our canoe ride

Take me where the loons are calling
Mist in the morning, smell of pine
Whiskeyjack wake me up
Send me out with a fishing line

Give me a canoe and let me go
Up past Waskesui to the Wabano
Give me a canoe and let me go

Take me where the loons are calling
Lake like glass and a starlit sky
Smell of a small campfire burning
Sit and watch the embers die

…and facing up to our ‰

“In the health-care debate, we’ve heard a lot about useless care, wasteful care, futile care. What we have been struggling with is unwanted care.

That’s far more concerning.
That’s not avoidable care.
That’s wrongful care.

“I think that’s the most urgent issue facing America today, is people getting medical interventions that, if they were more informed, they would not want.

“It happens all the time.”



leadership is restraint

I have no right, by anything I do or say, to demean a human being in his own eyes. What matters is not what I think of him; it is what he thinks of himself. To undermine a man’s self-respect is a sin. -Antoine de Saint-Exupery



all customers are mayors

▶ Cities Weigh Taking Electricity Business From Private Utilities ◀

stand up and bill like a utility

▶ States look to a “tire tax” to have you pay for the miles you drive. http://www.enotrans.org/eno-brief/transportation-as-utility ← the web often loses pieces of itself

do not plant trees

▶ Increased planting of trees such as eucalyptus, willow and poplar near urban areas for biofuel can lead to human deaths due to increased ozone inhalation.

shake that thang

▶ Solid gold can be deposited in Earth’s crust “almost instantaneously during earthquakes

how to get charisma

▶ Power & Warmth & Toes: People actually learn charisma. http://www.bakadesuyo.com/2013/03/interview-olivia-teaches-charismatic/

the p. u. patent

▶ Pine Oil repels mosquitoes more effectively than DEET
http://www.ars.usda.gov/research/patents/patents.htm?serialnum=11777795 and repels ticks as effectively as DEET

power grid telecom mesh

▶ Networks are as important as your country.

well, don’t take it from me.

▶ Corporations told that all their computers have been hacked. http://blog.amitaietzioni.org/2013/03/cyberwar-and-the-private-sector.html

we so orthodox radical silent

Jason Pontin at MIT declares what cannot be said in polite society in 2013: 

“The non-legal constraints upon free speech are real and, in many cases, justifiable. The number and range of ideas about which I may not speak or write and still hope to be employed or loved are large and various, and continually expanding. In the middle-class, heterosexual, educated-but-essentially-philistine milieux of knowledge workers in Boston, the Bay Area, Seattle, New York, Washington DC, and London such unmentionable ideas include belief in innate racial differences or the superiority of men at any mental activity; the sexual attractiveness of young adults or the delights of sadomasochism; the inalienable property or privacy rights of corporations and the State; and the justice of the Confederacy’s cause or of a Jewish state. Without opprobrium, I cannot say that fat people are disgusting gluttons or transsexuals fetishistic self-mutilators. I may not write that marriage is a grim gulag or children boring barbarians. Under no circumstances may I express the fugitive thought that the only things other than our fellow humans that matter at all are novels, poems, plays, paintings, and sonatas, and a handful of very beautiful mathematical proofs, scientific theories, and computer programs. More generally, it is unacceptable to speak or write about many ordinary events in human life, including abortions, disease, depression, the experiences of real poverty or wealth, or how our loved ones actually die. Without specifying, I have believed a few of these ideas, and experienced most of those events, but I cannot be candid.”



that morning, that night


When I hear them call
in the morning, before
I am quite awake,
my bed is already traveling
the daily rainbow,
the arc toward evening;
and the birds, leading
their own discreet lives
of hunger and watchfulness,
are with me all the way,
always a little ahead of me
in the long-practiced manner
of unobtrusive guides.

By the time I arrive at evening,
they have just settled down to rest;
already invisible, they are turning
into the dreamwork of trees;
and all of us together —
myself and the purple finches,
the rusty blackbirds,
the ruby cardinals,
and the white-throated sparrows
with their liquid voices —
ride the dark curve of the earth
toward daylight, which they announce
from their high lookouts
before dawn has quite broken for me.

–Lisel Mueller, “Why I Need the Birds”


baseline citizenry

There’s too much to learn to do anything other than learn. Sometimes I’m imagining zero spending for everything we can cull, raw elimination of all adornment, hallways but no hotel lobbies, dimming all street lights, do not repair paint on walls, in order to impose education to history’s new top. States were spending $8500 per college student, now it’s $5500. And a pittance dribbles to ubiquitous floaters or dropouts. What about $30,000? $50,000, $100,000? Hold on! The US already spends enough on aid to cover tuition of every college student in the country. Why isn’t college free? You see? I’m not crazy. This study asserts we can triple our GDP; that lousy learning means we’re losing more than $50trillion….

Will any society survive or prosper until the first thing we are doing is learning? Ahhh, he breathes, a fleeting thought.


together, which is warm

Repel to deny to learn too little so often as is each short infinity through beauty.

Delight in each prolific rendering of beauty as if the Earth a brew of tea and beauty its steaming wisps. This an inalienable wonder proved in either dirt or star and every blend between, our character sculpted in the clay of rapture, our heart’s regard for hope.

Beauty they say caresses the tender, arouses the dormant, excites the innocent, tempers the strong, guides the wise, comforts the good, binds the wicked, so why then do we so often ignore and abuse beauty?

If I walk slowly on soft earth amidst a native meadow, tongued by light, by wisps of breeze, touched across my chest and shoulder with warming sun, drawn by the incessant celebration of leaved branch, the spiked grasses, and the willing exposition of the flowers, will I not know of beauty and therefore be caressed, aroused, excited, tempered, guided, bound and comforted? May I not then add this taste of beauty to myself? To see and then be blind, to touch and then be empty, to join and then be apart, is to find and then to lose our precious human birthright. We are to rise each day and in our civilian duty declare no other purpose than the exploration of beauty.

We are smothered in the revelation of beauty, as awakening to each day within these stars must surely be. We are charged to take our birthright rather than be pelted with dusts of contempt, of incoherent denial, of jealous resentment, of darker splendored substitutions fashioned from culture and politic, and war. We are to strive in the breadth of our human mind to know the more intolerable splendor of beauty. We are beauty as ourselves, the essence of sweet seconded by reason.