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2001, october, The featured "VIP" of Oct.2001, KD5MPM, Retired HOBO freight-train Rider, a Collector of BOAT anchors.

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A Arkansaw HillBellie Shack
Full of Boatanchors! The featured "VIP" of Oct.2001, KD5MPM, Retired HOBO freight-train Rider, a Collector of BOAT anchors.
2004-04-29 07:55:22

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Monday, October 28, 2013

James E Harper Poet

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Free To Be Real -Angie Riedel

Free To Be Real

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Sex, Logic and You

I've always thought that young people kind of go to waste in our society, especially when they finally get to high school. They have so much inside them that is creative and optimistic and brilliant, and they have tons of energy and willingness to explore new things. But there is almost nothing young people can get involved in that's meaningful and worthwhile at a time when they have so much to offer and there are so many possibilities for them to achieve something substantial even at that young age.

This puts young people in a weird kind of void that basically leaves them little choice other than to get involved in what is left for them to put all that energy in to, and that boils down to socializing with all their heart and soul. While socializing is essential, if that's all there is it becomes a waste of time and potential that reduces people to doing things that leave them empty and frustrated.

It seems illogical to me to not have a whole slew of things for them to choose from that have substance AND personal meaning. It's a shame not to enable their ability to do great things, because they can do great things if the opportunity is there. Young people are smart and able to comprehend complex things and they can see many things more clearly than older people because they don't have all of those preconceived notions to fog their point of view.

In high school they have a lot of things pulling at them they're at the mercy of, like parents, school and let's not forget hormones, which is already a set up for frustration and emptiness. The truth of it is that life boils down to having to do what you're told and going to school, and whatever freedom you have is pretty much spent socializing yourself into oblivion. And a tremendous amount of time and energy ends up in the realm of all those raging hormones and all the activity in around desires for love and sex and everything in between.

Girls seem to be falling in love every five minutes, and boys, well, they have their own problems with raging hormones they have to learn to live with. It's not so much about intense feelings of love for boys as it is intense sexual feelings. And boy are these two strong emotional drives as different as night and day.

It's sort of a sick joke in a way that what girls want from boys, and what boys want from girls can't be gotten anywhere else and yet they're notable to find what they want there. Does that stop them from trying? Heck no.

There's not much that can be done to correct the situation so there is more balance between what girls want and what boys want but they seem to find common ground quite well in spite of things. But when there is no common ground, these strong desires can lead to trouble. Doing things for the wrong reasons is a common peril and can lead to someone getting hurt, or hurting someone by not thinking about how what you do will affect them, sometimes in pretty serious ways. I want to address this a little bit today by talking about how to make sure that we do things for the right reasons. Because really, what other way makes sense?

I'm here to say that both girls and boys and their natural drives and feelings are 100% completely normal and expected and anyone who tells you any different is clueless. But just because something is totally normal doesn't mean you can or should allow it to run wild. I remember once a guy said something very inappropriate to me and I was more than happy to set him straight. It was something along the lines of telling me that he found me attractive and wanted to do the wild thing with me. As he spoke he did the most peculiar thing; he made a rather raunchy humping movement with his hips and glared at me with a huge grin.

Many guys make the mistake of thinking that their sex drives are delightful for women to be on the receiving end of, and they're so wrong it's not funny. I told him he was disgusting, because he was. He replied with laughter and some ridicule and said, "Disgusting? Sex isn't disgusting, it's natural!" Implying there was something wrong with me for having a problem with his kind, natural offer of sex.

I told him that sex was indeed natural but there is a time and a place for everything. Natural doesn't mean lose your mind and act like an animal.

He laughed again and grinned even more. He said, "If it's natural it's always right. How can there be a time and place to be natural?" He thought he was so clever.

So I set him straight with this. "Going to the bathroom is natural too. Taking a dump is the most natural thing in the world, right? But you don't climb up on your kitchen table in the middle of dinner with your family, take down your pants and have a crap right there in front of everyone do you?."

He looked at me and blinked, and he stopped smiling and hung his head. "No," he said, "You don't. That would be inappropriate." Bless him, he got it, and he even apologized for being such a monkey brain. He never did it again, not with me, and my guess is, not with anyone else.

It was easy for him to let his sex drive over rule his logical mind, so much so that he just plain failed to engage his logic and let the sexual desire lead his behavior. It could have been worse if I was of the belief that I "should" accept his claims of it being all natural and wholesome and I was weird for not going along with the idea. If I was more worried about what I thought he and others would think of me for not seeing things the way he did, I might have allowed something to happen that could only have led to feeling bad about myself and having a lot of regret.

Strong feelings are not a basis to do anything, no matter what gets thrown your way that makes it seem justified. Often just a little more thinking will clarify things that only moments ago seemed like iron clad logic.

It's inappropriate to be run by strong feelings of any kind for a very simple reason. If you are in an emotional state of mind, you cannot be in a logical state of mind at the same time. It's impossible. You can only do one at a time. Think about it. When you're really angry is that the best time to expect your best thinking? No, because the anger is in control and this is when we tend to say things we don't mean, and end up regretting those words later.

It's not just anger that shuts down our logic and reason while it's blasting, it's any strong feeling, good or bad. Why is that a problem? Because there's little chance of acting in a way that is based on your ability to think logically and determine what action or inaction is the best decision for you to make. In other words, your actions are much more likely to be dumb ones when you don't think before you act.

Strong feelings have a way of making you feel justified in doing whatever the feelings make you want to do. In the heat of the moment, feelings feel like justification. Feelings feel like a valid reason in and of themselves to do what you're feeling.

But that's just it. Feelings are not reason. Feelings are feelings and reason is reason. They aren't the same. You could think of them as opposites but I don't think that's accurate. I see them both as equal but different. They do different things and cause us to choose to act in different ways. They are both equally important and they are both essential parts of our minds. Both are needed in order to go through life as a whole and balanced being.

Imagine what someone is like who is totally unemotional, who only lives in their logical mind. They are always serious, never in a happy mood, never able to laugh or have fun. They're pretty unpleasant to be around. You instinctively know that they'd be much more pleasant to be around if they showed a little more of their human side and could come down to earth with the rest of us and lighten up. You can naturally perceive that they are out of balance, allowing logic and reason to dominate their minds to the point that their emotional side seems cut off.

It's possible too to go over board the other way, and be so feeling driven that your logical side is reduced to nothing. When you witness someone who is completely driven by emotions and feelings, how do they appear to you? Most of the time we perceive them as kind of crazy. Out of control. Again, we instinctively know that they are not attached to their logical, reasonable sides; their feelings could easily be blinding them to facts, or making it impossible for them to be fair.

We would use words like unreasonable, unbalanced, and unhinged to describe them. Each of those words refers to their disconnect from their reasonable mind. It is interesting to note that in our society, this obvious imbalance of emotion over logic results in using words like unbalanced or unhinged to describe their behavior.

Yet when someone has an equally obvious disconnect from their emotional side, those words are never used. In fact, people who let pure logic run their lives are often praised for their imbalance. The fact is, they are just as unbalanced as their opposites, and their lives are lived without the emotional input necessary to balance their actions. Our society has a bias that favors logical thinking over emotions.

Why? Is logic better than emotion? No, it's not better, but that's not really a legitimate question. Both are needed to be able to perceive the world and interpret it fully. To say one is better than the other would be like saying shirts are better than pants. They're different but equally necessary. You can't toss out your pants and go out into the world without raising a few eyebrows. If you did and people asked why you had no pants on, and you answered with, "I don't require pants because shirts are all that is needed. Shirts are superior to pants"; how well would that go over?

No doubt if someone really believed that shirts are superior to pants they could come up with all kinds of "reasons" to think so, but you'd already know they were thinking in an unusual way. There's some possibility they might have a point, but there's just as much of a chance that they're just a bit odd. They're entitled to their beliefs, but we don't have to believe them or accept their reasons for ourselves. There's enough room here on planet earth for people to have their own beliefs and perceptions, no matter what we think of them. As long as it doesn't affect anyone else negatively then what difference does it make what someone else believes about their own personal lives? It makes no difference. It's their choice for their own life, and that's what it's all about.

In terms of logic and emotion, the point is to go for a balance between the two. We need to check in with both sides of our brain before jumping into action. If we don't take the time to step back and run the idea through both sides of our mind, we almost can't avoid unbalanced actions and as anyone can see simply by observing the world around us, operating out of balance is not something to shoot for. It's much closer to malfunctioning than it is to being desirable.

One of the best skills you can have is the ability to engage both sides of your brain before you act. It really is a skill, an essential life skill that will serve you incredibly well. You learn it by doing it all the time until it becomes a habit. After that it becomes impossible to live without and the benefits are a no brainer you would not give up for anything.

Everyday you'll run into situations that engage your emotions to the point that it's almost too hard to resist just going for it, whatever "it" is. This is not just now, this will always be there for the rest of your life. It will be extra hard now because you have so many things influencing you that you aren't really able to register as a form of influence. And there is a relentless, overpowering desire to fit in with the people around you. You're trying to literally figure out how you fit in with all of these strong personalities, and you're observing that some people seem to have it made while others don't have a chance. At first glance it may seem like it's so unfair but it's not a true observation.

It's as normal as the sky is blue to observe people that seem to have all of the popularity and fun and good looks and believe that copying them will bring the same to you. It rarely does. You'll probably end up copying them anyway, at least to some extent, and you'll find that you're still you and they're still them. There is a reason for that. You are you and they are them. Nothing you do will change that. But before you go around thinking that this is a bad thing hear this. You are you and that's how it's supposed to be. There is no other you. It's your job to be you and what applies to other people, what appears to be enviable in others is their thing. It isn't anyone else's thing.

Dogs and cats are equally valid animals, right? Do you ever see a dog feeling all depressed and forlorn because cats are cool and he doesn't look anything like a cat? No. He's too busy being a dog to care. No matter how much he believed he couldn't be cool unless he looked like a cat, it would never happen. He'd have to put himself through so much weird stuff in the attempt to copy the cat and even then, he would still be a dog in the end, and even worse, would look kind of pathetic for trying so hard to make himself something he's not. He believes he is inferior to the beautiful cat, but you and I understand that's not true. They're two different things, and he should just go be a dog and be a happy dog. It's his mistaken belief that's causing all of his feelings of being inferior, and the whole belief is wrong from the get go.

People are exactly the same way when they can't see themselves as equally valid to everyone else around them. They aren't everyone else, they aren't there to be anyone else, they are there to be themselves.

You're every bit as valid and perfect and lovable and necessary as the popular people are, and probably lucky not to have all the popularity they have. When all eyes are on you and it all comes easy because of looks or money or coolness, there's a good chance that there's nothing else going on in there.

That's actually pretty creepy. So if you engage your brain before getting swept away with social pressure there's a huge possibility that you'll avoid making the mistakes that these role models always end up making. They always experience a fall and lose credibility and they always have things going on that you don't know about. You'd be surprised if you could spend a day inside their heads, and you'd probably be anxious to get the heck out.

What you are is perfect. You arrived perfect and what you're supposed to do is be you. It makes no sense to get sidetracked like Mr. Dog there, and try to be someone else. Your talents and possibilities are all inside you waiting for you to discover them and let you become what will make you happy in a real and lasting way. Focus on being you,and use both sides of your brain to decide for yourself what makes sense and what you want. You can see down the road what actions will bring what kinds of results, and you should choose ahead of time when you have a choice, rather than afterwards when you're stuck with the outcome and it's too late to change anything.

You can always do something later, after thinking about it and deciding where you stand on things. But what you can't do is undo a done thing.

Which do you think is the smarter way to do things?

If there's anything I've left out that didn't address your specific questions, email me. angie@pbsblog.com In the meantime get out there and be you, because there's nothing on earth that's more important for you to do than that.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007


Hello and welcome. This blog is written to help young people learn how to stay in control of their own lives and not allow anyone or anything else outside themselves to decide who and what they are, or what they like and don't like, what they should think or feel, or even what's right and wrong. All of those things are up to each individual to discover for themselves and no one has any "right" to push their own ideas on anyone else.

It defeats the purpose of even having a self if it is reduced to mere non-thinking obedience. Unless of course, it is done by choice. But who would choose to give up control of their mind to someone else? Your mind is who you are, it is all you've got and it is guaranteed that no one is better qualified to control your mind than you are.

While my aim is to educate and empower the younger folk, people of all ages will benefit too because what is here applies to everyone. It's about being human. Everyone needs to know that you are your own person and everything having to do with you is up to you. But you're never too old to stand up and say, "Thank you but no more. I'll take it from here".

By getting this information to young people, they will have the enormous benefit of not having to see decades of their lives stolen by hundreds of other people and institutions, by social pressures, peer pressures, even parental demands well after they grow up and leave home. It's terrible to wake up and realize that decades of your life were wasted by people who didn't care about you nearly as much as they cared about their own desires.

If your natural independence is reinforced early in life, you may well avoid being used and abused and pulled off the course of your own life. Nothing worse can be stolen than who you are, what you are, and what you're here to do with your life. But there is always someone who is trying to take all of those things from you, and they'll use every trick in the book to do it.

It's as simple as realizing those things are yours, not someone else's.

People who are never given that information often end up being manipulated into being and doing what someone else wants, and it always ends up hurting them. This is a hard lesson to learn. But if you start your life knowing that you're not obligated to anyone, then you'll be strong and the parasites of life will not be able to make an easy target of you. You'll be much more likely to live a satisfying, happy life when you understand from the get go, that you're the boss of you and no one else gets an opinion. (At least not one that counts). Then you can really appreciate the people you choose to let in to your life, instead of letting them ruin it whenever they like, again and again and again.

It's a fact that there will always be someone who wants to control our lives in some way or another and if we are thoroughly induced as children to accept that we have an obligation to comply, then we will probably comply for the rest of our lives. The only ones delighted by this are the ones who gain control over us.

Anyone who tells us they have the right to control us is lying. It's that simple.

Bet you never heard that before, and you never heard it on TV. No one ever will. It's precisely what they don't want people to know. They don't want anyone to think about it and realize it's true. Because every time someone does, they stand up and walk away and the controllers of our world lose a little more power. They hate that. Tough. It doesn't belong to them, it belongs to us, and each one of us is the rightful owner of the power over ourselves. Don't let anyone try to tell you that it's any different.

The pressure for society to conform has touched almost everyone. Conforming is choosing to be controlled. Since few people would ever want to consciously be controlled they must be sold to accept being controlled in a variety of ways that make it seem appealing. Those sales pitches and pressures come from every direction, and they never end.

If our parents are believers in conformity, they will raise us to be good little conformers too. They will tell us that obedience makes you a good person, and that questioning authority is not the right thing to do. They will say that questioning authority is rude or out of line, or even that it's evil. But it's interesting to note that they never say why. As children we don't have enough life experience to call them on statements like this or to ask them why they think it's better to let someone else tell you what to do than it is to think for yourself. Why bother having your own brain if you're never going to use it?

Few of us are able to resist the many pressures that teach us to conform, and even demand that we conform. As soon as we are out of diapers and talking, we are learning that we have to cooperate to get along. But as soon as we enter the system we are taught that we must conform and obey to get along. Public school is the first introduction to shutting up and sitting down and forgetting all about what you want to do. You are required from your first day of school to conform to the system, whatever it is, and realize you don't have a voice. You are trained to accept your status as a slave to authority over the course of 14 years of public school and when you graduate high school, you'll be a very well conditioned, obedient citizen who sees authority as your boss.

Without our own awareness, we are conditioned year after year by being forced into subordinate status every time we set foot out of our own homes. In school you are subordinate, and the teachers and principal are authority. You believe they must be respected and obeyed because they have all of the power and they treat you like a subordinate, and act like they have the right to control you. Almost everyone accepts this control as normal, natural, and even desirable. But is it?

Well just ask that question and see what happens. That should give you a clue. You'll see tempers flare, voices harden, and accusatory statements will be made that vilify you for even asking. It's no wonder that part of our conditioning is to never question authority. It helps them stay in control without all those pesky common sense questions constantly undermining the idea that they get to tell everyone else what to do. The conditioning goes even deeper by reinforcing the notion that they SHOULD have total control, and everyone SHOULD be subordinate to them and that it is WRONG to even think things could or should be any other way. This is how our minds are shaped when we are too little to see what's being done to us.

We also have the tendency to want to please, and we find out quickly that when we do what our parents tell us to do that we are rewarded, and when we don't we are punished. That behavior comes to school with us and makes it easier for them to get you to accept that they too have authority over your life, and that it's as natural as your parents authority over you. It isn't of course, there's nothing natural about it. But they'll never tell you that.

Some children are lucky enough to have parents that understand all the authority over your life belongs to them, and to no one else in the world. But many children have parents who grew up in the same system and accepted the idea that they should be subordinated by others. They teach us the same thing the system teaches us: that to obey and conform is good, and to disobey or refuse to conform is bad. Very bad. It is even punishable by law in many areas of life. It is worth thinking about and asking what is so terrible about people refusing to let others control them?

Again, it is only upsetting to those who want control over you and will lose it if they can't trick you into believing they have a right to have it. For those who are not tricked, they are often treated very badly, punished and berated. They are told they are bad and wrong and illegitimate, and that authority must be obeyed. It's a very deep and well laid plan to teach us as children that they are better than we are, that they may think and decide things and we may not. We learn that their opinions matter and ours don't. They may do as they please, and we may not.

When this demand for subordination comes at us day after day at school and every day at home, we are easily turned into obedient citizens who actually take pride in how obedient we are. They have us exactly where they want us from the very beginning of our lives. It takes an unusual person to not be pulled into the lie of control, and to not give in to the prevalent beliefs that this is all how things are supposed to be. The few among us who know otherwise sound crazy when we say so, because the conditioning runs incredibly deep. It runs so deep that it actually forms the basis of most people's self and everything after that rests on the notion of obedience to authority and not having equal power to the other equal humans around us who claim to have more entitlement than we do in so many ways. It's a quite a racket and it's worked well for them for centuries. They like it that way and they won't give it up.

Understand one thing, no one can fight this alone. It is impossible to fight an enormous system like this by yourself and get anything except in trouble. You are overpowered as an individual so don't get crazy and decide to take it on all alone. It's not about fighting back as much as it is about knowing the truth and being able to see what's going on. That is how you are able to not be taken in when everyone around you is, and it's how you'll be able to take the best possible steps in life, make smart decisions and have a good life.

Once you get it, share it. The more every single individual learns to see what's really going on, the more it can become a reality to change things. When a large percentage of young people are awake and aware of the game, the changes will come because no one will comply any more. Until then, realize you're in their world and they control it. You're stuck in it and you should follow the rules because the only other option is one that will hurt you and probably accomplish nothing. Choose your battles wisely, and save your energy for what matters most.

I want to teach you how to be able to do that. You need to be armed with knowledge and it takes some time and effort to expand your head past the provided ideas and onward to seeing ALL of the ideas that are possible. This time and effort is not the typical horrid kind, it's a whole new kind. It's a kind that gives you back what you put into it, and it does it right way and keeps doing it. Over time it builds and grows and so do you. This is how you discover your true self and become who you really are. This effort makes you strong and powerful and self assured, it gives you self respect and it puts in you in charge of you without apologies to anyone. That's the way it should be. Blind obedience will never bring you any of those things, but it will make those who control you stronger every day.

Next time we'll cover more ways that other people use to get into your head and over ride your real self - ways most of us never really catch onto. If we don't realize they're there we can't deflect their influence very well can we?

Feel free to email me anytime with any questions or comments and I will always respond with the time and respect you deserve.



Bitch Dumped Vyzygoth's LIFE SAVINGS, BITCH lies & steals

the best of all possibilities. Thursday, November 01, 2013 Shitty People ALGIE RIEDELAngie Reidal I want to ask you for your thoughts on something. While the subject is one that affects me directly, it is also one that affects everyone on a greater scale. This is a kind of problem that can be personal, familial, national, international and global. I am going to come at it from the personal level with the aim of keeping it focused and specific so that I can get your thoughtful insights and feedback. First I need to set about describing this thing I'm talking about. Bear with me, it's a bit complicated. Here goes. There is a sad truth that applies to humankind. It seems like such a simple thing and yet it has proven impossible to overcome. That truth, and the problem I'm talking about, are one and the same. I must try to put this in a nutshell so as not to try your patience. The best I can do is this. While the majority of people in this world are basically good people, there are always some among us who are not good. The ones among us who are not good are responsible for the vast majority of pain, suffering and destruction that affects everyone around them. They make life miserable for others. I call them shitty people. They are not honorable. They have no concern about being dishonest with others. They don't play fair. They are self serving. They are brutal. They cheat. They lie. They deceive. They destroy. They can be just downright mean. They are either incapable of, or disinterested in, considering the negative effects their words and actions have on others. They not only don't care how much damage they do to somebody else, they often enjoy inflicting it. There are some people who are nasty through and through. These are people who cannot be reasoned with. They cannot be escaped or avoided and there is no way around them. It is a nightmare to encounter someone like this because there is no chance that you can escape unharmed. You may not even be able to escape at all. People of this type are very scary once you realize what they are. It's not always obvious at first. These types are also very good at pretending to be good, decent, upright, respectable people. They are good at selling appearances of decency and respectability but they are neither good nor respectable. They are nasty and very dangerous people. But there are others who only behave in these ways situationally, in other words it's not their usual way of behaving. It is due to group influence that they behave in ways that would ordinarily go against their values and beliefs. Like George Carlin said, and I'm paraphrasing like crazy here, one on one people are great. Sit and talk face to face with someone and they are reasonable, intelligent, good. But get them into groups and they become insane and monstrous. I guess it's the gang mentality. Us against them. Separatist, aggressive, competitive, violent. All of that holier than thou crap comes in along with all of the self justification that allows and encourages breaking the rules of human decency in the name of taking their cause to victory. There are also others who behave very badly due to their own life experiences. The accumulation of scars and damage they have received in life, instead of strengthening them in a positive way, makes them cruel. They want to take it out on others. It's a form of payback, only instead of paying back those who harmed them they transfer their vengeance onto people who have never done anything to them. It's no surprise that taking it out on innocent people is so devoid of satisfaction. By never addressing the actual problem they never achieve what they need, which is full and sufficient justice. Therefore they must constantly seek new victims to brutalize, and on and on it goes. It becomes even more complicated when the humiliation and rage they feel are not legitimate because they are essentially nuts to begin with. Not fun to be around people like this at all. There are other reasons that people behave badly as well. Emotional immaturity, lack of knowledge about the world beyond their own tiny piece of existence, lack of education, even being born psychopaths. There are a great many reasons that people behave badly, but regardless of the reasons, the outcomes and effects are the same. Serious damage is done to others. Worst of all is how impossible it is to stop people behaving badly, and how often there is nothing the victims can do about it. Justice will not come. Often the victims cannot even explain to someone else what they are going through. They are not believed, or they are accused in some way. Too many times, legitimate victims have no means of defending themselves and the nasty persons win. They often win big. And the victims simply fade away, broken and demoralized and alone. That's a general description of the concept I'm talking about. Shitty people. People from all walks of life, all social and economic backgrounds, whether they do it alone, do it with a family, do it with a group, organization or on the job, rich or poor, old or young, all races, both sexes, all of them have some shitty people. Now here is the question I have that I would love to get your reasoned and thoughtful responses to. How do we deal with such shitty people? There is an old saying in America, "You can't fight City Hall". What that means is that one wronged person alone cannot take on City Hall and win. One person fighting for justice against a larger group of people, people enclosed to themselves, people all on the same page, corrupted, self serving, for a plethora of reasons and motivations, will be able to use an assortment of tricks and tactics, while backing each other up, in order to close ranks and present an impenetrable wall to the seeker of justice. One person cannot win against such a group. The group has strengths and resources that the single individual does not have. And when you throw into the equation that the group is a shitty group of people it becomes all the more impossible to prevail against them. It can often become dangerous to even try to take them on. When we're talking about formal, organized groups like the police, the courts, the government, institutions and so forth, you know that as a single individual you have no chance whatsoever of being heard or getting a fair outcome. This is about power. The group has it all, the individual has none. One person cannot prevail here. It is much more likely that he will be crushed out of existence. It doesn't matter that he is right and they are wrong, all that matters is who has the most power. Historically though, when groups become abusive their abuses are seen by the general public. The more abusive they become the more visible they become. And the more people they victimize the more chance there is that those victims will become a group that will then begin to have some power and can begin to fight back. The general public can see both the abusers and the abused and some of them will stand up for the abused. This is political and there have been countless successes against abusive powers. It's not always pretty but success is not out of the question when groups take on other groups to force shitty people out of power and restore justice into the status quo. When power is equalized you can fight for what's right. When you have no power you just get victimized. But how can a single individual fight back? Is there no hope at all for individual justice? Something that I find deeply disturbing is that there are a lot of people who have a nasty value system. We see this in the military, in those who remain invisible to us but who are the ones responsible for long range planning and overall military philosophy. We see this in big business, in Wall Street, in the class wars we're in today like hair on fire. Some people consider the world and the way it works and they ask themselves, what can I do to guarantee that I will get my way and have everything I want? And the answer to them is a no brainer. Use force. Force overcomes everything. Force, violence, the more overwhelming and unnecessary the better, literally reduces the enemy to ashes. This is the guarantee of total success. It means dropping all human decency, ignoring every law standing in your way, behaving as badly, as madly, as it takes to crush the opposition. The only rules that matter are the ones you make. This "philosophy" of total selfishness and brutality is in direct opposition to my own philosophy of life and my personal values. I feel respect for others. I do not believe that I should have whatever I want at any expense to others. I am a firm believer in the golden rule. But then I also have a fundamental desire to see everyone do well. I want everyone to be happy and get their needs met and live wonderful, free lives. But there are many others who do not want these things. They do not share my desire to see everyone else doing okay. On the contrary. They have no respect for others. They don't care about others. In fact, some of them despise others and want them all dead. There is nothing new here, this is imperialism and it's been strangling the world for millennia. But that same imperialist attitude is encountered at the personal level too. It is so common it's not even funny. We have a lot of names for it, racism, sexism, etc., but it boils down to that same exact mentality of self over others. There are people today snatching people off the streets and selling them into slavery, sexual slavery, labor slavery. It's happening in our midst, not just in far away places. This is a mindset that is pervasive. Other people are exploited for personal benefit without a single thought given to the injustice done to the victim. Nobody cares about the victim in their circles. In fact, people like this feel absolutely entitled to victimize others as much as they like. ENTITLED to have a sexual slave. ENTITLED to exploit individuals or groups of people because it is what they see as beneficial to themselves and somehow that translates into entitlement to destroy other human beings at will. I can't speak to that because I don't understand it other than to say it is wrong and they are wrong and they are nasty, shitty people. I don't know how to not give a damn about doing harm to someone else. I don't know how to not care about someone's life being stolen, about enslaving them and using them for whatever I please. I could never do it. I don't even like being waited on at a restaurant because nobody is supposed to be subservient to me or to anyone else. But I'll tell you what, you'll find no shortage of people feeling entitled to top notch "service", and demanding it in the most obnoxious, snarling and insulting ways. As if it were owed to them to have someone else think of nothing else but serving them, breaking their back to keep them firmly ensconced in their delusions of superiority and entitlement to be treated like a king. To me people like this are just plain nuts. The reality is that people like me are snack food for people like them. Even though there are many more people like me than there are people like them, they have power. Shittiness is power. Full blown shittiness, the kind where the shitty person feels entitled to be that way, can make millions of people's lives absolutely miserable. They do more damage to more people in a day than I could ever do in a million lifetimes. I would never hurt anyone on purpose, it's not in me. I do believe in defending myself against shitty people who harbor the delusion that they are entitled to do harm to others for no good reason other than they want to. I know they're not entitled. Their personal delusions don't bind me or anyone else. I'll shoot 'em if they're fixing to shoot me or if they're shooting other defenseless people. Hell yes, I wouldn't hesitate because they don't get to force their personal will on others. I know the difference between right and wrong and nobody gets to run around stealing people's lives and happiness. No such creature exists who has any such right. It's nonsense. I wouldn't relish shooting someone in self defense, and if I killed them it would be deeply upsetting, but I wouldn't bear any guilt over it. Standing up for your own life in the face of imminent destruction is fair and square. They started it and if I have to finish it, I will. Not every situation is that clear cut and it's not always about imminent threat to life. At the personal level it's usually about beliefs, insecurities, immaturity, selfishness, jealousy, things like that. It's not a life or death situation, but the damage done is still very real. Being insulted, dismissed, ignored, being treated thoughtlessly or unjustly, these are all things that take a very real toll on human beings. It's that imperialist attitude of entitlement to not consider others again, it's amazing how common it is. What do you say to people like this? You have to deal with them. If you don't they'll just run over you like a Mac truck runs over road kill. But what do you say? Remember too how easy it is to become what you hate, we see it every day on the world news reports. If we say we must fight fire with fire then we become what we are against. We become the same as they are. We are not the same, and I won't have that taken away from me. So far I have found that the way to deal with these people is to simply speak the truth. State the facts of the situation in a way that is succinct, deadly accurate, and without anger. Truth is a mighty weapon and it can and does take down giants. Sometimes the truth is dismissed and I am accused of all sorts of preposterous nonsense. Sometimes people caught with their pants down will stand and angrily deny their pants are around their ankles and they will attack you for the rest of their life rather than take a look at their own ankles and see for themselves how silly they are. In your own daily life, how do you deal with the petty imperialists that stomp in and stir up discord? What is the best way in your experience to deal with the bullies, the liars, the cheats? Conversely, what is the worst way? What has worked in the past and what hasn't? If anyone would care to offer anything up from their own personal life experience I'd be delighted to hear from you. Addendum: On a very personal note, my Dad passed away on Oct. 2nd. Cancer. I didn't get to be with him when he died. I didn't get the chance to say good-bye or to tell him things I wanted him to know before he went away forever. Although we didn't see eye to eye on some things and our relationship has always been a difficult one, there were some things about him that I admired very much. He was a dignified man. He had diverse interests. He had a creative streak which he often shared with me, like his love of stamp and coin collecting, Far Eastern culture, leather working. He could even knit amazing sweaters. He built a huge boat all by himself in our garage, it was amazing. A cabin cruiser. Once it was finished he sold it without even taking it out on the ocean. He'd spent twenty years in the Navy and retired, coming then into the private sector where he got a regular job like everyone else. He tended to be rather serious and could be quite intimidating at times. But he was also superb with people, a perfect host or guest. He treated my mother with great respect and never abused her in any way. He loved her very much and that's a fact. One of the things I liked most about him was his willingness to hear information contrary to his current opinion, and to see my point, and even then to change is position. For instance, I remember once being at his house and george w. bush was on the TV. President bush was saying that we really had to do something about frivolous lawsuits. He then claimed that 60% of lawsuits against corporations were frivolous. They were a waste of tax payer money. He was talking about abolishing lawsuits against corporations. My Dad was listening and immediately was on the president's side. Sixty percent was over half and it was not acceptable at all. He would have been willing to go along with whatever the president said he was going to do about it. I looked at my Dad and asked, even if it's true that 60% of those lawsuits were frivolous, what about the 40% that aren't? He quietly thought for a moment then said, "You're right. I hadn't thought of that." How can you not love that about somebody? I'm going to miss him. I'll miss his strength. I will miss the feeling that no matter what, my Dad's got my back. He was a pretty good guy. Posted by Ang at 11/01/2012 07:26:00 PM Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare to Facebook 9 comments: Lynda Halliger-Otvos8:41 PM Ang, my heart reaches out to touch yours with sympathy in the loss of your beloved father. May your memories of him and your interactions with him bring you comfort. I, like you, wouldn't hurt another and do not understand the mind that goes with people who can hurt others. I have been damaged by folks like those and it cuts for a long time. I married one. Bad idea. Divorced him; found a better man and married him. He understands and protects me from shitty people and I am grateful for that everyday. Reply Replies Ang8:50 PM Lynda, Thank you. It is hard to lose someone you love. I am glad to know that you were able to survive marriage to a shitty person and got away from that situation. It is even better that you found someone who makes your life better, instead of worse. I would feel grateful for that too. Ang Reply Publius5:16 PM Ang, Hello there. I have commented before, and read you for a number of years now. I have been recently so busy with a new job that I haven't had much time to read blogs or respond. I want to respond to this wonderful post, because I have something to say about it. I will do so later this weekend, I hope. First though, tonight, regarding your father: my condolences. He's lucky to have a daughter like you. I use the present tense, because you are still his daughter, and he still existed... that will always be true. And that's not even talking about an afterlife, whatever you believe about that. My own father died 4 years ago. It was intense and traumatic: he was supposed to come down to my son's 2nd birthday party, but he died instead, after being unloaded from a medivac helicopter. He told the nurse that he felt the greatest pain he ever had, and was dying. He was right, he died. My dad was always a valetudinarian, if not a hypochondriac. He lived to be 86 despite his endless battles with alcohol and drug addiction. He was very abusive at times, but sometimes compassionate and empathic. He was a conundrum: the best dentist in the midwest, probably, and he treated poor people without demanding more than they could pay. If they couldn't pay at all, that was OK. He was open-minded: he used to invite a local orthodontist over for dinner, person who was thought to be gay - and was, and eventually was driven out of town. He was OK with homosexuality. He was an FDR liberal. Open-minded, despite his demons. Anyway, I can honestly say we were reconciled before he died. I wish he hadn't had to suffer so much from whatever it is that drove him to addiction and mental illness. But he was my father. Some people could never forgive him, but what does that say about him? More later. I want to talk about an odd issue with my new job... it's a good job in many ways, pays way better than the old job, but my current supervisor is someone who just gives me the creeps, who I instinctively don't trust... I am trying to determine if it is my paranoia, or if he really is one of the "shitty" people. I am starting to see patterns... how he only uses fear and disapproval to motivate, but never praise. The main thing though is just a heavy, intuitive feeling of distrust and uneasiness. Due to my background of growing up in a "dysfunctional" family, I am not sure if I am just paranoid, or maybe have a more attuned sense for manipulative people of ill-will. I need your help. Thanks again for your essays over the years. Publius Reply Ang8:49 PM Hi Publius, It's nice to hear from you again. Thank you for your condolences. Congratulations on the new job and the better pay. I hope it works out well for you. I am glad you asked me for advice about the creepy supervisor. Here's what I think. First off trust yourself. If you feel creeped out then trust it. 2. Keep your interactions with this person strictly professional. Don't talk about personal things, don't talk about feelings, in other words don't give them anything that they can use against you. Just be smart, stay cool, do a good job and realize that at least for the time being that person is not a friend. Maybe after you work for them for a while and get to know the supervisor better you might feel more comfortable with them but if you don't feel "safe" with them in some way then keep a respectable distance. Don't be cold, don't be overly nice, just be yourself and do your work and do it well. I don't know what line of work you're in or where you're located, but in my experience work places can be nests of jealousy and have long running soap operas underway. Just... watch your back. If you can make friends easily there then that's a very good sign. If it's impossible to get anyone to warm up to you then that's not so good. You didn't mention anyone but the supervisor so if that's the only person you're uncomfortable with then that's good. It might turn out that you're not the only one who feels that way about the supervisor, but finding that out will probably be down the road a bit. New jobs can be unnerving sometimes, that's just how it is. But you will know whether something is over-the-line or not. If you're treated with brazen disrespect then you've got a problem. The supervisor may need to see you prove yourself and then once he/she earns respect for you, they might lighten up. You weren't specific about what kind of creepiness you feel, but don't distrust it. It's real. Respect it. My guess is everything will be fine, but again, you'll know that after a time. I hope that helps a bit. I'll look forward to your thoughts on the post when you get some time to write them down. Ang Reply Publius7:54 PM Ang, Great reply - very helpful, and sane and pragmatic. Gosh - what is it really going on here? I work at a software company, a small one that is growing fast. Making lots of money. They don't make anything that hurts people (good!), and make a product that actually helps people (double good). They've grown so fast that they hired a bunch of "middle managers" just after I started earlier this year. These are people who don't really know technology, but manage people... I think they should have promoted one of the younger "kids" who were really doing a good job of managing themselves and others, but no, they had to hire the classic middle manager. Why does he bother me? Even before I was in his department (I was moved recently), I felt that he was superficial, unempathic, and... reptilian. Seriously. He is very into his appearance. I wouldn't find him attractive if I were a woman, but he's probably considered to be a normal, good looking, thin, youngish, ambitious man. But I didn't like him... I felt an air of callousness and manipulative energy. My paranoia? I don't know. I think he added an element of fear to the department. I think he primarily motivates people by fear. After I was moved to his department, I was still doing tasks for my old department, plus I was (and still am) the sole person responsible for an important task that safeguards our customers. I was then given a glorified paperwork task, just when a big customer had a major technical problem. I worked on this problem late, at home in the evening even, etc. I missed the unimportant, glorified data entry task's deadline.. I literally couldn't do it all. He then suggested that he would give me a "time and a half" pay if I did it at night or on the weekends. Well, find... except that I am salaried. I suspect he doesn't even know I'm not hourly, and didn't want to go there. To make a long story short, he threatened to "write me up" if I missed the new deadline. I met it by ceasing to do the important work I was supposed to do, and focus on the somewhat unimportant data entry. I specialize in a certain type of technical work, but he recently asked if I could take more of the other kind my sub-department does. First of all, I was already doing that - trying to help out in that area. Secondly, I felt he was suggesting I wasn't working hard enough. I have noticed that he will talk to other fellow underlings of his about things such as his new big screen TV, thus "wasting" a fair amount of his and the other employee's time. I don't care, really... but how does that jibe with the idea that I should be doing more work, and taking more tasks on? He displays a "hypervigilant" streak, as though he wants people to know that he's always observing them. Now, I am admittedly overly sensitive in some regards, perhaps seeing patterns in the world at times that aren't there, or more likely perceiving patterns correctly but exaggerating the extent of it. I feel that the carefree atmosphere with a lot of good camaraderie I saw in the department when I got there has been degraded... it's becoming more standard and corporate. The "boss" in question emphasizes procedures and standardization and reproducibility instead of people and the gifts they bring. I think this description should suffice. My main goal is to learn some new skills, and get out of that department or even the company altogether in less than a year. I'm a refugee from academia, and am lucky to be given a chance in a new field I wasn't strictly qualified for, other than perhaps innate intelligence and curiosity (no, I don't think I'm a genius, just very adaptable and willing to start again with a beginner's mind). Be well. Reply Replies Ang9:10 PM Yeah... I hear you. I know the type. Reptilian in the sense that where a normal sense of empathy and compassion are supposed to be there is nothing. Just a cold blank spot. As if to compensate, there is an overabundance of ego. Insufferable. And very corporate. This guy is doing what he believes is the right thing. The corporate mindset is that you must create an environment of fear amongst the lowliest workers in order to get the most work out of them. They believe in the stick and carrot philosophy, minus the carrot. It's really a sad and sorry belief system and the reason there has always been so much animosity between workers and bosses. First, he's not going to change. What you see now is all there is ever going to be. So step one is to accept it. Next, your way of seeing things is very much like mine. I find it irritating to come up against the corporate mentality, and I mean that in a literal sense. It can become intolerable in short order because it's just so dang degrading and f.o.s. But for your own sanity and success you can try to perceive this guy as a lost individual. Someone who doesn't get it and is therefore challenged. Have patience with him, and be courteous. He can't help it. The way this guy thinks is managerial. So make him manage. If he's telling you to do something that you can't fit in then ask him to manage it for you. Turn it around by making him solve the problem. Once it's back on him he may recognize you can't do the impossible and maybe he'll back off. Just tell it like it is, say, I have this to do which is priority one, do you agree with that? Get him to see it. If he says your primary duty is not priority one then your butt is covered and it opens the way for you to get clarification from HIS boss. Talk to him like a machine. Is this A or B? I was told it was A, now you're saying it is B. Which is it? He's also obviously trying to make you feel the pressure to do more than your original work contract stated. Since you're salaried you're exactly who he'll want to squeeze freebies out of. You knew going in that there would be some amount of overtime, but if this guy is wanting overtime to become a part of your regular day then you have the right to say you want a pay increase. I know the politics here, you're supposed to be a team player and all that jazz and if you are so unwilling to supplicate yourself as to stand up for what's fair and square it can quickly brand you in a negative way. Another way to go is to turn it back on him to manage for you. If you he wants to give you more work then he'll have to take something away from you to give you the time you need to do it. Again, just say, I have this to do and it takes X amount of time, right? Get him to acknowledge that. Then say I also have this and that to do and that fills up my entire day. I don't want to take work home every night, I want to get my work done during the work day. That's what a work day is for. You tell me what the priorities are and if you want me to take on something more than I already do maybe you can choose what to take away from me to make room for it. I want to do what you need but I can't do the impossible. Like I said, he's the manager so let him manage it. You have to stand up for yourself because if you don't you'll be miserable. I guess the good thing is that you only planned on staying a year. In a way that gives you more room to stand up for yourself. It's not like you had twenty years there and are now getting crushed. So, what you're experiencing is sadly, the usual corporate crap. You wanted to develop new skills, so here's your chance to learn to do wicked diplomacy. It can be done. If you can do it well your problems with him will decrease noticeably. Ang Reply Publius8:03 PM Addendum: I seem to have met a fair number of people who like me or even really like me. I have trouble with some of the more "aspy" highly introverted, computer geek types... I'm somewhat in the middle, mildly introverted but I really like meeting people and getting to know them one-on-one. Some people seem to be strangely intimidated by me at times... I may be out of my mind, but I sometimes feel that my observational and perceptive abilities ( I studied biology and have always been highly into observing and perceiving and theorizing about the world)are noticed by some people and that they don't like having a person like me around. I should also add that I think I am highly empathic and attuned to emotional nuances. This can be a disturbing ability to have working in the corporate world! Reply Replies Ang9:15 PM Well I like you Publius, and I don't care what anybody thinks. ;) It can be disturbing, but it doesn't have to be. Being sensitive and aware serves to give you information. As long as you don't expect others to be sensitive too then you'll be good. You'll have the information you need to see others for the way they are and deal with them as is most appropriate for all involved. Reply Publius11:27 PM Ang, Thanks for the great advice, again. Wow. I was kind of nervous about checking on your follow-up, because... well, I guess I felt I revealed something of myself. I really can be overly sensitive and paranoid. Except that my intuitions are often correct... except when they are not. At my last job, a guy who wasn't my boss, but the CFO, started harassing me all the time. Saying things like, "So how was your weekend... with all those pot smokers in your neighborhood" (I live in the inner city, where people are supposedly too liberal and drugged out!). Or, he might attack me for my anti-war views, which me must have found out about when I stupidly "friended" my real boss on Facebook the day after his brother committed suicide, so I accepted his request. Well, my boss shared my political views with the CFO... It got so bad I had to report him to someone else in management. He was chastised, and sort of apologized, claiming that it was all in "good fun," we should get a beer, etc. The same jerk, I found out, called a nice older coworker, a woman who had just been dealing with breast-cancer, a "bitch". He has also been known to get frisky with young co-worker women when drunk, etc. Very strange and just plain mean... He found out my wife is a yoga instructor, and told me once, as some kind of half-joke, half-revealing comment, "my yoga is drinking." Yikes. Anyway, my current boss and I are getting along OK, partly due to your good advice. It helps that my role has, suddenly, become very critical and strategic to the company, and I am the only one who is doing it right now. Of course, he is trying to hire two or three others ASAP to train for me role. I have started to notice that he often "attacks" or unexpectedly critiques other people in the company. It's like he's a loose cannon out to make a name for himself as some kind of crusader. Interesting. You are an unusually perceptive and wonderful person. Thangs, Ang. It's been a tough week, the holiday and all. My insane brother and my crazy mother are ganging up on me, and criticizing my wife, etc. That's a whole different story. Ever since my dad, who was an alcoholic and mentally ill but somehow able to be strangely open and empathic at times... ever since he died a few years ago, it's been a strange trip. I thought the family dynamics would improve, but somehow the sickness is being kept alive. My brother makes a lot of money, but is lonely and bitter. He used to be suicidal sometimes, but my wife would counsel him. Now he does nothing but bad mouth her. Last summer he dated a young woman, but they broke up. When he thought she might be pregnant, he was going to sue her for custody, because he would be a "better parent." Main point? I feel like I'm surrounded by craziness and insanity. When I try to explain my feelings about politics and the fact that our gov't is killing innocent men and women and children with drones, and that I hold Obama responsible at the moment, the Obama fans get angry and freaked out. It seems that a tiny minority of people I interact with can even see the reality of the brutal world our government helps to foster, in league with corporations, the police state, the arms industries, and the media. The Democrats are as dim-witted as the Republicans, and almost everyone is a willing accomplice. Add in family issues, and the fact that sometimes I dread going to work (like tonight, after two extra days off), and life can be somewhat... challenging. I do have a plan... leaving this company in less than a year and working with a friend who is a real genius in technology, and who, amazingly, is amazingly ethical and empathic and... good. And a great entrepreneur. But I'll really have to push myself to concentrate on almost nothing but learning a new/old fiend in real depth and breadth.