Day 461 – Democracy is on – We just haven’t taken Notice – yet

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Like most people who are waking up to the Reality of this world, I have made the mistake to believe that there is really No democracy, that the system is rigged, that we have no power to change things because someone is holding on to all the cash, making us their slaves.

While some of these things are true, what I failed to see until recently, is that the very system we live in, a corporatocracy that has obtained legal status and the same rights reserved to Living Beings and rightly so, we should add, because it is sustained by us all, in every moment of our day through the choices we make – we are the ones breathing life – or death- into this system daily – who else?

We have been misled into thinking that the Voting System takes place when we take hold of one card to vote one candidate over another, or a party over another, or the dismissal of an unfair Law, all practices that should have shown us by now that that’s NOT where Democracy is at the moment – because all those endeavors have so far resulted in NO NOTE WORTHY CHANGE in any way whatsoever – yet we keep fighting over who has the best choice, the best reasons for voting one or another of the people that we’ll put up there as puppets that are intended to keep the system going exactly as it is – just under a new costume (see the very dangerous Trump already backpedaling on his most outrageous proposals and pretending to implement the irrelevant changes that will always hide a loop to guarantee that NOTHING REALLY CHANGES).

Instead the Power to Change is in our perspective, in the self Honesty to admit that if MONEY is the Most Powerful Thing of this world – obviously – that’s where the power to change is – really.

Many initiatives are coming up about the Money System and how it’s in urgent need of a profound redesign, bankers that print IOU in Monopoly colors (to add irony to injury) and make us pay interest on them creating Public Debts, mortgages that force you to pay only the interest for the first 10 years of your 30 years engagement, gambling on the fact that you may not make it and they’ll end up with the money AND your house, usury, a tax system that is thinking how to tax the air we breathe – because they have already done that with the water, the food and don’t see why they should stop – are clear signs that we have been distracted to say the least – just not to call ourselves utterly stupid, to let it go this far.

And yet, we are still razzle-dazzled by the diversions used to not make us see, that a real coalition of intent, would bring all the castles down faster than they could write a law to prevent it.

So, one may wonder, where is this freaking power to change?

The first change required will have to be within, I won’t go into the details of how everything that exists inside of us exists outside because this is self explanatory with a little self investigation – but also because I want to bring on the table areal case scenario of Change that took place in Italy, where I live at the moment, that was unexpected, un-hoped for, no one saw it coming and then one day, BANG – it was there.

This story starts with PALM OIL, no one even knew they were using it in our food for 2 simple reasons

  1. we don’t have Palm Trees (hint hint)
  2. to be able to read the ingredients on labels you must have 25/20 eyesight normally, or your glasses handy
  3. 3 we trust that people producing food and giving us the lovely commercial that steer us towards ideas and feelings of ‘A Better World’ – an actual slogan of one of Barilla’s minor labels- can’t then go and put something that is BAD for us, the environment, the people that manufacture it and the animal kingdom, all in one go, in the food we are going to eat – we just can’t compute these 2 dissonant information usually – and end up trusting the commercial – because it makes us Feel Better.

One day though, someone opened a debate about it, pictures were shown of the damages to the environment, of how animals were de-housed as a consequence of intensive planting of Palm Tree for Palm Oil production, a list of the ill-fits to our health was compiled and then 40000 signatures were collected to stop the use of Palm Oil in Italy.

Well then, we could think it was the Food Regulatory Body that changed the Law that did the trick but alas – it was not Those silly Laws are just another distractions, proof is that when we write one, and we write thousands every year in Italy, we build IN THE LAW, the exit door for those that will obviously not want to comply, usually the very ones the Law had been written for (and by).
Nonono, the change came because People started to wear their glasses, read the labels and just stopped buying products that contained Palm Oil. It was that simple.

There were no demonstrations, no violence, no one was hurt and no one lost jobs over it, because the multinationals hire people who work to understand trends (market analysts), before any new emerging trend could emerge and impact their profit Рhence we could almost say, from one day to another, Palm Oil was replaced with sustainable alternatives and all the  corporations tried to beat each other on the change, because that was where the money was going to be spent.

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So, I just wanted to share this little Tale to say that Change is just a few dollars away from each one of us, those are our voting chips, we have to stop waiting to have SPARE money to support something. Within the times we live, there’s very probably nothing to spare for anyone BUT we can divert something of what we spend to support Life Giving Alternatives to this world, we can Stop feeding our egos and minds with things we don’t really need, we don’t need that make up, that neck relaxing cream, the boob plastic surgery, we don’t need fancy holidays, cocktails with paper umbrellas in it, we don’t need to buy mangoes in winter if we live in Europe, in fact we don’t need to buy mangoes anytime if we don’t produce them where we live – I am not saying we can’t have any of these things if we really want them, I am just saying, there’s a world of difference between a NEED and a WANT and what we really NEED now is a different world, it’s to take the time to see where we have been putting our voting chips and assess if we couldn’t make better choices with them, it’s the time to see what can we give up for this change that we say we want so much.

Cos if we thought change was going to come quietly by itself brought on by our wish-full thinking or manifested by some superpower or some leaders or some one with more money than we have, we got another think coming; change depends on each one of us, HOW MUCH do we want this change?

Then, choose a cause, choose Life Giving people to support, get involved, be heard when you explain common sensically to others why it matters that we engage each other and the world for this change, because Change it’s your Change, give Your Change for Change – and see how many dimension this sentence alone can open up for you. ūüôā

 

Peoples I have decided to support for Change

(not because I am good, special, better or richer – just because I am giving a new meaning to Money as Support for Life, as My Vote, as where I have to put my actions -not empty words- to contribute to +1 for Change)

 

Gian: I have met him a few years ago, his passion for change is real, his Life will be devoted to this, he has a vision that I want to support – I gave up 5 espressos a month to do so (they are bad for high blood pressure as well :))

Follow him here

https://www.patreon.com/user?u=4404004

 

Cerise and Joe

I know Cerise personally and I know Joe virtually, they are witty, clever and they expose the world for what it is, I support them because I believe we need big reality checks to expose our nature and find solutions for Change – and they provide them

Supporting them costs less than 4 packets of cigarettes a month (my health will benefit too!)

Find them here

https://www.patreon.com/getreal

Scott Santens

I support him for his unwavering dedication to the implementation of a Basic Income, I have been active for some years on Social Medias and Scott was there, have been absent for a couple more and Scott was there while I was MIA, I came back and guess what? Scott is still there, not because a Basic Income is a sure thing we’ll achieve in this Life Time – but because advocating for one, for a decent Life for every human being, for an end to Poverty, fear and Shame is a great ideal to hold close to heart and to embody in every moment of Breath.

You can find him here

https://www.patreon.com/search?q=scott%20santens

 

 

 

 

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Day 459: Feudal Employers and Basic Income

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Lexmark and a #BasicIncome or LETSMARK a #BasicIncome for All

Printer and software giant Lexmark has fired dozens of workers from its factory in the Mexican city of Ciudad J√ļarez after they demanded a pay rise of $0.35 per day.

Hundreds of workers at the printer cartridge plant went on strike last week, calling for the company to increase its daily rate for experienced employees from 114 to 120 pesos ‚Äď a raise of approximately $0.35.

Days later, Lexmark fired around 120 of the striking workers. Most of those dismissed had been involved in attempts to set up an independent union to advocate pay increases and improvements in working conditions.

It would seem impossible, but many of us don’t yet realize that the true asset of a company is it’s working force, no matter how much money a company has to invest, no matter how much they claim that ‘they are creating job opportunities’ -for which they get juicy tax rebates if not full tax holiday like in some third world countries, eager to attract foreign investments-, they are NOTHING and they can go NOWHERE without their working force.

We have become accustomed to a culture of replace-ability, our commercial system thrives on making people irrelevant in the working place, we have developed production models that alienate people while making them insignificant  Рor attempting to with all our might.

Of course it will be hard to put an end to this culture, mainly because it works, not for the people, but for the corporatism who is willing to trade the lives they don’t care to know anything about – for profit.

They are demanding better working conditions, a living wage, recognition of their right to form independent unions, a halt to sexual harassment, and legal protection from handling hazardous chemicals among other things. The maquila scene has not changed that much for workers since the city established manufacturing facilities fifty years ago.

Most of the demonstrators are laborers who are not paid sufficient wages to provide their families with enough food, clothing, and schooling, much less giving the families the opportunity to move out of poverty. Both the government and employers consider low wages as a ‚Äúcompetitive advantage‚ÄĚ that is used to attract foreign business interests. The laborers are caught in an impossible situation.

This feudal style corporate employment is a global problem, it pays for some to keep people too busy, too worried, too poor to even consider  other solutions.

regardless of ‘what they are doing to keep things as they are’ we have a solution right up our sleeve, it’s a #BasicIncome, a #livingincomeguaranteed for All, can you see how such a simple solution would turn the negotiating table upside down -for good?

People who have enough to live, pay for a housing, pay for their food, their kids’ needs, their health needs would not have to put up with the hope of ‘having someone generous enough to lift them out of poverty in exchange for their hard work’ – that would be a given, then all the Feudal Employers of the Planet would have to reconsider how they attract their workers and would have to offer much more than sexual harassment and impossible living conditions -that some are now forced to accept.

They would have to provide an attractive working environment, benefits, working models that remember they are often times dealing with talented people eager to learn and do their best to participate in the company’s growth, and then a company like Lexmark,¬† whose ‘revenue totaled $3.7bn’ last year, would be forced to reconsider how to share the profit including the bottom of the pyramid, because such pyramids can exist only if there is a bottom and unless the Feuda-tards start to realize that, they could go Topsy-turvy in a moment, when their ex-workers move on to more rewarding lives with a Basic Income or with Employers who have had no difficulty understanding or rewarding their companies’ True Assets.

Here is an example of the Future of Employment (an ad by a fast growing IT company)

What We Value

Clear communication, transparency, open-mindedness, empathy and patience are just a few of Buffer’s cultural values. We are looking for a person who understands this culture and will thrive within a team of people passionate about self-improvement, honesty and openness.

Where You’ll Work

You will work in the place that makes you happy, that inspires you daily, and helps you to become the person that you wish to be. You will work daily with team members scattered around the world and across time zones to build a better culture and product.

Get it?

The biggest oppositions to a Basic Income is Fear, the Pharaohs can see that implementing a Given Living for All would dis-empower them, which is not even true, unless one considers ‘Power’ making others lives a living hell to make sure their fear of survival ensures their fidelization to the company.

A Basic Income would change our social models to their very core- equality on the negotiating table will start only when all have a Living Guaranteed – why are not yet giving it to each other – if we are the 99%, who are we waiting for?

#BasicIncome – it’s not just a Solution- it’s a Revolution on the grounds of social justice and equality – we all have the same right to Life, that’s a given, so why isn’t a Basic Income A Given yet?

Day 456: The Earth is a Magic Circle – How to Get Equal Rites

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#TerryPratchett died, a real loss for those that enjoyed his novels and the incredibly witty world he created – #Discworld.

Many of his stories were about our systems and Magic and they had a striking resemblance to reality, I suggest reading ‘Making Money’, where he lays out the transition from gold standard to Fiat currency, it’s comical but it’s not, it’s actually tragic

‘The book delves into arcana such as the gold standard, the invention of bank-notes, economic modelling and the role of the press in furthering fiscal chaos’ and how it derailed to benefit just some and not All.

what makes it acceptable is that it’s a fictional book, with a lot of funny parts, it even¬† includes Golems, see, basically We are the Golems of this existence, so far, too dumb to work out what has been going on since the beginning of time, with the blessings and cover ups provided by religions, governments, lawmakers and ultimately the Golem Makers – the Money Makers.

The other day I listened to a fascinating conference by a renowned Italian mason (Carpeoro), a really clever man, who was explaining the difference between Magical thinking and Symbolic thinking, I don’t care much for labels of concepts, it’s easier when you don’t to see clearly the content of a concept as a file, and the files he was talking about were the Magical one, as in the one where we make up our own realities with no connection to the physical one, or the Symbolic one, where we look at all the world as a symbolic reflection of ourselves, one is NOT Real and one is Real.

He shared how in his view the world is infested by Magical thinking, where Magi draw circles in which they write their own rules and then have people – Golems mainly so far- step into them,¬† within that circle the Magus rules apply, think Derren Brown without going esoteric, he is a fairly good example of a Magus, he sets the stage and then works for the whole show to make people do what will give the results he has ‘fore-casted’ – that was not a reading in fact, it was an instruction manual, people stepped into his circle, the theatre, he set the rules and puppeteered everyone through the show to his desired results.

Now imagine to take this concept bigger, you take into the Money world, into the business world, into the Law world, you draw circles, you set the stage, you invite people in or maybe you command people into them and then just wait and watch them robotically live out Your Script, I have a nagging suspicion that the biggest Magic Circle may very well be Planet Earth but we’ll leave it at that for now, that would be too big of a burden of proof to carry for such a humble blog as mine.

So, how do we step out of these Magic Circles? How do we get ”Equal Rites”?

From Planet earth, it seems, only with Death, I don’t see any other feasible Exit here, but maybe from all other magic circles we’ll be able to step out of them alive, with awareness, the first step is to become aware that we are trapped into someone else’ s magical circle, we’ll know that we are the moment we realize we didn’t write the rules of the game, nor approve of them, nor we were ever asked to.

Then, as we gather together in force, with the common shared desire for a different world that may work for all, we can rewrite the system to one of support, someone said that ‘you never change things by fighting the existing reality, to change something you build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete. Buckminster Fuller’, may he have been right?

I very much believe in this, if I did not I could not support a Living Income Guaranteed or a Basic Income, because they don’t have space to exist within the current money models, but it’s not about the how, it is the principle that I support, the principle that a Life must be given and personally I don’t care how we’ll end up doing that, by distributing vouchers, mirrors, candies, shells, like at the Club Med, or whatever we’ll pick to exchange the system of access to world resources, I stand for solutions to stop the pointless suffering of Humanity because I have realized that we could make different choices, choices I was not able to even consider when I was standing as the Golem I was born to exist as.

And the same is the Law system, in Italy like probably nowhere else in the world, the Law is an opinion when not a farce, designed to oppress and not protect, absolutely grotesquely unfair, with trial times that lag long enough to make proceeding time ultimately expire and for which justice is nowhere to be seen -for those that are not affluent enough to buy themselves victory in any court of Law -to the detriment of the poor and derelict of society.

What I discovered, as I lived here most of my life and to the horror of my ex French law-abiding husband, is that there is no real punishment for not obeying, adherence to the existing Laws is obtained by fear and terror and not by a system that is vigilant on the wrong doing of its citizens, you just have to learn how to navigate out of the radar and usually that implies never entering any arena that makes it easy for the authorities to trace you, that would mean – never pay taxes, never register yourself into any association, never open a VAT number to be able to invoice regularly, never pay any contribution, never present a tax declaration, if you are, you are fucked, you are now on the system radar, you subscribed to it, absurdly those that pay the price are those trying to comply and never those that stubbornly refuse to.

Furthermore, even those with the best intentions are criminals under our Legal system, I will post at the end of this article a comparison between the Italian system and the US system, makes for a good reading for those interested and for some necessary questions, how can such a system require our obedience, who says we have to stick to it and change it instead of trashing it and rewriting it from scratch?
Napoleon did this not too long ago, true, he didn’t live to see the changes lol, because it’s the Law as it is written now that allows for the worst crimes to be committed while its perpetrators are protected, but if instead of one man there were many aware people rewriting the story of how the system, as the sum of all of us, should govern itself, changes could be made pretty quickly. We could be the Wizard of the words we set in motion instead than being the Golems, our Words and our standing One and Equal as Them, would give Equal Rights and access to Equal Rites.

Think about Iceland and their Brand New Constitution, that was a collective effort, rewritten in cooperation, agreed upon as a code of conduct, a binding social contract and accepted as such, compared to how long we struggled with our legal system, we could say they did it in a blink of an eye.

So, again,¬† who says we can’t?

Rethink this world, all of it, we gave away our authority, our author-ship to stand as pieces of the solution and we can take it back, it’s numbers that talk, we should have learnt that by now, if it served nothing else, from the very story of Money itself.

I support a #LivingIncomeGuaranteed, because Life shouldn’t be a struggle for anyone.

We could make it a pleasurable experience for all by rethinking into place everything that is not working and cooperating together to bring a new world into reality. Iceland did it, who says we can’t?

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Italian Law vs Us Laws – a sample – have a laugh

It’s simplest to consider broad legal principles individually, explaining the differences. What follow are simply generalities,

and these points certainly don’t constitute a legal treatise or legal advice. Let’s cast a glance over Italian legal realities.

Habeas Corpus: This idea takes different forms in different places and in various contexts. In criminal procedures, it usually implies, among other things, that a person cannot be held in custody beyond a reasonable period without being charged formally with a crime –in America typically a day or two– unless a judge issues a specific order to the contrary. (This is one reason why holding suspects for years, typically without trial, in the Guantanamo Bay detention center sparked legal protests from some Americans.) In Italy habeas corpus means almost nothing. Police in Italy can detain a person for days or weeks on the pretext that they are “gathering physical evidence” against the suspect, whose release they purport would permit him to destroy that evidence. Yes, law-enforcement procedures in Italy are tricky.

Search and Seizure: In the United States evidence obtained illegally (for example, without a specific search warrant, or during an unauthorised interrogation) cannot be introduced in a court of law. British law permits somewhat more latitude in this regard (a drug charge might be made if cocaine were discovered during a search even though the police were officially searching for something else). In Italy, however, it is fairly easy for police to obtain permission to search one’s home, and roadside “spot checks” of motorists’ vehicles are, in effect, on-the-spot searches made for no directly-related cause (i.e. probable suspicion is not present). Likewise personal searches, even of a person walking down the street – though this is relatively rare.

Right to Legal Counsel: In some countries a suspect has the right to have an attorney present during a police interrogation. This is not always the case in Italy. Furthermore, in Italian courts the judges have wide powers which make them, in many situations, de facto prosecutors as well as presiding magistrates.

Trial by a Jury of Peers: In Italy juries, in the rare cases that they even exist, are usually small councils of four or five attorneys. This is a good example of an early-medieval Germanic principle (a jury composed of tribal elders) which never found its way into law south of the Alps over the centuries, despite the lengthy Longobardic rule of the Italian peninsula.

Double Jeopardy: Defined as a defense that forbids a defendant from being tried again on the same or similar charges following a legitimate acquittal or conviction, this exists in Italy in theory but not always in practice. In a felony case such as murder, there’s the trial (Primo Grado or ‘first step’), automatic first appeal (Secondo Grado or ‘second step’) and possibly the second appeal to the High Court or ‘Cassation’ (Terzo Grado or ‘third step’). One normally thinks of the (convicted) defendant seeking appeal, but the prosecution may also appeal. Therefore, a murder conviction may be overturned on first appeal (and the defendant released) but subsequently appealed by the prosecution to the High Court. Effectively, the defendant, who has been found ‘not guilty’ and released ‘unconditionally,’ is being re-tried for the same charges. In the UK and US this would be considered double jeopardy; in these nations a conviction judgement (of ‘guilty’) can be appealed by the person convicted (the defendant), while a ‘not guilty’ judgement is final and cannot normally be appealed by the prosecution except in rare instances such as mistrial. Occasionally a defendant exonerated on one charge may be tried (subsequently) on other charges, but that’s not what happens in Italy in the situation described here.

Incidentally, this issue was raised immediately following the Amanda Knox acquittal in Perugia in October 2011. Ms Knox returned to the United States but an eventual ruling reversing her acquittal (on the appeal requested by the prosecution as the ‘Terzo Grado’) would not result in her extradition to Italy because the relative treaty makes it clear that neither the United States or the Italian Republic can claim extradition for an act that is not considered a crime in the other signatory nation. In the United States the ‘Terzo Grado’ judgement revoking an acquittal and release is viewed as a legal procedure tantamount to a second trial for the same crime and therefore double jeopardy. By way of comparison, on the Italian side, Italy is not obligated to extradite a murder suspect – regardless of nationality – to the United States if the suspect in question faces capital punishment (the death penalty) upon conviction as this form of punishment does not exist in Italian law. This means that, in theory, if an American murder suspect can make his way to Italy, the Italian government, being responsible to protect anybody on Italian soil, could refuse to extradite the suspect to the United States. (The same principle exists in most European Union countries, none of which have the death penalty.) Until now, the only cases similar to this have involved Mafiosi who were extradited to the United States only after the death penalty was ‘taken off the table.’

Freedom of Speech: It’s amazing how frequently Italian authorities attempt, sometimes with success, to squelch the press. An interesting case was Sabina Guzzanti’s satirical television programme (Raiot) which was cancelled after just the initial show was aired on one of the state networks because it allegedly “defamed” the reigning politicians. The film Lion of the Desert was effectively banned in Italy for decades, supposedly because it portrayed the Italian army in a negative light. A BBC documentary, Fascist Legacy, was also censured for many years.

Admittedly, this strikes a comical note in the era of the global village. By the 1990s, any Italian could have purchased these two “banned” films abroad and (if he could understand English) viewed them in their original language. When, in June 2009, prime minister Silvio Berlusconi persuaded an Italian court to suppress some photos taken of his summer villa in Sardinia, a Spanish newspaper ran them. Mr Berlusconi’s attempts to regulate the press – like a predecessor’s protests against the airing of Fascist Legacy in the United Kingdom – have met with little success beyond Italy’s borders.

Defamation and Libel: In the United States these are most often civil (rather than criminal) issues, and unless the defamation alleges criminal activity or serious wrongdoing, the plaintiff may have to demonstrate financial injury to win his case. Britain offers wider latitude for legal remedy. By comparison, Italy’s laws regarding these matters are vague and subjective, facilitating complaints (criminally) and litigation (civilly) on the flimsiest of pretexts. This makes it difficult, for example, for journalists to criticise public officials.

Appointment of Judges: Whether it’s better to elect certain local judges (as happens in the United States) or appoint them remains to be seen. The problem is that in Italy all judges are bureaucrats, and appointments are far more political than what exists in America because political philosophies are usually more extreme and because there is virtually no preliminary review of judges by the people (as in American congressional hearings to approve supreme court nominees). Some factions of the Italian judiciary are overwhelmingly leftist or, conversely, right-wing. As an example, Paolo Borsellino, a Sicilian judge killed by the Mafia, was politically right-wing (influenced by parents openly sympathetic to Fascism). In America and Britain judges are rarely quite so extremist in their philosophies and views.

Guilt by Association: While America’s RICO statutes facilitate the prosecution of criminal conspiracy, Italy’s anti-Mafia laws (which influenced RICO) make it possible to arrest somebody (and detain him for months on mere suspicion) based exclusively on a convicted criminal’s finger-pointing. In this way, pentiti (jailed Mafia turncoats who are cooperating with state prosecutors) often accuse upstanding citizens of being involved with organised crime, and those honest citizens are duly interrogated and even arrested. Some years ago, a former prime minister had to defend himself against these kinds of allegations, of which he was found not-guilty after a very long, expensive trial in Palermo.

Burden of Proof: In Italy the “burden of proof” is extremely high, and this allows many criminals to go free. While this is obviously a serious matter in organised crime, it is also relevant in matters of lesser gravity. For example, the fact that a man is in possession of stolen property, whether automobiles, motor scooters or jewellery, may not be held against him to the extent that it would be in Britain, Australia, Canada or the United States, even though possession of stolen property is a criminal offence in Italy as elsewhere. The question of burden of proof also comes into play in rape trials (see below).

Right to a Speedy Trial: In Italy a civil trial, as well as a criminal one, can take months or even years. The concept of a speedy trial simply does not exist in Italy. That said, there are statutes of limitations for certain offences, which is why mafiosi often are set free.

Speed Limit: Contrary to what you might think, there is a national speed limit in Italy. It is 150 kilometers per hour, which is about 93 miles per hour.

Presumption of Innocence: While this technically exists in Italy, in practice it is frequently overlooked entirely, especially in the investigations leading to trial. Some years ago, a company which sold legal pornography (in digital media such as DVDs) via the internet was investigated because somebody suspected that it was selling child pornography as well. The investigation itself was legal, but a number of customers were arrested based on an unsubstantiated suspicion that they had purchased the illicit material even though no company records or other evidence indicated this. Elsewhere, they might have been called in for questioning; in Italy police “SWAT” teams burst into their homes at six o’clock in the morning to search for the offending material (see Search and Seizure above). It is doubtful that an American or British judge would have summarily permitted such searches based on such a flimsy pretext.

Age of Consent: Italians will point out that the legal age of sexual consent in Italy is 15 if a minor has sexual relations with a near-contemporary under the age of 21, or 16 if the other party is over 21. But what if a 14 year-old girl has sex with a 23 year-old man? This is clearly illegal, but yet it is rarely prosecuted because the girl or her parents would have to file the police complaint, which rarely happens. How often do such sexual relationships occur? There are no reliable statistics, but they are frequent enough not to raise too many eyebrows, especially in the southern part of the country. When you hear about a 26 year-old man marrying a 19 year-old woman after a long courtship, you may be forgiven for inferring that they were having illegal sex some years earlier when the woman was a minor. Sex in Sicily may occasionally be complicated, but not enough to discourage anybody who wants it.

Drinking Age: In certain Italian cities (most recently Palermo and Milan in July 2009) local statutes establish that a patron must be at least 16 years of age to purchase alcoholic drinks at a pub, bar or club at any time, or in restaurants after a certain hour. A new national law likewise says that nobody under 16 may purchase wine, beer or liquor anyplace (not even in a supermarket). In practice, however, teenagers as young as 13 usually can purchase wine or beer in stores with no problem whatsoever. Alcoholism, though a growing problem, is quite rare in Italy (particularly in the South). An adult, other than a parent or guardian, may not legally serve alcohol to a minor under the age of 14. All of this contrasts greatly with the countries where the sale of alcohol is (at least officially) prohibited to persons under the age of 18 or even 21. Until a few years ago (when the age for alcohol purchase was established at 16), it was 14. Before that, Italy had no “minimum drinking age” at all.

Rape: Here Italian law is consistent with European Union norms, and indeed medieval Italy was among the first European societies (notably with the Constitutions of Melfi of Frederick II) to codify civil statutes against rape. But proving rape to the satisfaction of an Italian judge is nearly impossible, and blaming the victim is normal in Italy, so rape is highly underreported here, to the point that there are extremely few rape trials at all. Owing to the high juridical burden of proof, and to the shame attached to the raped woman by Italian society at large, this crime is rarely prosecuted. Ditto domestic abuse; it is extremely rare for a wife to file an assault complaint against her husband.

Divorce: A few months ago this site published an article dedicated to divorce in Sicily. The entire topic brings with it a series of laws and social practices unique to Italy to the extent that divorce in this country bears little resemblance to divorce anyplace else in western Europe.

Sexual Harassment: Forget about it; there are few statutes on the books that even define this as a crime. Like rape and domestic abuse, sexual harassment (in the workplace) is so unlikely to be prosecuted that it is hardly worth even considering here. The same applies to male university professors chasing their young female students. It is extremely rare that such a thing is actually prosecuted. This is one of those areas where European Union law will eventually influence Italian law – but probably not Italian social practice.

A big part of the problem is that Italian women generally accept the status quo. The presence of young miniskirted “hostesses” everywhere – at business conventions, trade shows, shopping malls – and scantily-clad “show girls” (or “veline”) on television makes it easy for Italian women to be seen as sex objects.

Taxation: About fifteen years ago, the government needed money but the tax rolls couldn’t provide enough of it. The solution? Levy a “one-time” tax, a sort of modern head tax, on every citizen who had a bank account by taking a certain amount (let’s say 2 euros) from each account. This was similar to the “donativi” levied by Sicily’s kings in times past; in other words, tax the people whenever you please. Obviously, this would be unconstitutional in the United States and Britain. Italians are overzealously taxed by the government. Americans who think that public health care and universities in Italy are “free” should think again. In fact, Italians pay for these “rights” with their taxes.

Sales (value-added) tax in Italy reaches around 20% for many retail purchases, but it’s the numerous residential, motor-vehicle and other taxes that make life difficult. Here’s an example. On purchasing your primary residence you’ll pay little or no tax on the actual purchase, and no annual tax (what Italians call the ICI). However, on a second piece of residential property (for example a vacation home) you’ll pay around 11% at the time of purchase plus the annual tax. Italy has inheritance tax and some people want to introduce an annual “personal wealth tax” such as exists in France. Incidentally, Italy’s bank fees are among Europe’s highest, while interest paid on bank deposits are among the lowest in the European Union.

Civil Disturbance: Order and decorum count for very little in Italy. It’s not unusual for the streets of Palermo and other cities to be closed by protest marches. Many –too many– of these protests are legally authorised, though perhaps fewer should be. Others are illegal. One afternoon, a lone protester stood at Palermo’s Quattro Canti with a megaphone and was permitted by police (who stood by watching) to block traffic for about five minutes. I was there to witness this astounding incident. It wasn’t very entertaining. Some years ago, protesting Fiat workers were allowed to close a segment of the superhighway connecting Palermo and Catania. That wasn’t too entertaining, either.

Financial Privacy: There isn’t much of it in Italy, but this is a complex topic for which I’ll offer just two examples. A recent law decreed that for every package sent abroad by courier (UPS, Fed Ex, etc.) the sender had to supply his tax number and other identifying information. Another recent law dictates that any payment made to an individual or firm for a value over a hundred euros must be made by check or wire transfer, never in cash. If you are investigated for a tax problem, you’ll be visited by uniformed treasury officers (Guardia di Finanza) armed with fully- automatic machine guns. In practice, despite laws to the contrary, they can investigate your bank records at will – and your bank may not even bother to notify you that they’ve been snooping about. Wire tapping is also zealous in Italy, but much of what is conducted is unauthorised. It is suspected (as reported by The Economist, 20 June 2009, page 30, “Language Problems”) that the telephone calls of certain foreign journalists are tapped.

Civil Recourse: In practice, it’s virtually impossible to sue the state or any state-controlled institution in Italy, so a medical malpractice or wrongful death suit against a public hospital is unthinkable under most circumstances, although in recent years a few such cases have been successful and new “class action” legislation will better facilitate this in the future. It is also extremely difficult to sue for damages resulting from such things as food poisoning (in a restaurant) or work-related injuries (incurred in a factory or on a work site). In any event, the compensatory awards are minimal.

Dual Government Appointments: It is legal in Italy for a person to hold two or more public positions (elective or appointed) simultaneously, for example as a senator of the Italian Republic and as a member of the European Parliament. In June 2009 a referendum was held which might have changed this but a quorum of voters was not reached which would have validated the proposition.

Felons in Government: In many cases it is possible for a convicted felon to run for a high office such as a seat in the senate or chamber of deputies, and indeed numerous Italian parliamentarians have been convicted of various crimes. Further, as a person convicted of a crime need not be incarcerated while appealing his sentence, he could actually run for office during the period between the verdict of the lower court and the hearing of his appeal by a higher one. Given the lack of alacrity in judicial process in Italy, this period could span years. One of the (many) strange paradoxes in this is that a serious run-in with the law would probably cost a man the chance of consideration for membership in the Rotary or Lions clubs (both active in Italy), or for an order of chivalry like the Order of Malta or Order of the Holy Sepulchre, yet he could still be elected to the senate.

Slavery: Don’t laugh too hard. Of course actual slavery is illegal in Italy, but a high court ruled in 2008 that gypsies (Roma) could not be prosecuted for imposing slavery on their children (nor could they be charged with child abuse) by virtue of the fact of constraining them to beg for money in public places. Yet an Italian citizen would be charged under the existing statute. An Italian parent would, presumably, also be ordered to place his child in school during the day instead of forcing her to beg for money on the street; efforts have been made to get Roma children into school. The judges stated that begging for offerings was part of “gypsy culture” and therefore had to be “respected” as such. The Italian line appropriated from the Supreme Court building in Washington, “La legge √® uguale per tutti” (Egual justice under the law) didn’t seem to apply in this situation, which effectively relegates gypsies to perpetual second-class status in Italy.

Prostitution: Italian law is more-or-less similar to what exists in Britain and a few parts of the United States (such as Las Vegas). Prostitution is legal if it is based on a contract (or action which constitutes a contract) between the prostitute, in her own home, and an adult client. However, a third party may not commercialise it in any way; this includes pimps but also any prostitutes who collectively rent a house or apartment to ply their trade, and it means that sexual services may not be advertised in any way. Sex is illegal in public, despite what you may see young lovers doing in public parks and on the beach. “Escort” services are not illegal per se.

Nepotism: Although there are certain British and American laws which prohibit the appointment of close kin to public posts where they may be working closely, the avoidance of nepotism, especially in the public sector, in academia and in publicly-traded companies, is as often a matter of policy as of law. In these societies nepotism is viewed as particularly repugnant. Not in Italy. Nepotism in Sicily is described in a separate article. It permeates every part of life in Italy.

Age Discrimination: It is legal to discriminate against job applicants based on their age, and ads for open positions often specify the required ages of applicants.

Public Nudity: In Italian advertising and on television there is a greater degree of nudity than you encounter in Britain or in the United States, and on holiday Italian starlets seem slightly more willing than their American sisters to bare all. This has to do with the dearth of “public decency” laws in Italy. On public beaches toplessness is permitted (as it is in some parts of the US). Italy does not have any “nude” public beaches but naturist clubs and resorts make use of private beaches for this purpose. What you do not see much of in Italy, particularly in Sicily, are striptease clubs.

Zoning Regulations: In Italian cities you see an eclectic mix of commercial, residential and even industrial property on the same block. That’s because, except for a few historical preservation statutes, Italy has no zoning or construction laws establishing that homes and businesses be separated from each other. A typical five-floor building in the city might house offices, residences and (at ground level) a store or restaurant.

Conflicts of Interest: The idea that the Italian prime minister’s assets would be placed in a “blind trust” during his term (a policy applied to American presidents) has never been seriously contemplated. Italian politicians routinely pass legislation in their own interest, or act in the interest of their own families while in office (see nepotism above). The problem is that there are very few statutes that actually make these conflicts of interest illegal. Silvio Berlusconi has often been criticised for “controlling” the Italian media because, in addition to his influence over the public television networks as prime minister, he controls several private ones through the companies he owns (and also several newspapers). As this situation was never contemplated before the 1980s, for there existed no private networks in Italy before then, it was not addressed by legislation. As you may imagine, conflicts of interest are evident in many parts of Italian life.

Corruption: This term is somewhat subjective in a nation where (as mentioned above) nepotism, conflicts of interest and sexual harassment are a normal part of life and – in at least some cases – may even be perfectly legal. Consider the difference between payment of a “commission” versus a “payoff.” If I steer some big-spending customers toward a restaurant, hotel or other business, the owner may wish to recognise my effort with a small payment. That kind of commission is legal so long as I pay taxes on it. (Think of it as “consulting” work.) If, however, a politician receives payment from the owner of a construction firm for pointing a public contract in his direction, that’s illegal. On a socio-cultural level, this distinction is lost on many Italians accustomed to a climate where it’s normal to pay for everything, and where “recommendations” and other practices are the norm; in Sicily it’s even normal to pay for job preferments.

Shopping Hours: While regulations have been relaxed in recent years in Italy (as in France), there are commercial restrictions which force most stores to be closed on Sundays. There are exceptions for certain shopping malls, and in some cities the stores are permitted to open on one Sunday each month and every Sunday of December before Christmas.

Separation of Church and State: A complex topic. Since 1986 Italy has been a “secular” nation having no state religion (crucifixes already in place before that date were not removed from schools, courthouses and other public buildings), but the Catholic Church is still powerful enough to be able, through political connections, to force rejection of another religious group’s petition to build a place of worship. This is especially bizarre considering that Italy has no zoning laws, but it’s a question of approval for a construction permit by a local council. Most Italians consider themselves Catholic socially, and the military has an overwhelmingly Catholic character; a non-Catholic is unlikely to become a high-ranking officer in the army, air force, navy, Carabinieri or Guardia di Finanza (Treasury Police). While a few vocal atheists, secularists and anti-clericals get press attention, their voices are drowned out by the majority. Very few politicians, even on the extreme Left, openly oppose the Catholic Church in any way, although divorce and abortion (contrary to Catholic protests) are legal in Italy. In Palermo alone there are three large statues of Padre Pio which have been placed on public property over the last ten years (in Borgo Vecchio, in Piazza Unit√† d’Italia, in Via Mediatrice), but that’s just a visible example of the church’s influence. The invisible hand of the Catholic Church extends into many aspects of life in Italy, even for non-Italians and non-Catholics. Some years ago, a Catholic archbishop of Palermo dissuaded a local American club from permitting a non-Catholic member (an American clergyman) participating in a prayer service sponsored by the club. Palermo’s mosque was founded in a deconsecrated church with the cooperation of the Tunisian government and the Archdiocese of Palermo not only as a gesture of brotherhood but to “control” Muslim influence in the city by attempting to isolate its activity in a specific place. Such gestures are made on the condition that the non-Catholic religious community being assisted will focus on foreigners and will not convert Italians to its faith.

Jobs and Wages: How can so many Sicilians earn so little? Italy has no national minimum hourly wage (in the United States it’s presently $7.25), and in Sicily it is not unusual for a private-sector employer –or even a public agency– to pay monthly salaries late. This, and rampant unemployment, is one of the main reasons people leave Sicily in search of greener economic pastures. Employees in certain fields are infamously underpaid, but as there exists no law establishing the lowest legal wage exploitation is the norm.

Terror in Academia: Sicily’s infamously mediocre universities are marked by nepotism and a terrible learning environment. These poor conditions thrive because lax laws permit them. (Having briefly attended the University of Palermo before studying in the United States, I’ve had experience with both systems; Palermo’s university is poorly and corruptly administered even by Italian standards.)

Freedom of Movement: As I’ve said, in Italy the state, not Nature, grants you your rights. In Italy passports are issued by the police department. Think about that. Does it sound a little like something you’d expect in a police state? You be the judge.

Caveat Viator: I was shocked the first time I heard an Italian use the phrase “un paese di merda” in referring to Italy. But such colorful expressions (I’ll spare you a literal translation but it is a criticism of Italy as a state) reflect frustration with Italy’s laws, government and public administration rather than the country’s people and culture. One hopes that eventually, as the law and society evolve, this sentiment will be heard less frequently. But for now… Welcome to the jungle!

About the Author: Amanda Sorensen, who practices law in the United States, lived in Italy for nine years (her mother is Sicilian) and still frequently visits Sicily, where she has a second residence. Thanks to Vincenzo Salerno for the historical information he provided, and to Marilu Romano for additional research and statistics.

Day 451: The Best Healthcare? Only possible with a Living Income Guaranteed

 

I would like to talk about the 3rd leading cause of Death in the United states, Iatrogenic Disease, also known as ‘medical malpractice’ and the state of our Healthcare system, taking the USA as a -bad- example.

Here some extracts from articles about it:

Medical Mistakes Often UnreportedDetroit News

Based on a recent report by the Institute of Medicine, which estimates 36 error-related hospital deaths per 100,000 people, 3,534 Michiganians died last year due to medical mistakes.

Patients reported 2,027 complaints about health care organizations to the state, but Tom Lindsay, director of the Michigan Bureau of Health Services, said those likely represent just a fraction of the mistakes.

Medical MistakesNew York Times

The NEW YORK TIMES reported that 5% of people admitted to hospitals, or about 1.8 million people per year, in the U.S. pick up an infection while there. Such infections are called “iatrogenic” — meaning “induced by a physician,” or, more loosely, “caused by medical care.”

Iatrogenic infections are directly responsible for 20,000 deaths among hospital patients in the U.S. each year, and they contribute to an additional 70,000 deaths, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control CDC). The dollar cost of iatrogenic infections is $4.5 billion, according to the CDC.

National Patient Safety Foundation

A new poll from the nonprofit National Patient Safety Foundation (NPSF) finds that 42 percent of people say they’ve been affected by physician errors, either directly or through a friend or relative.

If the survey of roughly 1,500 people accurately represents the general public, it could mean that more than 100 million Americans have experience with medical mistakes.

More alarming, according to the survey, is the fact that in one out of three cases the error permanently harmed the patient’s health.

Dr. Leape is a board member of the NPSF, which was founded by the American Medical Association in June of this year to improve health care safety.

AMA leaders say it’s time to bring the issue out into the open, rather than living in constant fear that any admission of error will launch a flood of malpractice lawsuits.

Leape’s own research has shown that the tally of medical mistakes made each year could reach 3 million, with total costs as high as $200 billion.

The survey found that 40 percent of the people who had experienced a medical mistake pointed to misdiagnoses and wrong treatments as the problem. Medication errors accounted for 28 percent of mistakes.

And 22 percent of respondents reported slip-ups during medical procedures.

Half of the errors occurred in hospitals, and 22 percent in doctors’ offices.

“It’s really a joke to worry about the occasional plane that goes down when we have thousands of people who are killed in hospitals every year.” Brook’s recognition of the extent of hospital errors is shared by many of medicine’s leaders.

Care — not treatment — is the answer. Drugs, surgery and hospitals become increasingly dangerous for chronic disease cases. Facilitating the God-given healing capacity by improving the diet, exercise, and lifestyle is the key.

Effective interventions for the underlying emotional and spiritual wounding behind most chronic disease is critical for the reinvention of our medical paradigm. These numbers suggest that reinvention of our medical paradigm is called for.

I would like to say that not all doctors are butchers, in Italy, a candid repented Mafia man exposed the story of when he sat at university as a ‘professor’ to grant some a degree in medicine as a favour to their families, my guess would be those would not make the best physicians having hardly seen a biology book in their lives, but there are many dedicated doctors who understand and embrace the principle of ‘do no harm’ -which given the statistics would be a good start- and who really want to make a difference in people’s lives.

Often times these doctors find themselves in the impossible position against big systems and corporations, unable to move out of accepted medical para-dimes for profit, feeling trapped and discontented with the system the way it is and unable to change it, unable to step out of it and even unable to expose it, in fear for their survival.

Take Homeopathy for example, the medicines are very cheap, highly affordable, I have been reading blogs of Indian homeopaths that cure people in the Mac Giver’s fashion, testing simple remedies and maximizing what they have to alleviate suffering, exchanging ideas, treatments, creating effective webs of support for those that can’t even afford to be killed by traditional medicine. All this without moving money.

And what do we do with them? We deride them, we call them insane, tell them about their ‘sweet pill’ that will not solve anything, we publish articles to denigrate their studies and turn them into nutcases, dismissing our chances to understand more about our personalities and the role they play in our health – did you know for example that some people with multiple personalities disorder had severe allergies to a specific food only when ’embodying’ one specific personality and not others? This alone should make us rethink the way we approach healthcare, aren’t we all ‘multiple personality’ people?
We could humble ourselves for once and admit the truth, which is that we know little about how the body works holistically and we need all the help we can find to work it out.

Take this Wikipedia reference to Homeopathy for disinformation

Continued homeopathic practice, despite the evidence that it does not work, has been criticized as unethical because it increases the suffering of patients by discouraging the use of real medicine, with the World Health Organisation warning against using homeopathy to try to treat severe diseases such as HIV and malaria. The continued practice, despite a lack of evidence of efficacy, has led to homeopathy being characterized within the scientific and medical communities as nonsense, quackery, or a sham.

The British House of Commons Science and Technology Committee has stated: “In our view, the systematic reviews and meta-analyses conclusively demonstrate that homeopathic products perform no better than placebos. The Government shares our interpretation of the evidence.

I have actually had exceptional personal experiences with Homeopathy, so not only I cannot support this claim about its inefficacy but I want to point out that statements like these only expose the system we have created, a profit-making machine with no concern for life and the well-being of all.

Hasn’t the establishment’ been trying to treat HIV unsuccessfully for decades? SO why don’t we find this mentioned or iatrogenic disease, as the third leading cause of death in the USA alone, under ‘Medicine’?

Why don’t we find information about the Queen of England and other Royals using Homeopathy – is she dumb? Uninformed? Didn’t she get the memo from the house of Lords about Homeopathy NOT performing better than placebos? Mysteries of the world we live in.

While I read many many pages on homeopathy to understand better its principles  I found a very telling quote that I wish to share

Usually in homeopathy one gets cases that have “tried everything else”. One of the contributory factors to the problem is the demand by the public that unpleasant discharges of whatever nature are immediately suppressed. Antibiotics do this, but as Prof. J.T.Kent points out on p909 of his lectures

“… The great mischief done by allopaths is due to the fact that they want to cover up everything that is in the economy.
They act as if ashamed of everything in the human race: whereas homeopathy endeavors to reveal everything in the human race and to antidote those drugs that cover up, and to free those diseases that are held down. It is true that many patients will not have homeopathy because they do not want the evidences of their indiscretion brought to light, but homeopathy endeavors to do that. Conditions that are in the economy will come out under proper homeopathic treatment.

There you go, the Secret about Why homeopathy is not even wanted to be considered in an unbiased way, not even considering the remarkable success on the cases that Allopathic medicine could not treat.

To be succesful in treating someone with homeopathy, a lot of very personal details are collected, one’s relationship to oneself, to one own’s mind, to others, to sexuality, dreams, food preferences, sleep patterns, it takes a degree of self honesty to be able to bring everything to the table to seek for a remedy because homeopathic remedies are specific, truly detailed archetypes of our personalities at play – and some are very nasty, who wants to say ‘yes, I am like that at the moment’?

So, the reason why homeopathy has not performed as well as it could have in our testing, rests in one of our greatest mistakes, our lack of self honesty, our lack of accountability for who we have become so much so that we would miss out on the opportunity for physical support if able to keep the masks on. Who wants to say ‘yes I am selfish, jealous, have dreams of killing people or raping them?’ Who wants to be ‘that kind of person’ – even when they are?

Incidentally, as I looked through hundreds of remedy I stumbled on the ‘Personality’ of one of my clients, it was astonishing and humbling to read, it made me realize that I had judged her as not wanting to ‘snap out of it’ when in fact some of our personalities really end up becoming pathological, the person no longer has the capacity to snap out of what has been created and embodied through time, hence, when we are tempted to judge someone we should stop and remind ourselves there are so many layers to this existence we are not aware of and that many diseases are just patterns playing out – it would help to see we are not dealing with evil people¬† but with evil patterns handed down from GENErations to GENEration – that are now embodied in people, in all of us.

To be able to rewrite our healthcare system in a way that considers more layers of what a ‘healthy human’ should function like, we need the freedom to do so.

For sure homeopathy will not hold all answers, nor is allopathic medicine completely dumb and yet we will never know what works best unless we un-link medicine from profit-making and return it to a noble practice of CARE first and foremost.

In this a Living Income Guaranteed will be our greatest ally, many would make different choices if they could, if we didn’t fault everything that we can’t see how to monetize, like homeopathy, we would be better off for that, we could take the best out of each practice and we could guarantee that our doctors, those truly devoted to the well-being of others, would have the freedom to move, to choose, to expose what doesn’t work and drive it to a solution, because their lives wouldn’t be on the line and that is when our expansion into taking care of others take place. We have to move our doctors beyond survival to reap the benefits of their abilities, their unbiased studies and concern for humanity.

If you have been looking at ways to change out healthcare system, consider a #livingincomeguaranteed, we could guarantee that each doctor has their life given back, free of charges, guaranteed, and we give ourselves and each other a life as a given, not as a struggle or as a debt or as a bond, then fixing the nuts and bolts of the matter will be an easy task that we can accomplish in one lifetime.

Join the discussion, share, care, let’s rethink this world to make it work for all.
It’s possible and it’s up to us to decide if we want to support Life or Death – in between there is nothing left.

Day 448: Wars and Famine are Human Ritual Sacrifices

The emergence of news about ritual abuses and human sacrifices has a shock factor that still gets our attention.

We can’t say the same for the ritual abuses and human sacrifices that we have ‘normalized’ in our world – we are hardly moved by pictures of hungry children in Africa or by wars, overexposure to these news made them normal and exposes the way we handle what we do to keep the world the way it is, take our Hollywood movies, if one shocking truth comes out about anything, we make a movie about it – think ‘Blood Diamonds’ or ‘Promised Land’ movies in which we tell each other ‘the way things are’. Sometime, like in the case of ‘Promised Land’ we tell the story even including how corporations get away with any potential obstacle by impersonating both sides of the fight, there, we exposed it, my guess is that we do this because we can then believe ‘we know what is going on for real, we are not stupid’, enjoy our contained moment of shock and dismal and then gladly go back to sleep.

Someone said that ‘Masses pay the ruling class for the privilege of the very entertainments that helps to keep them under the laughing gas’, and it is absolutely true, imagine the ingenuity, have your slaves pay to be enslaved, what a cunning, brilliant plan.

Here an interesting extract on human sacrifices from an article by Acharya S., a classically trained archaeologist, historian, mythologist and linguist, as well as a member of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens, Greece, and the associate director of the Institute for Historical Accuracy.

‘It is also purported that such sacrifices by any number of priesthoods, transcending race and creed, continue to this day in secret sites of the elite. Some members of this elite group, which includes both Jews and Gentiles, allegedly will bring about the destruction of the Muslim “Dome on the Rock” in Jerusalem so “the Jews” can reestablish the Temple for sacrificial rites (ostensibly of animals), an act that would certainly cause major turmoil in the Middle East if not the entire planet. There have in fact been several recent attempts to blow up the Dome, some of which were funded by Jewish/Christian organizations in the U.S.

War Itself is Human Sacrifice
This all raises the question of whether or not war itself is considered a sacrificial rite by the elite, who, along with their families, frequently escape such deadly rituals. The ranks of the “old money” elite are composed of robber-barons and third-party weapons manufacturers who both finance and reap the benefits of war. This “business,” in fact, is how they became elite in the first place, with the first tribal chieftain invading another’s territories, killing the inhabitants and stealing their land.

When one studies all the world’s entanglements, it becomes obvious that human beings must stop allowing themselves to be programmed with racist and sexist ideologies – and religions are numero uno offenders in that regard: Anti-woman and anti-everyone else who is not “like us.” These “unbelievers” and “infidels,” in fact, are to be condescendingly pitied, hated and/or killed. Those who believe “our way” are superior to those who do not, according to the pathology.

And so it goes on and on without respite from the ear-splitting, insane cacophony. When will humankind evolve? As American actor Gene Kelly said in the movie Inherit the Wind: “Darwin was wrong. Man’s still an ape. His creed’s still a totem pole. When he first achieved the upright position, he took a look at the stars, and thought they were something to eat. When he couldn’t reach them, he decided they were groceries belonging to a bigger creature. That’s how Jehovah was born.”

And so the story goes that there is nothing new under the sun, Human Sacrifices were performed all throughout history for power and wealth and to appease Gods that seem even more insane than the ones we became accustomed to worship, our Mind Control has led us to a blindness that doesn’t allow us to see the obvious, if wars are preventable events, if they are uneconomical – bar for a bunch of people who manage to even make money on them-, if we have the means and understanding to see where some imperialistic behaviors can lead, why don’t we give them up, why don’t we change, why do we accept someone else’s definition of Crime and do not extend it to senseless wars, to predictable famine, what is the cognitive dissonance that stands in our way from doing so?

What if the disclosure of human sacrifices we so fear when we hear about them as a singular, odd event, were part¬† of our mind control programs, the diversion for the vast, huge amounts of human sacrifices happening every day to thousands¬† of beings around the world that we no longer see or hear and whose suffering has become ‘normality’ justified by their prolonged, never ending/never so far ended, existence and by our dumb, never questioned, acceptance?

If you have been worried about Ritual Abuses, Human Sacrifices and Mind Control and you have never considered Wars and Famine as Ritual Abuses and Human Sacrifices, You Are Mind Controlled.

We have justified and turned famine into a side effect of a system we are led to believe it’s the best we can get for a freedom and a democracy we have never even seen with a telescope, and have turned wars into honorable happenstances that churn out dead heroes and medals for posterity, we have invested state sanctioned homicides as Wars with a character of justice and courage, qualities we want to participate with because we are mostly unjust and cowards but in a group, who knows, we might be redeemed.

Have we been and are we still ruled by superstitious, TheMented, capricious, psychopaths that have found ways to mass produce ritual sacrifices for magick invocations of wealth ?

Not that this should come as a shock, what we see outside goes on in each one of us, we each hold some superstitious belief about the world, our own petty rituals, call it religion or magical thinking or both, we are capricious about the way we want the Economy to run to satisfy our wants in the face of the unmet needs of many, willing to sacrifice others at the altar of our own wealth and success and we are ultimately all psychopaths for not recognizing the suffering of others as our own, the lives lost in wars and famine for what they are, the horrific loss of brothers and sisters of our Human Family and of priceless human potential, it’s time to seek solutions to end the sacrificial nature of this world and our participation within it, once and for all.

There is one way for us to break free, we can come together to break the spell we have cast on each other, ending the sacrifices of every living being on the planet by recognizing the nature of what we have accepted and allowed with our silent, manufactured consent and decide, together, on a different path.

We can decide that it is Life that must be guaranteed to all, and not death, death is a given on this planet while Life is not yet, and that is weird to say the least, we have come up with plenty absurd justifications about why it is so that we have invested with Authority and called Law, Economics, Monetary Policies, Politics, but guess what, we were told as well that war made sense, that famine was unavoidable in such a big world, all big fat lies that we can stop supporting and living as Truths if we decide to do so.

The Life of All living beings must be supported, honoured, guaranteed – not taken for no reason other than our mental ill-nesses that we have ritualized and sanctified, only Supporting Life for All will end our senseless lives of sacrifices and the horrific life taking,¬† whatever is the name of the sacrifice we have bought into, austerity, bonds, debts, usury, prostitution, famine, lack, wars, the list is long, let’s stop coming up with new ideas about how to abuse and sacrifice each other so we put an end to Ritual Abuses and Human Sacrifices that we never saw before as such, once and for all.

Join the discussion for a Living Income Guaranteed, let’s step out of our sacrificial mind-set, make this proposal and what it means your own, share it, spell it, breathe Life into it, your Life, for yourself and everyone else, Equal and One.

Day 445: The Elite is not The Enemy but our Wake Up Call to Global Change

 

Today I got an email from a friend that shared a link about an organization called The Re-set that supports

A constitutional re-set to re-store fair principles, accountability, community led governance and ethics.

I couldn’t help but notice how my email Inbox has changed in the last 5 years, I went from news about suggested self-serving intangible changes like positive thinking and energetics and conspiracy theories to receiving most of my emails about people rising up and getting involved to seek solutions that are real, physical and that consider that Life on this planet must be taken into account in everything we do, if we want real sustainable change.

I still get the occasional bullshit and fear based news and some pretence system-smoke-mirrors about change that don’t involve any specific participation but an electronic signature but, definitely, what I have noticed is a diminishment of our delusions and the realization that we need to come together to agree on new principles to manage Life on this planet.

And who do we have to thank for this if not the Elite? If the limited money in the world had not been sucked all the way up to the top, we would all still be living our comfortable, sheltered lives totally oblivious to the suffering of others.

Maybe we have to understand our Equality through suffering, just like we have always done, because we are not yet mature enough to evaluate solutions without being pushed by desperation into seeking them. But we can learn that even that is not necessary nor required.

So, for once, I would like to write The Elite, the 1%, a Thank You note for this wake up call, maybe many of them didn’t intend this to happen, maybe those at the top are just as shortsighted as the ones at the bottom, a fact that could explain why so much damage at a global scale keeps going on, as the more powerful, those who have accumulated the most money and have the thickest buffer protecting them from physical reality, may be suffering at the highest degree from our social diseases ranging from full-blown psychopathy to pathological greed, yet they are just grandly showing us the dire consequences of living out our carelessness and disconnection for/from each other and all the other living beings who sharing the planet with us.

If it wasn’t for the lack that we are experiencing at a global scale, many of us wouldn’t find it in themselves to move in support of each other, we would be too careless, too carefree, too uninterested to get involved, to move, to rethink this world to a world that works for all.

We too have a proposal, it’s called A Living Income Guaranteed, it’s designed to ensure that everyone on this planet is taken care of and that they can access a Life of Dignity, so, if you have not yet done so, stand up, be counted, we can reduce the suffering we have to experience before we realize that we have to stop delegating our responsibility for this world and each other to faceless corporations and govern-ments and stand united as self responsible human beings to look for solutions that include All – only this way we’ll end the worsening of this Consequential World we have created and lived into existence to replace it with a World of Support that is truly best for all.

So, within this realization, it’s time to depose our arms/weapons/hatred/blame and stand thankful to those that made and are making our awakening possible, maybe the saying that God, as ourselves, moves in mysterious ways, is more true than we have ever realized.

 

Day 442: Boosting our GDP with Sex, Drugs and RocknRoll

 Sex, drugs and smuggling could give Italy’s economy a much-needed economic boost this year, as national statisticians incorporate the country’s underground markets into its calculations.

The Italian National Institute for Statistics said it would include drugs, prostitution and smuggling in its calculation of Italy’s 2014 GDP recalculation, which should help Prime Minister Matteo Renzi achieve his dream of narrowing the country’s deficit to 2.6 percent of the GDP, according to Bloomberg.

‚ÄúThe size of the shadow economy might have surprised some readers if they had seen these estimates two or three years ago,‚ÄĚ they wrote. However, the recent Euro crisis ‚Äúhas shone a spotlight on problems in these countries with regard to tax collection and compliance and the problems are more widely known.‚ÄĚ

Economists generally consider a ‚Äúshadow economy‚ÄĚ to include any unregistered economic activities that would contribute to the officially calculated gross national product if the activities were recorded. This includes everything from prostitution and arms trafficking to a neighborhood lemonade stand or employee discounts.
 

In Italy, this kind of activity accounts for roughly 20 percent of its total GDP, but these illegal activities account for roughly 18 percent of the entire European Union economy, according to a study by economists Friedrich Schneider and Colin Williams.

 

We are having more and more problems with trying to fit our imaginary economics models to reality and this is proven by the questionable, if not laughable, solutions we seek.

The estimate of the shadow economies of the world is always undervalued, who would like to face the fact that our illicit activities in Italy surpass our gross domestic product by double? No one.

And yet, those that have taken the time to really look into our shadow economy and include ALL THE fifty shades of gray of it, could not come up with anything less.

An illicit activity is just one not accounted for, and it is not legal, meaning it doesn’t follow the Law Scheme that we have designed in protection of the wealthy and powerful of the world; at the moment we don’t want to raise any moral question on what is illicit in an immoral world because many of these activities are what is left for some to participate in to Make a Living, aka prostitution, drugs, smuggling etc.

But there is another huge side to our illicit activities made up of bribes and illegal endeavours we are too ashamed or wary to count in, like untaxed profits hidden away in fiscal paradises by privileged corporations or individuals, or like the huge traffic of toxic waste, the sales of weapons to countries we have agreed should not have access to them (such as those that we come together and decide should not be in the dangerous position to defend and protect themselves and that should never by any means pose a threat to us while we threaten them under pretences such as democracy or freedom) and many other government secret programs which, by their very secret nature, cannot expose and account for their spending into the ‘mainstream economy’.

The point that it’s interesting to me about this whole story is that we are seeking to raise our GDP to increase our public spending, which is now tied into a ratio whose threshold seems made of a stonewall that can’t be overtaken, changed or amended in any way by rational people, even in the face of an austerity we can no longer bear.

Maybe it’s because we don’t have ‘rational people’ anywhere at the top -or at the bottom-, the ‘rational’ ones can’t be on top, we can see the random ones that come with common sense, like senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont, made to look like loony bins when they attempt to expose some of the gross and unacceptable inequalities of the system we live in, we live in a world where rationality is feared and exposed. Rationality as in what would be best for all is simply abhorred.

This is because those exposures are rare, nonexistent for the most part, so much so that when one comes and ‘tells it like it is’ we almost feel offended – how dare he/she- and start making up names to define him/her, to defile him/her, to make sure we degrade any effort put forward for real change.

Now, this decision to boost our economy with sex, drugs and illicit activities, so we can have access to more funds, is just ridiculous, first because the economy will not increase in size for real but an underwater part of it, already existing and participating at all effects in the money movement, will be taken into account just for the futile purpose of moving numbers on paper, second because we keep forgetting that whatever we are currently subjected to, including amusing economic models which have no connection to reality, all those make belief restrictions have been created by ourselves, all the prisons we are now attempting to escape one way or another are just ideas that have become models and then have become beliefs and we hold the key to change anytime we agree on something else ‘en masse’.

So, if we don’t raise an eyebrow pondering how we are planning to get more access to funds vs just asking that the current ratio limiting us from moving be raised simply because it’s currently not reasonable nor sustainable (while we work on dismantling for good what is obviously not working anyhow, in any way), and do not raise an eyebrow in questioning why if the submerged economy amounts to a declared 20% of our GDP we include only 3% just to get the approval to further spending and not the whole 20% or why not talk about the real 200% and wonder how did we get there in the first place, we have to ask ourselves why can’t we take a leap into the new from our shenanigans as we admit that we are just screwing around with meaningless numbers for the purpose of keeping everything in place as it is.

Many new economics models and proposals are emerging, proposals that consider Life above everything else and economics at its service, as it should always have been, we don’t need to raise imaginary numbers to walk through an imaginary crack in the system, we need to review this system, it’s not working and what we are doing can’t be sustained nor it should.

Seek solutions, ponder new ways we could make this world work, only when we will embrace a new vision we may take the required steps to walk it through to completion, by giving unconditionally what we would like for ourselves, access to a life worth living – for All.

Check out our Living Income Guaranteed Proposal, we can make it real, we were the designers of our outdated and unequal economic models and, as we awaken to the need to include all, we can redesign our world in support of Life, freeing everyone from the dam-nation of imaginary debt and make belief restrictive and inhumane economics. Join us.