Monday, October 24, 2011

It's 10:00 a.m., and I've just taken my first sip of coffee.  Not bad, although this is a little late.  I like watching the sun actually rise, but if I don't set an alarm clock, what can I expect?  

October 24.  I watched the video of President Obama telling us the combat troops will be home from Iraq by the end of 2011 -- just as he promised during his campaign.  I wish that included the troops in Afghanistan.


Late last evening, I went out to my bonsai workshop (smile) to work on some of my honeysuckles.  At least that's what I'm calling them until something tells me different.  On the rough ones Nina dug out for me at the end of the driveway, I peeled away old bark and cleaned up a couple of them a bit.  The trunks begin to look like old trees!  Now they just have to keep growing those tiny sprouts that are already showing.  It's time to take pictures of the before looks.  

The other honeysuckle -- the one I know for sure is a honeysuckle -- is a really old gnarly, twisted stump with similar surface roots that I'm about ready to pot.  Last night I trimmed away the top few inches of the nursery can so I could see it fully.  Then I turned it this way and that, propped one side of the can for a different angle.  It's a really fun part of the process.  And it's exciting.  It was already old when Michael (the beekeeper and Tony (my late husband ) pried it off a tree trunk in Wilson, North Carolina and dug it out of the ground for me.  Since then, it has traveled to Maryland, California and Tennessee since 1985 or 86.  If it was only ten years old while still on the tree, add 25 years, and my prize honeysuckle bonsai is 35 years old.  Okay, I know -- more pictures.    (smile)  SilverBee

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Autumn Sights Outside my Back Door

I'm not always thinking about politics and social justice.  Sometimes I'm lost in moments of wonder at the changing beauty out my back door.  Just now the skies are gray, and every now and then a little rain comes down.  When a breeze kicks up, swaying the tops of the tall skinny trees in the woods surrounding the backyard, a shower of leaves tumbles to the ground.  The result of all that tumbling, walnut leaves blanket the patio and walkway, leaves that will resist with what seems like wilfulness later attempts to sweep them away.  Oh, well.  The bird feeders carry on a brisk business, with chickadees, titmice, nuthatches, an occasional bright red cardinal or chacking red-headed woodpecker.  I haven't seen the flock of crows today, but a while ago several doves, ever-present squirrels, and those clowns-of-the-yard chipmunks grazed among the grass, violets, wild strawberry plants and other un-named greenery that make up the mowed yard we call lawn.

Oh, I really meant to talk about the changing colors.  Day by day the many-hued greens of honeysuckle, sassafrass, maple, oak, black walnut, mulberry, and various vines in the woods beyond my open door become golden and tan.  I wait for reds, but I think that may be happening higher in the mountains.  I can still see blue and red morning glories, the red berries of a small honeysuckle tree, the maroon leaves and neon pink feathery flowers of the loropetalum . . .

Oh, again, the sun just came out, lighting up the world outside my back door . . . and is quickly gone, bringing another rush of leaves.  Well, I suppose that's enough for today.

More on Capitalism

I know there are individual shareholders who want companies to be more concerned about discrimination and about the environment. And I know there are companies with policies that lean in that direction. But, come on . . . the mandate of corporations is to make a profit for shareholders. And look at the state of the world. Corporations grew out of the colonial period when European countries worked on the principle that if they had the power then they had the right. That principle still prevails, as corporations do as they please in weaker countries and against weaker populations. In fact, through political power, they do pretty much as they please in stronger countries and against stronger populations. It's not a matter of asking, "Please, Corporations, will you be kinder to people," or Please, will you take a little bit better care of the environment." It's a matter of making laws to change the basic way corporations are allowed to work. It's a matter of massively changing the economic structure in the world from capitalistic corporations to (my coined phrase) Trade Institutions between people and nations.

I'm still thinking about all this, so there will be more to come as I clarify and define my thinking. I began to think about all this when I read Marjorie Kelly's book, The Divine Right of Capital: Dethroning the Corporate Aristocracy. I come at the problem from a slightly different angle than Kelly, but our goal is the same: Put power back into the hands of the people.

Getting Serious!

All right, I'm getting serious now! I've fiddle faddled around too long. I've put off writing about social and political issues that mean a lot to me. Now I'm ready. The name of my blog will stay the same, because in a way some of these issues will be coming out of deep ravines inside me, words I've pretty much kept down, and which I'll continue keeping down in my personal living space. I will be trying to get out to events around about, and I will keep writing to representatives and anywhere else I can make my voice heard. Here is my first example, posted this morning on FaceBook: Capitalism (the free market) has been pushed upon us by those who've fattened upon it. One sign that it is collapsing, of course, is the current economic failure. Even so, we're still being told -- get government out of the way and let the "private sector" do what it is supposed to do, make jobs. Oh, yeah? Umm, the private sector has BEEN in the driver's seat for [lo these] many years. Where are the jobs? Freedom and liberty come when government "regulations" assure all the people are treated equally and have access to the benefits of "the market" and who benefit from the resources of our planet. Capitalism has plundered the planet and oppressed people all over the world. Do we need trade among people and nations? Of course. But it has to be done by institutions accountable to the people through government, and, as Abe Lincoln said, so that "Government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the Earth."