Friday, January 29, 2010

Americas lost kids

My step daughter does foster care over in Washington state. It's something she has been doing for almost two years now so I have been able to get a glimpse of the system. In all honesty , the kids that land in her care are lucky. They have a safe loving home to live in and she actually cares , and likes kids. I don't think that is the case for all foster parents. To some, the kids are just a means to earn an income and that is the basis of why they do it. Like everything else, there is good and bad foster parents. Just as there are good and bad social workers. The most critical component in the mix is that there are good and bad parents that unfortunately sometimes find their kids taken by the state. The reasons kids are taken by the government varies but the most common reasons seem to be abuse - either physical or extreme mental, and neglect - where kids are not being cared for , protected and fed.

It's a sad state of affairs and I think taking someones kids should only be done as a last resort. The thing that has amazed me while looking at the process from the small micro sample that is my step-daughters experience is how little some of the parent do to correct the situation so that they can get their kids back. I find this astounding that they wouldn't do what ever it took to get their kids back into their care! The things the state is asking is not unreasonable. How hard is it to pass a drug test for 2-3 months in a row. The state will even pay for rehab but many of these people would rather do drugs then have their kids! Two kids she had ,one parent gave up his rights and the mother kept testing positive for marijuana - a substance that is non narcotic (meaning not physically addictive). How damned hard is it to stop getting high for three months to get the most precious thing in your life back! The state offers these parents treatment and counseling, paid public transportation, in many cases housing assistance. Some of the parents don't even bother to visit the kids! Some just treat it like sending the kid off to camp or a nanny service... Hey let them raise the kid , I can party!

I'm sorry , but what the fuck are they thinking????? If I had kids , and for some reason the state took them I would do whatever it took to get them back as quickly as possible. I just don't understand the mentality of some of the parents. One woman who had her kids taken had three kids in the system and was cranking out another one a year after the state had seized her last infant. Her kids were being born with drugs and alcohol in their systems causing health issues that were going to affect them their whole lives. The woman was in her early twenties , unemployed and having the state pay for all her medical and living expenses. I don't advocate forced birth control by any means, but sometimes you have to shake your head and wonder where you draw the line. Because of irresponsible parents the state of Washington has got to be spending millions of tax dollars on medical and care for the kids who's parents just don't give a shit! The biggest victims of this travesty is the kids, who's parents claim to love them even though they can't seem to get their heads extracted from their asses long enough to see the reality of the situation they are creating.

If you ever listen to the Alex Jones show you hear him go on about the pedophiles that infiltrate the foster system and that the state is out to seize your kids for whatever reason they can. I don't know about that, but I know that the ones in my step daughters home at least are loved , fed , and safe from abuse. I know the main reason the parents have not got them back is because the parents have failed to pull their act together. The state is not holding a pipe to the parents mouth or making them stay with a violent boyfriend. I see good kids , put in bad situations by their own parents who are to self centered to do whats right and sacrifice for the kids sake. I see people willing to let the state raise their kids so they can party and drink and do drugs. The scary thing is the problem is increasing. Many of these people dumping the kids into the system were foster kids themselves. This is a cycle that need to be broke! In the movie "Idiocracy" - the premise was that the stupid people bred at a fast rate while the smart responsible people bred slowly threw family planning. After time the world was populated by nothing but ignoramuses because the stupid people overtook the smart people with sheer numbers. The family structure has been under attack for a long time, so long that it is now imploding at a greater and greater rate. It's something we need to figure out how to stop.

The only real solution is for people to take better responsibility for their own actions. We have a moral crisis in this country and in the world actually. It's time for the men of this world to man up and be the dads the kids need. It's time for the women of the world to be the mothers the kids need them to be. What happened to parental instinct that so many seem to lack these days? I believe there are more good people in the world then bad by far, but will it stay that way if we don't find our way back to a course guided by a sound moral compass. I'm sure that there is cases where parents are having a hard time getting there kids back from social services when they should by all rights have them. From what I have seen though, the state really doesn't want to raise your kids for you. They expect the parents to do that. Taking a kid from a home should be a last resort, but if a child is being abused, starved or neglected to a detramental level or just abandoned, somebody has to do something about the situation for the sake of the child.

Until Next Time

Saturday, January 23, 2010

The State of the Republic

I just got done watching Ron Paul's , The State of the Republic address. It is posted on you-tube in 3 parts and is currently linked to at the "info wars" web site. Once again Ron Paul cuts threw the rhetoric and calls it like it is. Unfortunately , like the proverbial voice in the wilderness , not enough people are listening to the words. This is a video post I strongly urge everybody to watch, it takes about 20 minutes and has more honest assessment of the current state of the Republic then anything you will be hearing from the Democrats or the Republicans in the upcoming State of the Union address and its rebuttal by the Republicans.

There are many people hoping that Ron Paul will do another Presidential run in the 2012 election. I'm one of those people. I voted for him the last time around and will defiantly support him if he chooses to run again. In the past election he was the one cutting threw the standard rhetoric and bringing some of the real issues to the table. I'm sure that the mainstream media will start smearing Ron Paul early on and portraying him as a nut job. In the past election they virtually ignored him and tried their best to minimise his presence in the election process. It was a grass roots effort that kept up his momentum that carried him as far as he went. I know that alot of the base he built up in the election is still there, ready for him to make another run. I just hope he will!

Early signs from what we might see from the Republicans are low rumblings of the possibility Sara Palin or Scott Brown. Do either of these people have anymore experience than Obama? Can you really see Sara Palin , someone who didn't even finish her term as governor as president. Scott Brown might be good for a few soundbites , but does he have the long record of the likes of Ron Paul? Ron Paul has been holding to his beliefs for decades and has actively worked to return us to a constitutionally based government. His main problem is that he tells the people what they need to hear , not what they want to hear! Do we need another person like Obama , who promised us bipartisan solutions and transparency of government only to turn around and give us more closed door , backroom , bribe filled politics? Look at the handouts given to legislators to support health care reform. Look at the one sided push on health care reform. Look at the sealing of Obama records, if he isn't hiding something then why are his school records sealed and so much debate about his birth place! This is transparency? I respect the office of the president, I know Obama has a difficult job,the hardest job in the world in fact. My main gripe is that he , like so many politicians will say what it takes to be elected and then do the exact opposite of what they promised to do. Where is the liberal outrage about the violation and stripping away of civil liberates now that Obama and the Democrats are in control. They talked a good game when they were trying to get power and now that they are there the liberties keep slipping away.

America needs someone who will say what they mean and mean what they say. We are racing towards an economic calamity that will dwarf the great depression and I fear the momentum in that direction can't be stopped. The housing/mortgage crisis is far from resolved. The national debt keeps piling up threatening to come crashing down on top of us. More and more money is being spent on military actions in the middle east for a war on terror that has no end in sight. The jobs that have been lost in recent years show little signs of returning soon as many were construction related and many more have been shipped overseas. When and if they do, the jobs will pay significantly less then before as the global financial system will dictate pay scales. The financial consolidation that we have seen just in the past few years will continue putting wealth into fewer and fewer hands stripping the power from the middle class and putting more into the hands of a financial oligarchy.

To often people are not willing to objectively look at the world around them. To often we act like ostriches and put our heads in the sand and pretend things just don't exist. America is going to need to have to stand strong and dig deep in the coming years as our issues come to a head. The "Me" generation is going to have to return to the values of the "We the People" generation if we are going to survive the on coming storm that is approaching. To do that, we need sound leadership not sound bites and lofty illusions and dreams. The next few years will be a critical chapter in American history. I just hope we are up to the challenge.

Until next time
Lasco X

Thursday, January 21, 2010

The storm on the horizon

On the great plains, or at the ocean , where you can see the horizon in the distance this term has much more meaning. From miles away you can see the storm clouds building and slowly move in your direction. You get to watch it build or decrease in intensity from a safe distance and you have time to prepare for the on coming storm. Currently I live in mountain county and the horizon is the tops of the nearest mountains. This means that the approaching storm can sneak up on you and come over the mountain before you have time to prepare. Such is the analogy for this chapter/ blog because there is a storm on the horizon and those that choose to get the mountains that obstruct their view out of the way can see it on the horizon approaching us fast.

Many people do not look at world events going on around us. They look at a few of the major headlines like the chaos in Haiti and the limited reports on the current military actions we are engaged in and that is about the extent of their interest. Some do not even pay attention to those type of highlights from the main stream media. If you take the time and interest you can see the other bits of information reported on world events that are feeding the oncoming storm. We tend to pay little attention to these little trickles of information but we should, for from little trickles that start in the distance, when they join and combine like head waters, great rivers of information can be formed. Often , if we don't heed the reports of the swelling watersheds above us we get trapped in the flood waters that turn life into a living hell.

Enough with the colorful metaphors , let's look at the gathering storm clouds of warnings on the horizon. The rise of the red dragon China continues as it's economic strength feeds it's military machine. China is increasing it's military capabilities at an increasing pace. With technology they stole from us in the Clinton years they are upgrading their nuclear capabilities. They are also expanding their naval capabilities in an effort to one day rival the U.S. in not only the pacific , but the world. They have used their economic strength to gain control of critical shipping routes and now control the operation of the Panama canal. Threw a company with close ties to the Chinese government , Hutchinson -Whampoa , they are increasingly controlling more and more of the port operations across the globe. They hold more US debt than any other nation on earth and can , and eventually will , us this to their advantage. China has never really been a nation to venture outside it's borders with conquest in mind but as our world becomes smaller they are positioning themselves to be a top player and help shape world events. Most Americans pay little attention to the growing strength rising in the east that they eagerly feed as they buy cheep goods at the local Walmart. It's sad when people finance their own destruction and forge their own chains to be bound in.

Another bank of clouds close to the Chinese is the Russian bear. The reports of the death of communism were greatly exaggerated. Putin is methodically guiding Russia back into a totalitarian regime. He is also setting himself up to be in power for a very long time. With Russia's new found economic power from energy resources they are climbing back out of the hole that they fell into during the early eighties. Russia wants to regain their former world status and are determined to do it. Many Americans have tossed Russia into the category of old news , but , Russia's part in the future scheme of things is far from over. Whether it be Russia knocking off the rust of the military machine in the Georgian province or it's increasing influence in the South American continent , the signs are clear that Russia is a growing force rather then a shrinking threat. With close ties with China , seeing the two storm fronts combining is not just a possibility , but almost a certainty.

On Jan. 1st , 2010, the European Union implemented it's diplomatic service and appointed other officials to formalize the power of the European Union. They are now going to build up their own unified military force ,and though closely allied under the NATO treaties with the U.S. , will be a distinctly European entity. The central power in the European Union is Germany. Not to speak ill of our ally , but they don't have the best track record having played a major part in starting WW1 and WW2. The rise of a unified Europe is going to have major effects on the world stage. The concept that Europe could be against the U.S. in policy does not even cross most Americans minds since we have been have been so close for so long. Europe will in the end , look out for European interests. Much of the true monetary wealth of the world power base has been ruling from Europe for centuries. Europe is on the fast track to power consolidation despite its apparent Babylonian type schisms.

There are many smaller clouds that can also form into potential threats, and the clouds I mentioned might just simmer down into rain clouds that do little but bring minor inconveniences and puddles to cross. Personally I look to the horizon and see a storm brewing that will bring us a major tribulation that is going to rock the foundations of the world. We live in troubled , uncertain times. Morality continues to be supplanted by a "Whatever" attitude. People tend often to willingly blind themselves and ignore the gathering storm clouds. In fact , the rains have been falling up river for a long time now and the storm clouds on the horizon are just bringing the rains that will provide the surge needed to raise the waters to flood levels. Now is the time to learn to swim , get to higher ground, build a boat and batten down the hatches. When the storm starts, it will be to late!

Keep an eye on the horizon
Until next time
Lasco X

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Hell breaks loose in Haiti

This weeks big news was the earthquake in Haiti. Mass devastation rocked the little island nation as a 7.0 earthquake struck the people who live there. The pictures and news reports coming out of the region show a nation devastated and thrown into utter chaos. Body's are being burned in the streets and used as barricades to block traffic. Gangs armed with machetes are fighting in the streets over food supplies. Nobody seems to be in charge and if not for the international community sweeping in to the rescue,the situation would be spiraling completely out of control.

Naturally the left and right have foot in mouth symptoms. Danny Glover on the left comes out with "the earthquake was due to the failure of the Copenhagen summit" as Pat Robertson states "It was caused due to God being angry at their devil worshiping ways ". Personally , I think at times the tectonic plates shift in violent manners and result in disastrous consequences. The bigger question , or issue , is what would happen if it happened on a massive world wide scale. What if the New Madrid fault line running up the Mississippi basin were to shift again. The last time it went, it rang the church bells on the east coast. Now we have millions more people that could be affected if it were to shift. Geologists say it is due to shift again soon , some predicted back in the 80's that it could move in the 90's and so it is possible that it already over due. Some scientists are also predicting another shift in the earths magnetic field. This type of event would affect the whole earth with earthquakes and massive volcanic events. There is several other scenarios that could affect planetary well being ranging from other natural disasters like something striking the planet to man made events like nuclear war. The point at the heart of the issue is the fragile nature of civilised society.

As has been seen in Haiti , New Orleans and the Philippines in recent years when disasters strike we find out how vulnerable we are to natures wraith. So what happens if the whole world finds it's self in the grips of a global crisis. It is naive to think that the chaos we see in Haiti cannot happen here in the U.S.A. or in any other country. People in desperate situations often resort to desperate measures. The more people are prepared for disasters, the less chaos has a chance of seizing control of the situation. The problem is most people are woefully unprepared for crisis situations. When I was younger my grandfather , who was a farmer, made an observation. He told me a tale of his brother , who while visiting his son in Chicago one winter woke up to a massive snow storm that paralyzed the city. His son's family was worried because they didn't have much food in the house to make it threw the storm. His brother seeing a set of snow shoes hanging on the wall for decoration , strapped them on , hiked to an open store and returned with supplies. My grandfather observed , in the city's , security was an open store down the block to shop in. On the farm that he worked , security was a well stocked pantry that held the supplies that you needed. In these days , most people are not thinking of the future survival needs that could be needed to maintain life. They take the power grid and clean water supplies for granted. They assume the trucks will keep restocking the stores every day, week, month and that nothing will happen to disrupt the supply chain. The event's in Haiti should remind us otherwise!

Society is a fragile system built on mutual cooperation that has a history of upheaval. The planet is littered with the remains of the advanced cultures of their times. The Olmec and Aztec ruins of the Americas, the Egyptian wonders of the world, the ancient temples in South East Asia , the remains of the great Roman Empire who's decline was both caused from within and from outside political forces all should serve as reminders that civilizations rise and fall like tides crashing on the sands of time. The hardships and chaos of disasters can be minimised greatly by proper planning. Granted , sometimes the best laid plans can be cast to the wayside due to unforeseen circumstances but to not prepare at all is just plain foolish. We live in a societal structure that encourages a disposable society. That is part of the reason our landfills push ever outward with refuse discarded sometimes not because it doesn't work , but because the new version is the latest rage and must have item. Ironically, as society advances , the more vulnerable it can become. In the last great depression millions starved and we were much more of an agrarian society back then. What could happen now that most of the population dwell in cities is scary. As we have become dependant on electrical grids and gas powered machines to do our work and support our lives we don't think of what we will need to do if they suddenly disappear. I'm aware of these things and try to prepare for life without the modern conveniences but every time the power goes down I am personally reminded of just how much more I need to prepare and how at risk my family is for troubled times. A freezer full of food does you a limited amount of good if you have no power to keep it running!

In an age where externalizing personal problems and passing the buck is wide spread we need to look inside and ask, what can I do to protect my family and help my neighbor in times of trouble. We need to spend less on wars that project our power and more on upgrading our own infrastructure to insure it can survive and be repaired in the event of a Haiti type event. We need to understand that personal responsibility starts with ourselves but also needs to extend to those who cannot do for themselves. I applaud the worlds efforts to ease the suffering that is going on in Haiti. There is times that humanity shows the best and worst sides of our nature simultaneously and this is one of those events. It is times like these we can see the human race is a rainbow of colors that all bleed the same red. To often we see groups get caught up in petty race and ideological quandary's that put us against each other. We need to rise above those emotions but at the same time realize that not everybody thinks in that manner.

If more people will prepare for disasters, the amount of suffering will greatly be reduced because there will be more resources to contribute to the effort. As always ... Plan for the worst and hope for the best. The events in Haiti this past week show why that axiom rings true.

Until next time
Lasco X

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Lifestyles of the tanned and unemployed

I was working on a clubhouse that had a pool one day back in the mid eighties when one of the complexes tenants walked in to the pool area and stated "Welcome to the lifestyles of the tanned and unemployed". I thought it mildly amusing at the time and it stuck in the back of my mind. Since then it has popped back into my mind during the times that I have been unfortunate enough to find myself unemployed. It's sort of one of those "turn lemons into lemonade" type things I guess. When you find yourself in an undesirable situation you have to make the best of things otherwise you get beaten down and fall into despair. When people fall into despair they find themselves in terminal depression and experience an overall feeling of worthlessness. It's a dangerous, slippery slope that leads to a deep dark pit that is hard to climb out of. Generally when people are stuck in the pit of despair they need help getting out of it. Hopefully it just takes a friendly hand to help give them a boost out. To often people resort to psychotropic drugs cooked up by big pharma that are dangerous and addictive. The side effects of these drugs are often worse than the depression itself and lead to a permanent dependence on the expensive pills. Others often drift into addictions of alcohol and other drugs. These remedy's, like the pills from big pharma only just mask the issues and do nothing to solve the situation. Love and support from friends and relatives is the best cure for depression , but , sometimes even that is not enough. Most depressed people I think lack a sense of purpose and have a hard time appreciating the things they have , focusing on the things they do not have. I realize that this is a rather simplified opinion but I think it is very close to the truth. Society show us images on the screen where everybody is successful and all the problems are solved in only an hour or two. Television sells us a false reality where everybody is better and happier than most people ever find themselves. When people gauge their lives next to what they see on the screen they sometimes feel like they are not as good as they really are.

A lot of times the cause of depression is much more grounded in reality. Not being able to support your family because of unemployment , or under-employment is very real. These days it is a growing problem with more and more people finding themselves on the line looking for jobs that just don't exist. I find myself in the ranks of those collecting unemployment insurance. I consider myself lucky in the fact that I qualify for unemployment insurance. So many in my trade work as independent contractors and are not eligible for the benefits. This has caused wages to drop tremendously and people are giving the work away just to scrape by on what they can get. For the first time in years , the company I work for has nothing in the pipeline. The job listings have virtually no construction jobs to be had. Without a doubt it's tough out there right now. The whole economy is stagnant and the stimulus programs have done very little to kick start the economy. Our government is dumping trillions of dollars into wars and the military industrial complexes. This does virtually nothing to stimulate the private sector economy that is traditionally the largest employer. On Alex Joneses website ,Info Wars , I found a link to the Washington Blog that had a great article on the subject regarding the spending issues we are currently experiencing. It's a very good , informative read , I highly recomend it.

So , what can we do given the presant situation? First off , as the Hitch-hikers guide to the Galaxcy would say - Don't Panic! When all others loose thier heads, keep yours , is very good advice. Second , Do what you can , try and create your own job , don't lose hope! Don't wait on the government to create a job for you, you will be waiting a long time unless you want to go fight in one of the wars they have going on. Third , don't fall into the depression trap. Remember - God see's to it that the birds and beasts of the field have thier needs tended to and how much more worth you are to him then them. Or as Jaggar and the Stones once said - you can't always get what you want , but if you try sometime, you just might find , you get what you need.

Keep hanging on out there
Lasco X

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Taking the wheel

Greetings and welcome to 2010! This time of year is traditionally when most people look ahead and contemplate the future. The future is always the great unknown, we can speculate all we want but we have no way of knowing what it will bring. We can plan and work towards the future, slowly shaping our path and destination. Anyone who drives a car knows that you need to look into the distance as well as be aware of the immediate surroundings to safely navigate to the desired destination. If you look only a short distance you can't see the obstacles in the distance that need to be avoided. Even worse, if you leave the driving to someone else and pay no attention to where you are going then not only can you possibly end up where you don't want to be but you could end up in really bad shape when you get there. In life it is better to be your own driver and control your own destination. We can't really control our future , but we can help shape it. If you want to hit a target you have a much better chance of hitting it if you aim at it. If you don't hit it you will at least be closer than you would be than if you shoot wildly and randomly.

I know those concepts are rather simple and self evident, but it is surprising how many people are content to sit in the back of the bus and blindly be driven to destinations of others choosing. So with that in mind it's time to take a look at where the bus seems to be headed.

We still have the slow march to world government being shaped in the lofty board rooms of the international bankers and industrialists. It has been a long term goal of the power elite to consolidate power into fewer and fewer hands. Groups like the Bilderburg Group, the Council of Rome and the Trilateral Commission to mention a few have been facilitating the slow march to power consolidation for a long time now. This is sure to continue and accelerate in speed as the goal gets closer to within reach.

The Socialization and hobbling of the United States will probably continue and intensify as Americas economy teeters on the edge of a knife. We watched as the industrial base was dismantled and shipped over seas starting back in the 70's. In the 80's we watched as Wall-Street binged on excesses of executive bonuses as wages for workers slowly slipped into a state of stagnation. The 90's brought us a period of relative prosperity , much like the roaring 20's, fueled by ever increasing debt that slowly piled up higher and higher to unfathomable levels. The turn of the century saw the Empire of the United States standing at the top of the mountain held aloft by inflated ego, stacks of mounting debt and propped up by the worlds most advanced military. The first decade of the new century also saw reality come home to roost and the sprouting of the police state appear across the land. The events of 9-11-01 precipitated the unconstitutional dismantling of the Bill of Rights and civil liberties. We were thrust into wars in the Middle East called the "war on terror" but they have an frightening similarity to the scenario put forth by Brzezinski in the "Grand Chessboard" regarding control on the Eurasian Continent. I suspect the war on terror has more to do with power projection than defending us against terrorists. In the scenario of never ending warfare that is the "war on terror" I think it prudent to heed the words of Sun Tzu from the "Art of War" - There is no instance of a country having benefited from prolonged warfare. The continuing economic and social strain of the wars will have lasting effects on the United States. Add to this the new national health care reform being rammed threw congress and the pot is being brought to a serious boil. As we sit with extremely high unemployment rates and growing massive national debt, 2010 will be an uphill march to get back to higher ground. Let's hope our leaders in Washington DC will stop kicking the dirt from beneath our feet as we try and climb out of the hole.

The world economic problems are not contained to the USA and calls for a new reserve currency are sure to continue. "Out of Chaos comes Order" has been a philosophy used by the Power Elite for centuries. Will this be the year the world unhinges from the dollar and shift to a global unit for national commerce? It is hard to say but forces have been driving us in that direction for sometime now. Only time will tell in the coming days ahead.

I have more faith in the American People than the American government. The bribes and favors that were reported in the pushing of the health care reform bill shows what whores we have up on the hill representing us. The American people need to dig deep and rediscover our resolve and ingenuity for invention to solve our national issues. We all need to get our credit issues under control, personally and nationally. America cannot continue expecting the world to finance us, though ,to be honest , most people don't even think about things like that! Unfortunately to many are just riding on the bus to oblivion.

My hope for 2010 , that more people will take the wheel and drive to their own destiny's rather than being driven to destinations that others choose for them.

Until next time
Lasco X