We do peace We also have a dream
WHAT DO I LEARN?
Knowledge will forever govern ignorance; and a people who mean to be their own governors must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives. - James Madison
Education A plan
Graduation of Grandson Erich
First learn the meaning of what you say, and then speak.
Do I learn to live or live to learn?
"There are two ways to slide easily through life: to believe everything or to doubt everything; both ways save us from thinking." Alfred Korzybski
"Three passion have governed my life: The longings for love and peace, the search for knowledge, and unbearable pity of the suffering of human kind." Bertrand Russel and myself
Want to start a "PeaceJam"? Change starts here.
Always remember: if you cover news, start uncover with an open mind.
Education - Inspiration - Action
The Lure of Absolutism. Are you prepared?
By Robert G. Lee who is a professor specializing in the sociology of natural resources and former chair, Division of Forest Resource management, College of Forest Resources, University of Washington, Seattle. This is adapted from his address to graduating forestry students in 1989.
Written in Journal of Forestry, December 1989 Edition
Your generation is likely to experience more social, political, economic, and environmental turbulence than any in history. These challenges must be met by emotional maturity, mental preparation, sound moral judgment, and courage. With these qualities, you can make a difference ! And you can have fun seeking the best life has to offer. Are you adequately prepared? many of you are, but not for the reasons you may think.
The test of your personal character will hinge on how you respond to uncertainty about the future. As faculty, we have all too frequently taught you to meet uncertainty by seeking absolutes: fundamental principles, enduring truths, and ideals of perfection revealed in grand theory. The "isms" of academic doctrine haunt clear reasoning and distort personal judgment. You know the names of these ghosts of the mind as well as I: scientism, capitalism, socialism, professionalism, and the often least recognizable, environmentalism.
Harvard's Spanish philosopher George Santayana clearly recognized the corrosive effects of undisciplined academic idealism in America when he remarked, "Moral absolutism is the shadow of moral integrity." I will speak briefly about each of the five ism - about the blind dedication to abstract principles of perfection and purity contained in each. My purpose is to encourage you to think critically so that you may become freer and more creative in facing future challenges.
Scientism is a magical idea that natural science is omniscient and omnipotent. This doctrine asserts that the only route to truth and human happiness is the scientific method. Artistic expression, religious experience, practical experience and love, among other ways knowing, are discredited as primitive and unreliable. How many of you struggled with a conflict between your personal beliefs and scientific claims about nature, love, or beauty? Is the dance of a butterfly in a mountain meadow just so many molecules in motion? Is the trusting smile of a joyful child simply a conditioned response? Most of you are already wise enough to have rejected the seductive graces of scientism. You seek life, and laugh at the suggestion that you should base all your personal choices on abstract scientific principles. Science has its place, but it is only one way of discovering truths.
Capitalism is a powerful idea that has much to improve the material condition of human life. It is by far the most effective and efficient economic system the world has known. You have learned capitalist economic principles. But have you learned enough about the limits within which capitalism performed best? As with all doctrines, capitalism recognizes no limits. Its advocates argue for extension of its principles to all aspects of producing and distributing goods - even all aspects of decision making. Yet societies continuously place moral limits on it application and develop rules to make it work better. Laws have been adopted to govern property, contracts, labor, and environmental quality - including protection of endangered species. Since you seek life, you have learned that unlimited extension of capitalist principles will not yield a perfect world. As Robert Bellah cautioned, When economics is the main model for our common life, we are more and more tempted to put ourselves in the hands of manager and expert. If society is shattered into as many special interests as there are individuals, then as Toqueville foresaw, there is only the schoolmaster state left to take care of us and keep us from one another's throats. Paradoxically, capitalism without the limits of morality and law will lead us to the same sort of absolutist government as socialism.
Socialism is a political doctrine advocating governmental ownership of the means of producing and distributing goods. It is based on the utopian vision of a perfect society in which greed, competition, and aggressiveness are overcome by the expansion of scientific knowledge. Hence its great appeal to scientist intellectuals. This is a system for angels, not for the everyday error-prone people we actually are. You seek life, and are wise enough to reject the dreams of social engineers. You have company, since millions of people around the world are questioning state ownership and regulation in favor of a greater role for private property and individual initiative.
Professionalism has often been urged upon you. But what is it? It is often the sense of privileged position that comes with specialized knowledge and long, intensive academic preparation. The idea that "foresters know best" draws its sustenance from scientism; selected scientific facts and technical rationality tell us what we should do. Hence forester often find themselves in conflict with public interest groups whose ideas about what should be done stem from other scientific authorities, esthetics, personal experience, or love for undisturbed nature. You seek life, and know that foresters must listen to both the land and a wide variety of people in order to serve paying clients and society at large.
Environmentalism is perhaps the most insidious doctrine taught. Unlike the other isms, it is protected from serious questioning by an aura of righteousness and purity. Fear of global ecological change feeds blind adherence to this doctrine. As a participant in the interagency review of the Yellowstone fires of 1988, I was dismayed by widespread acceptance of the principle that nature knows best; large wildfires are good if ignited by lightning and bad if ignited by humans - even through the effects may be the same. The absurdity of this doctrine is revealed by extending it to smallpox, other diseases, or the natural disasters that create so much human suffering. Are these events good because they are "natural"? You seek life, and know that nature doesn't always know best. You are the future caretakers of the earth; you will inherit responsibility for making wise management decisions. Your greatest challenge will be those who avoid the hard choices of life by erecting "nature" as their god.
How are you to live in this uncertain world? How are you to avoid the lure of absolutism? All I can do is extend the wisdom of past thinkers by calling upon well-tested traditions: - Have courage to think independently. - Cultivate your mind by reading. ( Watch very little television; it is one of the most ubiquitous forms of pollution. ) - You cannot live by bread alone; your need for a larger meaning in life will, unavoidably, be filled by some form of absolutism if not by personal belief and commitment. - Cultivate doubt and challenge you personal beliefs; faith is strengthened by serious questioning. - Celebrate ambiguity; you will find fullness of life in literature, poetry, art, music, nature, religion, and love. Robert G. Lee, Professor Emeritus, Forest Resources 2010 University of Washington.
Peace one dayprovide education resources to every school
Robert G. Lee gave an excellent account of understanding and commitment to make a difference for young people to get started in a world that gets smaller every day. After leaving Fascism, Nationalism and Communism somewhat behind we have to deal at the start of the 21st Century with globalism. Are we prepared, is again the key question in a fast moving communication age.
Arthur S. Miller, a retired constitutional law professor who taught at the George Washington University, was chief consultant to the Senate Watergate Committee. His article about "Constitutionalzing" the corporate giants should make us think what role public citizen start playing today and in the future.
"Constitutionalizing" the Corporate Giants
To the founding fathers, GM, GE and AT&T would have been no more than letters in the alphabet. Although visionary, the framer of the Constitution could not foresee all of the great changes the future would bring. Remember, they found this country when electricity had yet to be harnessed, long before the industrial revolution and the post-World WarII technological revolution. No wonder, then, that in the Constitution, the role of big business is not delineated. This has forced courts to fashion a body of law about corporations on a case-by-case basis. The results would likely displeased the founding fathers. Super corporations today occupy a place in society comparable in importance and influence to the Holy Roman Church in medieval Europe. In effect, super corporations have become private governments, social political organizations at odd with democratic theory and vision. They overshadow in economic importance most states and many nations. In everything except name and constitutional theory, a super corporation is a government. It often uses private judiciaries (arbitrators), has extensive intelligence services (even for industrial espionage) and private "armies" (security forces). With enormous assets, it wields immense economic, therefore, political, power similar to and sometimes dwarfing that of public government. The time has come to place limits - both positive and negative - on corporations' power, negative in the sense of limiting arbitrary power, positive in the sense of devising affirmative societal duties for the firms. One way to balance corporate duties with constitutional rights is to extend civil liberties to the work place. No one should have to check his constitutional rights - such as freedom of speech, due process and privacy - when entering a factory or office. For example an executive protected by a "corporate Bill of Rights" could not be disciplined because he spoke critically against what he thought were the company's too superficial efforts to comply with pollution laws. His comments would be protected by freedom of speech. He would have the right to privacy, thus protecting his desk and files from searches when he is absent. No doubt there would be strenuous opposition to a corporate Bill of Rights, as there was to collective bargaining a few decades ago. But a Bill of Rights would help preserve enterprise; institutional loyalties would be strengthened. Employee morale would improve and, with it productivity. In addition, corporations should be required to file "social impact statements" similar to environmental impact statements. Officers of these "private governments" would then have to make the type of evaluations routinely made by public officials. The societal and business environment in which super corporations have flourished developed within the constitutional framework set forth by the founding fathers. It is not unfair to require the business giants to acknowledge the debt owed to the Constitution by imposing duties on them commensurate with their rights and privileges. Arthur S. Miller
Now, we have to realize that the corporate giants are here to stay and common sense people need to understand that big business with their volume orientation has through lobbing influenced government ability to work for the common good of their citizens. VOICE recognizes a stalemate and is trying to develop a non-partisan dialog among concerned taxpayers about globalism and consumerism. Both "ism" definitely start setting new trends and will have great consequences in the near future when the word "over-population" pre-occupies our minds and then fall for new rhetoric and being lured into Absolutism.
1507, One of the first map of the world - shorlty after the discovery of America - Is not 502 years of violent civilization enough? Can we get the violence out of our heads?
It is impossible for man to learn what he thinks he already knows. Epictetus AD 55 - AD 135
Constitutionalism - the idea of free people ordaining their own form of government and limiting it by a written document of their own devising. It is proper we should understand what I deem the essential principles of our government: Equal and exact justice to all men, of whatever state or persuasion, religious or political; peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations, entangling alliances with none; the support of the state governments in all their rights, as the most competent administrations for our domestic concerns and the surest bulwarks against anti-republican tendencies; the preservation of the general government in its whole constitutional vigor, as the sheet anchor of our peace at home and safety abroad; a jealous care of the right of election by the people...
About Education - What does it mean to be educated and successful in today's world? Do you consider yourself educated? Are you on the way to success? The fact that you read this far shows that you are part of a select group for real success. Perhaps you did not know that nearly one billion human beings today cannot read or comprehend this or any other written sentence. And many more have barley mastered the basic skills of reading and writing. They are lacking real potential for success in this present life. Does this mean that these people are inferior by nature? Absolutely not ! What it does mean is that people who cannot, or have trouble, reading and writing, are at a distinct disadvantage. The ability to communicate in written form is an essential key to success and to true education. The fact that so many are unable to read points to a major flaw in this world's educational systems. But it's only one symptom of a major crisis - a crisis largely ignored worldwide - in modern education.
Today's Situation - The 20th Century has experienced a virtual knowledge explosion. Within the span of a single human generation, men and women have gone from horse and buggy transportation to interplanetary exploration. Communication cables line the ocean floor; microchips put vast computer technology at the fingertips of the common man; and complex probes from both the U.S. and the Soviet Union plunge deep into the solar system. But, at the same time, starvation and squalor grip vast areas of the earth. Through sophisticated television networks, people in the developed countries can watch contemporary continuing crises in Africa, Southeast Asia, Latin America, the Persian Gulf and many other areas.
But why this contrast between man's scientific achievements and his moral and social failures? There must be a cause for every effect. And the cause is wrong, misguided education ! When is education, education? And when is education faulty and erroneous indoctrination? Unfortunately, the word education has lost its meaning in today's world. You hear of "receiving an education," or the place where one "gets" an education. Neither definition is true. Richard Franco Goldman in an address at the Peabody Institute in Baltimore, Md., said: "It is certainly not possible to mass-produce educated men and women. They have to produce themselves, and this is a concept highly unpopular in our times. Education is not something that one receives. One has to desire it, and work for it. By Michael A. Snyder
Now you may understand where VOICE gets his motivation from to communicate worldwide for a peaceful coexistence. "Hands around the Globe " educational effort can only be successful when educated people have a desire to do so. Become an "International Volunteer" and work with us for the common good and give others the strength of our conviction as a partner of the 21st Century voice-consensus movement
How important is knowledge?
Every day, we are confronted with controversies, allegations, news reports - The by-products of current events and the struggle to understand them. The media floods us with information, analyses, and interpretations. How can we make sense of this torrent of information? How will these current events affect us as individuals? What can we do about them?
If we are to shape our own lives, we must decide what can be done about things we control. We can better react to the things we cannot control by understanding more about why they occur.
It started with propaganda on radio and ended up with pss.t. the enemy is listening! - But, who is the enemy of "We the People"?
Thanks to today's communication systems we have more opportunities to get a better understanding of the human struggle throughout the centuries. While we are the product of a past generation we must acknowledge mans history and make the connection between previous event and today, because only then we can make a difference in one form or another for a better tomorrow.
With the wealth of knowledge and information available it is very important to develop an overview of the past and present. The Audio Classic Series elevates you to an understanding of what the human race is all about, because you learn about relationship between different subjects and events. With this overview knowledge you can intelligently discuss the problems of today and be a positive force and roll model for our children. E pluribus Unum. I am sold on the importance of these products.
The Giants of Political Thought Narration is by Greg Deitschmann
Government and politics have a daily influence on our lives. The authority and responsibilities given to government affect not only our social customs but our prosperity and our freedom. These cassettes present the most important ideas in political history.
(Paine-Jefferson-Thoreau-William Lloyd Garrison-Adam Smith- J.S. Mill - Wollstonecraft-Machiavelli - Boetie - Marx & Engels - Rousseau-Burke- Hamilton- Madison and Jay- Hobbes- Locke-Tocqueville)
The United States Constitution Narration is by Walter Cronkite
These cassettes take you back to Philadelphia in 1787 - to four months filled with back-room deals, political scheming and fierce debates. You'll feel the full impact of conflicts and passions that nearly tore apart the Philadelphia Convention, the ratification process, and the infant American Nation. Walter Cronkite brings The Constitution and it's history to life. His skillful narration is combined with the voice characterizations for dozens of important historical figures. You'll understand The Constitution in a way you've never known before. The four installments include: The Constitutional Convention at Philadelphia - The Ratification Debates - The Text of the U.S. Constitution - The Bill of Rights and Additional Amendments.
The Great Economic Thinkers Narrated by Louis Rukeyser
From classical economics to monetarism and supply -side ideas, these presentations express the view of history's most important economists. Particular emphasis is placed on explaining each thinker's attitude toward capitalism. (The Classical Economists - Karl Marx: das Kapital - Alfred Marshall & Neoclassicism - Early Austrian Economics - Walras: Markets in Equilibrium - Institutionalism - Welfare Capitalism Begin - The Chicago School - The Free Market Process - Schumpeter and Dynamic Economic Change - The Keynesian Revolution - The Keynesian Heritage - Monetarism and Supply Side Economics.
The United States at War Narrated by George C. Scott
Not simply a presentation of military history, these cassettes are an overview of the political, economic, and social forces that erupted in military conflict. They describe the historical context for each of the major U.S. wars, and how a military conflict resolved (or failed to resolve) the forces that caused a war. Although the series concentrates on America, its scope is much broader. Foreign affairs and European history will be included to provide necessary perspective. Nine major events are presented: The American Revolution (Part 1 & 2) - The War of 1812 - The Mexican War - The Civil War (Part 1 & 2 - The Spanish American War - World War I - World War II (Part 1 & 2) The Korean War - The Vietnam War.
The Giants of Philosophy Narrated by Charlton Heston
These cassettes describe and explain the views of the most influential philosophers in history. Assuming no prior knowledge of the listener, each pair of cassettes present the concerns, questions, interests, and overall world view of a great philosopher. A special emphasis is placed on making each idea both clear and relevant to modern listeners, to gain a new arsenal of insights to help us live better lives. The Giants of Philosophy will include the following thinkers: Plato - Aristotle - St.Augustine - St Thomas Aquinas - Spinoza - Hume - Kant - Hegel - Schopenhauer - Kiekegaard - Nietzsche - Dewey - Sartre.
2oth Century European Philosophy narrated by Lynn Redgrave
Twentieth-century European philosophy has grown out of two movements:existentialism (emphasizing the everyday turmoil of living) and phenomenology (seeking the essential, indispensable core of things grasped by pure consciousness). These movements highlight consciousness, meaning,freedom, and body; later philosophrs have also stressed language, discourse, and power. Major figures in "continental philosophy" are: Edmund Husserl (1859-1939) Martin Heidegge (1889-1976) Jean Paul Sartre(1905- 1980) Jacques Derrida (1930-) Michel Foucault (1926-1984) Emmanuel Levinas (1905/6-1995)
Peace of mind starts with guaranteed income - not unemployment
The World's Political Hot Spots Narrated by Harry Reasoner and Peter Hackes
These cassettes explain the basis of conflicts in some of the world's most politically sensitive areas. Many of these regions are in today's headlines, and tensions recently have become violent in virtually all of them. Each presentation covers 3.5, even 10 centuries of background... revealing how and why today's problems occur. (The Middle East - South Africa - Central America - Germany - Ireland - Cuba - The Philippines - Soviet Union - Mexico - Persian Gulf States - India & Pakistan - Ethiopia & East Africa - Poland & The Eastern Bloc - Nigeria & West Africa - The Mediterranean Basin - Chile & Argentina - Colombia & Its Satellite Countries - The Golden Triangle - China.)
Few things are more influential or long lasting than the ideas of history's great thinkers. In politics, economics, philosophy - even wars - the same kinds of problems and issues seem to recur throughout history.
I remember this team what created a stirr in the 1960s. For 30 years it was dangeriously serious stuff as this cartoon shows?
Interested in making contact with smart people?
Big Think is a global forum connecting people and ideas. It may be a cliche to say that knowledge is power, but this doesn't make the statement any less true. Everybody knows that there are only 24 hours in a day, that you are bombarded with information and that the bombardment will only escalate.
When genetic humans are extreme related to eachother, then why the hostility?
Is the idea of world peace a first step to understand the Perilious Ethics of Biotechnology?
Are people listen to Stephen Hawkings warning before we have to abandon earth or face extinction?
If we enter an age where our genetic information becomes a feature of everyday life, should we rather be open minded instead getting fearful of the unknown?
How many people still remember that before the 1960's most people were not equal because of their race and color?
Do we believe in equal rights and civil rights natural or do we feel guilty about the people who did not have them and fight for them? Can everybody agree that this is an educational question?
When most people want their children to prosper, then why should governments tell them how to live their lifes? Good question, another reason to know how government works?
How do we expect people of poor countries to develop, if genoicide and violence continues, industrial nations abuse their labor and political support unstable regimes?
An overview - taken from American History
American Financial Disaster
Who got us into this mess? Alexander Hamilton, America's first Treasurer secretary, pushes for the establishment of a central bank to regulate the nation's money supply. The bank was welcomed by Northern merchants but viewed as a threat to states rights by Thomas Jefferson and other Southerners.
1791 First Bank of the United States receives 20-year charter.
1792 Wall Street's First Crash: Treasurer pumps money into the market and New York recovers.
1816 Catastrophic problems funding War of 1812 prompts President James Madison to back creation of Second Bank of the United States.
1819 Nationwide bank panic and depression caused by abrupt decline in international trade.
1836 President Andrew Jackson kills the Second Bank. No unified currency, half the banks founded in the 1830s failed by 1845.
1837 Panic caused by rampant speculation lead to depression.
1857 Panic caused by a life insurance firm leads to depression that last until the Civil War.
1862 President Abraham Lincoln issues $ 400 Million in greenbacks to pay troops.
1863 National Banking Act and 1864 establish a federal system for chartering banks.
1873 U.S. goes off silver standard. Panic leads to 101 bank failures and six years depression.
1886 Two-third of money supply is called in by banks and bank loans are suspended.
1893 panic caused by shaky railroad financing and a run on gold leads to failure of more than 50 banks and a major depression.
1907 Panic. A national run on banks is contained when J.P. Morgan organizes consortium of New York financiers to act like a central bank and shore up system.
1913 Federal Reserve Act creates 12 regional banks and the Federal Reserve Board. Federal Reserve notes replace national bank notes.
1929 Stock market crash: 659 of 24,633 banks nationwide fail.
1930 nationwide panic results in 1,350 bank failures.
1931 Two nationwide panics result in 2,293 bank failures.
1932 Nationwide panic results in 1,453 failures.
1933 President Franklin D. Roosevelt closes banks until the Office of Controller of Currency clears them or forces their liquidation. 4,000 banks fail.
1951 Accord between Treasury and Federal Reserve frees the Fed from obligation to peg interest rate to government debt.
1980 Deregulation and Monetary Control Act forces all banks to abide by Federal Reserve's rules; allows banks to merge; allows saving and loans to offer checking accounts.
1982 Depository Institutions Act: Saving and loans allowed to make risky commercial loans and real estate investments.
1980 - 1985 More than 500 savings and loans close when they can't compete with money market funds from investment banks.
1986 - 1995 half of 3,234 savings and loans close, leaving federal insurers with $ 160 billion in bad loans.
1987 Stock market crash: Quick action by fed limits financial fallout.
1998 Congress allows interstate banking; banks start consolidations.
2008 Panic and market crash triggered by suprime mortgage crisis.
2009 What is next? What are we learning? In 1913 a father gave one son $ 20, another son $ 20 in gold coins (1 ounce) today the face value of the first son's gift is still $ 20 .... while the gold coins could be traded for $ 874,20
2010 Who said: "The fnance crisis is over"?
Using the Consumer Price Index and starting with $ 1 in 1913, the buying power of the dollar falls to 5 cent in 2008.
The final cost of putting a man on the moon in 1969 was between $ 20 - $ 25 billion ....today it would be $ 390 billion. Are these the effects of inflation?
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