Friday, April 28, 2006


What has impressed me this week? Lucy Liu's account of the ethnic cleansing/holocaust in Africa and the children kidnapped to be soldiers in the fight as reported on the Oprah show; the work of other actors in Africa in building public awareness for the plight of the warrior children, the women who have clittoral removal, the ethnic cleansing, AIDS, and the extreme poverty. The world is so full of horror. We in the USA are so lucky.

It is sad that the worst cases of man's disasters all result from activity that man does to man. I know it is politically correct to respect all cultures and, romantically, to desire to preserve indigeneous cultures. But the modern countries today are more peaceful and more comfortable to live within. It is the modern countries that will be called upon to solve the problems of these people that are powerless to solve the problems themselves.

I have not much to say today. Everyday living is absorbing all of my attention and energy right now.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Formation of a New Art Community

Formation of a New Art Community

A new book on classical fables is out—and it is a winner. Some of the art is in the Primitive Folk Art tradition, some in Romantic Watercolor tradition. The work has a charm that is enduring. All art was produced by mentally and physically challenged individuals in a special art education program, but that fact doesn’t diminish the quality of the book’s illustrations.

Some of the images reach out and grab your fancy in the ways of all good art. Some characterizations are so real that you can see the personality of the person or animal drawn shine through so that you know exactly what it is thinking or planning or whether you can expect mischief from it. Kids will love these pictures. I already do. Visit
for a view of the group’s website*. Look for the book Disabled Fables.

On Today (NBC) members of LA Goal were interviewed about their new book Disabled Fables. Members are disabled: legally blind, autistic, mentally and physically challenged, etc. The organization provides them with art education. Chosen art has been used to illustrate a retelling of Aesop’s Fables.

You can find out more about the group at

Look under the Resources section and the article Disabled Fables. Clicking there will take you to the link for Inside Out Productions in the 3rd above paragraph.

I have recently run across other art that I love. One artist that I discovered last week, Kay Schlagel, has allowed me to use one of her digital art abstracts in my PowerPoint® Template Design Series. Visit my website to see more of this artist’s work in the near future. You can see more of her work at

This link takes you straight to my favorite image. Browse for the others. Beautiful stuff.

Anything that makes us joyful extends our lifetime. That's what the research is saying, anyway, so I offer you beautiful images on which to gaze and smile. Sustaining, huh?

Sorry about the typos today, but I really must run to other tasks and have no time to fix stuff. Bear with me please.

*Personally, I want web site and web page to be one word. It saves on word counts and on typing. I will use them as one word here to encourage others to do so. The e-vocabulary words all need standardizing, too. Another blog? Estore, eshop, elearn?

Saturday, April 08, 2006

A Letter to True Believers

Dear Pro-Lifers,

I might be willing to deny the right of a woman to have an abortion if the society in which I lived would meet certain conditions. These conditions were not met in the past when women felt the need for abortion so strongly that many would get one in dangerously clandestine ways.

In the past women got abortions because

1. Her pregnancy would result in social stigma that made it impossible for her to continue as a respected member of society and continue her education, and hold down a decent job and marry a good man.

2. The child of a single mother was deemed illegitimate and faced social stigma as severe as the mother’s.

3. A child with severe birth defects or genetic predisposition to debilitating illness would suffer needlessly and would require expensive medical care that would have little real effect on relieving the suffering that the child would face.

4. The father refused to be responsible for the child.

5. The community refused to assist the mother in caring for the child.

So under what conditions would I be willing to disallow abortions?
1. The community churches would pay for all medical care for a child born with a birth defect or genetic predisposition to a severe medical condition. The churches would do this without demanding that the child or his mother accept as truth the precepts of the church or regularly attend services or make any claim to Christianity. The church would do this simply because the members voted against aborting this child and so have some responsibility in insuring that this child be cared for properly.
2. The community churches and all of its members would make a single mother feel welcome in their communities, not ostracize her, not prevent her from supporting her child by denying her a job in the community.
3. The community churches and all of its members would encourage employers to hire women that have illegitimate children.
4. The churches and all of their members would assist women, especially single mothers with low income, in obtaining low-cost, quality child care so that she can work to support the children. Religion must not be forced on these children as a condition of the child care assistance.
5. The churches and all of their members would make the child welcome in the community, would prevent its own children from teasing a child and bullying a child based on its status as illegitimate, would not stigmatize the child for its origins, and would not in any make the child wish it had never been born.
6. The churches will pay all fees for adoption by anyone willing to offer the unwanted children a good home, a home not necessarily Christian, but one where the child is not abused, where the child will be loved, and where the child has at least one parent that wants him or her.

If the churches and or their members push for an abortion ban, then the churches and their members must make the changes in its attitudes towards illegitimate and defective children that forced many women to get abortions to begin with. If the churches that push for an abortion ban insist that life is precious, then they should take responsibility for making sure that the child has a chance to realize that his life is precious. The social ostracism of the past does not affirm life. The bankruptcy of family by medical bills does not affirm life. The bullying by other children and even by members of community churches does not affirm life.

Once again Mississippians want to demand that all people live according to their own church doctrines. But this is a country of religious freedom. Such demands go against every principle on which this country was established. Forcing religion-based morality on Americans is the same thing that is happening in Afghanistan where a Christian convert faces the death penalty.

And if your argument is that abortion is murder, then outlaw all murder: self-defense of property, self-defense against sexual assault and rape, and war. These are all just as murderous. Why should abortion be singled out as wrong? Write a law that is completely fair and expresses your opposition against all murder. If you insist that you can defend yourself, that you can send your fellow citizens to war, then you are not against murder. Get real.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Sustainable Stuff can be very Practical

I just came across a new word, for me, and a new idea. Arborsculpture. Richard Reames, an arborsculpturer, has written a book about the subject. Arborsculpture is the process of shaping growing plants into usable objects such as chairs, table surfaces, hedges to make rooms, etc. There is a history of such practices in the book, a history related to Bonsai, and it goes back centuries. Who knew?

The book is Arborsculpter: Solutions for a Small Planet by Richard Reames (Arborsmith Studios)

I discovered this idea in Utne, March-April 2006 issue.

I also came across this word: biomedia. I think it is what a tree sculptured for use by man would either be or become. This word belongs in lists that contain the word bioremediation, using living organisms to clean up waste or fix problems. Both words go with sustainability and sustainable solutions, wouldn't you say?

This month's Utne also mentioned other biomedia: plastic bottles made from corn and a veggie-leather totebag sold at the Utne store . I offer this to you not so much as an advertisement but as an exploration into practical sustainability.

I do have to ask, because I do not approve of illegal drugs, is the hemp used for rope and cloth really never usable for smoking? Does support of the hemp industry not support the growing of marijuana? Will someone please explain the relationship of these two products to me.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Dolly and Pony

Much is being said about the new industry for cloning horses. Two champion geldings, Royal Blue Boon and Tap O Lena, just became proud fathers of clones born to them by surrogate mares. ViaGen, a Texas company, is pioneering the cloning of champions for commercial purposes.

Expensive, yes, but even horses need an alternative to a reversable vasectomy.

Read my poem about cloning in Culture Star Reader.
After enjoying the art on the first page, link to Poetry and then to A Tribute to Dolly.
I have written a longer version of the poem. Look for a reference to it in the future.

Two references to news articles on the cloning of champion horses are found here:
(you may have to go to the home page, register, and search for cloned poney.)
There are 2 associated story links at the bottom of this article. Both are well worth reading.

What is unique here is the commercial enterprise applied to champion horses. The first cloned horse was born in Italy in 2002. Farm animals have been cloned for years now, especially cows, sheep, and pigs. There is even a company interested in cloning your pet dog or cat when it dies.

Several blogs have commentary and comments about the mammal cloning enterprise this week.
which has just moved to a new site.
Visit there to read additional comments about cloning.
This site has interesting comments.

Til next time. You copy?

Saturday, April 01, 2006

The Original Atmospheric Scrubbers

The True Crime of Illegal Immigration

I have no problems with illegal immigrants. If they paid taxes on their wages, then they should receive the state services that hospital rooms and schools complain are underfunded. But they do not pay taxes because the employers that give the illegal immigrants jobs do not claim them or set aside the taxable contributions of their wages.

But even the dearth of taxes to cover free medical services and public schooling is not the biggest crime of illegal immigration. The worst of criminal acts here is exploitation. Illegal aliens forgo legal protection in order to find work and provide their children with the American Dream. American employers then exploit them in extremely low paying jobs and sweat shops. Yes, I know we have such laws. But all our energies and outrage seem to be focused on the bordercrossing poor, not on the well off American voters who flaunt the law and deserve--but escape--the punishment.

Charitable organizations, churches and generous people enable this exploitation by protecting the illegal alien from discovery by the INS, all the while keeping them for the use of the slavers--ah--exploiters, the employers. Why are these same organizations, churches and generous people not sponsoring the people they help work visas and green cards? Why set these aliens up for abuse?

If we want to get serious about preventing illegal immigration, enforce the laws that require employers to pay minimum wage, at least, and to check citizenship and visa status. Convict the real criminals: those American employers that exploit the immigrants and virtually own the lives of these exploited people.

Illegal immigrations occur because the poor of other countries know that in the United States they can find work, health care and an education. Convict the employers and give them meaningful prison terms. Soon these aliens will get their student and work visas in order, and probably pay their taxes, too.