Sunday, November 25, 2012

Sand Mandala

November 30th

The Monks of Drepung Loseling Phukhang Monastery, visiting from South India, will build a traditional Tibetan Buddhist Sand Mandala at the Downtown Eugene Public Library over the course of three days. 

An Opening Ceremony will be held on Friday, November 30, from 10:30 to 11:00 a.m., and a Closing Ceremony will be held on Sunday, December 2, from 4:00 to 5:00 p.m.  

The public is also invited to watch the process at any time on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, when the Downtown Library is open from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. 
The ancient art of creating Sand Mandalas is meant to inspire compassion and bring progress towards world peace. According to the monks, “it is said that wherever a Sand Mandala is created, all sentient beings and the surrounding environment are blessed, and that whoever views the mandala experiences profound peace and great joy. The colorfulness and harmony of the millions of sand particles in the mandala gives a powerful message that we all can live in peace if each of us work in creating a little more space for others in our hearts.”

The Opening Ceremony will consecrate the site with approximately 30 minutes of chanting, music, and mantra recitation. Then the monks will begin the exacting work of drawing the lines for the design of the mandala. Throughout the following days, the monks will skillfully pour millions of grains of brightly-colored sand from a funnel-shaped metal tool known as a “Chakpur,” creating an astonishingly detailed work of art. During the Closing Ceremony, the monks will dismantle the Mandala, sweeping up the colored sand “to symbolize the impermanence of all phenomena, teaching that everything that exists has a beginning, a middle and an end.”

His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama will be visiting Eugene in May 2013. 

Saturday, November 24, 2012

helping hands

Ironically, I just quit a job that paid a substandard wage, but they always hit us up to "give generously" to charity.  They even made this big push for United Way (top heavy in the amount taken for administrative costs)- during a year long WAGE FREEZE.
I always thought, I'd love to -- & will do so right after you pay a decent wage so I could afford to give.
Now I have a new job. My employer is not hounding me for donations, and all by myself, I decided this year I can do some donating (thank you new employer for paying me a living wage).
Request envelopes came from the Food Bank & Red Cross.
They do good work & the need is great (despite the media telling us the numbers are looking better).... I'm saying yes. I'm not going to be in the Big Donors Circle, but if everyone could throw whatever they can afford to such charities, what a difference that would make.
For instance the population in Eugene, Oregon is 156,929. Even if everyone gave a buck, that would be a chunk of change. Even $2 bucks each would equal $313,858 dollars.

So I'm encouraging us all to give whatever we can- because even small amounts add up. If cash is tight, you can donate your time, or blood.
So many good organizations are in need- be it the local animal shelter, soup kitchen, Vet support, Food Bank, whatever. Just do it. Feels great!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Moore's awesome letter to Pres. Obama

November 19th, 2012 8:46 AM

An Open Letter to President Obama

Dear President Obama:
Good luck on your journeys overseas this week, and congratulations on decisively winning your second term as our president! The first time you won four years ago, most of us couldn't contain our joy and found ourselves literally in tears over your victory.
This time, it was more like breathing a huge sigh of relief. But, like the smooth guy you are, you scored the highest percentage of the vote of any Democrat since Lyndon Johnson, and you racked up the most votes for a Democratic president in the history of the United States (the only one to receive more votes than you was ... you, in '08!). You are the first Democrat to get more than 50% of the vote twice in a row since Franklin D. Roosevelt.
This was truly another historic election and I would like to take a few minutes of your time to respectfully ask that your second term not resemble your first term.
It's not that you didn't get anything done. You got A LOT done. But there are some very huge issues that have been left unresolved and, dammit, we need you to get some fight in you. Wall Street and the uber-rich have been conducting a bloody class war for over 30 years and it's about time they were stopped.
I know it is not in your nature to be aggressive or confrontational. But, please, Barack – DO NOT listen to the pundits who are telling you to make the "grand compromise" or move to the "center" (FYI – you're already there). Your fellow citizens have spoken and we have rejected the crazed ideology of this Republican Party and we insist that you forcefully proceed in bringing about profound change that will improve the lives of the 99%. We're done hoping. We want real change. And, if we can't get it in the second term of a great and good man like you, then really – what's the use? Why are we even bothering? Yes, we're that discouraged and disenchanted.
At your first post-election press conference last Wednesday you were on fire. The way you went all "Taxi Driver" on McCain and company ("You talkin' to me?") was so brilliant and breathtaking I had to play it back a dozen times just to maintain the contact high. Jesus, that look – for a second I thought laser beams would be shooting out of your eyes! MORE OF THAT!! PLEASE!!
In the weeks after your first election you celebrated by hiring the Goldman Sachs boys and Wall Street darlings to run our economy. Talk about a buzzkill that I never fully recovered from. Please – not this time. This time take a stand for all the rest of us – and if you do, tens of millions of us will not only have your back, we will swoop down on Congress in a force so large they won't know what hit them (that's right, McConnell – you're on the retirement list we've put together for 2014).
BUT – first you have to do the job we elected you to do. You have to take your massive 126-electoral vote margin and just go for it.
Here are my suggestions:
1. DRIVE THE RICH RIGHT OFF THEIR FISCAL CLIFF. The "fiscal cliff" is a ruse, an invention by the Right and the rich, to try and keep their huge tax breaks. On December 31, let ALL the tax cuts expire. Then, on January 1, put forth a bill that restores the tax cuts for 98% of the public. I dare the Republicans to vote against that! They can't and they won't. As for the spending cuts, the 2011 agreement states that, for every domestic program dollar the Republicans want to cut, a Pentagon dollar must also be cut. See, you are a genius! No way will the Right vote against the masters of war. And if by some chance they do, you can immediately put forth legislation to restore all the programs we, the majority, approve of. And for God's sake, man – declare Social Security and Medicare/Medicaid untouchable. They're not bankrupt or anywhere near it. If the rich paid the same percentage of Social Security tax on their entire income – the same exact rate everyone else pays – then there will suddenly be enough money in Social Security to last til at least the year 2080!
2. END ALL THE WARS NOW. Do not continue the war in Afghanistan (a thoroughly losing proposition if ever there was one) for two full more years! Why should one single more person have to die FOR NO REASON? Stop it. You know it's wrong. Bin Laden's dead, al Qaeda is decimated and the Afghans have to work out their own problems. Also, end the drone strikes and other covert military activities you are conducting in Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, Colombia and God knows where else. You think history is going to remember the United States as a great democracy? No, they're going to think of us as a nation that became addicted to war. They'll call us warlords. They'll say that in the 21st century America was so in need of oil that we'd kill anyone to get it. You know that's where this is going. This has to stop. Now.
3. END THE DRUG WAR. It is not only an abysmal failure, it has returned us to the days of slavery. We have locked up millions of African-Americans and Latinos and now fund a private prison-industrial complex that makes billions for a few lucky rich people. There are other ways to deal with the drugs that do cause harm – ways built around a sense of decency and compassion. We look like a bunch of sadistic racists. Stop it.
4. DECLARE A MORATORIUM ON HOME FORECLOSURES AND EVICTIONS. Millions of people are facing homelessness because of a crooked system enacted by the major banks and Wall Street firms. Put a pause on this and take 12 months to work out a different way (like, restructuring families' mortgages to reflect the true worth of their homes).
5. GET MONEY OUT OF POLITICS. You already know this one. The public is sick of it. Now's the time to act.
6. EXPAND OBAMACARE. Your health care law doesn't cover everyone. It is a cash cow for the insurance industry. Push for a single-payer system – Medicare for All – and include dentistry and mental health. This is the single biggest thing you could do to reduce the country's deficit.
7. RESTORE GLASS-STEAGALL. You must put back all the rigid controls on Wall Street that Reagan, Clinton and the Bushes removed – or else we face the possibility of another, much worse, crash. If they break the law, prosecute them the way you currently go after whistleblowers and medical marijuana dispensaries.
8. REDUCE STUDENT LOAN DEBT. No 22-year-old should have to enter the real world already in a virtual debtors' prison. This is cruel and no other democracy does this like we do. You were right to eliminate the banks as the profit-gouging lenders, but now you have to bring us back to the days when you and I were of college age and a good education cost us little or next to nothing. A few less wars would go a long to way to being able to afford this.
9. FREE BRADLEY MANNING. End the persecution and prosecution of an American hero. Bush and Cheney lied to a nation to convince us to go to war. Manning allegedly hacked the war criminals' files and then shared them with the American public (and the world) so that we could learn the truth about Iraq and Afghanistan. Our history is full of such people who "break the law" for the greater good of humanity. Army Specialist Bradley Manning deserves a medal, not prison.
10. ASK US TO DO SOMETHING. One thing is clear: none of the above is going to happen if you don't immediately mobilize the 63,500,000 who voted for you (and the other 40 million who are for you but didn't vote). You can't go this alone. You need an army of everyday Americans who will fight alongside you to make this a more just and peaceful nation. In your 2008 campaign, you were a pioneer in using social media to win the election. Over 15 million of us gave you our cell numbers or email addresses so you could send us texts and emails telling us what needed to be done to win the election. Then, as soon as you won, it was as if you hit the delete button. We never heard from you again. (Until this past year when you kept texting us to send you $25. Inspiring.) Whoever your internet and social media people were should have been given their own office in the West Wing – and we should have heard from you. Constantly. Need a bill passed? Text us and we will mobilize! The Republicans are filibustering? We can stop them! They won't approve your choice for Secretary of State? We'll see about that! You say you were a community organizer. Please – start acting like one.
The next four years can be one of those presidential terms that changed the course of America. I'm sure you will want to be judged on how you stood up for us, restored the middle class, ended the s***ting on the poor and made us a friend to the rest of the world instead of a threat. You can do this. We can do it with you. All that stands in the way is your understandable desire to sing "Kumbaya" with the Republicans. Don't waste your breath. Their professed love of America is negated by their profound hatred of you. Don't waste a minute on them. Fix the sad mess we're in. Go back and read this month's election results. We're with you.
P.S. President Obama – my cell number to text me at is 810-522-8398 and my email I await my first assignment!
Moore really nailed it. 
I too do not want to wait for change -- Obama now has the opportunity to be more radical & make  some breakthrough changes.... this letter/list is packed with great common sense items that restore balance to our country. 

Love that he calls BS on the fiscal cliff. 
Love the demand to cut the wars & covert actions & drone bomb dropping. 
I particularly love the go after Wall Street like you do medical marijuana dispensaries remark.
The deep debt students are enduring-- is preventing may students from even going to college at all. 
President Obama can;t be President for more than 2 terms. 
No more worries about potential future reelections.
 Time to roll up the sleeves & be the change we wish to see in the world.

No purchase necessary

Time again to think about the *Buy Nothing Day* movement.
Stampedes. People behaving badly. Jam packed parking lots & stores.
Long lines to check out. Debt. More stuff.

Just say no.

Sleep in. Relax. Hold hands. Visit nature. Meditate.
Contact someone who may need a companion.
Make a donation to the Red Cross or the local Food Bank or Shelter.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Hostess is serving up lies

Turns out the truth is less sweet than the myth they tried to serve the media. 
Looks like the Execs were taking more than a baker's dozen, cash wise, and thought they could give FOX newzzz types a cake walk, blaming the workers for being greedy "takers", with their hands in the cookie jar, or Ho Ho box , if you will. 
Now they are in a Twinkie mediation, trying to pull the business of mysterious confections out of the bankruptcy fire/oven. 
I seriously doubt anyone thought there was nutritional value in the Hostess product line,  but the reason they have such a long shelf life is some of the chemical magic in the ingredients. 
Mmmmmm polysorbate 60, Trans fats & high fructose corn syrup.

Much ado about this: 

Enriched wheat floursugarcorn syrupniacinwaterhigh fructose corn syrup, vegetable and/or animal shortening – containing one or more of partially hydrogenated soybeancottonseed and canola oil, and beef fatdextrose, whole eggs, modified corn starchcellulose gumwhey, leavenings (sodium acid pyrophosphatebaking sodamonocalcium phosphate), saltcornstarchcorn flourcorn syrup, solids, mono and diglyceridessoy lecithinpolysorbate 60, dextrincalcium caseinatesodium stearoyl lactylatewheat glutencalcium sulphate, natural and artificial flavors, caramel color, yellow No. 5, red #40

And! Good Nutrition they need!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

No rest for the weary

It's already started-- Who will run in 2016???
I'm fine with that happening behind the scenes. It's not about just winning the race, it's about doing the job you are elected to do. Focus! Have you ever heard an American say they look forward to the campaigning in election years?

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Effing Game Day to the Max!!!

Because there is simply not enough hype about sports & football @ the University of Oregon.  ESPN is having a "Game Day" event. 7 semi trucks to run the game day broadcast, 60 staff people from ESPN, people are going to camp out overnight to be 1st in line for the super hyped up event-- but here is the kicker-- as a publicity stunt, they had the Duck Mascot sky dive... & the duck lost it's head on the way down!

Puddles, the Oregon Duck, has lost his head. Puddles was skydiving with for a College Game Day segment when his head came off mid-jump. As you can see from Chris Fowler’s tweet, it was lost somewhere in Oregon. While the Duck has two more heads (this was the “third string” head according to Fowler), this must have been seen as a bad omen with a game against #13 Stanford looming tomorrow night.

The mascot head was found in a nearby town by a "good Samaritan"- wow!
Returning a mascot head is now a heroic act, and or "breaking news"!
Want to watch the news? All about Game Day!
Want the weather report? It's the Game day weather report!
People are flocking to the book store to get--- you guessed it- Game Day trinkets!
All this over the top hype is ridiculous-- it is not just "Puddles the Duck" who lost his head.
This is like the Lorax story, College Football version.