On Leadership

The terms “leader” and “leadership” get bandied about often without a clear understanding of what a leader is; or, what the resultant leadership means.   It has been written and stated widely that “leaders are born, not made”.  While that axiom may get some pushback, leaders have an innate character that ultimately will take them into a leadership role of one type of another.  Even those with less evident qualities for leadership can – can – be groomed for leadership.

When I was age fifteen, I was sent by my church to a youth leadership training camp at Muhlenberg College.  As I recall, that camp lasted a week.  I recall little else.  I attribute that loss of memory to the nearly sixty years since!  But, for me the core issue is how the church saw in me leadership potential.  I was one of the church youth leaders; secretary of that group.

Three years later I joined the United States Air Force.  At Tech School, I was one of the first Airmen on the Airmen’s Advisory Council created by our Squadron Commander.  For my service on that Council, I received my first letter of commendation for outstanding performance and leadership.  Three years later, before being discharged honorably I would receive two more such letters while stationed at a remote Intel site.

I share the foregoing not to impress, but rather to share how “my story” as it has unfolded.  I recall a high school English teacher saying, “If you write about yourself, write from what is familiar; from experience.”  That instruction has followed and guided me for decades.

The United States Air Force unleashed my “inner” leader, simultaneously building within me a level of self-confidence that I had lacked fully when first into boot camp.  Along the way, thereafter, certain commissioned officers and upper rank non-commissioned officers saw my potential and mentored me.  Most often, that mentoring was subtle – a methodology followed by good mentors.

One thing I intuited early on as a very young Air Force Staff Sergeant:  Leadership is not about me.  It is about “you” and “us”.  A boss is about “me”.  A leader sees the greater good and the wider whole of teamwork and team spirit.  A good, strong leader intuits the potential of his followers, his team, and incentivizes that group energy.  Two of my iconic leaders from history are General George S. Patton who was an extraordinary leader during World War II; and, William Wallace, the Scotsman who paved the way for Scotland’s independence from the Crown.

What follows are various definitions of and perspectives on leadership.  They have been borrowed from the Web, Merriam-Webster and others who are noted below along with their quotes.

Leadership involves establishing a clear vision, sharing that vision with others so that they will follow willingly; providing the information, knowledge and methods to realize that vision, and
coordinating and balancing the conflicting interests of all members and stakeholders.

A leader steps up in times of crisis, and is able to think and act creatively in difficult situations.
(Read more: http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/leadership.html)

Leadership is a process by which a person influences others to accomplish an objective and directs the organization in a way that makes it more cohesive and coherent.  And, I would add “more successful”.

Some other popular definitions of Leadership are:

The U.S. military has as one of its definitions, Leadership is a process by which a person influences others to accomplish a mission (U.S. Army, 1983).

Leadership is inspiring others to pursue your vision within the parameters you set, to the extent that it becomes a shared effort, a shared vision, and a shared success [Emphasis mine.] (Zeitchik, 2012).

 “The single most powerful way to grow as a leader: Become truly self-aware.”  Erika Andersen, Forbes, November 2012

11 Ways to Define Leadership

By Jennifer Post, “Business News Daily” Contributor

  1. The pursuit of bettering your environment
  2. Knowing your team and yourself well
  3. Giving people the tools to succeed
  4. Open, authentic and positive influence
  5. Clarity, confidence and courage
  6. Building consensus and common goals
  7. Being the solution to problems
  8. Helping others achieve the impossible
  9. Building the next generation of leaders
  10. Building followership
  11. Actively listening

From the above, one sees how leadership – good leadership – is a powerful force in the lives of one and many.  Of course, there are bad leaders.  But, a cautionary note is in order:  If someone is a “bad” leader, they really are not a leader in the authentic sense.

In our world today we see many who want to claim the title “leader”.  Politicians are among the worst offenders.  Most legislators, whether in the United States Congress or in state and local legislative bodies are far from being leaders.  Far too many of them, if elected, arrive with their own personal agendas; often struck with high rolling supporters who expect favors if their candidate is elected.

Being a strong leader, becoming a good, strong leader, requires time, experience and maturity.   In his book, “Leading”, Sir Alex Ferguson the legendary manager of the Manchester United (UK) football league lays out an excellent repertoire on leadership.  As Sir Alex reveals, leaders learn more from our pitfalls, shortcomings and failures; the teaching experiences.  Success and victory are the fruits borne from those teaching experiences.

The two areas, or professions, where leadership is most demonstrative is in our military services and in our sports; athletics.  Whether it is a platoon leader or the captain of an athletic team (think soccer, rugby, football, lacrosse, baseball, basketball, and so on), those are the lads who are looked to and looked up to for the next victory or conquest.

It is unfortunate that in many environments today there are people who see themselves as leaders when in fact they are bosses.  Their sense of authority, real or imagined, elevates their ego to the point of becoming ineffective.  We often use the term “alpha” for a leader.  But that “alpha” is translated in the most positive and respectable sense.  Alpha also can mean “dominant”, which alone in its context can take on highly negative perceptions.

Leaders also embrace a solid sense of mission:  Where are we going and how do we get there?  Leaders must be mission focused; clarity of mission is critical and essential.  Entering any situation “blind” is a sure recipe for disaster.

Leadership is like a ladder.  In the military, we have the command officers; then the squadron officers and senior non-coms (Non-commissioned Officers); then the platoon leader, most often a person in the rank of Sergeant.  In sports we have the manager, the coach or coaches; the team captain.  As you can see, leadership does not rely upon or center on one person.

We must not confuse a boss or a “head” of an organization, group or company as a “leader”.  The title does not necessarily fit the reality.  Slave masters are not leaders.  They are thugs and bullies.  Walking across dead bodies, speaking euphemistically, to put yourself ahead of the rests is not leading.

The common denominator among true leaders is how they realize and demonstrate shared duty and shared success.  The concept of “team”, a term often over used is in full play when leaders lead.  Sir Alex Ferguson lays out various aspects that must be included in good leadership:  listen, watch, read, and perhaps most important of all, the exercise of discipline.  Disciplining self and your team are critical.   Discipline embodies structure.  Structure is essential to unity:  unity among the team members; unity of purpose; a unified effort to reach predetermined goals.

Trust also is key in all such organisms.  Loyalty to the team and the team’s efforts.  And for the team leader, I return to Erika Andersen’s “being self-aware”.  The leader must be in a constant state of self-awareness.  Simultaneously, the leader must be aware of those he or she is leading.  Leaders do not self-isolate; they cannot self-isolate.  They are the center, and like the spokes in a wheel they spiral outward among their team.

 

Thoughts on Dr. Travis Bradberry

April 2017
As a fan and follower of Dr. Travis Bradberry, author of “Emotional Intelligence 2.0”, I admire and respect his plaudits for self-reflection/introspection and road maps to greater success. There is a “however”. Isn’t there always?
Dr Bradberry lives and breathes in a world that is far removed from the world many others of us live in; and, must live in. His list of the ten most toxic people one should “avoid like the plague” is spot on. It has been very helpful as I process my current professional predicament.

The president of a client board has put a target on my back to get me fired. She admitted as much to my assistant manager, in “secret”; not realizing, perhaps, that my assistant’s loyalty is to me; not to her. Ergo, he told me her plans. This particular woman is toxic, possessing at least three of Bradberry’s ten toxins. Many of us who have interacted with her conclude she is consumed with hate and anger. She especially hates men; all the more men who are strong; ones over which she cannot trample or ride rough shod. At her core she is a bully, often highly irrational; living in a world of rage and anger just below the surface that is easily triggered. She is not, by any measure, a leader. She is self-flagellating, often becoming demonstrably angry when anyone dares to disagree with her opinion or her point of view. If you are “in her sights”, she will cleverly set you up for an attack. When someone holds that much authority, they can and will commit serious damage even to the suspecting.
Dr. Bradberry has posited, “One cannot be rational with an irrational person.” This particular board president’s behavior and demeanor underscore the reality perfectly!
I want to hear Dr. Bradberry’s views on survival in such toxic situations. Such environments are, after all, war zones and minefields. Most often, it is difficult to extract oneself quickly from battle fields such as these. Those who find ourselves in highly toxic work settings must follow rules and guidelines to survive the nefariously driven chaos. Finding another job is the logical goal. But in the meantime, the abused must summon up the psychic energy to survive; not play into the hand of the villain. Anyone who finds themselves in such cancerous surroundings must deftly strive to extract themselves — permanently.
Toxic people motivated by hate, the origins of their hate often not known to them, are destructive. They are a poison in both the professional and the social environments. When they hold a “seat of power” where they can lord over those they want to “get rid of” or do harm to, they are relentless. Dr. Bradberry’s words and theories are powerful. Dr. Bradberry works through the light; from the bright side. Regrettably, certain real world settings are so negative and disruptive that applying Dr. Bradberry’s axioms may not work.
Those under attack must be ever-vigilant. We must summon up our strengths and keep our defenses and wits about us. We must not play into the pernicious hand of the villain, for they are set upon seeing us fail; destroyed. Once an escape has availed itself, take it post haste! Never give up. Never give in. Good souls ultimately victor over the bad ones, but the road can be treacherous along the way.

Email to Kevin Sullivan, Washington Post, 22 May 2016

Dear Mr. Sullivan,

Your commentary in today’s Sunday Washington Post heralds a cause for concern among those of us who believe in the rule of law and staying within the parameters of those rules; and, for those of us who truly love our country, warts and all.

Soper and his followers/colleagues are, simply stated, anarchists. Soper claims he only wants “our” government to follow the Constitution. Like Soper is an expert on the U.S. Constitution? How strange it is that the Constitution, not unlike Holy Scripture, is open to wide interpretation. The gun lobby and the 2nd Amendment represent a perfect example on how opposing sides interpret the 2nd Amendment differently. For what it is worth, I interpret it as many if not most scholars do: The right of the Colonies to establish a Militia because we had no standing army at that time. (Wouldn’t that reality be painful to the MIC of day’s culture!)

I see Soper and his ilk as enemies of the state; terrorists laying in waiting. They can spew out all the bravado and gusto as they wish. They claim patriotism while in fact they are nationalists; not patriots. Their collective frames an underground of tyranny against the United States of America; and, I sense they are “itching for that gunfight”.

You quote an Alex McNeely saying he wanted to join the U.S. Military until Obama was elected. “I wasn’t going to accept him as my Commander-in-Chief,” says McNeely. Really! Well, it is a damned good thing he did not enlist. As a U.S. Military Veteran whose family has served our country since the American Revolutionary War, I will be among the first to remind McNeely we do not get to choose our bosses; for better or for worse. The Military oath states, in part, “to protect the Constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic.” McNeely should look beyond the White House into the Capitol to discern just how many enemies of the state are freewheeling on the backs of America and corrupting the Constitution. McNeely also needs to learn more about the duty of our Military when it comes to matters of government. No president is king.

The Sopers of our world are belligerent marauders who thumb their noses at the rule of law. “Their” law appears to be at the end of the barrel of a gun. These Trumpites better hope and pray Trump does not get elected as president. There is an old cliché, “a fool is born every minute.” There are a lot of fools riding this Trumpified train wreck. They may feel disenfranchised. Under a Trump as president, their fate would be even worse.

But, sadly, they also are among the many less educated white folk in America who see life as dark and hopeless. I see light and hope. I refuse to “blame” this government, flawed as it is, for my good times or my bad times. Soper states, “the government has lost ‘common sense’.” Now, I wonder: Who, really, lacks that common sense?

Respectfully,
The REVEREND M. VINCENT TURNER

The Bathroom “Wars”

Dear Professor Haslam,

The now “international” (seeing that you are in Melbourne, Australia) kerfuffle over bathrooms and transgender people, and users of restrooms in general, has kept me fully amused.

I grew up in rural Maryland farm country on a small farm. In middle school (then known as ‘junior high’), we showered after gym class. We were naked. (Screams of disbelief.) In high school, athletes showered after the game. (Clothes were not permitted in the shower.)

In my Military service, during boot camp somewhere between 40 to 60 of us shit, showered, shaved and peed in open. The “urinal” was a long trough. The toilets were open for all to see. In order to shave quickly enough to avoid your DI fragging your ass, each boot shaved close in with privates nearly touching privates (and I am not talking about the generic term “Private, as a rank). Having served two Overseas tours, we had open showers and urinals. The toilets, thank God!, were privies.

No one in my generation who has shared such public display of “private parts” has been harmed, either psychologically or physically.

Several years ago I learned that showering in public schools after an athletic event became taboo nearly three decades ago. The kids simply went home all smelly. Really? What in God’s name has caused now two full generations to fear being naked among their own? We have devolved into a society and culture of unwarranted fears and obsessive squeamishness. If a gym buddy is gay, it is not likely he will come onto another “dude” in the shower or while drying off. Gay men likely have more respect for discretion and barriers than many straight men. When then president Bill Clinton in 1992 agreed to Don’t ask, don’t tell [DADT], I realized our country had devolved into a state of inexplicable fear of sex and gender; and into the age of the stupid. That action alone spoke volumes about America’s immaturity when it comes to sex. (Never mind the fact the U.S. uses “sex” both in the blatant and the sublime to promote nearly every product in the universe. Sexual innuendo in advertising is a specialty here in the States.)

As to the transgender folk, I “kinda” get it and I “kinda” don’t get it. At some level it must be hell on earth for a child or adult to realize their body parts do not match their intuitive sexuality (gender). I will embrace and understand their dilemma and urge them on to do what is best for them both physically and psychologically. The population of morons here in the States is by all measure a grotesque group of infantile vigilantes who are so unintelligent their only “tolerant” act is to picket Target Stores or assert their right to check one’s crotch before allowing the use of a restroom. Your “where taboo subjects cannot be escaped” renders how foolish our under-educated pockets of American society are. The other 99.99% of us simply want to go in, do our business, wash our hands and leave. I truly wish the moronic populace would wash THEIR hands of this entire matter and move in. And, please! Memo to those toilet thugs: Do not hang around in the restrooms thinking you might protect “us” from a transgender person. You are the pervert. They are not.

Best regards,

The REVEREND M. VINCENT TURNER

Footnote: Professor Haslam is an Instructor at the University of Melbourne, Australia

Recent posts to Salon.com

Below are two separate quotes I posted today on Salon.com. One refers to a two-part series by Noam Chomsky, a superior intellectual whom I have admired for years. Chomsky speaks to the decline and fall of the American Empire; a reality I saw coming a few decades ago. (Sadly.)

The second is in response to a commentary about Donald Trump. Trump has ignited the ire of many. The media, I believe, has over played Trump’s hand.

(1) As a fan and follower of Chomsky for some years, I am not one to “take the wind out of his sails” but I have been saying this very thing to friends and colleagues for this last decade. I pinpoint the genesis of our decline with Ronald Reagan, who sold out all but the straight while male “Christian” upper class. A good decade or so ago Robert Kuttner wrote his book, “Everything for sale.” Our nation was being sold out and has been. The moral and ethical boundaries which we the people are expected to embrace are off-limits to the mighty, wealthy and powerful. They like those constructs that keep the “good citizen” “in line”. So long as the majority of us toe the line, they the 1% and 1/10th of a percent get to fill their coffers with more money; more power. Our grandchildren will awaken to a rotting country that has fallen ever further into dumbing down, school systems intentionally driven into the ground (now in progress) and a national ineptitude that will turn us into a 2nd or 3rd world nation. “We the people” have been played. Our apathy and our lethargy have been a boon to our eventual slaughter (metaphorically speaking). In the current hit series on the CW Channel, “Green Arrow”, Stephen Amell who stars as “Green Arrow” would take out his city’s vermin after first raging out, “You have failed this city.” We can say to the three branches of our federal government and to American corporatocracy, “You have failed our nation.”

(2) Trump is the most dangerous (yes, dangerous), vile and pathos driven man in America’s recent history. That an estimated 30% of the electorate have embraced Trump tells us just how far down the proverbial sewer we have swirled. If Trump is elected (God forbid!), our nation will collapse into so many levels of chaos we will not be able to reconstruct or redeem ourselves. Folks may not like the alternative (Hillary or Bernie, who knows?), but that alternative is our best and safest option at this moment in our nation’s history.

A nation, breaking

“Our political system is profoundly broken, and although many of us have understood that for years, this has been the year that fact became unavoidable.” That quote states the obvious. Our political “system” such as it is has been fracturing for decades. The pilots steering this ship of state have taken us until troubled seas, knowing precisely what they were doing all the time. We have become a nation of serfs, bowing to the wishes of a Legislative Branch, Executive Branch and, now sadly, a Judicial Branch all ruled, run and controlled by big money. I have been convinced for years that BOTH parties would love to find a way to remove the entire electorate from the election process. In lieu of that, they have rigged the system so that we really don’t matter all that much anyway.

The MEDIA has not been helpful, having collapsed into the sewer of false and bombastic bravado — no matter their political tilt. “News” is not news. It is filtered propaganda fed to each us through the corporate funnels that determine what to report. Whether it’s Megyn Kelly on the one side or Chuck Todd on the other, neither one is truly interested in truth of fact. Ratings, the ultimate broadcast selfie assessment, dictate what they can or will say. Most of us “out here” do not tilt totally right or totally left (although Trump has found a LOT of right-leaning tilters!). Yet, to listen to the media there are two distinct camps each out to claw its way to victory filtering their lies as truth. Our empire is dying on the vine. That fact has troubled me for years. I love this country. As a young Airman many years ago, I would have died for Old Glory without a question. Today that proud Airman is filled with shame, disgust and dismay. We are rotting at our core and there is no slave to cease that rot.

Response to article on Salon.com regarding Trump followers, 20 MAR 2016

Quote from this Salon article: “Widespread poverty throughout the heartland and Southern United States is a lamentable social problem, but even in the best economic conditions, and under the friendliest government policies, the career options for high school dropouts will forever remain few and poor. Rather than accepting some “personal responsibility” – a favorite conservative concept – for their low standard of living and destructive lifestyle, the wrongly romanticized white working class is flocking to a candidate who allows them to blame other people for their problems. “End quote.

It has been widely accepted for a few decades that the United States has been “dumbed down” with intention. Being an athlete in one type of sport or another is broadly respected. However, it seems that the “dumb” athlete is more highly regarded than the smart, better educated athlete. Somewhere along the way becoming educated was seen as someone’s effort to look better to others. How sad! Teachers and public school systems have been undermined since the 1980s, robbing them of the authority they had when I attended public school in the 1950s. (Yeah, I know that I am an old fart.) Public schools have come under increasing criticism for “teaching the tests”. Yet, that is not the fault of the schools but those self-defined academic “leaders” who simply change things for the sake of change that has resulted in fewer students actually being well educated.
The less educated one is, the more defensive they are. Sarah Palin, to note one, has publicly pandered to the under-educated redneck gun-toting citizen. It is a known fact the less educated are those who buy into the “macho” bluster, bombast and bravado put on by Trump. As much as I want to blame Trump’s followers, I blame the system; a system that became corrupted and contaminated just a few decades back. When one feels “the world is against them” as noted in the quoted passage above, they clamor with great enthusiasm and excitement to the Trumps of our world. Intellect and intelligence are scorned. It is easier to be a less-educated sloth forty to a hundred pounds overweight drinking national brand brews while holding onto your Glock, Smith & Wesson, Remington or Colt.

We the people have allowed the creation of these new Frankensteins. Regrettably and sadly, I doubt we have enough time in our nation to alter this course where the lies put forth by networks such as FOX simply feed those Frankensteins, making them an ever-increasing challenge. Say what one will about Trump, he knows full well how he is playing them and they simply are too stupid to figure that out.

Mother Earth is in Crisis, February 2016

Planet Earth is creaking and groaning from the abuse we humans are subjecting her to. This fact is a sweeping indictment against the human race.
Even if one does not embrace the tenets of Scripture where God instructs human-kind to be the careful custodian of our planet and to replenish what we take from her, you cannot deny that we are abusing Earth into oblivion. If there is such a thing as “universal, collective sin”, this is it.
The human penchant to destroy and to lay waste to the land, animals, plants and the universe as a whole is catapulting Earth into its own death. The Planet may survive, but the destruction that will take place will be irreversible.
We are fools at our own hands. Population growth is out of control. Rather than urging reduced procreation, organizations such as the Roman Catholic Church encourage ever more reproduction. That is in and of itself a sin against Earth and Nature be-cause of the overriding destruction it will impale upon Earth. Earth does not need more people. Earth needs fewer; fewer at every quarter of our Planet.
Humans deceive ourselves if we believe we can get away with this destructive carnage. That carnage occurs at so many levels, it is a challenge to keep track.
The United States is, perhaps, the worst enemy of Earth. We have turned eating from a necessity into an industry. McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Burger King and a host of other fast food and dine-in restaurants have turned eating into a national pastime. The waste generated from uneaten food that ends up in the disposer or the garbage dumpster is a direct violation of all things decent, dignified and responsible. Simply because we “can have it” does not give us license to abuse it.
In order to sate our gluttony, cattle, swine and fowl are kept in infection infested facilities that disgrace the very Face of God. No creature, large or small, should be or deserves to be corralled in such horrific, criminal conditions. One need only read The Talmud to embrace humankind’s required care of all animals.
Our deplorable disregard for the lives of animals slaughtered to sate our gluttonous appetites has resulted in cattle, swine and fowl being injected with antibiotics to counter the negative impacts of other antibiotics. Add to that the diseases these poor defenseless Creatures of God endure, and we the people have become the new Frankensteins.
Yet, sadly, our unbridled carnage against earth does not stop with livestock. Oh, no! We now treat vegetation and fruit with chemicals the future toxicity of which has not been determined. Companies such as Monsanto and Dow Chemical have introduced plant modification chemicals into the human, animal and insect life stream the results of which are already having toxic effects: the honeybees being one huge example. Monsanto’s GMOs are heralded as the “solution” to food production on Planet Earth that will lead to more abundance of food. Yet, our vegetable life is being manipulated with-out any idea whatever about the impact these chemicals are having on current life; worse, what impacts will be felt in future lives.
The imbalance we humans have brought to Mother Earth is beyond hideous and massively debilitating to our planet. The sweeping slaughter of dolphins by Asia, the reckless killing of wolves, fox and endangered species is in direct conflict with our duty to Earth and her creatures. Ritual killing of various species is beyond ungodly. Such acts are patently and unequivocally evil.
There is a wide difference between “thinning the herds” for the survival of the herd than killing for the sheer joy of killing. Mounting heads of deer, elk, boar, bear, lion and other species is not a statement about humankind’s prowess. It is the direct result of an inner evil among humans that defiles Earth and defies our custodial care for all things, big and small.
Add to this Earth crisis the coal-infused atmosphere of China; the raw feces flowing into the waterways of Brazil an d India; the ritual slaughter of dolphins in the Faroe Islands and Japan; the increasing presence of all things plastic in our oceans and tributaries; landfills holding waste products that will not decompose for centuries; and, unrestrained population growth because governments will not undertake limited procreation programs and policies: We see how Mother Earth is being raped to death: rape in the most violent, vicious carnal way imaginable.
Worse is how the United States government endorses and underwrites programs of cruelty and decimation toward wildlife and livestock. The imbalance in Nature is a direct result of programs that ignore harmony; a disharmonious pattern between humankind and nature that creates chaos at its most destructive. Of course, some herd thinning is natural in order to maintain a balance. Yet, many of those herds’ natural predators have been all but exterminated (wolves, for instance). The more humankind tries to “manage” Mother Nature, the more we create mismanagement and large imbalances.
Compounding Earth’s crisis is how “economy” encourages the abuse of rain forests, oceans and tributaries; and, endangered species. Eliminating large swaths of trees and natural growth corrupts the biosphere. Toxic runoff and raw sewerage flowing into natural waterways introduces toxins that kill marine life as well as human life. Trophy hunting of elephant and rhinos for their ivory and tigers for their skin is barbaric, inhumane and tragic.
Whether selling timber from destroyed rain forests, ignoring toxic waste into waterways or killing species for profit, the larger criminal in all this is the corporate world. When “free enterprise” encourages rather than discourages the pillage and rape of earth, those of us who see ourselves as caretakers are forced against a wall. Money and power are used either to silence us or to manipulate us into complacency where we simply cannot act or react as we know we should. That reality is exacerbated by governments small and large, including the United States Congress.
The entities and agencies that should be protecting our natural environments are instead on the dole with big money; big banks; big corporations. “Profit” is realized through huge political contributions, money from special interest groups and policies that work against the greater common good.
When the likes of the Koch Brothers and Exxon/Mobil can manipulate an entire society and culture to support their draconian, unethical and destructive programs, the citizenry suffers. Whether it is poverty in Calcutta, coal smoke in China or killings by guns on the streets of Chicago, a toxic imbalance is supported by the selfish, egocentric Earth marauders who seek only self-gratification. They collectively treat Earth as theirs to destroy; to hell with the rest of us.
When the patriarchs from Rome to St. Petersburg put more energy into maters such as gay marriage and less into the serious imbalance created by excessive, abusive procreation, one sees how religious patriarchs live and thrive in a myopic monolithic bubble that is destructive in and of itself. It is easier to divert attention away from the real issues, thereby spawning ill-fated destruction worldwide.
If Earth’s caretakers and caregivers are to win the game, one that will test the very mettle of our individual and collective souls, then we must band together as an immovable force. There is strength in numbers and we must swell those numbers to such a formidable force that our opponents quake in their boots and shoes. Only when we show we mean business and are not simply talking the talk will the wider world stand up and take notice. The world is at its most critical crossroad in its history. Every organization and every human who truly cares must agree to form one, singular powerful voice. We must make push back a living hell for our opponents, because it is pain-fully clear they will oppose any and all consensus. A powerful coalition will surpass any results that might be attained by fractions thereof.
Some say, “Winning isn’t everything”. I say, “Winning is the only thing.” When it comes to Earth survival, we cannot afford to lose; to fail. We must marshal the forces of supreme strength and power to defeat and conquer the enemies of Mother Earth. Compromise may be out of the question, given the stakes at hand.

Militia Tyranny against Our Land

Dear Mr. Heim:

You have generously contributed nearly one and one-half pages of today’s Sunday Washington Post to the illegal taking of public land by the Bundy militia.

The Bundy militia has violated several rules of law without penalty, essentially holding the locals and the nation hostage. Had this illegal staging taken place by blacks, browns or Native Americans this would have been over weeks ago with a substantial body count among the marauders. The disparate application of law and the enforcement of that law stares us squarely in the face.

The Bundy militia is a band of marauding terrorists exercising their tyranny against the nation state. This matter could be dealt with swiftly by way of sending in Special Forces with a few Apache gunships. Instead of enforcing the law, these bandits are permitted to increase their encroachment all the while thumbing their noses at our country. In simpler times, they merely would have been hanged for all to see the results of their tyranny.

Response to Brian Edwards, Salon.com, 10 JAN 2016.

Edwards quote: “This militia of the marginal used the greatest creation of the American century to bring about its downfall—the Internet. Can we still harness the positive attitude of optimism, hope and ingenuity that represents the best of the previous era and restart a new relationship to the world based on respect, trust, and partnership?” End quote.

The less educated bully class have become the marshals of the new century. The disaffected have created a whole new class of disaffected: Those who truly care but have simply walked away because they see the system as rigged, dishonest, unscrupulous and even perilous to the average citizen. Trump’s disaffected are less educated, mostly white men who have never known self-actualization or self-realization; and, somehow that is the fault of all of society instead of their own fault.

For three decades I have watched as the American underbelly has risen to the top. It has been an ugly thing to watch, but with people like O’Reilly, Limbaugh, Ailes, Murdoch, Hannity and others of their cloth we have seen the zenith of intellect and basic intelligence collapse in a mire of human waste. The resident evil that has thrived at the core of this nation, suppressed for a very long time, finally witnessed its release from its prison of ignorance and deception through the vestiges of Trump, Cruz, Hukckabee and a host of others who dare to claim fealty to our nation and our Constitution all the while serving as a monstrous toxin on wider society. We have been standing at this abyss, teetering for some time. I believe our nation has seen her best of her best days, and we are about to tumble as few might believe. Trump & Co. will coax us to the edge and watch gleefully as we fall. I thank God I am now old enough to say that I have lived the very best years of our once great nation. I pray to Almighty God I am dead before her last gasp is heard.