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Martin68's Journal
Martin68's Journal
November 30, 2023

I appreciate the author's perspective on the significance of the Deepwater Horizon disaster and the

rapidity with which it has faded in the public’s memory. I entirely agree that the extent of the damage and the significance in terms of the danger posed by deep water oil rigs is not taken seriously enough.

I have quite a bit of insight into the effects of the Fukushima disaster because my wife’s ancestral home was located on a stream about halfway between two of reactor sites. Her family had been living there for hundreds of years with a thriving and unique culture. Her family not only farmed crops and livestock, but grew silkworms, and wove and dyed and assembled fine kimono. The family included a number of highly respected traditional musicians and calligraphers. The only thing remaining of their homes, belongings, and farm buildings is the family cemetery, which was located on a hill and escaped the effects of the tsunami. 47,000 residents were evacuated to escape the effects of radiation, and will never be able to live there again. Deepwater Horizon was a horrific ecological disaster, but, because it took place on land, the Fukushima disaster erased centuries of human culture and permanently deprived tens of thousands of their ancestral land. In 2016 I walked the site with members of her family who had special permission to make a short visit. I had been welcomed into their home years before, and was incredibly moved to realize that their lives there had been completely erased and could never be reconstructed. I visited the cemetery with them to burn incense in their memory, and contemplate the great loss that had occurred. Please do not minimize the pain and suffering these people have suffered.

October 6, 2023

They want to "restore the strength of the people?" If they did that they'd lose all power, as

evidenced by their efforts to block the people's votes with gerrymandering, voter suppression, and election fraud. Not to mention an armed insurrection against the United States congress while in session to carry out their sacred duty to approve the results of a presidential election. "Restore the strength of the People" my ass!

October 5, 2023

We should cheer as the Republican Party gets farther and farther out on that branch of extremism.

In their own states, I might add, which will eventually lead to former supporters sawing off the branch behind them as they crawl out into Never-Never-Land.The pool of genuine supporters shrinks as they continue to compete to demonstrate that they are the most extreme people in the party, outrunning all but their most insane followers. These antics will also weaken the party in other states when people start to realize how fanatical and out of touch with reality they really are and start to fear what their own Republican representatives might do.

September 29, 2023

My question is, "If Republican extremists remove McCarthy, who will they find to replace him?"

No one will want the job, and none of them could get the votes to get the job. Sounds like we are approaching the perfect storm: shutting down the government, defaulting on our national debt, and having a Congress without as Speaker. The House of Representatives will be decapitated and totally unable to take votes on anything. Perhaps Biden could declare a state of emergency, impose martial law, and restore order. Republicans won't be able to oppose anything without a Speaker.

September 25, 2023

A lot of voters are very particular about what they expect from their representatives and their

president. They often have unrealistic ideals about what can be accomplished in a democratic system. Worse, we are now in a situation where the other party is run by wide-eyed zealots who are inspired by wild conspiracy theories and extremist ideas. Meanwhile, liberals, among whom I count myself, have unrealistic ambitions about what a president and representatives in the House and the Senate can accomplish when confronted with agents of chaos that MAGAts have elected to destroy the government. Pelosi, Biden and Schumer have accomplished miracles within that context. But idealists often do not have a clue what it takes to achieve progress against an intractable opposition party that cares little about the good of the nation and will only vote to advance their extreme agenda - which has nothing to do with conservatism, by the way.

September 24, 2023

That cannot be allowed to happen. Lahaina should be rebuilt providing affordable housing for

longtime residents. As a historical town closely tied to Hawaiian culture, that should be the highest priority in planning.

September 21, 2023

The terms "blocking out" and "suppressing" are equivalent. They both imply a conscious effort to

avoid or push back negative thoughts and emotions. Instead of quickly reacting to negative thoughts in a negative way, I suggest that it is far healthier to acknowledge such thoughts and feelings and then shift focus to something else. Vipassana insight meditation suggests we quietly "observe" negative thoughts when they come up, not pushing them away or embracing them, and then gently shifting the mind's focus to observe the breath and other sensations in the body that are conditioned reflexes in response to those negative emotions. It is perhaps a subtle difference, but the result over time is to gradually reduce the physical response to such emotions as they arise. We become more aware of our physical reactions, which are real, instead of focusing the memory itself. Just observing our body - breathing, sensations in the chest, stomach, shoulders, etc - allows them to relax. The more aware we become of our unconscious physical reactions to negative emotions, the less power they have over us and the less violently our body reacts to them.

September 21, 2023

There is a world of difference between "suppressing", which never works, and objectively examining

a negative thought or feeling as it comes up and then letting it go. Suppressing a thought or feeling reinforces it and it will come back stronger. I'm not saying the process is easy, but it can be learned and is very beneficial. That's different from a therapeutic context where a trained therapist can listen to traumatic or negative events and provide guidance to integrate and understand the effects of those events.

September 21, 2023

I can and will continue to argue that immigration is a benefit to every healthy country. You should

little research into how the lack of immigration and a rapidly aging society has negatively impacted Japan. You are treading mighty close to Republican taking points my friend. You also seem to lack a moral compass if you think we should turn away refugees from repressive regimes and gang violence. Immigrants don't take any jobs from Americans. They do the jobs Americans refuse to do. They are already a vital part of our economy, without being extended the privileges of citizens, or even the opportunity to obtain citizenship. They get injured on a job and are thrown by the wayside.

September 20, 2023

I'm not sure I understand the concept that the wildfires are "eroding decades of air quality

improvements." Air quality improvements continue to have a beneficial effect on the air we breathe. While wildfire smoke seriously degrades air quality, it is not permanent, and lasts only as long as the fire burns. Other sources of improvement - controls on industrial emissions and vehicle emissions for example - are still in effect and will continue to have a beneficial effect on air quality. Air quality has returned to norma where we live in Virginia now the the Canadian wildfire smoke is no longer reaching us, as its will elsewhere. The progress is not "unravelling." It is a temporary decrease in air quality. Seems like a very pessimistic way to portray the effect of wildfire smoke. No doubt it has negatively impacted the health of many people, but if other emissions control had not been in effect, the cumulative effect could have been catastrophic.

Profile Information

Name: Martin Johnson
Gender: Male
Hometown: Virginia
Home country: U.S.A.
Current location: Charlottesville, VA
Member since: Tue Jun 8, 2010, 01:30 PM
Number of posts: 22,189

About Martin68

Martin Johnson Charlottesville, VA

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