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Zippy the Pinhead is the protagonist of Zippy, an American comic strip created in 1971 by Bill Griffith.

Zippy is distinctive not so much for his microcephalic skull shape, or for any identifiable form of brain damage, but for his enthusiasm for philosophical non sequiturs (“All life is a blur of Republicans and meat!”), verbal free association, and the pursuit of popular culture ephemera.

The strip is unique among syndicated multi-panel dailies for its characteristics of literary nonsense, a near-absence of either straightforward gags or continuous narrative, and for its unusually intricate artwork. I don’t understand it at all, but I like Fatboy Slim’s song, the title of which is Zippy’s most famous catchphrase.


Groove of the Day

Listen to Fatboy Slim performing “Are We Having Fun Yet?”


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 by Hat Bailey

Originally, the word Mammon came from the ancient Chaldeans (remember Ur of the Chaldees where Abraham came from?) and actually has its roots in the word ‘confidence.’ I expect this may have reference to having confidence in something that appear legit and reliable, but may not be. Like the term “confidence game” or “confidence man.”

At its most basic level, the word meant ‘riches’ or ‘wealth,’ but it connoted an idea of personified wealth gained with avarice. It often took on a deified nature. This was especially true in the Middle Ages where Mammon was depicted most commonly as a kind of demon or demi-god.

Now I want to be completely clear, I do not intend that anything I say here is meant to imply that money itself is evil, or that it is bad or wrong to be wealthy. Money, like a crutch, is neither evil or holy. It can be helpful by temporarily substituting for real value as crutches do for a broken leg. I define that real value in our case as love of God, or if you prefer, all that is real and true, as well as our fellow man with whom we share it. Perhaps one day we will reach the point at which we are ready to grow up and learn what real wealth is. There is evidence that God, or the Intelligence which created us, is loving and intends us each to be truly wealthy, but this is not strips of paper or large bank account balances.

I have absolutely no envy or resentment of those who are very wealthy in the world’s terms. I don’t believe that because someone has earned millions that therefore there is less for me, or that I therefore have less opportunity to be wealthy. In fact the opposite is most likely true. Those who have earned it through hard intelligent work that I haven’t been willing to perform for it, those who have added value to our world, such persons deserve to be the ones to have it and take full stewardship over it. They don’t deserve to be robbed legally or otherwise of the fruits of what they have produced. Such material wealth is a heavy responsibility, one that I would be very reluctant to take on myself.

Those who get it through criminal acts, clever manipulations, banking scams, lies and exploitations of others are not people to be envied. We should be ashamed of ourselves for allowing ourselves to be so gulled, and pity these people, not envy them. These people are pathetic empty shells in most cases, and will discover eventually that the empty void within themselves will never be filled by any amount of money, and no amount of worldly power will ever make them feel truly secure.

Today we live in a world where we have the advantage of seeing just what results from this love of money, or greed, when pursued to an extreme degree. Few are aware of just how many wars, plagues, enslavements of peoples and mass starvation, as well as the destruction of our supporting earthly eco-systems are owed largely to this very cause. Not satisfied with relatively honest money, the greedy further corrupt it in their favor by using it to suborn public leaders and pass laws taking away any intrinsic backing for what is used for money so it can be more easily manipulated in their favor. The substitution for love of God and fellow man is further substituted with worthless paper. This eventually destroys its value, crashes the economy of nations, and results in unbelievable suffering, war and starvation.

Bankster ConspiratorThe conspiring cabal that created the Federal Reserve managed to take complete control of the creation and manipulation of what we use in this nation today as money. Similar central banking cartels owned by the same self-styled elites control similar scams in almost every other nation of the world today. The few holdouts, mostly in the Middle East—such as Libya, Iraq and Syria—due to their religious beliefs regarding usury, have, or are being subdued and supplied with more compliant ruling regimes.

Thomas Jefferson prophetically said: “If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around them will deprive the people of all property until their children wake up homeless on the continent their Fathers conquered…I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies… The issuing power should be taken from the banks and restored to the people, to whom it properly belongs.”

Kennedy attempted to do an end-run around this cartel by executive order 1110 authorizing the Treasury to issue silver certificates backed by real precious metal in competition with the unbacked FRNs. Like Lincoln who attempted to issue greenbacks to pay the debts of the Civil War without borrowing the money at interest from the international bankers headquartered in London, he also lost his life to assassins and as the successor to Lincoln, his whole project was quickly dropped by LBJ. More recently, Bernard von Nothaus was prosecuted, jailed, and his life and business were destroyed because he was producing a private currency, the “Liberty Dollar,” backed by real silver. He had not harmed or defrauded anyone(actually the so-called “government” people were the criminals, since they stole all the silver coins and backing he had, and thus made it impossible for Bernard to honor many outstanding orders from customers who were waiting for their coins or certificates).

Today the value of our money has sunk to such a degree that the Treasury spends two cents to make a penny out of cheap base metal, and ten cents to make a nickel which once had about the same value as the metal in it. A real copper penny had a penny’s worth of copper, and would originally buy about what a dollar would today. How much lower is today’s dollar value? In 1913 you could buy as much with a dollar as you can with $23.63 in 2014.

Although it only costs the Treasury Department a few cents to print a hundred dollar bill, the public is expected to pay back that hundred dollar face value to the Federal Reserve banksters who created it out of nothing and “loaned” it to the nation. To repay it though, you must actually work to earn that hundred with real productive thought and labor, and then repay it with interest. Since all such money is loaned into circulation, where you might ask will this interest come from? It of course will also be loaned into existence with interest. thus leading to the spiraling and inescapable debt we see today. Now the dollar stands on the brink of a crash to total worthlessness as it becomes revealed for what it really is.

Truth/Reality/God never fails, but the false god of money has failed uncountable times over the centuries. As Ecclesiastes says, “..there is nothing new under the sun.”

According to the King James Version of Genesis 47:15: “And when money failed in the land of Egypt, and in the land of Canaan, all the Egyptians came unto Joseph, and said, Give us bread: for why should we die in thy presence? for the money faileth.”

Lovers of money often give lip service to higher principles, but it becomes obvious where their hearts really are. Long ago there were some who felt alienated and separate from others as all humans do to some degree. They felt vulnerable and looked for a way to get control over others to make themselves feel more secure in a frightening world. In a more enlightened society people would rely upon building relationships of trust with each other, and with Truth, to gain security.

Then through free will exchanges they would come to find abundance of every good thing. The invention of money made it not so necessary to build such relationships. You could remain isolated and separate from others and yet still use money to get what you wanted. And through the clever manipulation of this money technology you could gain a huge material advantage over others who weren’t quite so clever.

For these people money became in a sense their god, and something for which they felt an insatiable need. There was the false promise that it might fill the empty void within their hearts that only God can truly fill, and they always thought that just a little more money and control would do the trick. One of the sad things about the affliction of which we are speaking is that greed can never be truly satisfied, which is quite characteristic of the lower levels of the human mind.

Ecclesiastes 5:10: “Whoever loves money never has enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with their income.” This too is meaningless.

One of the sad things about the love of money is the corruption of justice we have seen in this country where the only “justice” to be had is for those who are rich and powerful. Again, this is nothing new.

1 Samuel 8:2-3:  “Now the name of his firstborn was Joel, and the name of his second, Abijah; they were judging in Beersheba.  His sons, however, did not walk in his ways, but turned aside after dishonest gain and took bribes and perverted justice.”

Deuteronomy 16:19: “Do not pervert justice or show partiality. Do not accept a bribe, for a bribe blinds the eyes of the wise and twists the words of the innocent.”

Exodus 23:8: “Do not accept a bribe, for a bribe blinds those who see and twists the words of the innocent.”

In Chapter 14 of Proverbs, we are given solid advice. It says, “The naive believe everything…but a wise man looks well into a matter.”

madoff-prison-letter-CNBCBernie Madoff was in the news because many foolish people followed their love of money into his scam. And this advice generally is something that most in America would do well to heed, considering the fact that our mass media is owned by six big corporations run by those very men who have the love of money to an extreme degree. These are the ones who promote and cover up the evils of such corporations as Monsanto, Halliburton, Big Pharma, and the whole military-industrial complex.

Few question the agenda behind those who produce our news and their real motives for including or neglecting the news that is really important.

In the ancient Greek language, there were many words for love, and it doesn’t translate easily into what we think of as “love” today. The specific term used here is philargyria [phil-r-gear-ee-a], which means greed for wealth or material gain. The bottom line is that greed—an extreme, disproportionate love for money and wealth—is unquestionably the root of all kinds of evil.

Just look how the love of money and greed nearly destroyed the entire US financial system through a rolling series of bursting bubbles.

Greed led ordinary people to take enormous risks… for bigger and bigger gains… even though the market fundamentals were crumbling right underneath them. Does anyone remember and the talking sock-puppet mascot? They used their sock puppet in multimillion-dollar Super Bowl ads and as a balloon in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade. The sock puppet became an instant Internet rock star! But what you probably don’t remember is that the company raised $82.5 million in their high-profile initial public offering from Wall Street banks, pension funds, and people just like you—only to collapse nine months later

Of course, it’s easy to point fingers at the masses who were sucked in by the Wall Street greed machine. But frankly, the love of money is an insidious foe, and it can take down anyone at any time if they aren’t careful… even the wisest and most successful people. It can be seductive, yet there is a part of us that longs to do what is good, helpful, wise and a blessing to all with whom we feel a connection. The sick perverted souls have so lost that sense of connection that there is no compassion, no wisdom and no motivation other than profit. Corporations are the epitome of this conscienceless organism that cares for nothing but the bottom line. Profit is to be pursued at all costs, even to the destruction of the very eco-system upon which we all rely for life itself.

There is worry in some circles that someday, machine intelligence, or AI as it is called. They believe that computers may someday supplant human life with a cold inhuman intelligence that cares nothing for the suffering or welfare of living organic beings. Yet aren’t corporations already something like this? Companies like Monsanto conceal knowledge of the cancer causing factor of glyphosate they have known about for years in one of their most profitable products, the weedkiller Roundup? Didn’t the tobacco giants also conceal the same sort of thing in their tobacco products? Haven’t big pharmaceutical giants paid millions in fines because they knew some of their products that were very profitable were also dangerous and were seriously harming or killing people?

I would submit that we already are suffering from allowing such artificial persons to be empowered to use their money and influence to bribe our congress critters to make laws that favor their profit driven agenda?

One of the biggest issues of the war of 1776 was taxation without representation. Do you feel represented by the congress we have today? I don’t, and with good reason. The secretive TPA treaty being kept from public eyes, which will further empower these trans-national corporations is being fast tracked, although it will further erode your choices/rights and burden the American people with higher costs and fewer jobs. Human avarice is being tested to the limits.

TPA passed with a mere 219-211 vote with only 218 needed to pass. The real shocker comes from the amount of money each Representative received for a yes vote. In total, $197,869,145 was given to Representatives for a yes vote whereas $23,065,231 was given in opposition.

  • John Boehner (R-OH) received $5.3 million for a “yea” vote and was the highest paid legislator.
  • Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) received $2.4 million for his “yea” vote.
  • Paul Ryan (R-WI) received $2.4 million for a “yea” vote and came in at the third highest paid legislator.
  • Pat Tiberi (R-OH) follows Paul Ryan, coming in the fourth spot having received $1.6 million for his “yea” vote.

nascar uniform 1Some have suggested it would be helpful if legislators had patches like NASCAR drivers showing who their big-money sponsors are. Congressional approval ratings are unsurprisingly in the single-digits, yet people will undoubtedly continue to participate in the voting charade that gives them an excuse to think they have some control, when it is the money that is all that matters to these people.

I could go on about the other big money powered monopolies enforced by these so called “governments” such as the Healthcare/Big Pharma monopolies, the military-industrial complex monopolies, the prison-industrial monopolies, the education indoctrination monopolies, and so many others all powered by human lust for money and power.

A true change in paradigm is indicated. A return to something simpler will undoubtedly be necessary for awhile after the coming collapse. Something that removes the powerful levers of the stick and the carrot that have been monopolized by a few oligarchs, who other than these clever manipulations have little to offer of real worth, and would stand exposed as what they really are if deprived of the money and corporations they call “governments.” Change is coming, and only those with eyes to see and something of real value to offer will come out of it relatively unscathed. Be prepared for it.


Hat Bailey is the eldest in a family of nine kids raised in the ’60s in Bakersfield CA, and on the Jameson cattle ranch in the Tehachapi Mountains east of there. He served a two-year volunteer mission for the Mormon Church and graduated from BYU in Utah with a BS in psychology. He has metaphorically worn many hats, a few of them including: computer programmer, mental health rehab specialist, electrician’s helper, hard-rock underground copper miner, salesman, general manager of California Compost Corporation, swap meet business owner, resort maintenance manager, actor, taxi driver, long-haul truck driver, roofing business contractor. Hat presently lives off-the-grid in the Big Bend area of Texas working as rock mason and general handyman, and the shepherd of a small non-denominational Christian church.




Groove of the Day

Listen to Linkin Park performing “Lies, Greed & Misery”


Weather Report

96° and Clear


shake your tail feather


Max showed up the next morning—Monday—and it became clear what had happened (see yesterday’s post). He had had a run-in with a javelina (peccary), the vicious, betusked cousin of a pig which has bristly hair and usually measures between 3 and 4.3 feet in length, and at full growth, weighs 44 to 88 lbs. This morning I watched as a particularly bold javelina responded to a dog bark by running up the road towards us almost a quarter of a mile about as fast as a dog could run. Luckily, it finally lost interest in the challenge and returned to its pack.

I can imagine now that Max may have been guilty only of standing his ground. Max has a skinned area on his side and a 1½-inch core of his tail which had the outer skin and fur slipped off like the paper cover off a drinking straw. It looks like a wooden peg has been exposed, but it’s flesh, bone, and blood. Our veterinarian Dr. Sam said the inner tail needs to be amputated and the remaining skin sutured together.  It sounds like a “tail-job” to me.

The dog will have to be put under general anesthetic, but the first trick is getting Max into the pickup. Max has been in the truck only once before, and he was terrified by the experience. My attempts to get him into the cab Monday resulted in dog bites to both my hands. (I am typing with both hands bandaged right now.)

Our solution is that Aliana will pick up tranquilizer pills in town from Dr. Sam, and we will administer them the next morning so Max will be more amenable to being transported in the truck. Aliana is going into town anyway. The surgery will just have to happen a day later, but Sam assures me it’s not an emergency.


Tuesday: Well, Max will look ridiculous for a while. His furry tail is shaved halfway up, and a big red bandage adorns the tip of his tail like a tail light. But the amputation is done, and in a month or two no one will notice. Right now, Max is pretty drugged-up and is sleeping it off in the shade. The procedure only cost me $30, and it’s probably worth it for the drugs alone.

I’m exhausted too, and am going to take a nap. There is a strange sympathetic thing going on, and though I have not consumed drugs or any other substances at all, I feel as if I have been the patient.




Groove of the Day

Listen to Ray Charles & the Blues Brothers performing “Shake Your Tail Feather”


Weather Report

97° and Clear


the tip of the tail


I really don’t know what is going on. There’s a one-week bank holiday in Greece and people can withdraw only €60 ($72) a day from their accounts (if they can find an ATM with money in it), the Euro is decreasing in value against other world currencies, the stock markets are falling sharply (1.3%-5%), Alex Jones has just announced that the elites are escaping to their bunkers in New Zealand and other remote places, Jade Helm 15 is scheduled to commence (if it hasn’t already) in 2 weeks, and our house of cards seems to be on the verge of imploding.

ustv-dancing-with-the-stars-week-3-zendaya-valPart of the world appears clueless, engrossed in Dancing With the Stars or whatever other diversion seems important to them.

NeighborMrsKravitz2Another part of the population is engaged with the evidence and, in the extreme, is convinced that this is the beginning of the end of the world.

Most people, though, know that there is little they can do to change the course of world events.

The great ship has already struck the iceberg and is taking on water. The outcome is inevitable, but it is too early to know what that is. We can only secure a place in the lifeboats or wait for the band to start playing “Nearer My God To Thee.”

On Sunday I returned from a morning breakfast with friends, and saw the tip of Max’s tail in the middle of the road. Yeah, really. It was a total mystery to me what had occurred while I was gone, but I was convinced that the worst had happened. I spent the whole day convinced that Max lay dead somewhere on the desert. Then, at nightfall he briefly returned home, licked my hand, ate a bite of food, and then disappeared again. Except for the bloodstains, he didn’t look any worse for wear—and as I had often thought that his tail was too long anyway, I concluded that he probably wouldn’t miss the tip after it had healed. But the mystery of what had happened to him was nowhere closer to being solved.

Our bigger, non-dog troubles seem to be a recent development, but they have been going on for at least 150 years. In 1865, Otto von Bismarck said: “The division of the United States into federations of equal force was decided long before the Civil War by the high financial powers of Europe. These bankers were afraid that the United States, if they remained in one block and as one nation, would attain economic and financial independence, which would upset their financial domination over the world. The voice of the Rothschilds prevailed… Therefore they sent their emissaries into the field to exploit the question of slavery and to open an abyss between the two sections of the Union.”

That same year, Abraham Lincoln said: “I have two great enemies, the Southern Army in front of me and the bankers in the rear. Of the two, the one at my rear is my greatest foe.”

What the world is experiencing today is a banking crisis, not a crisis of our way of life. The bankers are the tail of the dog, not the dog itself. Come what may, the sun will rise tomorrow and the day after, and the day after that. If the bankers stop offering credit, the people themselves will step in and provide it. People will continue to trade, regardless of whatever currency or goods we use to denominate value. Some people once used sea shells to represent value. Even gold and silver are a proxy. The economy may be disrupted, but the gears of progress will continue turning. The people will discover that they can survive without the tips of their tails, which were long ago rendered obsolete by evolution.

FalloutShelter1600The temptation is great to retreat to our fallout shelters and await a coming apocalypse, but this would be a grievous error. Life goes on. Kids still get into trouble and their futures are determined in courts of law. They still need to see by our example that life is worth living, that a positive future still needs to be planned for and invested in. The kids and their problems are real; the money is just an illusion.

This past week I had to write to Travis Montgomery and tell him that the fundraising for the costs of his defense is not going well. I told him we are only a quarter of the way there, and he may have to rely on his court-appointed attorney if we cannot do better. Remember, his scheduled trial date is in September. I had hoped we would be at least two-thirds of the way there by now. Travis is facing a real crisis, not a perceived crisis of illusory origins.

I am asking you to please overcome your natural fears of an uncertain future, proclaim your belief and faith that the world can become a better place, and give generously today to Travis’ defense.


donate hands

To make a contribution to the Redemption Project, please use the link at the top of this page or click here. Remember: It’s only money that may be worthless in a few weeks. Thank you!


Here, in Travis’ own words, is his account of the circumstances that led to his mother’s murder.
If you want to learn more about Travis’ case, here is a police report.
And a fairly comprehensive news report that gets it wrong.


Groove of the Day

Listen to Mikis Theodorakis’ Dance Music from “Zorba The Greek”


Weather Report

97° and Clear




It is ironic that the bank holiday in Greece starts on the first day of the fortnight (June 29-July 13) governed by the rune Feoh or Fehu. The rune’s phonetic value is “F” and its literal meaning is “cattle” to be interpreted as “wealth.” In the traditional society of ancient Europe, the main negotiable property of a person, family, or clan was cattle. In Scandinavia the homestead was immutable inheritable property, and could not be sold or bartered away. Thus “cattle” literally refers to mobile wealth. The shape of the rune is like a horned bovine head.

40Feoh was looked upon as a completely positive rune. It was associated not only with possession, but with honor as well. Great wealth has always enabled men to make rich presents, which won them esteem. The meaning of Feoh may also at one time have included slaves (or human cattle), who were looked upon as beasts of burden and units of wealth. To give slaves captured in battle, and later to give the equivalent measure of gold, was to give some of the battle glory to another. A man‘s courage and strength were measured by his plunder.

On a material level, Feoh symbolizes the accretion of power and control, both directly over the herd itself and through its possession and manipulation. But, by possessing anything, we automatically have certain responsibilities that ownership confers. To own a herd of cattle wisely and responsibly entails correct stewardship. Wastefulness and greed lead to disaster, either through the collapse of the enterprise or interpersonal discord.

In modern times, Feoh refers to money in general, but more specifically, to the ability or opportunity to gain worldly success and great wealth, and keep it. The word “fee,” meaning a payment, comes from the name of this rune.

As with all things, there are two polar aspects of wealth. The Anglo-Saxon Rune Poem expresses them both: Wealth is a comfort to everybody, yet we must give it away freely if we want to gain favor in the sight of the lord. But The Norwegian Rune Poem emphasizes the problems of wealth engendering greed and envy, which can bring the downfall of all: Wealth causes friction between relatives, while the wolf lurks in the woods.

I have always believed that possessions—especially fine possessions likely to arouse feelings of envy in others—are a curse unless one is willing to share their enjoyment with others. Yet your material wealth must not be wasted on the undeserving or squandered on things unlikely to result in material increase.

In matters related to your spiritual wealth, however, it is important to recognize that it cannot be reduced by use. Share as much of your spiritual wealth as you can and you will become stronger, not weaker.

In general, Feoh is a rune of fulfillment and can apply to relationships, friendships, health, and ambition, as well as to financial matters. The important point is that humility, generosity, and stewardship must be your bywords as you enjoy the fruits of your labors.

Magically, Feoh can be used for good or evil. If used to signify that someone has power over his environment or that his wealth will increase, it is beneficial. If applied with respect for one’s adversary, it can break the opponent’s spirit and render him incapable of effective action. However, if applied with scornful regard, Feoh can backfire and create cowardliness and hubris in one’s self and fawning dependence and fear in others who could be supporting you.

In contemporary American culture, the great secular sin is being poor and powerless. However, Feoh’s wisdom reminds us that the greater sin—the spiritual sin—is misusing the resources we presently possess to increase their quantity and quality and thereby be in a position to achieve the greater good.

The great lesson I have learned since moving to West Texas is that, by adopting a lower standard of living that is more commensurate with one’s available resources, one can achieve a higher satisfaction with life. For example, I no longer drive a fancy sports car with a burdensome monthly payment; instead, I drive a used pickup truck that is 100%  paid for and requires no monthly payment whatsoever. My home is about a year from being fully paid-for.

I can no longer imagine returning to the outer world and the treadmill of existence that would entail. This is the closest I have ever been to total freedom since I was a child.


Groove of the Day

Listen to Bea Miller performing “Rich Kids”


Weather Report

94° and Clear




Everyone I tend to agree with is celebrating… so I may as well join in.

A cousin posted this picture on Facebook, and I stole it.

Here’s to everyone being happy, even if Michele Bachmann is offended.


Hell, here’s to Michele Bachman being offended!



Groove of the Day

Listen to the Village People performing “YMCA”


Weather Report

98° and Clear




Fear, So Useful to TPTB*

by Hat Bailey

(* The Powers That Be)

Many are beginning to realize that for many years, hundreds, and possibly thousands of years, there have been those who have developed a highly-specialized technology for controlling and exploiting masses of people. One of the many tools in their arsenal of control has always been the skillful use of naturally inherent biologically-based fears.

For animals in the natural state, where life is about nothing more than day to day survival and reproduction, and where the maintenance of the physical body is the highest value, fear (at least to the extent of teaching respect for common realistic threats) has been a mostly useful strategy. However, for beings who rely primarily on an order-of-magnitude increase in rationality and conscious intelligence as a strategy for survival and success, fear begins to lose much of its luster. This is especially problematic when it is allowed to become very intense, such as in the case of extremes of terror or panic. Here fear has a tendency to take rationality and higher cognitive functions right off-line, leaving an organism with nothing but blind, mindless, adrenaline-boosted fight or flight. For a human being, who has forgotten that he is essentially a spiritual entity within a physical body, and who has forgotten the reason for his even being here in this universe in the first place, the effects of terror can be even more disastrous and counterproductive.

Yet there are those, sometimes called “the Merchants of Chaos” who find it very useful indeed for their benefit and survival as parasites upon the masses of humanity. Always, of course, based on the promise of protection from some fearful thing. For these people, an enemy—or some real or pretended threat—Is vitally necessary for their strategy to be successful. If such a threat does not exist, then it becomes very necessary to invent or manufacture one immediately. Thus the popularity of staging so called “false flag” events to stimulate the necessary fear or outrage necessary for their plan to proceed.

People left to their own devices naturally tend to cooperate with one another to accomplish shared goals and objectives. However they don’t like others ordering them about or taking things from them that they have produced through their intelligent labor without fair consensual compensation. Naturally this is looked upon as theft. And those who gained positions of leadership through an ability to get respect or fear of their strength or prowess, or through aggressive intimidation, soon found that an exterior threat tended to make people more amenable to control, and less likely to rebel against their control.

Today, more than ever this tool has become ever present. We are taught to fear each other, those of different appearances, different cultures or religious beliefs. We are afraid of symbols, afraid to offend or be offended. Let’s show how evil it is to offend by offending the one accused of offense by making him take down his symbol. Of course our use of offense is good while his is evil.

It has been said that “War is the Health of the State” and indeed the fears of a credible foreign enemy has been very useful to political leaders and rulers of all stripes. This is clearly shown in the movie: “Wag the Dog” Wars were such a profitable strategy for them it was not enough to have wars or potential wars against other nations. We were also carefully taught to fear the evils of marijuana and other fearful drugs, we are also expected to fear terrorists, as well as ordinary criminals. So we got the “war on (some) drugs,” the “war on poverty,” the “war on cancer,” the “war on crime,” and the ever-popular “war on terror.”

What we have as a result are more people in prison than any of the totalitarian police states in the world at any time. The prison industrial complex is thriving. Poverty is still here, as is the carefully nurtured fear of terrorists. I used to be afraid of cancer, my father died of it. While people are still in poverty, still on drugs, still dying of cancer. Today I am not at all afraid of this disease as I have done my own research and know that there are many easy cheap cures for cancer that have been (or are being) suppressed. While people are scared into the same old cut, burn, and poison routine that seldom seems to grant more than a few months of extra life at the cost of hundreds of thousands of dollars of one’s own or of others’ money, and the loss of all semblance of a quality of life.

The mass media and many trolls on the internet continually feed into this atmosphere of fear. And it is all so contrived. We are told that we must spend billions of dollars to protect us against terrorists, yet (according to the US Department of State) only 17 U.S. citizens were killed worldwide as a result of terrorism in 2011. That figure includes deaths in Afghanistan, Iraq, and all other theaters of war.

Yet you are 35,079 times more likely to die from heart disease than from a terrorist attack. You are 33,842 times more likely to die from cancer than from a terrorist attack. A new study reveals that each year preventable adverse events (PAEs) lead to the death of 210,000-400,000 patients who seek care at a hospital. Those figures would make medical errors the third-leading cause of death behind heart disease and cancer, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention statistics—yet you won’t find this being blared from the mass media. You are nine times as likely to be shot by a policeman than to be killed by a terrorist. Yet how much is being spent on this problem?

Although many people think that we are approaching something like Armageddon or the Apocalypse there is evidence that things may not be as dire as some would have you believe.

All this fear-mongering has led to some very mistaken perceptions of both what is dangerous, and the notion that we are living in one of the most dangerous times in history, when the truth is very different from that. The truth does not support the level of fear that is necessary to justify a total police state and totalitarian global government to the distress of the powers-that-be. The fact is that crime rates are dropping all over the world.

But as the crime rate has dropped, Americans have missed the news. The number of people who told Gallup that crime is getting worse climbed to 74% last year, a figure higher than any year since the carnage of the early ’90s.

• All violent crime: Down 48% 1993 -2012

• All homicides: Down 50.5% 1993-2012

• Forcible rape: Down 34.5% 1993 -2012 (Source: FBI Uniform Crime Reports )

• Physical Assault: down 33% 2003-2011

• Rape, attempted or completed: down 43% 2003- 2011 (Source: University of New Hampshire Crimes Against Children Research Center) Down 80% since 1973.

• Murder within families: The US rate of husbands being killed by their wives has dropped from 1.2 per 100,000 in 1976 to just 0.2. For wives killed by their husbands, the rate has slipped from 1.4 to 0.8 over the same time period.

• Lynchings, which used to occur at a rate of 150 a year, have disappeared.

But it isn’t just physical violence that is down.

The chances of dying in a crash in a late-model car or light truck fell by more than a third over three years, and nine car models had zero deaths per million-registered-vehicles, according to a study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

Discrimination against blacks and gays is down, as is capital punishment, the spanking of children, and child abuse.

This is also true in other nations as well:

• Canada: Crime rate back to level of 1972 and continuing to fall.

• Britain: Murder rate lowest since 1978.

• Australia: Since a peak of 344 murder victims in 1999, the number has continued to decline, to 244 victims in 2011.

• Murder in European countries has steadily fallen from near 100 per 100,000 people in the 14th and 15th centuries to about 1 per 100,000 people now.

The World is More Peaceful Now than You Think, as well. It seems as if violence is everywhere, but it’s really on the run. Yes, thousands of people have died in bloody unrest from Africa to Pakistan, yet we’ve historically never had it this peaceful.

That’s the thesis of three new books, including one by prominent Harvard psychologist Steven Pinker. Statistics reveal dramatic reductions in war deaths, family violence, racism, rape, murder and all sorts of mayhem. In his book, Pinker writes: “The decline of violence may be the most significant and least appreciated development in the history of our species.”

And it runs counter to what the mass media is reporting and essentially what we feel in our guts. Pinker and other experts say the reality is not painted in bloody anecdotes, but demonstrated in the black-and-white of spreadsheets and historical documents. They tell a story of a world moving away from violence.

In his new book The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined, Pinker makes the case that a smarter, more educated world is becoming more peaceful in several statistically significant ways. His findings are based on peer-reviewed studies published by other academics using examinations of graveyards, surveys, and historical records:

• The number of people killed in battle—calculated per 100,000 population—has dropped 1,000-fold over the centuries as civilizations evolved. Before there were organized countries, battles killed on average more than 500 out of every 100,000 people. In 19th century France, it was 70. In the 20th century (with two world wars and a few genocides) it was 60. Now battlefield deaths are down to three-tenths of a person per 100,000.

• The rate of genocide deaths per world population was 1,400 times higher in 1942 than in 2008.

• There were fewer than 20 democracies in 1946. Now there are close to 100. Meanwhile, the number of authoritarian countries has dropped from a high of almost 90 in 1976 to about 25 now.

Pinker says one of the main reasons for the drop in violence is that we are smarter. IQ tests show that the average teenager is smarter with each generation. The tests are constantly adjusted to keep average at 100, and a teenager who now would score a 100 would have scored a 118 in 1950 and a 130 in 1910. So this year’s “average kid” would have been a near-genius a century ago. And that increase in intelligence translates into a kinder, gentler world, says Pinker.

(And this despite the efforts to lower IQ by fluoride, GMOs, mercury-laced vaccines, corruption of the food supply, and intentional dumbing down the curriculum in public schools.)

“As we get smarter, we try to think up better ways of getting everyone to turn their swords into plowshares at the same time,” Pinker said in an interview. “Human life has become more precious than it used to be.”

Pinker argued his case in a commentary this past week in the scientific journal Nature. He has plenty of charts and graphs to back up his claims, including evidence beyond wartime deaths—evidence that our everyday lives are also less violent.

Now whether or not you believe (as some do) that a wonderful new “golden age” may soon be upon us, the evidence supports the fact that humanity does seem to be evolving into something a bit more peaceful, and awakening to the dangers and dysfunctionality that has kept us down so long as a species. They are tired of all these “wars” that never seem to resolve any of the issues to which they were expected to be a solution.

I would submit that it is not so much that things have become worse and more chaotic, as that so much that was hidden and denied is now being exposed and made very evident to masses of people. Secrets are being revealed, people are beginning to see how they have been manipulated.

The solution is to begin giving up the fear, or at least being willing to confront it and act intelligently in spite of it. Am I sometimes fearful? Yes, but not to the extent I once was, and I refuse to be provoked into giving up highly-valued freedoms and rights for a semblance or pretense of security. As I have shown in the above statistics, what we have been persuaded to believe are our greatest threats are greatly exaggerated and distorted. We have been persuaded that we need external rulers, a so called “government” an institution with a monopoly on the use of force and coercion, because we cannot trust most of our fellow men and are frankly afraid of each other. Actually there are only a few who are really dangerous, and these would be essentially powerless without our cooperation.

At one time we were helpless babies, with vulnerable little bodies. We needed parents to protect us and see to our needs. That is no longer the case. It is time to grow up and become self sufficient adults with something to offer in free value-for-value exchanges with others. People who take responsibility for their own lives, rulers of their own feelings, emotions, and possessions. Government is another word for control. Those who fail to control themselves will ultimately be controlled by external forces, some of which care little for your preferences or values. Ridding oneself of fear, or at least refusing to give in to its powerful control over your life, is to remove a prime tool in the arsenal of those who would enslave us all. The fear in them is very terrified of the fearlessness they see growing in you.

In any case, beginning to know who and what we are is vital to being rid of so much of the fear that surrounds us, and becoming free to be exactly what we really are.


Hat Bailey is the eldest in a family of nine kids raised in the ’60s in Bakersfield CA, and on the Jameson cattle ranch in the Tehachapi Mountains east of there. He served a two-year volunteer mission for the Mormon Church and graduated from BYU in Utah with a BS in psychology. He has metaphorically worn many hats, a few of them including: computer programmer, mental health rehab specialist, electrician’s helper, hard-rock underground copper miner, salesman, general manager of California Compost Corporation, swap meet business owner, resort maintenance manager, actor, taxi driver, long-haul truck driver, roofing business contractor. Hat presently lives off-the-grid in the Big Bend area of Texas working as rock mason and general handyman, and the shepherd of a small non-denominational Christian church.


Groove of the Day

Listen to The Doors performing “The End”


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87° Rain, but Mostly Sunny


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