destroys.

And now we forget that he began by accelerating the destruction of the earth and that acceleration continues.

The earth is dying and he cannot admit that it’s our doing. Why? Because if he is in a room of oil barons he knows they will skin him alive if he deserts them.

The bad news is coming faster than at any time in the 15 years I have worked on global warming. And if you are a scientist you are trembling. When I first read of all this 15 years ago I said “we’re screwed.” Well we are.

The Greenland Ice Cap is melting, 2000 or so years early. Yet if you look over the entire planet, there is not one person who can stand up and command the attention of national leaders. Not one. And explain to them what thermal runaway means and how we are part of it.

Note: Why Americans Continue to Deny Scientific Facts.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_brain

XI. Ourselves Hidden From Ourselves


Sight Hides. Hear Silences.

If anything in this writing were indespensible it would be this.

I call my body of photography work “The Hidden World of the Nearby” because I found great pictures by the side of the highway, where no one else throught to look. Over time I began to think that there might be more to the idea than I had realized.

In science sometimes the simplest of questions lead to the most profound answers. Einstein asked what it meant for two things to happen simultaneously and out popped special relativity. So I thought, how close could I get to myself. Well I was myself, so what was I.

I presume you are sitting with your eyes open. So close them. Reality disappears. And if you plugged your ears another dimension would also disappear. Big deal until you realize that this space around you, the sense of the space, its many dimensions, colors, textures, motion, perhaps changing every second was the experience of the reality we call life. I see, but how do I see. Two 1/2 inch images on our two retinas. That is all the input to our brains for the sight that gives me this experience of life. It’s call sentience. So, so what.

To me this is a miracle of a kind because no one can explain sentience. We can’t get any closer but it delivers the experience of life. Or from two flaps of skin, the sound of a symphony.

What is happening is that mysteries are piling up. Sentience is a big one. Another is why people believe as they do. Belief and knowledge are two very different things. Belief is faith. Knowledge is science. People put their faith in god curing their illnesses and die. People study the science and find if it is done carefully out pops knowledge.

Above is the “time-line” of the universe, from the singularity (big bang) that began it all to the earth which was our birthing space.

From The Beginning...


What brings you here?

There is a certain knowledge base we carry with us, whether we know it or not. In early civilization it was a set of wishes and fears because there was little real knowledge. Only faith. I drive Susan (my wife) crazy by beginning too many discussions with the big bang, which is when it all began. I do object, however, to the term “big bang.”

Some years ago on, I believe, NPR’s “Science Friday” a contest was announced for a better name than big bang. No one came up with one.

However, I have my own.

The big bang was a “singularity” which means that it took up the smallest space possible (the Planck distance of 10-35 cm) and the shortest time possible (the Planck time of 10-45 seconds). So I call it “The Grand Singularity.” More appropriate, don’t you think?

Then there was time for construction of the universe and that took (so far) 10.78 billion years. As I have read through the stages after the Grand Singularity (see diagram) it seemed so natural the way each kind of step was the right kind of step. The first stars burned only with helium and hydrogen but some of them as they burned out formed super novae which, in collosal explosions that could often be seen with the naked eye, formed all the other elements, the most important one of course being carbon which is what makes things organic.

Then another seemingly miraculous thing happened. The solar system was formed and of course the earth. The conditions necessary for life such as we have on earth are almost impossible to exist together. It always amazes me that I never hear of anyone talking about something so remarkable. But we are not finished.

About 4+ billion years ago the earth was born and about 200 million years ago homo sapiens appeared as the product of evolution.

I have now come to the place of realizing that this web site is a hopeless task. All this big banging has created us with sense linked to sound and sight. A miracle possibly discussed below.

However, realizing this is hopeless I am going to put on a slide show or two and link to some music or two and wonder that given all these wonders, why so many of the creaters in this world are doing their best to destroy it and to make life miserable for so many. And why Donald thinks he is smarter than his nation wide staff of medical experts and cannot coprehend how is miserable mind has killed so many people.

XII. Joy For A Disappeared Country


Growing Up in Poland, Rhode Island

Being born and growing up in Central Falls, Rhode Island was a fabulous experience. Everything that could possibly be Polish was Polish. We lived in a two family home with my father’s parents. Polish was the language of survival, otherwise you might miss dinner. Or a breakfast of naleśniki with applesauce. Creaps for breakfast.

All four of my grandparents were born in Poland. Church was in Polish. Satufday afternoons were Polish picknics at a grove by the river with booths set up to severe kelbasa and piergoe. Church banquests were an event for I had to memorize and recite from memory poetry, in Polish of course. And there was music. My father played violin and taught me medlies to play on the piano while he played the violin.

Searching through CDs I remembered the Mazofsa Polish Folk Ensemble, and founnd them on U-Tube, and cried. In the middle of this fabulous dance was a melody my father had taught me and reminded me of the harvest vestivals from the church.

The joy I feel from this performance is something I feel nowhere else, even playing Chopin on the piano. And the subtitles tell about a Poland that would never disappears as long as the Vistula River runs, for Poland was without a coast line and smack in the middle of Europe. In 1795 Poland was partitioned and disappeared until 1918.

What is the point? Life is joy and sadness and we fight for joy and the elimination of sadness and I would not dwell on this were it not for the history of America that I have told a small portion of. I am afraid it is a history of fooling itself that it was free, while it held slaves. That it was just while practicing racism. That it was kind, with a tiny safety net, and enormous incarceration. And elected the devil as the incarnation of all worst characteristics and raises the really big question: will America become America, or will it descend into the devil’s own ideology, without the comprehension of science and without the art of joy.

This dance, the Krakowiak is the most famous of the five Polish national dances. Somewere about the minute and a half mark is the melody my father taught me.

This perfermance of dance and song moves me like nothing else. It expresses in its melodies, costumes, dances a love of life, an instance that joy is its purpose, and that joy will continue despite participation and then occupation by Russia. And the Warsaw getto, a fight to the death against an insistent and incalculable cruelity. An attempt at destruction of anything good. Warsaw had to be rebuit plank by plank, window by window while looking at pictures of what it once was. And now it is again.

Part of my connection to this dance is that when I was 10 or so, every autumn from our Polish church we used to have a harvest celebration called Dozinki, where all us children used to dance, in costume (a bit simpler than these) a simple version of this dance. So everything in my life, food, language, church, music, grandparents (all 4) was Polish. And at every gathering at our church, my grand mother would teach me poetry that I would recite (in Polish) before gatherings (banquets) at the church.

XIII. VIRUS


One Virus, Two Viruses, Three and Infinity

Donald Trump has exhausted many people. He has depleated the Oxford Engish Dictionary. There are no words left. The devil has chosen early retirement rather than face him.

There are crimes of many kinds. Violent. Silent. Grusome. Horrible. Intentionally planned. A flame-up of the moment. But Donald Trump has invented many different ones, and his handling of the virus opens a new world of crime that infuriates me more every day.

The president has responsibilities to lead, protect, and inspire, to comfort the suffering and more. Donald does not know the meaning of any of these. A president does not hesitate when warned of a epidemic let alone a pandemic. When President Obama was faced with a much less urgent situation he phoned the new head of Homeland Security while she was on her way to Washington for confirmation. He briefed her, told her she was to go to a meeting when she arrived and swore her in on the way.

In the face of a pandemic Donald waited two months when two days made a difference, told everyone he had taken care of the problem because he had an intuitive understanding. He derived this understanding from his uncle who had attended MIT. This is such ludriculous bullshit one could only expect to find it in a comic book possibly with an eight year-old showing off. That’s our Donald. Except for one small difference.

Instead of stopping the virus in its tracks he laid new tracks, urged it on, had already ready decimated the agencies that would deal with it so that the virus had no brakes traveling on its new polished and shiny tracks. This is a new kind of crime. Tell everyone you have it under control, lying through your teeth and not knowing that you are lying.

The result is thousands more dead and an America that will never be the same again, while Donald thinks he is making it great while we have a whole new kind of crime. Praise yourself while people die through your neglect. And over a third of the country supporting him. He has also destroyed any peace I could have hoped for in the waning years of my life.

Why do I write this stuff which probably no one will read. There is no alternative. It is just to feel a little human.

What we can see of the afterglow of the Grand Singularity

Laying a Foundation

First Principles.

1.0 Neither science nor religion can tell us why we exist so we take it upon ourselves to assert why. (Kind of makes sense.

2.0 Reciprosity rules. Everyone has a reciprocal duty toward everyone who crosses their path. Those with more have the greater responsibility.

3.0 We are all children of the grand singularity and therefore of the earth and of the first primitive life forms.

4.0 We all evolved to become Homo sapiens and children of a small group of Africans who migrated north about 100,000 years ago. Hence we are all Africans. Our color is determined by the northward progression of our ancestors and our need for vitamin D.

5.0 We are all taught the basics of science, logic and thought.

6.0 We all assert and teach that life is meant for us to learn the truths of the universe, and to create based on those tested and verified truths beauty and joy in reciprocal relationships.

7.0 No creator is valued on the basis of what they create but rather on the basis of their ability to teach learning and creation.

8.0 No one has any greater rights to what is created than anyone else.

9.0 Our purpose is the enjoyment of the process.

10.0 We are responsible for the earth and for the care and nourishment of all living things that live in reciprocal relationship with us.

11.0 We are all responsible for living by and teaching these principles.

12.0 We acknowledge the enormity of the task before us, but commit ourselves to it based on lessons from the past.

13.0 All are free to join with others or to live as individuals.

14.0 It is a sacred responsibility to resolve conflicts in the interest of enjoyment of th gifts of life, consciousness, intelligence and sentience.

The Creation, The Grand Singularity, has given us space, time and the earth.

In turn, the earth has given us existence and Life.

Sometimes we have made Life glorious.
Other times we have created a massive bungling,
to the point that the existence of Life and of the earth is in question.

To my mind, civilization has been a great arc and now we are near its apogee, as if at the top of a roller coaster although this one can go up, as well as down. On which side we are, up or down, is not clear.

My terror has turned into wondering if there lies an opportunity, the earth and evolution have given us, homo sapiens, the astonishing ability to make a picture of our birth. That picture, this green egg, is the after-glow of the Grand Singularity (usually called the big bang) that began everything 10.78 billion years ago in the smallest time and the smallest space there can be. Space and time were born and no religion or scientist knows why, but we do and I will tell you why.

The IMAGE is the result of a joint NASA/European Space Agency venture, nine years of sensing by a satellite to extract the useful part of the image from the background noise. The colors show galaxies and galactic clusters about 300 million years after the big bang which is as far back in time as we can see. Light from further back has not had time to reach us.

The image at the top of this page is of a magnet and its lines of force. I originally placed it to illustrate the divisions that have separated America into its factions (the red and blue were colors chosen coincidently by the illustrator). But as I have continued to study it, the effect seems more and more the joining of the poles.

There is an amazing coincidence of a problem of physics that was solved by this satellite: the question of whether a single pole (known as a monopole) of a magnet could exist. Careful reseach into the nature of the big bang has told us that monopoles cannot exist and that coinsides with my thinking that Life always requires another, whether it be a person or thing, for all of life is an interaction. It is called RECIPROCITY, an exchange, cooperation, a joining of sprits.

Conflict, violence, war. Hoarding wealth. Neglect of poverty, suffering and abuse. Denial of justice. Hatred. These are all also reciprocal evens, but Life, Life, Life. The beauty and joy of the universe, DEMANDS AND WE, YOU AND I, REJECT THEM for they destroy Life.

For all of our existence we have hoped that god or science would mediate between these opposites. I believe that our current time near the apogee of civilization tells us that neither of these, after thousands of years of trying, can bring us to a realization of what life means, and so it is left up to us to decide.

The “Time Line” of the universe, brom the beginning of time to the earth, as it is today. The creation of the earth began about 5 billion years ago. The creation of human life happened when a virus turned into a bacteria, which could divide into two identical selves. This was the beginning of life.

Action


What we do that matters

The two pictures above tell us that we, you, I and everyone are miracles of the Creation, the greatest miracle of all time. And as children of the Creation, we must first accept, without question, that the Creation did not make different kinds of humans, that we treat every single human on the earth the same way, as we expect to also be treated equally. The name for this is RECIPROCITY. When we join with others, we can also be creators. But to do this, we must also be warriors of the spirit, we must declare that Life will be the experience of learning, creation and joy. We must assert, take things into our own hands and minds, and carry the Creation into all our lives. If we do not, there will be only death.

There are infinite obstacles to the truth. Prejudices. Religious dogma. What others think. But it is your mind, if it is open to learn, that can save you and our world.

No. That is not right. It is to re-create the world as Nature, as the Creation, intended. We need to make the future a future of reinvention. Chapter 1 is over. We must start writing Chapter 2.

“Conservative,” “Liberal” and all other labels, trap our brains so we cannot learn. Above all, a scientist, an artist, an intelligent human tries to see, to experience, to hear what is really there. Not to see and hear what we want to see and hear, what we have been told to see and hear. But what is really there.

I have spent 40 years making pictures of nature. I call my collection “The Hidden World of the Nearby,” because I discovered that beauty was where I least expected to find it. Below is on a busy street near my home that commuters use, bumper to bumper to get to work. But I found that I must stop and open my eyes. Click on FOURTY YEARS OF SEEING.

That is how the picture below: Spring Morning After Storm was made. On a busy road. No one else but me thought to look. And it lasted only seconds.

It takes courage, but everything we do depends on listening and seeing what the Creation tells us.

If we see the beauty around us. If we hear the words spoken to us.

But we must accept we are all part of the same creation, the creation that gave us the universe and the possibility to experience joy and beauty while sharing.

When two of us, no matter how we look or speak or where we came from, when we accept we are all human, then something called reciprocity happens. We exchange the core of our beings. We participate in each others souls. And we give back to the Creation the joy it has given us. We preserve and create Life. We create joy. We enjoy beauty. We enjoy the earth, but above all we enjoy each other, whether we were born male or female, black, white or any other color. When we learn what life experience made us the way we are. When we greet each other with smiles and a word of welcome. Then we are alive for there is no life when there is isolation.

We are on the edge of destroying America, the earth and civilization itself. We hoard money. We let others suffer and die while we have billions in the bank. Whatever anyone else says, that we earned this money so we can keep it, we, together assert that is wrong. Life can only be lived together.

Civilization 2.0, is to take advantage of the assault on all of us of the virus, of the destruction we have mindlessly caused, of the oncoming death of the earth and begin, all of us, of every religion, of every view of life to think, to learn and create, together.

Listen to my friend Constantine Finehouse, connect to the universe his way: CLICK HERE.

1. Learn

2. Create

3. Act

4. Reciprocate 3*** he Lucy direction to the point that there is no discussion of the purpose of life in our presidential debates. Sound bites and name calling is our intellectual span and there is no motivation to go deeper. And thoughout the world we desperately need to go for some (excuse the phrase) “deep learning.”

.

II. What We Know


and what we don’t know, but think we know

A picture keeps running through my mind, something like a loog empty space. Mine is not very elegant so let’s think of a long library bookshelf, say 100 feet long, and ask the question, in each corner of the planet how much is filled with real knowledge.

However, in America there is an additional colossal tragedy, that it was the introduction of slaves in 1619 that has so dominated the development of American civilization. An excellent recounting is The 1619 Project in the New York Times. In fact the great American free market collossus it turns out is the most important cause of global warming and that “free“ market was built on the backs of slaves a crime that continues today with the market unable to stop the burning of the fuels that are damning the earth.

Not being conscious of what is happening to us because we have not yet learned to teach each other the joys and tragedies of life, we descend into hell and think that by being worth 100 billion dollars we are experiencing life. We are in fact experiencing death, not only our own, but the death of the spirits of those from whom we have taken billions.

III. The Road Not Taken


Machine Guns are Mastered With the Pull of a Trigger

Pianos Are Mastered with the pressing of up to 10 of 88 keys at one time

repeated several million times

Firing a gun uses one millionth of your brain. Playing this piano requires you to press so many keys so often in such a precise way that your brain must grow larger to accommodate your needs. Imagine sitting at the keyboard of this 1050 pound work of several lifetimes, focusing all your attention, down to the very essence of your being because you are going to make a connection to your soul and to the souls of the composer and your listeners. The music is a ballade by Chopin. The pianist is Krystian Zimerman. It takes infinitely more courage to master this instrument than it does to make war for it is the commitment of a lifetime. And its reward is joy for thousands and even millions of those whose ears are open.

This is my own piano. It is an extraordinary instrument and I play it every day, repeated a scherzo by Chopin that I have played perhaps 10,000 times. Each time it is a new experience.

From the creation we have stunning examples of what our minds can do that bring satisfaction and joy and connection with others of our species. In the great arc of civilization it is time we all learned the beautiful parts and learned of the joy of caring for each other, no matter which members of our species are the points of connection.

IV. Eyes Shut, Ears Blocked


unconscious reality

This web site was originally inanothershoes.com in response to the rash of gun violence, racism and multitudes of other sins happening in America. Then global warming came to the top of my list as I became aware of how little the public knew, how great was the danger and how little we were doing, and the site became caringfortheearth.com.

Except that, on the scale necessary, caring never happened. Fossil fuel barons simply ignored the evidence and continued to burn, and around the world more coal was being burned. Where in hell were we going to end up. My own assessment is that the Paris Accords are a futility. We pump more and more carbon dioxide, the developing countries burn more coal and the developed countries ignore the agreements, as in the United States, or ask for concessions. When the risk is an uninhabitable planet that we have already ravaged, this seems inconceivable. But there is a back story.

Ironically I have taken joy in this being the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth and listened to new and inspired performances of familiar music. But it is another anniversary (plus one year) that could not be further from the joy of Beethoven and that has an amazingly fundamental role in virtually every aspect of American life as well as in global warming. The anniversary is 400 years (in 2019) of bringing slaves to America.

The New York Times, which I have often criticized for its dismal coverage of global warming has created Project 1619, the story of slavery in America. Its impact on me has been profound. In reading just a small part I came to know America far more than I had wished because slavery was not just enslavement, it was an industry. It’s free labor built America into the financial colossus it became. The United States supplied 60% of the worlds cotton, slaves were treated as property to a degree I never imagined, and with great irony, the blindness to everything but money that is still driving global warming is simply an extension of the slavery industry, a utterly crushing realization and somewhat of an explanation of where America’s soul lies. It is interesting to note that Thomas Jefferson, the man behind “we are all created equal,” morgaged his 150 slaves to build Monticello. But it doesn’t end there.

America is the worst of all industrialized nations in income inequality, in the treatment of is people and especially of its workers without college degrees resulting in an enormous surge in suicides, drug and alcohol abuse. Then we add to this Donald Trump who has exacerbated every problem we face. In my mind, reading of all his machinations about his election and his behavior of hiding everything he possibly can about himself, he is if not legally, then in principle a fake, abusive president.

V. Reciprocity


The missing link

In Sunday school, many decades ago I learned of the golden rule. More recently I learned of the philosophical term, reciprocity that carries the same meaning. In this Wikipedia link, the Japanese philosopher Fukuyama maintains that human culture is not possible without reciprocity, yet all the problems America is facing can be traced to a failure to accept that we are all of the same species, all carry essentially the same genome, all feel more or less the same joy and pain, but that America is, contrary to what I was taught in grade school, a society that does not recognize reciprocity as a value. In all the presidential debates I have heard nothing about what it should mean to be a human being in the United States. We are as a nation and as a planet on the brink of catastrophe. We may continue to exist, but it will be an existence that denies what it should mean to be human. Humans like you and me are homo sapiens. We are of the genus homo and the species sapiens. The ancesters of all of us, blacks and whites, and all in between, are Africans. Yes, you heard me correctly you and I (I am of Polish descent) are Africans. Its recorded in every cell in our bodies.

Here is the map. And here is the experience by someone who lived the life. Elizabeth Marshall Thomas, in her wonderful book, The Old Way, tells what it was like to live among the bushmen of the Kalahari, probably as close as we could get to knowing how our original ancestors lived.

But being black has a whole other connection that it seems to make me an ignoramous that I learned of it today reading the New York Times.For the last decade or so I have slowly tuned into shortcomings of our democracy, and then felt body blows from Mr. Trump. However, 2019 was the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first sales to America. I had known that American textbooks downplayed the story and some in the south gave it a positive spin. But I did not know the role it played in global warming, although that may be the least of slavery’s sins.

ABOVE: A map of the migrations of homo sapiens that began about 100,000 years ago. (Credit: National Geographic)

VI. It Takes Cotton To Mine Coal

It took slaves to grow the cotten that built capitalism

How much of the story of slavery has not been told. From my perspective, hardly any until I began reading the New York Times 1619 Project.

“Out of slavery — and the anti-black racism it required — grew nearly everything that has truly made America exceptional: its economic might, its industrial power, its electoral system, its diet and popular music, the inequities of its public health and education, its astonishing penchant for violence, its income inequality, the example it sets for the world as a land of freedom and equality, its slang, its legal system and the endemic racial fears and hatreds that continue to plague it to this day. The seeds of all that were planted long before our official birth date, in 1776, when the men known as our founders formally declared independence from Britain.”

“...it economic might...” is what burned coal and later oil and pumped gigatonnes of carbon dioxide into the air and continues to do so, and I expect is responsible for American industry’s inability to stop. Once slavery became a money machine all else followed and American democracy became a joke, but a joke that hardly any got. We rank at the bottom and I mean bottom of industrialized nations in the way we treat those not wealthy. The wealthy own our govenment to and have guided it to an obscene distribution of wealth at the top.

ABOVE: A map of the migrations of homo sapiens that began about 100,000 years ago. (Credit: National Geographic)

VI. It Takes Cotton To Mine Coal

It took slaves to grow the cotten that built capitalism

How much of the story of slavery has not been told. From my perspective, hardly any until I began reading the New York Times 1619 Project.

“Out of slavery — and the anti-black racism it required — grew nearly everything that has truly made America exceptional: its economic might, its industrial power, its electoral system, its diet and popular music, the inequities of its public health and education, its astonishing penchant for violence, its income inequality, the example it sets for the world as a land of freedom and equality, its slang, its legal system and the endemic racial fears and hatreds that continue to plague it to this day. The seeds of all that were planted long before our official birth date, in 1776, when the men known as our founders formally declared independence from Britain.”

“...it economic might...” is what burned coal and later oil and pumped gigatonnes of carbon dioxide into the air and continues to do so, and I expect is responsible for American industry’s inability to stop. Once slavery became a money machine all else followed and American democracy became a joke, but a joke that hardly any got. We rank at the bottom and I mean bottom of industrialized nations in the way we treat those not wealthy. The wealthy own our govenment to and have guided it to an obscene distribution of wealth at the top.

Despite knowing full well that burning fossil fuels puts the earth in danger, fossil fuel producers continue to produce and market as much as they can. Accumulating wealth rules.

As of three years ago LiveScience wrote:
“Global warming is expected to have far-reaching, long-lasting and,
in many cases, devastating consequences for planet Earth.”

Attempts to reduce CO2 emissions to meet the Paris accords have failed.
Then Donald Trump arrived and poured gasoline on the fire. A more uninformed, ignorant, corrupt person I find hard to imagine.

As an engineer I feel an almost overwhelming compulsion to solve problems but after two years and two months attempting to teach, to create something that would inform, advocate and convince anyone of the seriousness of our situation I believe it is too late to turn things around and I am spent.

Now Donald Trump has shifted his attention to creating a corona virus vaccine or the wealthy.

Is there any hope? Perhaps a miracle.

I have written on many topics relating to global warming including trying to teach what science is. You will find them in two tables of contents.

The site is pretty much still a draft, not spell checked, and needs rewriting. But I believe there is some good thinking here and I will slowly try to clean things up. In the meantime I am trying to cool off and get on with other work.

VI. Thought


an overview

THE PROBLEM OF NOT UNDERSTANDING THE PROBLEM

Our place in life is determined by what and how we think. That, of course, is determined by the circumstances of our birth: where, when, in what environment, religion or philosophy. Or possibly none of these for many children. Many will not survive, receive little or no education or learn only how to cause harm.

In the face of threats civilization provides anything from an idylic, idealistic, informed life, to a hateful, violent need to kill and dominate. Or it provides nothing at all.

America has seen itself as the ideal, yet in early 2020 it is failing further and in more ways than most of us could have imagined. These failures are exacerbating the effects of global warming, the worst crisis the planet has ever faced. Thought, that which we do all day every day, is so uninformed, so twisted and illogical, so lacking in compassion as to defey finding appropriate words.

Science and truth are virtual twins, each enhanses the other and we cannot function or ultimately exist without both. Yet we find, particularly on the conservative side of the asile, stunning ignorance including a president who causes despair and even contributes to the rate of suicide.

Many citizens of intelligence fight for truth and compassion, but pitifully corrupt power blocks the way. And now a pandemic, a bodily sickness in a terrifying way appears seemingly out of nowhere and our president blames his political enemies, and minimizes its danger and then hints at a vaceen that will be only for the wealthly. Another day, another eye-opening evil.

In ths website I try to expand on those needing more explanation while searching for thoughts that are missing, which had we a Roosevelt, Lincoln or Churchill might be inspiring and teaching us.

above: two year old pictures of the beginnings of climate change


N E X T

The Beginning

Note:

At this point I have paused, or possibly stopped, working on this web site essentially since I have lost hope, that anything I say will ever be read by anyone who can do more than is being done. However, I will make it as available as I can.

I think the following contains useful thoughts although it may take some effort to extract them. I will do my best to clean things up. Also, the Table of Contents contains many links to drafts of various essays, some more or less complete, others in early draft stage. However, after two years and two months I am returning to my photography for this story is more than I can bear.

Figure 1

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