Sunday, December 26, 2010

Strings of events and the magic of everything

We do so much, think so much, our lives are just full to the brink with things to do...

Events seem to pull us with invisible strings. Emotions connect us almost automatically with the world. And we go, go, go... Seamlessly involved in the world. Getting so much pleasure, anxiety, information, diversity, up and down we go on the bumpy ride of life...

And yet... where are we - what's this place called "the universe" - where is it?
And "when" are we? When did it all begun? What lead to the big bang, or whatever beginning brought it all about?

In other words, where are we, when are we, what are we? And, furthermore, what's the point of it all?

I don't know! Do you know?

I've studied the answers from philosophers, scientists, religious leaders and followers, mystics...

Some of them have arrived at "their" answer - the thing that satisfies them.

Whatever it is, it is far from rationally convincing. We might "feel" what the answer is, we might believe it, we might "see it" in some mystical sense. But, in the end, I can't stop feeling that we are just naked monkeys trying to hide our big ignorance of the vast world out there and our place in it. We are so ashamed of not knowing. And we try to put words on that ignorance, just as one puts clothes to erase the memory of those "shameful" parts.

And nevertheless, it is there, in the forbidden zone, that the most magical place for lovers reside.

Just accepting the naked truth, that we don't know, is what leads to the secret places that makes the world so incredible beautiful and magical, not only in its mysteries, but in the myriad possible answers that we may imagine to explain all those things that we can live, inside and outside, by ourselves or with others.

It's like opening the doors to paradise, like disrobing our love and kissing the most forbidden part. The doors of ecstasy are in that general direction, I think...

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The art of control

It would be cray to tell your wife what to eat, how to dress, how to walk, etc. In some countries it is still done, a few hundred years ago it would be the proper thing to do, but today women have "rights", they are free, independent, they have the ability and are encoraged to decided through their own mind.

Through the centuries we have progressively emancipated slaves, war prisoners and the fair sex. I wonder if we'll ever do the same for children. Of course, we do control the way they dress, act, eat, and almost everything else, for their own sake, just as they did, for the sake of slaves and the weaker sex. It was deemed unthinkable that a woman could handle a business or estate, so the property was handed down from father to husband (or brother). Just as today we think it would be crazy to let young people decide on their own about their lives, although there are plenty of examples (I'm one of them) that when a kid has total freedom to do as he likes, the result may well be a greater sense of responsibility and ability to think for oneself.

The idea that we not only can but should, and is indeed an example of good parenting, control every minutia of our children's actions, is so widespread as to be almost invisible. We take it as something so normal, that we almost never consider the alternative, or how it did make us feel, how it sored our relations to our parents, how distant it made us, how it made us accept the other sources of control in society: the teacher, the boss, the politician, the police, etc.

Things are changing however, because a growing number of kids are having access to more sources of information than those we can control. Of course there are some who continued to be hooked on tv. For those I guess there is no hope. But for all those that, in ever increasing numbers, access the internet, and plumb through newspapers, wikis, forums, and all sorts of less controlled information, those will be more difficult to control. It is a very small minority, for sure. But they will spread, their children will be even less controlled. And their children's children even less. There will come a time when the liberation of all kids will occur. And it will not be just a matter of: I choose what I study, where I live, what I eat, what I think, what I believe in, what my goals are... It will be much more than that: because to no one, absolutely no one, will be recognized the power to tell them what they should be.

And that springs a whole new beginning for mankind. (just as the other emancipations allowed)

For this new mankind will not accept to be manipulated so easily, as if it was natural, as if it was a second skin. They will want, because they will be used to it from the beginning, to think for themselves.

My bet? In two to eight generations children will no longer be considered a "property" of their parents.

How much longer than for animals and so on... ?

Monday, October 25, 2010


When we hate something we make sure it looks and tastes and feels and drives awfully, not only to ourselves but to everyone else that may enter into contact with it.

So it is specially surprising that something or someone that gives you great pleasure, with which you deal easily and perfectly can be considered by someone else has #$%& shitty awfully bad!

Just let it go!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Peter, Alice and Shera

Freedom, the inner fire that feeds our most fierce dreams...
So seldom does it awake, only before we gain anything that we consider rightfully ours...
And then life becomes a prison,
of the success we have had...

In the past...
Holding us to the past
Caressing us into the past
Embracing and keeping us warm in the past...

For us there is no future, and the present,
Is just a shallow comforting embrace
into the past...

Monday, April 12, 2010

Sotigui Kouyaté

Un homme qu'il faudrait connaître mieux:

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Living blind...

We are surrounded by what completely surpasses our understanding. In relation to cavemen and other animals we have gained more control over nature. but we cannot say we understand it better. First of all because understanding is of the individual and control is only possible for the society as a all. Certainly we have gained the ability to reproduce tested formulas: from mathematics to technology, whatever works as been well kept and reproduced in textbooks and practices transmitted from generation to generation. But, if any single individual was left to himself, he wouldn't even arrive at the rudiments of language. Of course, with such an inheritance, the individual does grasp more, on the shoulders of the rest of humanity. He understands that stars are distant suns, that he is just another infinitesimal small step in the history of life on this planet. He gets a glimpse of such explanation, because we were not made to conceive the vast distances that separate us from the other stars and galaxies or the stretches of time that make the history of life on our planet comprehensible. We cannot even understand a fly or a leave at the cellular or molecular level. Our brains are simply too rudimentary for that. We know that we could be good at maths, because, very rarely, humans are born with such abilities, we call them savants, but in fact it is us that can't discern what a simple calculator can do with absolute ease. How can we understand the universe then.

If there is one thing that science and technology have showed us (those willing to see it) is that we are very limited in our cognitive powers, and, because of our biological limitations, we will never be able to see the world that surrounds us as it really is.

So, we might say we are surrounded by mysteries, not so much because there are indeed mysterious or irrational, but mainly because, even if the world is capable of being rationally described (deterministic and well-defined, among other things) the ability to describe it is very far from our powers. At most we get a glimpse of how it works at different levels (atomic, molecular, cellular, organic, social, planetary, galactical, etc).

With so much uncertainty, blind would be a more appropriate word, being so blind to reality, and understanding that... how should we live? What implications does it have?

Well, it seems not too many. I feel like a blind fish that suddenly realizes that he can touch and smell but that there are many more things that he cannot phantom. So, what can he do? Well, he might be ready to be surprised, and he might maintain an open mind about the world. But not much else. Whatever he does in his life, he is confined to his own frontiers, to what he can see, imagine and understand. All the rest of existence, however beautiful and important and desirable, will forever remain out of his reach...

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Violence and violation

Violation of the inner I is widespread in our society. We complain about pedophilia but children are violated in almost every other possible way and no one cares (it's considered ok to tell them what to do, where to go, what to do, who to see, how to behave, what to say, and all sorts of other things). This kind of traumatic behavior passes on to adults, and so we consider it normal to be told what to do and how to live in controlled manner all of our lives.

Why is violence against the individual so widespread and why does it seem to be an integral part of our society? Perhaps human design is not originally intended for gregarious living in such large numbers, and our large societies only become possible with widespread violence, symbolized for instance in religious practices and social traditions. The way in which we regulate human behavior is the greatest source of violence.

Of course, without such violence there seems to be only two options for large societies: consciousness or chaos.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

If I was a God

If I was a God, not just any kind of God, but the only thing that really Existed, such that nothing could harm me in any way: all-powerful, indestructible, no one else but me...

I could not be judged, no one could find fault in me... because I would be what Existed, and also else, was just a product of my thought and will.

There is such a place, in my imagination, I harm no one, no one knows what I imagined, and so I suffer no harm from whatever it is that I may imagine. No one suffers, no one knows, except me. In this particular setting, I am as close to this kind of God as I can imagine.

There is one startling particularity about this situation, it is the only one in which fear is non-present.

In our daily lives, we can die, we can be tortured, arrested, we can loose our house, we can end up on the streets, famine is a real possibility for the outcast, the one no one really cares if he lives or dies. Aren't they on the street already. The despise everyone gives them... would I want it for myself.

So fear from consequences restricts, not only my movements, but my every thought and desire. There are things which are good to desire, and others which we must desire, or else...

A simple example is "acceptance". A God would care nothing about being accepted by his thoughts. Who cares what the figment of His imagination thought about Him. It might be fun or repetitive, or boring or sensual. But nothing more than that would matter.

In this unique setting our true self arises. One that is not in fear, of anything, shows at last his true face. for what he truly desires is not now diverted or conditioned by the consequences that his desires may bring. They appear as they truly are.

So what are my true desires?

In other words, when I'm alone, completely alone, and I imagine a world as I want to, who am I, who surrounds me, what situations do I live?

Well, first of all, I am not alone. If I wanted to be isolated I could imagine a desert landscape. Perhaps somewhere between faraway Galaxies. A place without sound or images. Nothingness perhaps through all infinity.

That is not what I desire.

That is not what I imagine when I'm alone beyond all regards.

What I do imagine reflects either the opposite of what I am living in my material life (for instance a desert island if I am surrounded y too many people), or a situation in which I am the undisputed leader (in case I feel submissive), or I may imagine that I am adored (in case I feel neglected), or I may imagine myself flying through the stars (in case I feel a prisoner on earth).

But in all these cases one thing is common: I search for proximity, re-union, fusion. Desiring nothingness is rare, almost impossible.

The problem is that, it is easy to search for proximity, it is very difficult to find it. Knowledge, friendship, creativity, joy, are ways to feel reconnected again. But for me, the difficult thing to recognize, is that having is nothing when compared to being.

To be close to another one, we have to be him/her: to be fire like another's fire, to be water like his/her water, to be what no one can describe (the inner I).

Only then, in such vaporous, invisible, ways, can we hope to truly share what others are.

In the mean time, if I was a God, of that previous kind, nothing would escape my possession and dominion, or at least, the ones I did not want close by, fear me. Everything would work around me, much like in the OT actually.

The God of Abraham is POWERFUL, and he destroys distance...

Friday, February 19, 2010

Joe Stack - the man who had enough of Zombies and their caretakers

Joe Stac, the man that crashed into the IRS building in Austin, on February 18, 2010 wrote an interesting epilogue that made me cry! I reproduce it here... Although I wonder what the victims of his anger will think of it.

One aspect of this event that I'd like to emphasize is how an obviously intelligent person may, in the name of justice and fairness, kill people who did nothing wrong to him, and still feel a big hero fighting against evil. More and more we seem to live in a movie where life and death can be traded to make a point.

The details about the IRS law he speaks about can be found here.
A mirror of his original site ( can be found here.
I took the following text from here.

Joe Stack:

If you’re reading this, you’re no doubt asking yourself, “Why did this have to happen?” The simple truth is that it is complicated and has been coming for a long time. The writing process, started many months ago, was intended to be therapy in the face of the looming realization that there isn’t enough therapy in the world that can fix what is really broken. Needless to say, this rant could fill volumes with example after example if I would let it. I find the process of writing it frustrating, tedious, and probably pointless… especially given my gross inability to gracefully articulate my thoughts in light of the storm raging in my head. Exactly what is therapeutic about that I’m not sure, but desperate times call for desperate measures.

We are all taught as children that without laws there would be no society, only anarchy. Sadly, starting at early ages we in this country have been brainwashed to believe that, in return for our dedication and service, our government stands for justice for all. We are further brainwashed to believe that there is freedom in this place, and that we should be ready to lay our lives down for the noble principals represented by its founding fathers. Remember? One of these was “no taxation without representation”. I have spent the total years of my adulthood unlearning that crap from only a few years of my childhood. These days anyone who really stands up for that principal is promptly labeled a “crackpot”, traitor and worse.

While very few working people would say they haven’t had their fair share of taxes (as can I), in my lifetime I can say with a great degree of certainty that there has never been a politician cast a vote on any matter with the likes of me or my interests in mind. Nor, for that matter, are they the least bit interested in me or anything I have to say.

Why is it that a handful of thugs and plunderers can commit unthinkable atrocities (and in the case of the GM executives, for scores of years) and when it’s time for their gravy train to crash under the weight of their gluttony and overwhelming stupidity, the force of the full federal government has no difficulty coming to their aid within days if not hours? Yet at the same time, the joke we call the American medical system, including the drug and insurance companies, are murdering tens of thousands of people a year and stealing from the corpses and victims they cripple, and this country’s leaders don’t see this as important as bailing out a few of their vile, rich cronies. Yet, the political “representatives” (thieves, liars, and self-serving scumbags is far more accurate) have endless time to sit around for year after year and debate the state of the “terrible health care problem”. It’s clear they see no crisis as long as the dead people don’t get in the way of their corporate profits rolling in.

And justice? You’ve got to be kidding!

How can any rational individual explain that white elephant conundrum in the middle of our tax system and, indeed, our entire legal system? Here we have a system that is, by far, too complicated for the brightest of the master scholars to understand. Yet, it mercilessly “holds accountable” its victims, claiming that they’re responsible for fully complying with laws not even the experts understand. The law “requires” a signature on the bottom of a tax filing; yet no one can say truthfully that they understand what they are signing; if that’s not “duress” than what is. If this is not the measure of a totalitarian regime, nothing is.

How did I get here?

My introduction to the real American nightmare starts back in the early ‘80s. Unfortunately after more than 16 years of school, somewhere along the line I picked up the absurd, pompous notion that I could read and understand plain English. Some friends introduced me to a group of people who were having ‘tax code’ readings and discussions. In particular, zeroed in on a section relating to the wonderful “exemptions” that make institutions like the vulgar, corrupt Catholic Church so incredibly wealthy. We carefully studied the law (with the help of some of the “best”, high-paid, experienced tax lawyers in the business), and then began to do exactly what the “big boys” were doing (except that we weren’t steeling from our congregation or lying to the government about our massive profits in the name of God). We took a great deal of care to make it all visible, following all of the rules, exactly the way the law said it was to be done.

The intent of this exercise and our efforts was to bring about a much-needed re-evaluation of the laws that allow the monsters of organized religion to make such a mockery of people who earn an honest living. However, this is where I learned that there are two “interpretations” for every law; one for the very rich, and one for the rest of us… Oh, and the monsters are the very ones making and enforcing the laws; the inquisition is still alive and well today in this country.

That little lesson in patriotism cost me $40,000+, 10 years of my life, and set my retirement plans back to 0. It made me realize for the first time that I live in a country with an ideology that is based on a total and complete lie. It also made me realize, not only how naive I had been, but also the incredible stupidity of the American public; that they buy, hook, line, and sinker, the crap about their “freedom”… and that they continue to do so with eyes closed in the face of overwhelming evidence and all that keeps happening in front of them.

Before even having to make a shaky recovery from the sting of the first lesson on what justice really means in this country (around 1984 after making my way through engineering school and still another five years of “paying my dues”), I felt I finally had to take a chance of launching my dream of becoming an independent engineer.

On the subjects of engineers and dreams of independence, I should digress somewhat to say that I’m sure that I inherited the fascination for creative problem solving from my father. I realized this at a very young age.

The significance of independence, however, came much later during my early years of college; at the age of 18 or 19 when I was living on my own as student in an apartment in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. My neighbor was an elderly retired woman (80+ seemed ancient to me at that age) who was the widowed wife of a retired steel worker. Her husband had worked all his life in the steel mills of central Pennsylvania with promises from big business and the union that, for his 30 years of service, he would have a pension and medical care to look forward to in his retirement. Instead he was one of the thousands who got nothing because the incompetent mill management and corrupt union (not to mention the government) raided their pension funds and stole their retirement. All she had was social security to live on.

In retrospect, the situation was laughable because here I was living on peanut butter and bread (or Ritz crackers when I could afford to splurge) for months at a time. When I got to know this poor figure and heard her story I felt worse for her plight than for my own (I, after all, I thought I had everything to in front of me). I was genuinely appalled at one point, as we exchanged stories and commiserated with each other over our situations, when she in her grandmotherly fashion tried to convince me that I would be “healthier” eating cat food (like her) rather than trying to get all my substance from peanut butter and bread. I couldn’t quite go there, but the impression was made. I decided that I didn’t trust big business to take care of me, and that I would take responsibility for my own future and myself.

Return to the early ‘80s, and here I was off to a terrifying start as a ‘wet-behind-the-ears’ contract software engineer... and two years later, thanks to the fine backroom, midnight effort by the sleazy executives of Arthur Andersen (the very same folks who later brought us Enron and other such calamities) and an equally sleazy New York Senator (Patrick Moynihan), we saw the passage of 1986 tax reform act with its section 1706.

For you who are unfamiliar, here is the core text of the IRS Section 1706, defining the treatment of workers (such as contract engineers) for tax purposes. Visit this link for a conference committee report ( regarding the intended interpretation of Section 1706 and the relevant parts of Section 530, as amended. For information on how these laws affect technical services workers and their clients, read our discussion here (


(a) IN GENERAL - Section 530 of the Revenue Act of 1978 is amended by adding at the end thereof the following new subsection:

(d) EXCEPTION. - This section shall not apply in the case of an individual who pursuant to an arrangement between the taxpayer and another person, provides services for such other person as an engineer, designer, drafter, computer programmer, systems analyst, or other similarly skilled worker engaged in a similar line of work.

(b) EFFECTIVE DATE. - The amendment made by this section shall apply to remuneration paid and services rendered after December 31, 1986.


· "another person" is the client in the traditional job-shop relationship.

· "taxpayer" is the recruiter, broker, agency, or job shop.

· "individual", "employee", or "worker" is you.

Admittedly, you need to read the treatment to understand what it is saying but it’s not very complicated. The bottom line is that they may as well have put my name right in the text of section (d). Moreover, they could only have been more blunt if they would have came out and directly declared me a criminal and non-citizen slave. Twenty years later, I still can’t believe my eyes.

During 1987, I spent close to $5000 of my ‘pocket change’, and at least 1000 hours of my time writing, printing, and mailing to any senator, congressman, governor, or slug that might listen; none did, and they universally treated me as if I was wasting their time. I spent countless hours on the L.A. freeways driving to meetings and any and all of the disorganized professional groups who were attempting to mount a campaign against this atrocity. This, only to discover that our efforts were being easily derailed by a few moles from the brokers who were just beginning to enjoy the windfall from the new declaration of their “freedom”. Oh, and don’t forget, for all of the time I was spending on this, I was loosing income that I couldn’t bill clients.

After months of struggling it had clearly gotten to be a futile exercise. The best we could get for all of our trouble is a pronouncement from an IRS mouthpiece that they weren’t going to enforce that provision (read harass engineers and scientists). This immediately proved to be a lie, and the mere existence of the regulation began to have its impact on my bottom line; this, of course, was the intended effect.

Again, rewind my retirement plans back to 0 and shift them into idle. If I had any sense, I clearly should have left abandoned engineering and never looked back.

Instead I got busy working 100-hour workweeks. Then came the L.A. depression of the early 1990s. Our leaders decided that they didn’t need the all of those extra Air Force bases they had in Southern California, so they were closed; just like that. The result was economic devastation in the region that rivaled the widely publicized Texas S&L fiasco. However, because the government caused it, no one gave a shit about all of the young families who lost their homes or street after street of boarded up houses abandoned to the wealthy loan companies who received government funds to “shore up” their windfall. Again, I lost my retirement.

Years later, after weathering a divorce and the constant struggle trying to build some momentum with my business, I find myself once again beginning to finally pick up some speed. Then came the .COM bust and the 911 nightmare. Our leaders decided that all aircraft were grounded for what seemed like an eternity; and long after that, ‘special’ facilities like San Francisco were on security alert for months. This made access to my customers prohibitively expensive. Ironically, after what they had done the Government came to the aid of the airlines with billions of our tax dollars … as usual they left me to rot and die while they bailed out their rich, incompetent cronies WITH MY MONEY! After these events, there went my business but not quite yet all of my retirement and savings.

By this time, I’m thinking that it might be good for a change. Bye to California, I’ll try Austin for a while. So I moved, only to find out that this is a place with a highly inflated sense of self-importance and where damn little real engineering work is done. I’ve never experienced such a hard time finding work. The rates are 1/3 of what I was earning before the crash, because pay rates here are fixed by the three or four large companies in the area who are in collusion to drive down prices and wages… and this happens because the justice department is all on the take and doesn’t give a fuck about serving anyone or anything but themselves and their rich buddies.

To survive, I was forced to cannibalize my savings and retirement, the last of which was a small IRA. This came in a year with mammoth expenses and not a single dollar of income. I filed no return that year thinking that because I didn’t have any income there was no need. The sleazy government decided that they disagreed. But they didn’t notify me in time for me to launch a legal objection so when I attempted to get a protest filed with the court I was told I was no longer entitled to due process because the time to file ran out. Bend over for another $10,000 helping of justice.

So now we come to the present. After my experience with the CPA world, following the business crash I swore that I’d never enter another accountant’s office again. But here I am with a new marriage and a boatload of undocumented income, not to mention an expensive new business asset, a piano, which I had no idea how to handle. After considerable thought I decided that it would be irresponsible NOT to get professional help; a very big mistake.

When we received the forms back I was very optimistic that they were in order. I had taken all of the years information to Bill Ross, and he came back with results very similar to what I was expecting. Except that he had neglected to include the contents of Sheryl’s unreported income; $12,700 worth of it. To make matters worse, Ross knew all along this was missing and I didn’t have a clue until he pointed it out in the middle of the audit. By that time it had become brutally evident that he was representing himself and not me.

This left me stuck in the middle of this disaster trying to defend transactions that have no relationship to anything tax-related (at least the tax-related transactions were poorly documented). Things I never knew anything about and things my wife had no clue would ever matter to anyone. The end result is… well, just look around.

I remember reading about the stock market crash before the “great” depression and how there were wealthy bankers and businessmen jumping out of windows when they realized they screwed up and lost everything. Isn’t it ironic how far we’ve come in 60 years in this country that they now know how to fix that little economic problem; they just steal from the middle class (who doesn’t have any say in it, elections are a joke) to cover their asses and it’s “business-as-usual”. Now when the wealthy fuck up, the poor get to die for the mistakes… isn’t that a clever, tidy solution.

As government agencies go, the FAA is often justifiably referred to as a tombstone agency, though they are hardly alone. The recent presidential puppet GW Bush and his cronies in their eight years certainly reinforced for all of us that this criticism rings equally true for all of the government. Nothing changes unless there is a body count (unless it is in the interest of the wealthy sows at the government trough). In a government full of hypocrites from top to bottom, life is as cheap as their lies and their self-serving laws.

I know I’m hardly the first one to decide I have had all I can stand. It has always been a myth that people have stopped dying for their freedom in this country, and it isn’t limited to the blacks, and poor immigrants. I know there have been countless before me and there are sure to be as many after. But I also know that by not adding my body to the count, I insure nothing will change. I choose to not keep looking over my shoulder at “big brother” while he strips my carcass, I choose not to ignore what is going on all around me, I choose not to pretend that business as usual won’t continue; I have just had enough.

I can only hope that the numbers quickly get too big to be white washed and ignored that the American zombies wake up and revolt; it will take nothing less. I would only hope that by striking a nerve that stimulates the inevitable double standard, knee-jerk government reaction that results in more stupid draconian restrictions people wake up and begin to see the pompous political thugs and their mindless minions for what they are. Sadly, though I spent my entire life trying to believe it wasn’t so, but violence not only is the answer, it is the only answer. The cruel joke is that the really big chunks of shit at the top have known this all along and have been laughing, at and using this awareness against, fools like me all along.

I saw it written once that the definition of insanity is repeating the same process over and over and expecting the outcome to suddenly be different. I am finally ready to stop this insanity. Well, Mr. Big Brother IRS man, let’s try something different; take my pound of flesh and sleep well.

The communist creed: From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.

The capitalist creed: From each according to his gullibility, to each according to his greed.

Joe Stack (1956-2010)