Archive for June, 2011

A LOT OF HONEST LIARS

The common habit

of deviousness

By RALPH DOBRIN

Author of “How to Avoid Armageddon”

To order the book click:  www.amazon.com    type: how to avoid Armageddon. Also available through publisher Old Line Publishing or ask at book stores.

We should realize that falsehood is not only a question of telling lies, half-truths or being devious. If I choose – for whatever reason – to ignore or downplay a negative phenomenon or danger, or when I allow a blatant untruth to go unchallenged, I am in fact subscribing to falsehood by knowingly allowing it to prevail. And conversely, if I ignore a well-founded warning or a plausible claim, I am also pandering to falsehood. For example, if I leave on the lights or the air-conditioner, in my home or office when I don’t need them, I am ignoring the warnings about pollution and the probability that global warming is at least partly our own doing. I am needlessly making the world a more hazardous place, not only for myself, but for my children and grandchildren. On the other hand, by relating honestly to what seems probable, I can immediately begin to play my part in helping to redeem the planet.

Many people allow themselves and their children to be duped by slick advertising showing good-looking men, women and children, happily gulping down sugar-saturated, artificially flavored soft drinks, or gorging on salty, chemically corrupted concoctions posing as food, that are created with one purpose only – and that is to make a big profit, while the health of the public is of little consequence. But by allowing ourselves to be taken in by crafty promotion gimmicks, and ignoring what has been common knowledge for over a generation about sensible nutrition and the dangers of factory-processed foodstuffs, we are ruining our health, sapping our energy and cutting short our lives. We are certainly not doing our children any favors. It’s a form of wishful thinking. And wishful thinking is often the same as lying to ourselves. By the way, I bet that many of the people involved in all this guile, are actually pretty decent folks who would be mortified if they fully realized the harm they are promoting.

There are many other ways that we lie or deceive ourselves. Politics and ideology for example. Many people automatically … accept or reject ideas because they seem to relate to some ideological or political principle or party line, usually according to … either liberal, progressive Left-wing sentiments, or conversely, a conservative Right-wing stand. We mentioned this briefly in our last video. But as far as I can make out, there are usually many valid claims that are made by both sides. Equal rights, freedom of expression, social issues, protection of the environment, a determined stand to prevent warfare – these are all noble, worthy sentiments, whether they are usually predominantly Left-wing or left of center causes or not. And so are free enterprise, security of one’s country, curbing unlimited sexual licentiousness and maintaining a loyal, honorable national identity – even if these causes are usually part of a Right wing platform. Surely what counts is whether the claims make sense or not. But unfortunately, a fairly common attitude is to accept or reject something mainly according to how it tallies or seems to tally, with an overall political platform or ideological system, or which politicians are supporting or rejecting the idea. And often, this tendency on our part, precludes considering each issue purely on its own merits.

But in today’s precarious world, we have to face facts – all facts and factors – as soberly and objectively as possible. In other words, knowledge of the issues, backed by personal honesty and truthfulness should always determine how we make our value judgments and choose what to support, what to reject and what to remain undecided about.

This should be our approach when contemplating what to do on a personal basis regarding a healthy lifestyle for ourselves and our families, or pollution and climate change, or any other vital issue for that matter.

Actually, it is the Israel-Arab conflict that so penetratingly shows how falsehood in its various forms, can play an enormous part in creating misery and calamity. In our next talk, we will focus on this conflict and through it, come closer to understanding how we can avoid a global apocalypse.

Taken from the 3rd in our series of brief talks on the dangers of falsehood and the immense importance of truthfulness as the key to humanity’s future.

Click: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wKza41mUMqI

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June 28, 2011 at 5:28 am Leave a comment

The meaning of truthfulness

The meaning of truthfulness

IN A NUTSHELL

By RALPH DOBRIN

Author of “How to Avoid Armageddon”

To order the book click: www.amazon.com   type: how to avoid Armageddon

In just about any dispute or conflict, no matter how large or small, it is usually some form of falsehood or false perception, that got the confrontation started in the first place, and that keeps it simmering and erupting and prevents its resolution. Therefore it’s logical that in order to prevent or resolve disputes and conflicts, as well as most problems, honesty and truthfulness should be the guiding principle for all the parties concerned.

The trouble is that truthfulness, as simple as it might sound, is not really universally understood or practised. In fact, I’d venture to say that very few people anywhere, myself included, adhere fully to the principles of truthfulness. While most people are pretty honest most of the time, just about everyone exaggerates a little now and then. And while, under normal circumstances most people will seldom knowingly tell an outright lie, there are times when the large majority of ordinary folks do … twist the truth a little! For instance, as drivers, if we’re caught speeding or not heeding a stop sign, many of us will lie to the policeman, that we were traveling at far less than the speed limit, or that we did indeed stop at the stop sign. Or when criticized or scolded for something, we often lie about what we heard or didn’t hear or what we thought we understood.

How often have we given some kind of cockamamie excuse for coming late to an appointment or made some fake claim of not feeling well so as to explain why we didn’t keep some promise? I’m not talking about telling a white lie so as to spare another person’s feelings. No, I’m talking about not being truthful, in order to impress someone, or to get out of an embarrassing or costly situation – and not even realizing that we are being untruthful.

I confess that in the past this is what I have done from time to time. And even though I now realize the paramount importance of truthfulness, that old habit is still there and I sometimes catch myself about to regurgitate one of my old fibs, or exaggerate or even tell a lie. But I usually catch myself in time. At least I hope so.

Truthfulness means a lot more than just telling the truth. It also means not expressing half-truths or indulging in selective omission. For instance, if I say that a man stuck a sharp knife into another man’s heart, this in itself might be the truth. But if I purposely omitted to mention that the man with the knife was a great surgeon saving another man’s life on an operating table, clearly I was expressing a half-truth; I was omitting certain vital information and making the scene seem like a murder instead of a life-saving act of mercy. And this is the kind of lie that is so very frequently used by many politicians and world leaders. Especially with regard to the Israel-Arab conflict.

Apart from outright lies, half-truths and gross exaggeration, most of us follow certain tendencies that might lead to faulty or completely false impressions, such as wishful thinking – who doesn’t sometimes indulge in wishful thinking. Or stubbornly clinging to old concepts long after they have been proven to be invalid. And we should be aware how inclined we all are to self-deception and to lying to ourselves through wishful thinking or blinkered, narrow-minded stubbornness.

Among many people, these tendencies are deeply intertwined with ideological and religious – or anti-religious – sentiments and political loyalties. Even the most level-headed, intelligent, learned and honest people often lose their ability to think objectively when considering issues that might have some connection with ideological or political belief. It is largely due to this flaw, that history is so rife with catastrophic decisions made by leaders and backed by misplaced trust of people who should have known better. But in today’s precarious world humanity cannot afford the dubious liberty of blurred thinking. And only through a better understanding of the meaning of truthfulness and practicing it, will we be able solve serious existential challenges and end conflict.

To order “How to avoid Armageddon” click: www.amazon.com  type: how to avoid Armageddon

June 13, 2011 at 2:44 pm Leave a comment

SURVIVAL IN A DANGEROUS PLANET

SURVIVAL IN A DANGEROUS PLANET

LET’S FACE FACTS

By RALPH DOBRIN
Author of “How to Avoid Armageddon”

To order the book click: www.amazon.com   type: how to avoid Armageddon


Many people all over the world see Israel as a racist, war-mongering, imperialistic country that keeps killing innocent people, and refuses to make peace with its neighboring countries. In the United Nations, Israel has been condemned more often than all the other nations put together. But how justified is Israel’s awful reputation? How much is it based on real facts and fairness?

After all, how can it be that one of the smallest countries in the world – yes, that’s Israel – would keep challenging the enormous Arab world that has a population 50 times larger and which possesses a major share of the world’s oil reserves, as well as active support from the rest of the over billion-strong Muslim world? Surely that doesn’t make sense. In fact one would expect that Israel would do whatever it can in order to live in peace with all the other nations in the Middle East.

And actually, despite all the bad things said about Israel, this is exactly what it has tried to do since it declared its independence in 1948. Many people seem to forget that Israel has repeatedly given up territories … from which it had been attacked and even invaded in the past – only to be attacked from these same territories again. Sinai with its oil fields and strategic depth had been returned to Egypt on three separate occasions before finally making peace, which incidentally today is more unstable than ever before. The Gaza Strip, southern Lebanon and most of the West Bank have all been relinquished by Israel, only to be attacked from these places all over again.

Every time that Israel defends itself, which is what nations normally do when attacked, often retaliating only after diplomacy fails, it is Israel that is blamed, censured and condemned in every international arena, while the real instigators, whether they are the armies of neighboring countries or terrorist militias, might face some censure from a few world leaders, politicians and thinkers – at least those blessed with genuine integrity. Israel is frequently and indignantly admonished by public figures and ordinary citizens all over the western world, joining the angry pressure from Arab and Muslim countries, many of which strive determinedly for an end to the Jewish state. Even though throughout history, in war it is the winning side that has always kept territory it conquered or determined what should be done with it, especially in wars of defense, as is the case with Israel. But people either don’t know this or choose to ignore it when they call for boycotts and sanctions against Israel in its lonely, desperate struggle simply to exist. And they don’t seem to care that relinquishing all these territories will almost certainly make Israel practically impossible to defend.

It seems that there are a lot of double standards involved in the way people relate to Israel. And bear in mind that double standards imply bias, hypocrisy and the purposeful ignoring of pertinent facts – in short … dishonesty! Which begs the question: is that what impels much of the media when censuring Israel, while downplaying or even ignoring the frequent attacks on it by Arab militants? Are boycotts, sanctions and divestment yet another expression of shameless dishonesty? Is it dishonesty and perfidy that moves some western governments to condemn Israel like a criminal entity whenever it defends itself?

If it’s not dishonesty then it’s ignorance of the real situation in the Middle East. And people who have something to say about the Arab-Israel conflict, whether they live in Israel or in the neighboring Arab countries, or elsewhere, should consider whether they really know what they are talking about. And then to question their integrity. Quite possibly they will find that they are actually spreading lies or pandering to falsehood or indeed supporting evil. And thereby they prevent any resolution the conflict.

And it is this same insular approach towards Israel – stemming from ignorance or bias – that portends a very unhappy future for this planet. It shows that humanity on the whole doesn’t understand the meaning of truthfulness. And accordingly, we won’t be able to cope with all the other serious, pressing existential threats and challenges to our planet. Because of the cynical promotion of half-truths and lies used by various interested parties, combined with public gullibility or indifference, pollution is not being adequately addressed; neither are poverty and other global demographic issues; militant Jihad is making dangerous inroads everywhere – to mention just a few of the issues that mankind must address sensibly and promptly.

For this to happen, humanity needs to learn how to face facts honestly. People everywhere need to learn the meaning of truthfulness and its vital importance. People need to be able to discern falsehood. These are not easy lessons, but they must be learned in order to ensure a decent future for all people everywhere. These are probably the most important lessons for each and every one of us and can be found in the book, “How to Avoid Armageddon,” which is available through Amazon or from the publisher Old Line Publishing or you can ask at book stores.

To order “How to avoid Armageddon” through Amazon, click: www.amazon.com  type: how to avoid Armageddon

June 7, 2011 at 6:00 am Leave a comment

Wilders Warns America

Wilders Warns America

Patriotic democrat or bigoted

rabble-rouser?

By RALPH DOBRIN
Author of “How to Avoid Armageddon”

To order the book click: www.amazon.com   type: how to avoid Armageddon


Because of his harsh, very risky criticism of Islam, Geert Wilders has become one of the most hated men among Muslims everywhere. The founder and leader of the Netherlands Party for Freedom, which has become a major party in his country’s parliament, and which promotes free market economics and European integration, the party is best known for its opposition to the Islamization of the Netherlands. His activities and statements have prompted a number of attempts on his life and he is constantly accompanied by body guards and changes his domicile to a new place every day.

Not only Muslims are upset. He faces prosecution by the Amsterdam law courts for what has been termed his “incitement to hatred and discrimination.” He was banned from entering Britain (the ban was subsequently removed). A number of cities in Europe on hearing his intention to visit them, had notified him officially that he is not welcome.

Small wonder that Wilders has faced so much opprobrium. He has compared the Koran to Hitler’s Mein Kampf and says it should be outlawed in the Netherlands. He calls for a ban on the construction of new mosques. He is especially reviled by Muslims and Left wing liberals for his 2008 film on Islam, Fitna.

Compounding all this, Wilders has called the prophet Muhammad a “barbarian, a mass murderer, and a pedophile,” and referred to Islam as a “fascist ideology,’ adding that it is “violent, dangerous, and retarded.”

In July 2010, Wilders announced the International Freedom Alliance, a network of groups and individuals who “are fighting for freedom against Islam”.

Like all controversial figures, Geert Wilders prompts many questions. Is he a dangerous trouble-maker making waves in order to attract attention and build up a political base through ethnic hatred, or is he a sincere visionary, recognizing grave dangers to the future of his country and the rest of the free world?

On May 12th, 2011 Geert Wilders gave a talk at the Cornerstone Church in Nashville, Tennessee. Here are a few modified excerpts that might help provide answers to these questions:

Do you know why America is in a better state than Europe? Because you enjoy more freedom and that’s because you are still allowed to tell the truth. In Europe and Canada people are dragged to court for telling the truth about Islam.

I am an elected member of the House of Representatives in the Netherlands. Yet I am currently standing in court like a common criminal for saying that Islam is a dangerous totalitarian ideology rather than a religion. I risk a jail sentence of 16 months.

Last week, my friend Lars Hedegaard, a journalist from Denmark, was fined because in a private conversation, which was recorded without his knowledge, he had criticized the way women are treated in Islamic societies. And recently, another friend, Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff, a human rights activist from Austria, was fined for saying that Muhammad was a pedophile because he had married a 6-year old girl and raped her when she was 9. Unfortunately, there are many similar cases.

So, I am especially happy to be in your midst because here I can say what I want without having to fear that I will be dragged to court. You cannot imagine how we envy your First Amendment. But beware, because the day when America follows the example of Europe and introduces so-called “hate speech crimes” – used to punish only people critical of Islam, that day America will have lost its freedom.

I am here today with a warning; with a battle cry: Wake up, Christians of Tennessee. Islam is at your gate. Do not allow Islam to gain a foothold here.

Islam is dangerous. Islam wants to establish a state on earth, ruled by Islamic sharia law. Islam aims for the submission, whether by persuasion, intimidation or violence, of all non-Muslims, including Christians. The results can be seen in Europe.

Islam is an ideology of conquest. It uses two methods to achieve this goal: the first method is the sword. Demonstrating this is the flag of Saudi Arabia, which shows a huge sword, just below the Islamic creed. The message is clear. Without the sword Islam would not have been able to spread its creed.

The second method is immigration. Islam’s founder Muhammad himself taught his followers how to conquer through immigration when they moved from Mecca to Medina. This is called al-Hijra.

In Europe we have been experiencing al-Hijra for over 30 years now. Many of our cities have changed beyond recognition. They now have within them a second city, a state within the state, a government within the government. A Muslim city, a city ruled by the Koran.

We now find ourselves in this situation because we adopted the concept of cultural relativism, which determines that all cultures are equal. However, Islam is spreading like wildfire because the Koran explicitly tells Muslims that they are “the best of peoples ever raised up for mankind” and that non-Muslims are “the worst of creatures.”

Islam is spreading like wildfire everywhere in the West where political, academic, cultural and media elites lack the guts to proudly proclaim, as I believe we all should proclaim: Our Judeo-Christian Western culture is far superior to the Islamic culture. We must be proud to say so!

Multiculturalism is a disaster because it made us tolerate the intolerant, and now intolerance is annihilating tolerance. In the name of tolerance, we should claim the right not to tolerate the intolerant. Let us no longer be afraid and politically correct, let us be brave and bold. Let us tell the truth about Islam.

I want to make clear that I do not have a problem with people. I always make a distinction between the people and the ideology, between Muslims and Islam. I have no problem with Muslims, but I do have a problem with the totalitarian Islamic ideology of hate and violence. The fact that there are many so-called moderate Muslims, does not mean that there exists a moderate Islam. A moderate Islam does not exist and will never exist.

And because there is no such thing as a moderate Islam, the Islamization of our free Western societies is a definite threat. Only two weeks ago, the British press revealed how the so-called “London Taliban” is threatening to kill women who do not wear veils in the London borough of Tower Hamlets. In some neighborhoods Islamic regulations are already being enforced, even on non-Muslims. Women’s rights are being trampled. We are confronted with headscarves and burqas, polygamy, female genital mutilation, honor-killings where men murder their wives, daughters or sisters because they do not behave in accordance with Islamic rules. Polls show that the influence of those Muslims who live according to Islam’s aggressive requirements is growing, especially among young people.

Among 15-year-old German Muslims, 40% consider Islam more important than democracy. Among Muslim university students in Britain, 40% support sharia. One in three of those students considers it legitimate to kill in the name of Islam.

Christians are asked to follow the example of Jesus. Muslims are ordered to follow the example of Muhammad. That is why Islam is dangerous. While Christianity preaches love, Islam preached hatred and practices violence – hatred and violence for anyone who is not a Muslim.

If you wear a cross or a kippah in certain urban areas in Europe today, you risk being beaten up. In the capital of my own country, Amsterdam, a tram driver was forced to remove his crucifix from sight, while his Muslim colleagues are allowed to wear the veil. In June 2008, the Christian church authorities in the Danish town of Arhus paid Islamic security guards in order to assure that church goers are not harassed by Islamic youths. Talk about protection money!

On March 31st, 2010, Muslims entered the Roman Catholic cathedral of Cordoba, Spain, and attacked the guards with knives. They claimed the cathedral was theirs. Last month, the bishops of Sweden sent out a letter to priests advising them to avoid converting asylum seekers from Islamic countries to Christianity, because the converts would risk losing their lives.

In Amsterdam, the city authorities in register polygamous marriages. The authorities in Rotterdam serve only halal meals in municipal cafeterias. Theaters provide separate seats for women who are not allowed to sit next to men. Municipal swimming pools have separate swimming hours for men and women. Muslim lawyers do not have to stand when the judges enter court rooms!

Meanwhile, in Amsterdam, Jews are again being harassed in the streets. Even political leaders acknowledge that life has become unsafe for Jews in Holland. Their solution? They advise Jews to emigrate. But I say: Jews must not leave, violent Muslims must leave!

What is needed is a spirit of resistance. Because resistance to evil is our moral duty. This resistance begins with expressing our solidarity to Christians, Jews, indeed, to the millions of people worldwide, who are the victims of Islam.

We can see what Islam has in store for us if we observe the fate of the Christians in Islamic countries, such as the Copts in Egypt, the Maronites in Lebanon, the Assyrians in Iraq, and Christians elsewhere. Almost every day, churches are arsoned and Christians are assassinated in Islamic countries. Their homes are burnt. Rivers of tears are flowing from the Middle East, where there is only one safe haven for Christians. You know where that is. The only place in the Middle East where Christians are safe is Israel.

That is why Israel deserves our support. Israel is a safe haven for everyone, whatever their belief and opinions. Israel is a beacon of light in a region of total darkness. Israel is fighting our fight.

The jihad against Israel is a jihad against all of us. If Israel falls, we, too, will feel the consequences. If Jerusalem falls, Athens, Rome, Amsterdam and Nashville will fall. Therefore, we all are Israel. We should always support Israel!

Make no mistake: Islam is also coming for America. In fact, it is already here. America is facing a stealth jihad, the Islamic attempt to introduce sharia law bit by bit. Last March, a judge in Tampa, Florida, ruled that a lawsuit against a mosque and involving the control of $2.4 million should proceed under Islamic law.

Be aware that this is only the beginning. This is how it started in Europe. If things continue like this, you will soon have the same problems as we are currently facing. Leaders who talk about immigration without mentioning Islam are blind. They ignore the most important problem that Europe and America are facing.

There are five things which we must do. First, we must defend freedom of speech.

Second, we must end cultural relativism and political correctness. We must repeat it over and over again, especially to our children: Our Western culture based on Christianity and Judaism is superior to the islamic culture. Our laws are superior to sharia. Our judeo-christian values are better than islam’s totalitarian rules.

Third, we must stop the Islamization of our countries. More Islam means less freedom. We must stop immigration from Islamic countries. We must expel criminal immigrants. We must forbid the construction of new hate palaces called mosques.

Fourth, we must take pride in our nations again. We must cherish and preserve the culture and identity of our country. Preserving our own culture and identity is the best antidote against Islamization.

And fifth, we must elect wise and courageous leaders who are able to address the problems which are facing us, including the threat of Islam. 

Geert Wilders – a democrat and patriot or bigoted rabble rouser? Depends on one’s perspective, doesn’t it?

To order “How to avoid Armageddon” click: www.amazon.com  type: how to avoid Armageddon
 

June 5, 2011 at 2:42 pm Leave a comment

Telling the truth will save the world

Telling the truth will save the world

But not many people really

know what truth means

By RALPH DOBRIN
Author of “How to Avoid Armageddon”

To order the book click: www.amazon.com   type: how to avoid Armageddon

In just about any dispute or conflict, no matter how large or small, it is usually some form of falsehood or false perception, that got the confrontation started in the first place, and that keeps it simmering and erupting and prevents its resolution. Therefore it’s logical that in order to prevent or resolve disputes and conflicts, as well as most problems, honesty and truthfulness should be the guiding principle for all the parties concerned.

The trouble is that truthfulness, as simple as it might sound, is not really universally understood or practised. In fact, I’d venture to say that very few people anywhere adhere fully to the principles of truthfulness. Even normatively honest folks. And that includes the writer.

To put this in perspective, we should say that while most people are pretty honest most of the time, just about everyone exaggerates a little now and then. And while, under normal circumstances most people will seldom knowingly tell an outright lie, there are times when the large majority of ordinary folks do … twist the truth a little! For instance, as drivers, if we’re caught speeding or not heeding a stop sign, many of us will lie to the policeman, that we were traveling at far less than the speed limit, or that we did indeed stop at the stop sign. Or when criticized or scolded for something, we often lie about what we heard or didn’t hear or what we thought we understood.

How often have we given some kind of cockamamie excuse for coming late to an appointment or made some fake claim of not feeling well so as to explain why we didn’t keep some promise? And I bet there are dozens of other situations, which have prompted most us to fib or lie from time to time. I’m not talking about telling a white lie so as to spare the feelings of someone. No, I’m talking about not being truthful, in order to impress someone, or to get out of an embarrassing or costly situation – and not even realizing that we are being untruthful.

Truthfulness means a lot more than just telling the truth. It also means not expressing half-truths or indulging in selective omission. For instance, if I say that a man stuck a sharp knife into another man’s heart, this in itself might be the truth. But if I purposely omitted to mention that the man with the knife was a great surgeon saving another man’s life on an operating table, clearly I was expressing a half-truth; I was omitting certain vital information and making the scene seem like a murder instead of a life-saving act of mercy. Now, that’s a lie of immense proportions! And it’s the kind of lie that is so very frequently used by many salespeople, politicians and world leaders.

And apart from outright lies, half-truths and gross exaggeration, most of us follow certain tendencies that might lead to faulty or completely false impressions, such as wishful thinking – who doesn’t sometimes indulge in wishful thinking. Or stubbornly clinging to old concepts long after they have been proven to be invalid. And we should be aware how inclined we all are to self-deception and to lying to ourselves through wishful thinking or blinkered, narrow-minded stubbornness.

Among most of us, these tendencies are deeply intertwined with ideological and religious – or anti-religious – sentiments and political loyalties. Even the most level-headed, intelligent, knowledgeable and honest people often lose their ability to think objectively when considering issues that might have some connection with ideological or political belief. It is largely due to this flaw, that history is so rife with catastrophic decisions made by leaders and backed by the gullibility, indifference or fear of ordinary people – all of whom were unable to focus clearly on reality or tell right from wrong because of biased and narrow, one-sided perspectives. But in today’s precarious world humanity cannot afford the dubious liberty of blurred thinking – especially on the part of the leaders. And only a better understanding of the meaning of truthfulness and practicing it, will we be able solve serious existential challenges and end conflict.

We should realize that falsehood is not only a question of telling lies, half-truths or being devious. If I choose – for whatever reason – to ignore or downplay a negative phenomenon or danger, or when I allow a blatant untruth to go unchallenged, I am in fact subscribing to falsehood by knowingly allowing it to prevail. And conversely, if I ignore a well-founded warning or a plausible claim, I am also pandering to falsehood. For example, if I leave on the lights or the air-conditioner, in my home or office when I don’t need them, I am ignoring the warnings about pollution and the probability that global warming is largely our own doing. If I drive a high-powered gasoline-guzzling SUV when I could use some other practical way of getting around, I am needlessly making the world a more hazardous place, not only for myself, but for my children and grandchildren. On the other hand, by relating honestly to what seems probable, I can immediately begin to play my part in helping to redeem the planet.

Many folks allow themselves and their children to be duped by slick advertising showing fine-looking men, women and children, happily gulping down soft drinks infused with risky artificial flavoring or gorging on sugar-infused breakfast cereal, or savoring other salty, chemically corrupted concoctions posing as food, that are created with one purpose only – and that is to make a big profit, while the health of the customers is of little consequence. It’s all lawful as long as there’s some small print listing the ingredients. But by allowing ourselves to be taken in by crafty promotion campaigns by manufacturers and advertising agencies – and ignoring what has been common knowledge for over a generation about sensible nutrition and the dangers of factory-processed foodstuffs, we are ruining our health, sapping our energy and cutting short our lives. We are certainly not doing our children any favors. It’s a form of wishful thinking. By the way, on an individual basis, I bet that the large majority of people involved in all this guile, are actually pretty decent folks who would be mortified if they fully realized the harm they are promoting.

There are many other ways that we lie or allow ourselves to be deceived without realizing that falsehood is behind it all. Politics and ideology for example. Many people automatically … accept or reject ideas because they seem to relate to some ideological or political principle or party line, usually according to … either liberal, progressive Left-wing sentiments, or conversely, a conservative Right-wing stand. We mentioned this briefly in our last video. But as far as I can make out, there are usually many valid claims that are made by both sides. Equal rights, freedom of expression, social issues, protection of the environment, a determined stand to prevent warfare – these are all noble, worthy sentiments, whether they are usually predominantly Left-wing or left of center causes or not. And so is free enterprise, security of one’s country, curbing unlimited sexual licentiousness and maintaining a loyal, honorable national identity. Even if these causes are usually part of a Right wing platform. Surely what counts is whether the claims make sense or not. But unfortunately, a fairly common attitude is to accept or reject something mainly according to how it tallies or seems to tally, with an overall political platform or ideological system, or which politicians are supporting or rejecting the idea. And often, this tendency on our part, precludes considering each issue on its own merits.

But in today’s precarious world, we have to face facts – all facts and factors – as soberly and objectively as possible. In other words, personal honesty and truthfulness should always determine how we make our value judgments.

This is what we should consider when contemplating what to do on a personal basis regarding a healthy lifestyle for ourselves and our families, or pollution and climate change, or how we stand, how we really stand, with regard to the challenge of religious fundamentalism against freedom of expression, freedom of belief, and equal rights for all people, or what we really know about various political upheavals in various parts of the world including the Israel-Arab conflict, or any other vital issue for that matter.

Actually, it is the Israel-Arab conflict that so penetratingly shows how falsehood in its various forms, can play an enormous part in creating misery and calamity, generation after generation. This conflict, which has been going on for three or four generations now, is a very complex affair, and I venture to say that few people – no matter who they are – really know the background or understand the present situation. There are many people all over the western world who feel they must do something to bring peace to the Middle East. A few are quite conversant with all the issues and do a lot of good, occasionally managing to set the record straight for the misinformed. But too many who are misinformed or who have closed their minds to reality, keep meddling and stoking the tinders. Many who think they are helping the Arabs of Palestine are actually aggravating their plight.  

Read about all this in the book “How to avoid Armageddon”  click:  www.amazon.com   type: how to avoid Armageddon

June 1, 2011 at 1:13 pm Leave a comment


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