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mlmonterey
18 July 2008 @ 10:38 pm
Let's co-create earth & heaven united!

 
 
mlmonterey
09 July 2008 @ 10:54 am
The Economics of Compassion, Part 1

This first half of a chapter from Green Mind, Green World: The inner ecology of sustainability, book 3 of a trilogy, Emergency: The rise of post-consumer society,* an unpublished book project in progress, by Michael Lucas Monterey.

©2008 Michael Monterey :: All Rights Reserved

NOTE: This is a work in progress. The content of this work may not be a definitive expression of the author’s view or understanding of the topics. I write like I design buildings and like some people develop software. This work is subject to upgrading, expansion and extension. Unlike typical buildings and software, if further research or new evidence warrant a complete reversal of given interpretations, assumptions, conclusions and statements, then major revision will proceed accordingly. Yet, current events keep proving that my foresight excels 20-20, for better or worse.

MM, San Diego, July 9, 2008

>>>

Global Emergency Medicine

"The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness." John Kenneth Galbraith

Foreword

For those of you who lack the time or patience to read this or study the subject (the global crisis) in its vast totality, I give you the all-in-one mini-summary, analysis and conclusion up front...

Modern civilization is collapsing, because of several interactive causes. We can choose to aggravate and accelerate the process or halt and reverse it. It seems to be a race against time, and we have no idea how much of it we have left. Our preference for happiness and well being favors the solution. Still, it requires our understanding, radical change and effective cooperation. Reality enforces radical change, but the prescription for achieving the rest is complex, yet simple.

The 1% of society we call the rich and super-rich cared more about their own ambitions, desires, fears, opinions, follies, fantasies and fortunes than the well being of the world they exploit. They orchestrate economic "expansion" and drive speculative "investment" bubbles, financial boom and bust cycles. They rig the game to maximize their score and profits and to minimize the risk and costs or eliminate them as often as possible. That fans the flames of envy, jealousy, ambition, lust, greed and obsession in about 5% to 10% of other folks who also fail to care about their impact on the environment and our species. The results? Compound interest, inflation, ruinous monetary policy, currency speculation, leveraged stock/futures trading, corporate subsidies, crashes, global depression, and so on. Without a radical solution, heartless economic math guarantees an ever widening gulf between the rich and the ever growing numbers of the underclass -- the poor, the soon to be poor and the ever shrinking middle class. As long as the most selfish 10% of the population control and exploit over 80% of the wealth of human culture for the sake of their sick ego games, we imitate previous failed civilizations. Yet, the size of our population and environmental disasters guarantee that our fate could be worse.

Fortunately, we do have superior alternatives, options and choices. The details of those options and choices are covered in a later section, called The Prescription. Without studying the rest of this diagnostic report, the cure may not seem possible or practical. A very short time ago, who would think it possible that a young, half-black Democrat named Barack Hussein Obama could become President of the United States?

Now, since I began writing this, in the early days of January, 2008, many dramatic changes burst upon the world scene. The “free market economy” started winding down in earnest. Several revealing reports in the mainstream media offered surprizingly informative overviews. Mainstream TV news shows and commentators grew brave and fairly honest. A recent Op-Ed commentary on the crisis appeared below Steve Breen’s cartoon showing a high-class motor yacht, named "Wall St." on the brink of a big whirlpool in a giant toilet bowl. The captain’s blurb said “We’re sailing in uncharted waters.” The cartoon was more accurate than the column below it.



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mlmonterey
07 July 2008 @ 11:11 pm
"Oh, God! For lack of knowledge, my people perish!"
Isaiah, Old Testament Bible

Edward R. Murrow was right about most of us being allergic to reality. Unfortunately, the reality allergy is contagious and hereditary and pandemic and typically terminal. Fortunately, it is curable. Unfortunately, treatment and recovery are rare. A majority of victims also suffer from virtually terminal denial. These interdependent illnesses are actually demonic afflictions.

Christians define demons as supernatural entities with independently real existences that may infect, possess, harrass or corrupt human beings. Buddhists see demons as any attitude, activity or habit that enslaves and endarkens us, retarding our maturity and/or suppressing our compassionate wisdom, liberation and enlightenment. Those are demons we can deal with, like computer viruses infecting the mental operating system of our human biocomputer (the brain and mindbody).

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mlmonterey
07 July 2008 @ 11:02 pm
"It is well to understand without knowing. To know without understanding is ill."
Lao Tzu, from Dao De Jing, 2600 BCE

A healthy economy, whether personal or global, is based on cultural activity and exchange, not ruthless greed and terror. Scoring and hoarding build zero wealth and no economic health. Neither wealth nor cultural liveliness depend on either winning or bloating. Saving is really investing and wealth is the capacity for sustaining a best case scenario.

Without a best case scenario, the win-win scenario, the economy's snowballing End Game scenario will keep accelerating. If it does, the stealth depression will become an overt depression of the largest possible magnitude.
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mlmonterey
"Here is the way of Heaven: those who have more than enough giving to those who have too little. Not so, the way of the world, taking from those who have too little for those who always have too much."
Lao Tzu

To crave winning, by cheating others if necessary, comes of poverty, not wealth. Wealth is more than score and well-being and potential, the capacity for accomplishing results. Wealth is also flow. Realizing our potential and sustaining a high rate of flow requires understanding. The wealthy understand the nature of the game and how to play it artfully, without cheating.

As current events are demonstrating so dramatically, even in a dynamic economic system based on floating currency values and Voodoo Economics, no flow means no grow and then, inevitably, no go. The formerly upwardly mobile house of cards trembles, sways, flutters and starts flying away in the jet stream of reality, unveiling golden opportunities for anybody wise enough to keep the flow going with healthy alternatives.

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mlmonterey
07 July 2008 @ 10:41 pm
"I need not pass beyond my garden gate to discover the way of the world or to predict its fate."
Lao Tzu

What are the symptoms, causes and nature of the chronic disease afflicting our culture and our body politic? Ours is a very complex syndrome, definitely something like cultural AIDS and sociopolitical cancer combined.

The news items mentioned above were accompanied by other useful items. The FBI announced an investigation involving 14 firms from across the financial services industry. This joint FBI-SEC fraud probe follows a 50% increase of mortgage fraud cases, from about 800 to 1210 in the last year. ‘Suspicious activity reports’ are expected to surge from 48,000 a year ago to 60,000 this year, a rise of 857% from about 7,000 in 2003. Is it simply a mass of coincidences that the legal gambling markets have ballooned at about the same rate as frauds? It’s getting easier to connect the dots. What will happen when the FBI reveals the final list of firms being investigated? If they ever get around to it, that will be ugly, but workable.

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mlmonterey
07 July 2008 @ 10:25 pm
"If you want what you've never had before, you've got to do what you've never done before."
Rev. Michael Murdoch

What can cure the seemingly terminal money madness dragging the world into the pits? Can our our culture be exorcized, rescued from the predatory ego demons infesting it? Will most of "super-rich" elitists suddenly donate more than a small fraction of their winnings for something more than good PR and tax breaks? Are they planning how to make human culture a success?

If not, then the likelihood of catastrophic failure is assured. We now have more potential global disasters on the horizon than I care to recount here. The old reliance on the business-as-usual status quo as an eternal verity is clearly obsolete and extremely dangerous. As most relatively sane people now realize, the time left for slamming on the brakes and turning around is shrinking at an ever accelerating rate. Our small window of opportunity is closing very rapidly. The canary in the coal mine never sees the invisible gas that kills it. We need intelligent leadership, able to see the nature of the radical changes happening to our ecosystem, but also well informed citizens who will ensure that the leaders of commerce and politics will respond appropriately.


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mlmonterey
"Trickle-down theory - the less than elegant metaphor that if one feeds the horse enough oats, some will pass through to the road for the sparrows."
John Kenneth Galbraith
"The only kind of socialism that works in America is corporate socialism."
JKG

Like the prophet Muhammid, I take wisdom from the mouth of a fool if I find it there. Like Tibet’s spiritual CEO, Tenzin Gyatso Rinpoche (the Dalai Lama), I may be compassionately tolerant to a fault — even of shameful con-artists, tyrants, usurpers, and other ecocidal maniacs. Why? We are both as sure of the reality and power of Karma (action-reaction) as we are of energy and habits and results, negative and positive. We are not doormats though, nor grandmas offering brats cookies and milk.

Exorcising Culture, one of my forthcoming books, documents the disastrous combination of flawed game theory, mathematical economics and the mass cultivation of corruption by ecocidal egos that spawned the global epidemic of psychic AIDS now plaguing the planet. One of my incentives came of learning that John Nash’s early game theory breakthroughs were due to his paranoid schizophrenic negativity. Being paranoid does not mean that “they” are not conspiring to do us in. Our hellish dilemma is our own collusion with the forces and agencies of negativity and senseless destruction. Using the results of Nash’s mental illness as the basis of Cold War “social control” for over 50 years created a karmic habit as persistent as acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS), as gluttonous as cancer and more pervasive. "They" really are us. We need radical, holistic therapy for our culture’s malignant disease.

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mlmonterey
04 May 2008 @ 05:00 pm
Some deeply insightful comments on the Washington Post blog on the McCain-Clinton Gas Tax Holiday ploy and Obama's dry, wry, yet tepid response inspired me to reply. Here is my comment on the intelligent comments and the issues:

It is unfortunate that R. Hewison is on target about Obama's tendency. He seems to catch himself quickly on many slips, but the alleged tendency and his need to play some politics as usual (to avoid alienating so many normally neurotic factions in his potential constituency (us)) puts him in a double bind on critical issues disturbing the media pundits and naive swing voters and fence straddlers. For example, Obama could smack down Billary's "summer gas tax holiday" bribery by calling it her "Summer Fantasy Holiday".
 
 
mlmonterey
01 April 2008 @ 10:06 pm
Celebrating Emergency

“The Paradox of Our Age: We have bigger houses, but smaller families; more conveniences, but less time. We have more degrees, but less sense; more knowledge, but less [wisdom]; more experts, but more problems; more medicines, but less wellness. We’ve been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet the new neighbor. We built more computers to hold more information to produce more copies than ever, but have less communication. We are long on quantity, but short of quality. These are times of fast foods, but slow digestion; tall men, but small character; steep profits, but shallow relationships. It’s a time when there is much in the window, but little or nothing in the room.” Tulku Tenzin Gyatso Rinpoche, HH the 14th Dalai Lama

Right -- this is not a joke. It is my late father's birthday. In memoriam, I dedicate this little piece of exegesitive journalism to my formerly slightly wacko but lovable joker, warrior, artist, designer, dreamer, doer and successfully entrepreneurial sire, without whom none of this would be possible. So, today I have a genetic right to my Quixotic folly and a little gratification, even a tiny bit of gloating.

This can also be called a work of celebrative journalism, because everything that I was predicting, reporting and explaining in The Economics of Compassion, Part 1, 'Global Emergency Medicine' has been vindicated by current events still unfolding, still gaining momentum, and still attracting more commentary from other insightful observers of reality. This is also a celebration of all those other kindred spirits, gold bugs and bearish contrarians who were brave enough or foolish enough to be reporting their own discoveries and realizations over the years, particularly in the last three months. We can also celebrate the fact that our calls for compassionate sanity and economic rationality are finally being given space and time in the mainstream media and accorded due respect thereby. But this is no time for resting arsses on laurels. Quite the opposite, much more is yet to be revealed and explained about what really goes on under the hood and behind the curtain in the empire of the mighty Oz!

First, I need to point out that most of what I am writing about in The Economics of Compassion has been incubating for over 32 years. From 1975 my independent R&D of sustainable architecture, planning and social theory (etc.) led to increasing interest in geopolitics, economics and the history of banking, among other subjects, but all that was preceded by more evolutionary development of my psyche. After meeting my monetary policy mentor, John Workman, I was able to understand the “real deal” and start developing an original synthesis of ultra-green economics. Many of my basic insights and intuitive predictions came in the early '70s, but my comprehensive Big Picture view developed between 1987 and 2001. I should admit to one big surprize though... The full depth of lameness running rampant in the corridors of financial power, the board rooms and trading halls of the "Free Market" economy and the offices of our elected officials and bureacrats. It reminds me of two great quotes.

One is from the late, great "cowboy philosopher" of Oklahoma, Will Rogers Jr., commenting on the Great Depression and its aftermath, etcetera, "After thinkin' it over, I reckon that the great success of the American politician is on account of the short memory of the American voter."

The other relevant observation comes from Lazarus Long, the fictional oldest guy in the universe via the weird imagination of Robert Heinlein, "Never underestimate the power of human stupidity."

The degree of functional stupidity of even the most well informed politicos overwhelms the bounds of incredibility for even the most aware and/or cynical observers. It recalls the old quip, "how low can you go?" It reminds me of The Bottomless Pit.

Foremost on my mind lately is the failure of the Presidential candidates (among others), the talking media heads and the rest of the Normalcy Pushers to get real and come clean about the roots of the global emergency and the actual level of severity. If they are as shocked, dazed, confused and/or oblivious as the majority of We, the People, then that may be cold comfort but no excuse for pretenses to leadership. It looks more like the blind leading the blind deeper into that hellish pit. I just can't stand by and do nothing to help.

Since I have yet to see one, here's a provisional laundry/shopping list of 8 vital necessities:

1. We, the People, do not want "free trade" and baseless currency and endless inflation. We want fair trade, a stable currency, ultra-low inflation and no economic depression. Due to the human susceptibility to greed and corruption and denial, the only way to make that possible is by making Congress do its Constitutional duty of controlling the money, values, weights and measures and fixing the relative prices of precious metals and strategic materials. To do that without disrupting the entire world economy requires a dual system and re-establishing the non-debt based, legal money system of the USA. When we accomplish this exercize of our freedom and sovereignty, then we can all have good jobs and a decent share of our own common-wealth.

2. We, the People, do not want to occupy or provide the national police force for Iraq, nor to go to war with Iran or anybody else in order to protect our access to Middle-Eastern oil. We just want to go places without going broke. Due to the human susceptibility to greed and corruption and denial, the only way to make that possible is to quit letting the owners and employees of oil, car and weapons companies run our government and ruin our world. Besides all that, whenever hostilities increased in the Middle-East, the price of oil and petrofuel went up, then so did inflation. War, waste, pollution, taxes, interest and excess profits are the roots and blossoming realities of inflation.

3. We, the People, do not want a perpetual war against terrorism that creates more ruin, devastation and hate among people who think that vengence is holy and that there is a divinely righteous hatred of an entire nation of people (us). We want an end to growing terrorism against the USA and our allies. Due to the human susceptibility to greed and corruption and denial, the only way to make that possible is to use our natural intelligence, compassion and economic power to help our allies and the people of failing states. Terrorism feeds on violent conflict, pain, suffering, fear, hate, envy and jealousy. We need to quit letting greedy psychopaths run our government and our minds and demand a new Constitutional amendment permitting national referendums and recalls.

4. We, the People, do not want better health insurance and cheaper sickness care. Like the Canadians, British and French, we want great health care. Due to the human susceptibility to greed and corruption and denial, the only way to make that possible is with non-profit medical and pharmaceutical industries. Insurance is a large group of people investing a little of their their assets to cover the possible, occasional losses a minority suffer at any given time. We, the People of the USA, are a large group in need of such a system. So, we may as well give ourselves the best, at the least cost, by spreading it over the whole group of working adults, as in Canada, Britain and France.

5. We, the People, do not want more government corruption, waste and taxes. We want less of the organized insanity of parasitic bureacracy. Due to the human susceptibility to greed and corruption and denial, the only way to make that possible is to make government corruption and currency speculation treasonous crimes subject to really severe penalties, restitution, and capital punishment or banishment. If government corruption and official fraud were the only crime punished by public execution (on the streets and TV) that would quickly correct all our systemic problems with crooked politics. Since currency speculation directly siphons value from a culture and aggravates the tendency to instability, ending it is essential to restoring a stable currency and a healthy economy.

6. We, the People, do not want more crooked elections and expensive media circuses posing as effective political campaigns. We want an effective electoral process by, for and of us, We, the People. Due to the human susceptibility to greed and corruption and denial, the only way to make that possible is to mandate regular, non-profit media coverage of political campaigns, with real debates and “town hall” Q&A meetings that truly cover the issues important to us. The costs of this mandatory coverage incurred by participating media firms (etc.) can be defrayed by tax breaks and community service credit units (accepted in lieu of payroll checks and cash or money credit). If it takes creating a fourth branch of government -- a supervisory council of elders, children, mentors, experts and heroes -- then we must do that.

7. We, the People, do not want a dystopian socialist welfare police state. We want a communitarian culture with decent jobs and community service for all. As I show in Global Emergency Medicine, tweaking the monetary policy and interets rates won’t help most Americans or the global economy now any more than they did in the Great Depression. We need a major overhaul of monetary policy and cultural imperatives. Due to the human susceptibility to greed and corruption and denial, the only way to make that possible is to liberate our human intelligence and energy with a national community service credit system, a non-profit system for initiating “public works” programs that we need, employing Americans without increasing the tax burden. That will jump start consumer shopping by providing a substantial increase of workers' wealth. Two years of national service for highschool graduates will help. One year of community service work for each year of tuition-free public college will also help.

8. We, the People, do not want our government ruled by corporate greed gamers who care nothing about the aftermath of their rape and ruin of our nation. We want a government of, by and for all of us, especially for the sake of our children and their children and so on. Due to the human susceptibility to greed and corruption and denial, the only way to make that possible is to delegitimize corporate irresponsibility and its supremacy over humanity. We all need to recognize that corporations succeed because of their working relationships with their host cultures, and that should be formalized -- 50/50 ownership. Also, instead of giving them the best of privileges and rewards but virtually zero responsibility, corporations must be held liable and subject to our laws and penalties to the same extent as natural people.

Now, since the original Americans understood that the differing valuations of different cultures and different costs of doing business in different states and nations created possibilities for unfair trade and other abuses, our original tax policy was used solely for limiting and regulating trade. Thomas Jefferson called the power to tax “the power to destroy.” Since we've been gradually cheated out of understanding our own money system and trained to believe that personal income tax is a necessity (despite the growth of our pre-IRS economy and the ongoing financial success of the tax-free State of Nevada), my seemingly radical reversion to a valid national economic system needs some explaning. That is the purpose of The Economics of Compassion, Part 1 (below) and Part 2, in progress.

Before getting into that, let's first admit that pretending we need a minor, typical and temporary (bogus) correction for a chronically devastating case of fraud is a symptom of insanity or criminality or both. With that in mind we can all participate in the cure and the Dalai Lama's critique of modernism can be revised.

Michael Monterey :: April 1, 2008 :: michael.gcda@gmail.com

©2008 Michael Monterey :: All Rights Reserved
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