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silicon valley USA | monterey co. USA | london UK | canaries ESP | 2017

December 2017

Republipedos repudiated
The disgusting fascist Christipedo Roy Moore was repudiated by even the reddest state of ther U.S. as dignified Doug Jones sent the nation into ecstatic celebration. The alt-right Bannon filth are reeling, the occupationist Russian stooge Donald Trump and his oil drunk goons, albeit maybe temporarily, thwarted.

Let the "me too" wave wash away our hated fake President, let the evangelical worshippers of the anti-Christ drown in shame, let the environmentalists take heart that we can get our lands back for the American people not for exploitation by 1% sanctioned Uranium miners, let freedom ring!

Resist the right-wing swamp builders. Resist fascism. Collusionist Trump, obstructor of justice, will soon face his Waterloo.

Shameful Republican capitulation to ultra rich
The anti-American juggernaut of the Russian controlled Republiscum White House and Congress rolls on, adding a horrific tax blow to the working and middle classes, along with a trillion dollar bill, to the long list of vandalizing the people of this nation including environmental destruction, anti consumer protection, pro-Nazism, boastful mysogyny, greed-fueled collusionism, pro big business yet anti small business, judicial packing, gerrymandering, unfree internet, broken health system, endless mass gun slayings, and overt racism. Just like Russia.
Michael who?

And unless you're a billionaire, there's very little you can do about it.

It would be nice to find a silver lining in all this but even if the filth get voted out the damage done will be lasting and in some ways irreparable.

On the plus side there is a palpable change in the consciousness of those, still the majority, who have a better vision of the future than the debacle we have witnessed under the current "administration".

Part of that stems from the understanding that while it's good to be active in the world, ultimately we can only raise our own awareness and level of consciousness, and amazingly more people are recognizing this and practicing accordingly. So whatever happens, there is always a way out and a way upward, but not necessarily via the path of political solutions. That portal is all but closed to anyone but the likes of the Koch brothers.


November 2017

Tin Pot Nut Job
A growing number of Americans are voicing concern that, to put it bluntly, we've got a nut job running the country who has the nuclear codes. Psychologist John Gartner [phD] describes the situation as the "greatest psychiatric crisis in history."

"The irony of Trump was always his tin pot populism, speaking to people's economic anxiety while doing everything possible to screw them over. It's a testament to his cult of personality that he even retains the little popularity he has.

"He is a rich bully who fights for rich bullies. As vacuous as he is mean, he is willing to shred healthcare as we know it to make a point." -- Ross Barkan, The Guardian

"There is no group in the United States less attached to its own ideals or more eager for its own exploitation than religious conservatives.... they pant and beg to be a part of someone else's movement.

"If Christian conservatives are loyal enough, Bannon promises that they can be 'the folks who saved the Judeo-Christian West.' All that is required is to abandon the best of the Judeo-Christian tradition: a belief in the inherent value and dignity of every life." -- Michael Gerson, Washington Post

"Since taking the oath of office in January, Donald Trump has provided evidence, almost daily, that he is ill-suited to be president of the United States. For months, much of the country has watched in despair as he and his administration have meat-axed the Affordable Care Act; crushed forward-looking Obama-era regulations in education, the environment and consumer protection; and backtracked on civil rights. He has made a mess of things with our allies, emboldened our adversaries and embarrassed the nation on the world stage. We have groaned through his insults and lies and witnessed his embrace of people and causes that travel on the dark side.

"He shows no signs of relenting.

"Trump bullies, brutalizes and slimes with impunity because members of his base cheer his every move or concoct reasons to keep their mouths shut whenever he crosses a red line. And his enablers are not just holed up in America's heartland and red states; they are here in Washington lining the halls of Congress under the banner of the Republican Party." Washington Post

October 2017

Moron
Urging Rex Tillerson not to resign, Robert Reich wrote "while there are undoubtedly more important issues to cope with than who called who a moron, the question would not have made the headlines if there weren't deep concerns about the President's state of mind to begin with."

"The reason Tillerson's moronic comment about Trump made the headlines is that Trump really is a moron, in the sense he probably meant it: He's impulsive, mercurial, often cruel, and pathologically narcissistic. Some psychologists who have studied his behavior have concluded he's a sociopath." [from an article by Raw Story]

Where is the leadership?
"This was the worst _______ in U.S. history. You can fill in the blank with almost anything now. The worst mass shooting, the worst hurricane damage, the worst governing. The carnage is Las Vegas is heartbreaking. The devastation in Puerto Rico is unimaginable. The abdication by your elected officials from doing anything to prevent the next, even-worse calamity is breathtaking. And as citizens, our failure to insist on better is our failure to use our democracy. We have voted for catastrophe, and this vote will count." -- Tom Toles blog, Washington Post

September 2017


Republican health assault repelled
September 29: Looks like war hero John McCain [R-AZ] had to save America yet again, not just on the actual battlefield, but here at home, from the enemy within, twice now in just a matter of weeks, saving many millions of Americans their health care. It's heartening to know that there is a Republican that votes his conscience rather than gormlessly towing the party line and allowing the anti-American agenda of the captured occupationist Republican party to do untold damage.

As before, let's not forget the other Republicans who planned to vote against the latest, and now failed, diabolical assault on the ACA with a hideous Republican plan that actually managed to be even more braindead than the previous flops. And then there's Rand Paul who would have voted no because it's not harmful enough to the American people, but that's another story. Much respect to McCain and the other "no-ers".

But the battle to defend America from the hostile Trump regime from the waves of environmental, health, and economic assaults on its exploited people and land is one that must be fought every single day. Greed and evil are never satiated.

LeBron James to the fake 'president': "Going to White House was a great honor until you showed up!"

August 2017

Hatemonger-in-chief Trump must go
The Hill quotes Republican analyst Gianno Caldwell, an African-American who wiped tears from his eyes during a morning broadcast that quickly went viral: "Our president has literally betrayed the conscience of our country. He has failed us." He has, and it's a crying shame.

The Washington Post reflects what the American people are demanding, Trump must go. As Michael Tomasky of the Daily Beast wrote: "no person in a position of responsibility in this country can now deny Donald Trump's unfitness for the presidency." Real problems have finally come his way and he has shown himself incompetent to govern.

The #1 threat to our United States of America is paranoid narcissist Donald Trump's anti-American values and the extreme right-wing fascists who surround him in the administration, nodded and winked at by the impotent, captured, gutless Republican party. "Every day Trump remains in office is a victory for the extremists." -- Washington Post.

Pop goes the weasel
It's a far cry from no drama Obama to Captain Chaos as the comings and goings at what the faux president calls "The Dump", ie the White House, accelerate to the point where the Scary Moocher happened so fast this site didn't even get round to having a pop at him before, well.... he popped. But one suspects there'll be plenty more weasels to go pop before Trump becomes history.

What happens when the so-called Administration actually faces a major challenge, when they can't get past the infighting and palace intrigue that has bogged them down from day one? Even their hard-core support, though still mostly a blindly loyal bunch, is eroding at the edges. The numbers don't add up for Trump's survival as the frontman for the GOP [Geriatric Odious Pillocks] beyond a term that already may be shorter than the four years he signed up for, as the Russian/Trump investigation moves forward, slowly but surely.

July 2017

ACA lives, Far right Repugnicants repudiated
Trump"Care" is dead, long live Obamacare! Turtle faced tosspot Mitch McConnell eats it publicly and bumbles over a tired tirade about his disappointment that the 1% couldn't ditch those pesky American citizens who feel they deserve health care, and deserve proper service from their supposed representatives, currently beholden instead to Putin and his poodles, Trump included. A wonderful night, renewed hope for our democracy, and a resounding result for the beleaguered exploited majority of the inhabitants of this potentially great nation.

Special props to John McCain, who despite his terminal condition, or maybe as a result of it, voted not to deny tens of millions of American people their healthcare, even as he, one of the privileged few, was able to access it. Let's not also forget the other few Republicans, including the women reps who have been so often excluded by their right wing peers, who stood up for America and against the runaway Russian apologist Republican anti-democratic mainstream. It was the right thing to do.

But also props to the active anti-Republicans whose grass roots efforts allowed the voices of the American people to roar in unison: "No more, no more being shafted by those who do not have our interests at heart."

This was the Repugnicants cynical effort to rob the American people, and they failed.

Who says good things don't happen?
In a brand new series on The Quake, the site looks at the good in people. Exhibit one: Sulley Muntari gave his shirt to a child who was racially abusing him at Cagliari: "I needed to set an example so he grows up to be nice." Now that's a real man, and a real professional.

Even automated closed captioning bots dislike Trump
A great way to multi-task is to use the ellipticals at the gym to do a kind of walking meditation whilst getting fitter at the same time. Meanwhile, on the TV monitor above, the computer generated close captioning translated the words of the pundit as "but will Don Jr's incriminating emails ultimately lead to the pig kahuna, Trump senior, himself?"

Meanwhile, many generations earlier, William Shakespeare's Macbeth described the same scenario apropos to the Trump Jnr email release: "Guilt spills itself for fear of being spilt."

The smoke keeps getting thicker, a fire has been detected as a result of Trumpanzee Jnr's admission of soliciting something of value from a foreign power to influence an election. This puts the Russian government into the heart of the Trump campaign regime, along with Don Jr's false statements on a security clearance form.

English Futbol season looms
A brand new season of English league and premier football is almost here and so The Quake's first dip into the returning sea of club soccer takes us to Arsenal FC's imposing 6' 1" Swiss international midfield playmaker and aggressive "problem solver" Granit Xhaka who has gained a reputation as a hardman on the field, a bit of a thug. Classic quote from the big guy himself: "I'm bothered by people who call me dirty, dumb and brainless. It's who I am." Great stuff. Fitting start to the footballing fistivities, I mean, festivities.

War on media & healthcare stay up front
Traveling the world was an incovenience for Trump and only important insofar as he can use international issues to bolster his sagging popularity at home. Sadly but predictably the Grump, who has the duty to protect our country, instead has chosen to protect Russia.

Trump's strategy must, and does, go beyond "just appeasing the Cro-Magnon mouth-breathers who grunt in approval at any intimation of violence from their hero" [Colbert King], because he needs sufficient independents and swing-voters to bolster that base.

In the Washington Post, King continues: "That means denigrating and defaming the media so that, regardless of the evidence, the public summarily dismisses [their] reporting and analyses."
Eight men own the same amount of wealth as 3.6 billion of the poorest people in the world  
pbs.org/newshour

"Denouncing reporters as the 'most dishonest human beings on earth' and 'scum' while repeatedly declaring 'the news is fake,' aren't off-the-cuff invectives. These are essential weapons in his war arsenal. It's called branding. And it worked like a charm for Trump during the election cycle."

The intent is "to take out the media before the in-depth reporting on him and his administration really sinks in."

Meanwhile,Donald Trump's moronic "economic advisor" is kidding nobody with his smarmily pronounced threat: "Americans will like the health care we give them." No, we will not. At all. Republiscum Wealth Care, in a word, sucks. However, as mentioned previously, it does have a built-in silver lining, albeit a karmic price for the extreme right.

"Single payer provides the only leverage to bring costs down. History shows insurance companies can't do it -- their response to the marketplace is an actuarial, business-driven one designed to protect their stockholders by holding their competitive position. Furthermore, these companies have little control or interest in the quality of care provided. Any new approach should include competitive bidding for medical equipment and devices suppliers, price controls on prescription drugs (a recent estimate concludes a 15% decrease in cost would produce more than $600B in health-care savings over the next 10 years), anti-trust legislation to curtail hospital mergers, and re-institution of bundled payments for operations and other multi-step procedures. Other countries have successfully addressed cost control and affordability issues. Why is it that we can't learn from them?" -- Pam Ela, article forum contributor

June 2017

Trump[don't]Care massively unpopular, even with doctors
The Republican obsession with repealing the ACA, no matter how harmful this move is to the citizens of this country, has given us yet another even more diabolical version of Trump-don't-Care otherwise known as Wealth Care as part of its anti-Robin Hood money grab. If passed, it will ironically make it the biggest liability that the party of the ultra rich will be stuck with owning going forward, one that could cost them dearly in the mid-terms.

This new bizarre wilderbeest of anti-healthful care is as unpopular with the medical professional as it is with the public. With its head of an ox and hind quarters of a cow, it will be one that could devastate the party that created it, and perhaps even usher in single payer in a Democratic backlash if and when the pendulum swings blue again. So maybe, indirectly and unintentionally, they're doing us all a favor, and we can benefit from the demise of the insurance companies, who, as useless middlemen add 30% "waste of space" expense, and who are also effectively death-panel operators with their "prior medical condition" restrictions being not so subtly sneaked back in by the Republiscum.

Learning from experience

"If you minimize the ego, you gain a lot of extra energy," said Michael Dobbs Higginson, author of A Raindrop in the Ocean" [2017], in a recent BBC radio interview, speaking of things he experienced and learned whilst traveling the world in a remarkable life. He added: "Be curious, go for substance, not form."

A famous person once said, and it applies equally well for most other societies too, particularly Britain, that "Americans learn only from catastrophe, not from experience." And thus, alas, leaving things awfully late.

Philip Morris vs Uruguay, how the little country that keeps thinking it can..... did [once again].

Miasma of incompetence & anti-democratic vandalism

"If you can't stand up in the eyes of the law, if you can't stand up with the facts, create a diversion," is the autocratic mantra and one which the Trump regime has adopted. Will it work? Maybe, but at a huge cost to the already battered American democracy and people. It ain't going to be pretty.

From the Washington Post: "Onlookers have assumed that any obstruction was intended to prevent evidence of "collusion" or Russian infiltration of Trump's campaign from surfacing. However, the subject matter of the underlying investigation may extend to financial crimes, putting Trump's and his associates' international business dealings under the microscope.

"The addition to Mueller's team of a prosecutor including Andrew Weissmann, Supreme Court advocate and criminal law expert Michael Dreeben, and others experienced in complex fraud and international bribery cases suggests that the probe may be looking at more than "collusion" between Russian officials and Trump team members."

A shrinking portion of the American public is sympathetic to the travails of the crass self-serving billionaire autocrat leading the Russian occupation of the United States government whilst simultaneously drowning in scandal.

The karmic vultures are circling to descend upon this incompetent and possibly criminal White House regime. Russiagate may not shake out in the short term, but for those yearning to liberate our country from the cowardly, harmful Trumpian leadership there's reasonable optimism that the occupationists, some of whom may turn out to be pro-Kremlin collusionists, will come to their deserved ends, but not before a lot more damage will be done.

Somebody who only watches right-wing American media may not even have known the Trump Regime was, and still is [ever increasingly] in deep trouble, when for examples the news broke that Comey was going to testify about Trump's conversations with him, or that Jared Kushner had failed to mention on his clearance application of secret [private citizen] meetings with Kremlinistas to set up a back door channel to avoid detection by US security forces.

Because while those big stories were breaking, outlets like Fox were running programs revisiting Hillary's emails and exposing Benghazi. Their rolling news had bizarrely become frozen in time, hosted by also-rans replacing their departed firebrand hucksters.

Their audiences were left to puzzle over the cartoonish background slogans such as "Liberal Hysteria" without actually knowing what the original stories were that had prompted the character generated exclamations. Little wonder that their ratings tanked as Fox News in effect forced their core viewers to flip to rival outlets to catch up with what was actually going on, all the while growing restless at Fox's stale and dishwater dull "alternative stories".

Never before has a White House regime showed such contempt for the people of this nation and for American institutions. If and when Trump goes down, all Putin's horses and all Putin's men will struggle to put Trumpty together again. That said, Putin's goal is to fragment and isolate the US and to drive a wedge between this nation and its former allies, and he's proving successful probably beyond his wildest dreams.

For America, this miasma of incompetence will leave a right old mess to clear up, including the need to restore the confidence of our former but now snubbed allies.

May 2017

Bottomless Rapture

With the opioid epidemic consuming America's forlorn rust and coal belts, the huddled masses, duped by their perceived savior Donald Trump's search for cheaply gained votes only to find their despair compounded, it is perhaps timely to recall one of the best radio programs of 2014, the BBC's "Heroin".

The Guardian wrote in an article leading up to its broadcast: "Baudelaire, an avid reader [and translator] of Thomas de Quincey's Confessions of an English Opium Eater described how it could 'expand beyond all measures, stretch out the limitless, make rapture bottomless.'" In the Paris jazz explosion of the 1950's or the post-war twilight alt-culture of West Berlin, western Europe's isolated "last stop" surrounded by alien territory, heroin was the "transcendant relaxation" that fueled the creative artist's "gift to the future".

With the collapse of social infrastructure in the red state heartlands, has stimulation of the opioid receptors become meditation for the have-nots? To update Karl Marx: "the opiate of the masses" is no longer religion, but opiates themselves. Anything else is fake news.

April 2017

New Mindfulness explored

The meaning of our new mindfulness is explored in a segment of radio program On point.

Fox & Unfriends

Bill O'Reilly is ousted from Fox News, but he's already history now with new events unfolding at a rapid pace, as the Republican mad right barrels on with its insanity. Now the beleaguered Trump "administration" is circling around its own vomit and trying to resurrect its diabolical Trump Care monstrosity in hopes of having something to claim for its first 100 days of chaos.

One of the new version's "features" is an attempt to try to eliminate pre-existing conditions coverage without anyone noticing by shoveling it down to the states' level. "This latest rehash of Trumpcare is nothing more than a desperate effort to deliver a political win for President Trump after his disastrous first 100 days," said Democratic Sen. Patty Murray of Washington state, as reported by Politico.

March 2017

Trumpcare: a complete disaster

"Today was a big win for the president. The 44th president, Barack Obama, and it was, to put it in Trump-speak, a complete disaster for the current president." -- Lawrence O'Donnell MSNBC tv channel

"The last Republican version [of healthcare], they had cut hospitalization, doctor visits, maternity, mental health, lab tests, prescriptions, emergency room visits," Maher said. "Their version of health care was: If you like your doctor, go f*** yourself." -- Bill Maher, HBO tv

Trumpist fantasy world hits the hard core of Being

"The waves of Trump's sociopathic belief that he can say and do what he likes with impunity are starting to hit the rocks of reality. There is nothing to celebrate yet, no cause to relax, no outcome assured. Let us just say that this may, conceivably, be the end of the beginning." -- Matthew d'Ancona, Guardian

Trump regime endangering the United States

The president will attack anyone "but there's one person and one country that's immune..... No matter if Vladimir Putin kills political opponents." Jim Himes, Connecticut Democrat

"What Spicer seems to not get - or what Trump won't allow him to get - is that when he is standing behind the podium in the White House briefing room, he is a spokesman for the entire United States, not just the president. And when facts get such short shrift, it has real-world effects - on our allies and our enemies." -- Chris Cillizza, Washington Post

Republicans Make Us Sick

The Business Insider reported that Democrats, scrambling to amend Trump's diabolical AHCA health plan, which ultimately was abandoned, wanted it officially retitled the "pay more for less care act." Meanwhile, from the WaPo....

"So House Republicans have accomplished something remarkable: they have written a bill that would make every problem they've complained about much, much worse. If there's any saving grace, it's that almost no one will be happy about it, except for the wealthy people to whom it gives a gigantic tax cut.

"And that's the most concise summary of this bill: Republicans are going to take people's health coverage and health security away while increasing their costs and doing enormous damage to the insurance market, all so they can give a tax cut to the rich.

"There are so many awful things about this bill that it's hard to fit them all into one post."

"Every time the issue of the relationship between Trump's apparatus and Moscow comes up, he is moved to unleash unhinged counterattacks. This only underscores how urgent it is to get to the bottom of this story quickly.

"If there is any good news here, it's this: Alternative facts can take you only so far. A president can't just make up charges against his predecessor, call him a "bad or sick guy," and then get away with it." -- EJ Dionne, Washington Post

"The bar is so low that people now praise Trump for reading from an autocue." -- Rachael Revesz, The Independent

February 2017

"Thank God for the resignation in shame by Mike Flynn, President Trump's national security adviser. And not just because he misled the vice president and engaged in deeply malignant behavior with Russia, but, more important, because maybe it will finally get the United States government, Congress and the news media to demand a proper answer to what is still the biggest national security question staring us in the face today: What is going on between Donald Trump and the Russians?" -- Thomas Friedman, New York Times, Feb 15, linked by Raw Story.

I was thinking about the classic humour of various British/Irish comedy programs back in the days of what now seems pre-historic TV, and revisited Dave Allen to find that rarest of gems -- a talent who sounds not just as brilliant as he did back then, but even better, maybe because we're older and "wiser". Back then it was very daring to air this kind of stand-up material. Classic Dave Allen on religion.

It's great that uploaders keep returning with "The Bill" so I can catch more episodes that I missed [when I was often visiting there there back in the day]. A murder needs solving: A mother's son.

quake's world

Futbol
the spur
daily match highlights
guardian football
WSC
one touch football
200%
bbc five live radio, plus quality podcasts

Beats
jukebox

Likeable links
raw story
pro publica
daily kos
politico
axios
the daily beast link fixed Sept 2017
resist
vox
xe.com currency historical exchange converter
the last quiet places
mac option key symbols
annualcreditreport.com
roll dice online and here
free internet access for the city of santa clara
allcarselectric.com
plugincars.com
friendly atheist eye-opening daily accounts of the threat to the separation of church and state that America faces

Usually reliable online TV streams
euronews in english, new link Nov 2017
al jazeera in english, new link Nov 2017
france 24 in english, and french
PBS newshour episodes, live 3-4pm M-F pacific USA time
CBS news "cbsn" cbs hi rotation rolling feed, USA live
DW german intntl news in english
sky news uk, live on you-tube
crtvg, galicia, espana, us feed
tvr britanny, france
tnn24 thai
elonce tv argentina
rte dublin, ireland
rtl muenchen deutschland
center.tv dusseldorf, deutschland, updated 2016
telemolise southern italia
bbc britain
sfgovtv san francisco, usa

San Francisco & Monterey online radio
kqed san francisco radio
kalw san francisco radio
kazu nat. public radio for the monterey bay

Other radio
bbc world service

Radio programs and podcasts
PRI
On point
philosophy talk [live on kalw]
on the media


london


san francisco
arriving by luft re-add Nov 2015

gran canaria

monterey county

Local voters ban fracking in Monterey County despite aggressive opposition from big oil and gas

dhamma


lam rim
dhammatalks by thanissaro bhikku
audiodharma insight meditation center
bubbles of illusion dharma talk
jikoji zen dharma talk podcasts
"what it means to be a buddhist" [dharma talk]
shasta abbey rm daizui dharma talk podcasts
shradda tv, sri lanka

sangha

amaravati uk
hayagriva aus.
dhammaloka aus.
sacramento dharma center usa, three buddhist groups in one new home
jikoji usa
monterey bay zen center usa
tassajara usa
metta forest monastery usa
reddit buddhist forum

practice

online meditation timer

buddhist global relief

"To be alive and to know you're alive is the greatest miracle of all. Present moment breathing in, wonderful moment breathing out." -- thich nhat hanh

"Meditation is the key that unlocks your mind, permeating post-meditation with awareness. Wisdom arises from the still mind." -- bhante henepola gunaratana

"It is the nature of things to decay. Be attentive, and you will succeed." -- buddha

"You are not the victim of your thoughts. You are the originator of your thoughts." -- ajahn sujato

"With realization of one's own potential and self-confidence in one's ability, one can build a better world." -- dalai lama

"There is no permanent self, but we have to be somebody. There is nothing to rely on. This is the hard thing we learn when we sit." -- angie boissevain, dharma talk

"Does what we know depend on there being a knower?" -- alan watts 'This will change your mind'

namo amitabha
buddham sharanam gachchami

In 2012 a study in Israel showed that meditators were less inhibited by 'cognitive rigidity': in other words, they were more open to completely new solutions to problems.

other

the benefits of buddhism
dhammakaya anthem
the buddha garden
om and om
aum
om mani padme hum
[namo tassa] bhagavato arahato sammæsambuddhassa re-add jan 2017
thai buddhist song, with voiceover
four noble truths
misunderstanding buddhism
positive psychology: catching up with ancient buddhist insight [pdf]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tMGSFhXU1I8