I'm weary, worn out
Can't take it anymore -- people telling me hour by hour, day by day, what's good, what's bad, what's sinful, dangerous, awful, shocking, wrong.
Hammered down, I am, by all the polls -- last year's, this year's, yesterday's, today's polls -- that prove who's winning, who's losing.
Weighted down, yes, I am -- from the scary, terrible news about my country -- this and that is failing, worsening every day.
I don't want to hear more stuff about this or that candidate --how much money they have, what taxes they're paying-not paying, and what this guy and that guy did wrong in his private or his public life.
I love Rachel Maddow but I can't handle her peppy, clear, accurate reports -- revelations about other seriously corrupt things that are going on.
Yii! Super Pacs. When, how, did they creep into our everyday news?
Yes, the curfew tolls the knell of parting day. But now, Super Pacs are knelling the DOOM of democracy where we the people used to actually pick and elect our leaders.
The commercials -- the brilliantly finessed truthful sounding untruths in Super Pac commercials -- dear God, the tons of money the Pac-guys are pouring into controlling who's going to be our next president!
Duh ... that's all I can mumble, about lower class, poor Dems who don't have the Voter Id's that a lot of Repub states already require, that force folks to spend $$ to prove where and when they were born, IF they want to vote.
Meanwhile, one candy candidate is winning, the other's bubble gum is popping, while what's-his-name is doing great but hasn't got a chance or does he? He's logically explaining how the unqualified do-nothing Muslim in the White House, "Entertainer of the Year" is handing out food stamps.
Sing-a-long -- "Tramp, tramp, tramp, Repub-boys are marching, cheer up comrades they are tramping into the mud everything that's crud, which is ABSOLUTELY everything.
Yep, the current Congress runs the depressed, stymied fearful, unsure country -- they're the boss not the Pres.
Hard to breathe under the heavy blanket of words about why we've got to get the floundering Pres OUT of the oval office -- it's a matter of life and death.
Hey lookie! Grab a laugh at the mashup of singing celebs -- Obama, Senators 1995, Reagan 1952, Cain, Clinton, McCain, Orin Hatch, Dennis Kucinich. John Ashcroft. Gee, wow, wooee -- wouldn't it be nice if presidential hopefuls started singing and went for a little harmony!
Wednesday, February 1, 2012
His name -- a Jewish name that lends itself into a nickname -- I think of New York City's Mayor as "Bloomy."
I see him/hear him constantly-- every time there's a crisis in my hometown-- there he is in the news. The decisions he makes certainly affect my life as a New Yorker.
This guy makes sense, explains things clearly, not excessively, but lays out a summary of what the issue is, and his plans for handling whatever it is.
I know from listening carefully -- my ear glued when I've heard him mention guns, and capital punishment -- that he's against capital punishment and is passionately concerned that we have stronger gun control laws. I know he supports -- respects, loves our fireman, cops, teachers -- he's for helping needy people (respecting them, whoever they are). At the same time, Bloomy's aware of the budget and knows what can the city can afford to do.
In a recent six-page spread in Newsweek, (an attack on Bloomy ), readers were warned that Bloomberg is super rich, making more money than the NY Times, Reuters, and Turner or Murdoch. Bloomy apparently has been gathering around him men and technical machines -- he's built a powerful network that sells its information services to subscribers. The network, "Bloomberg LP," is making 30% more money than any of them -- the article promoted the idea that Mayor Michael Bloomberg is trying to dominate the world financially
Okay -- Bloomberg LP. (limited partners) is an ocean of partners and services. It includes B-government, B-legal, B-news, B-media network. B-LP is a Bloomberg Information Center that can provide Bloomy and his subscribers the latest information about what's happening in the world of their endeavor --whatever their endeavor is.
So ... ? Money is as money does. He uses the money to support what he thinks is important. Digging into Bloomberg.com, NYC.gov and Chronicles of Philanthropy, I know Bloomy's generously helping the poor, trying to provide better education, medical help, financial aid. Here's a partial list of what Bloomy's supporting.
The figures aren't in yet on 2011, but in 2010, Bloomberg gave a total of $279.2-million to 970 nonprofit groups that support the arts, human services, public affairs -- stopping the use of tobacco (the smoking that's killing people throughout the world), and gun control -- he took his strong ideas on tobacco, guns, jobs and immigration to Washington. He's knocking himself out, working constantly on getting more jobs, higher paying jobs in NYC,
While building himself a large Twitter and Face Book presence, Bloomy's working with Face Book, Twitter, and TechCrunch -- selling them on creating new, major engineering offices NYC. He's determined to make NYC the world's #1 technology hub.
I can't help wondering when he has time to eat, sleep, and see his girl friend. Does he have one? Yes. Do we know much about her? No. Is he gay? Is that why he supports gay marriage? Probably not -- married for 17 years, he has two grownup daughters.
So is Bloomy hyper something, running for financial king of the world? for president in 2012? What about 2016?
I say no -- I think his Jewish background, his out-in-the-open expression of what he thinks, creates an insurmountable wall. But he's a man of the people, concerned about America, thinking, digging into possible courses of action -- a seat in the senate? maybe a fourth term as mayor?
I like him. I really LIKE him -- like what he stands for, what he's tried to achieve, has achieved. and his actions fit his words.
Hey, I'm not selling him politically. I'm just sharing what I've noted and have learned about a good guy who's running New York City and setting an example, perhaps, for other cities on what a good mayor can do.
Monday, January 30, 2012
Can your thoughts flip a lever, push a button, or open a valve?
Thought control fascinates me.
When I began to read an article in TIME about the latest advances in thought control, I thought it was spooky talk about magicians like Houdini.
Nope. A plain regular man has demonstrated that he can tell a computer, without touching the keyboard, to open and close valves. He's a manager at Ontario Power Generation, a nuclear plant on the outskirts of Toronto.
This guy can do it if he's wearing a device strapped to his arm that measures the ebb and flow of brain activity. The device, called the "BodyWave" is an iPod-size tool with three sensors that touch the skin and detect levels of neurotransmission -- ALPHA waves (your aware-but-relaxed waves), DELTA sleep waves, THETA, daydreaming waves, and BETA, your brain processes.
Alpha, Delta, Theta --the Greek terms turned me off. But by measuring these three waves and your brain processes, the BodyWave device can determine when your concentration has peaked, and you are primed to make an important, split-second decision -- for instance --when to use the scalpel during an operation, when to make a stock trade, when to putt on the 18th green.
I have to admit, I'm enthralled by the idea that the mind can do this. If people praying -- if prayer could make a difference ...? Is science on its way to proving that prayer can make a difference?
Apparently measuring brain waves has already been used at NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) for training pilots operating supersonic planes. At NASCAR (National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing) it's being used for training the crew in a pit, so that tire-changers, by focusing, will be able to remove five lug nuts in one second.
Measuring your focus is known as EEG. (Electroencephalography). When you get red-faced because you're embarrassed, it's a moment of intense concentration. Sensors can register it.
The electrical charges that occur in your brain when you're concentrating on something, means neurons are firing in synchrony. It produces a unique electrical signature that can be measured. When you stop concentrating, the synchrony breaks and the signature changes.
(So it's like the famous s "Rockettes" in a line kicking one leg--if one of them didn't get her leg up in unison with the others --wow, you'd notice it instantly).
It isn't terribly complicated. The Body Wave measures when the neurons change from synchrony. The device is plugged into a USB port; the computer can say if you are focused or
thinking about what to do on the weekend.
It would be great to know when you are concentrating, and when you are drifting, but, at present, the BodyWave has a flaw --it transmits data to a computer screen that shows if you're falling asleep, but there's no sound, or light signal that warns you to stop before you do something stupid. The inventor of the device, Mr. Freer, is a tinkerer and he's still tinkering, certain he can fix this problem.
Concentration -- how long I can sustain a thought -- golly, standing on one leg with a powerful spot light on you -- it takes huge concentration. Working on this post for my blog, my stomach's rumbling -- I notice a hangnail, look at the clock -- yep -- my mind's wandering -- I'm wondering what this post will mean to my readers.
"Stop!" I yell at myself, but I've been working for a couple hours. I know from novel writing, that I can concentrate intensely for about 30 minutes. I know that on a stage, dancing Mahler's Fifth Symphony, I concentrated for an hour. But novel writing and performing are things I've practiced for years. If I was attached to a device measuring my synchrony, right now, I bet it would tell me, "Enough said -- you're done, post this on your blog for readers to chew."
Is the BodyWave something you or I would want to buy? If we practiced, could we become a super concentrated person? (An "Avatar" is the term used in this video clip.)
Click and see what Freer's company says about it.