Monday, June 30, 2014


The return of the dark ages through the aegis of a carefully contrived supeme court proceeds like a runaway train. It all began with catholic Reagan, along with his other attempts to return america to the rule of the rich, powerful and fanatically religious that was originally begun by emperor Constantine and caused over one thousand years of human stagnation under a cruel, ignorant religious hierarchy blinded by their stupidity and hatred.

I'm very down this morning. Those five assholes on the bench have finally succeeded and I'm sure they're smugly proud of themselves. I wouldn't be surprised if they somehow contrived to have me arrested for something for daring to write what I've just written.

Don't get excited, guys. My voice will soon disappear just through the natural attrition lifespans impose. In the meantime, fuck you bastards! Fuck all churches! Fuck all stupid gods and religious book crap! Fuck what the USA has become!

Sunday, June 29, 2014


(From Facebook.)

There are some people who keep on following what I put up and I know they must find it diametrically opposed to their own set beliefs. There was a time when I probably would have been in their shoes, so I kinda understand. I hung onto "faith" long after I should have chucked it into the nearest trash can. It's not easy to cast off a lifetime of surity and supposed security overnight.

Anyway, it wasn't easy for me either. As recently as a decade ago, I was buying the "secret" CDs and giving them credence. I still value positive thinking, but I recognize that it just gives you a mental attitude and approach more conducive to progress and possible eventual success. Life is still pretty much a crapshoot because neither you nor your thinking can alter every happenstance.

Before that was Neille Donald Walsh's books. Same general facts apply. Some good phiilosophy, but it didn't come from any actual "conversation" with any deity anymore than the Quran or the books of the Bible did.

So, rest assured that I appreciate those who stick with me even if some of the things I say and share might irk them or make them feel uncomfortable. I didn't get where I am overnight and you may never join me.

That's Ok. But, don't expect me to "lighten up."

That just isn't me.

Friday, June 27, 2014


I had a terrifying experience in my van today. I was coming downhill on Rio Mesa Drive (nearly everything in this river valley is either on or near a hill) and the motor cut out. I could still steer laboriously, but there was no brake! I finally got my arthritic leg up high enough to slam on the parking brake and skidded to a meandering stop. The motor started, then stopped once or twice more then kept going and I proceeded but decided to go up another uphill street to the right. Bad move. It stalled again and I'm careening backward downhill toward the intersection with little control. I managed to swing left around the corner and into the ditch where I was finally able to again engage that ridiculous emergency brake.

Luckily, no one was where I careened wildly, and by this time, I'm trembling mightily. I thought a moment and decided to try again. It started. I put the brake part way down, put it in 1st gear and eased out of the ditch and down to the 260 main road and around the corner, then shifting into second and slowly making my way home where the van is now safely parked.

My diagnosis is fuel pump. It's one of those in the tank monstrosities that cost a fortune to replace, so the van will be sitting awhile. If it were a sane vehicle from a few decades ago, I'd disconnect and unbolt the fuel pump, go get a new one and put it in. No way is this a shade tree deal! Especially not for an eighty year old stove up old fart.

Well, it did solve a problem I'd been wrestling with. I'd booked a Sedona cleaning job for Monday and was questioning whether I'd bitten off more than I could really chew, especially with the probability of stairs to wrestle that heavy machine up and then down, which is even more dangerous, and maybe split levels inside. Very little in Sedona is one level.

This happenstance effectively puts me out of the flooring business, and maybe it's for the best. I'm so ornery that I just hate to quit. Maybe it's akin to my first marriage. My ex made the decision for me. I doubt if I ever would have divorced her. We Dexters are great at toughing it out and loyalty and dedication seem to be a built in given. It also helped keep me in that ridiculous cult far longer than I ever should have stayed.

So, I don't have to feel guilty and like I'm a quitter. We humans are enigmatic creatures, aren't we? We have so many psychological quirks. One of my biggest is just plain stubborness. But, if you want somebody who will hang with you through thick and thin, I guess I'm your man.

Thursday, June 26, 2014


Everything evolves! It's the law of the universe. From simple to increasingly complex everywhere and in everything.

In the beginning was hydrogen gas that grouped into stars and stars gathered to form galaxies and galaxy groups. As stars exploded, heavy elements evolved, new generations of stars came into being with planetary systems so diverse we'll probably never be able to isolate and categorize the variabilities.

We can watch it all with ever more power and clarity and it is going on all around us in the vastness of the universe.

So far, we're only able to identify the evolution of life on our own infinitesimally small piece of cosmic real estate, but it follows a similar route to ever greater complexity. And we, who seem to be the pinncle of evolutionary development in this eco system carry the principle forward with our ever more complicated and wondrous technology.

Just look at that cell phone in your hand and then go look at an original hand crank dinosaur in some museum that was a marvel just a short century ago. It's the only computer many have or need and it blasts to insignificance those original vacumn tube monstrosities I read about in Scientific American as a teen ager. A big monstrous computer monitor sat unclaimed in the free stuff lineup at an estate sale this morning. That would have disappeared very fast just a few short years ago, but who wants that when a tablet will do much more and certainly much more handily?

You have to be stubbornly intent on believing for the sake of believing to deny the reality of evolution.

Monday, June 23, 2014


(From Facebook.)

I wasn't able to attend the meeting of our free thought group last week and missed out on meeting someone who came with flyers and business cards obviously hoping to proselytize among us for a following. There are a lot of people like him in the Sedona area, each set on promoting their paticular brand of wooo. He was not at all impressed by our secularness and concentration on proven scientific facts. Here are selections from an email he sent to the leader of our group:

"For the past 35 years I have been to over 50 countries, traveling and spending time with Native American medicine people, Canadian medicine people, Peruvian Shamans, an Eskimo medicine man, psychics, channels, complimentary therapists and literally hundreds and hundreds of other healers and therapists worldwide.

I have also developed ways to heal the underlying root cause of diabetes, allergies and cancer. These are very logical approaches, however I doubt if any western trained doctor would validate my work.

I have also been invited to work in holistic chiropractic and medical clinics to help in cases where the traditional practices could not solve the challenges. What I have seen and experienced in the past 35 years, including physically seeing spaceships, has humbled and stretched my logical left brain to the point where I had to honor my right brain and my intuition."

Why he shows up at our meeting with his flyers, etc. instead of taking his momentous achievements to the AMA and other peer reviewed and rigidly monitored organizations is a question I would like answered. He told Ron, our defacto president that he has cured cancer. I'm sure the medical world would love to see documentation of that and be able to duplicate the wonderful things he claims to have done. Maybe they could even give a research chair to some of those medicine men, etc. he mentions.

This kind of thing has been going on since the beginning of time. We even see it in the pages of the New Testament.

For prime example, along comes Saul whose name got changed to Paul. He freely admits that he never met someone named Jesus, or ever exchanged a single word with him. Yet, his writings are the main foundation upon which the christian religion is based. He even gives details of the "last supper" at which he was totally absent and it surprisingly parallels rites common to some other sects of competing savior/hero religions.

But, in this new thing he first tried to stamp out, he found something he could promote as a special revelation to him and went around to synagogues and other places of meeting and discussion and slowly built up a following for himself. Among those intrigued by his message would sometimes be someone with an active and questioning mind who gave credence to wooo wooo tales and was also very rich. They often provided a comfortable place for Paul to stay with all the perks that particular aristocrat could offer. Not a bad life at times and he got to preach what entered into his deluded brain and often to write it down. He says he got these things revealed to him by Jesus personally in Arabia. Hmmmm.

Arabia seems to be a common cauldron of wild-eyed divine revelations. A few centuries later, a guy by the name of Muhammad got some other crazy stuff there while holed up in a cave talking, he says, to an angel. I had an uncle by marriage who got similar things through his bad case of shizophrenia and died in a boarded up apartment with aluminum foil covering every opening.

Anyway, we definitely are secular free thinkers. That does not mean we're going to go hieing our behinds off after every cooky pitcher of wooo that happens by. We go with history and science. We demand proof of claims, not bombast.

Monday, June 16, 2014


There's an ancient saying -- "he slept with his fathers." Kinda sums up human existence and the inevitable end result.

I only remember back as far as father and grandfather. I remember them as energetic, vibrant men, and so were my mother, grandmothers and two great grandmothers. They're all gone now, and I have no memories of any of the "fathers" who preceded them because I never knew them. I just know that the day will come when I will join them, but I'm not so sure that it's a sleep. More likely, it's the finality of blackness and nothingness just like what preceded my birth. Like Mark Twain, that nothingness was no inconvenience to me and I expect no inconvenience when I'm gone. If something continues on, so be it. I'll deal with that when I'm there, but I really question whether I'll have to.

I know for sure that my brain will stop functioning just as surely as when I was under anesthesia a few times as soon as the oxygenated blood ceases to flow. It's doubtful I'll be able to see with no functioning eyeballs to convert those electromagnetic waves into electrical signals to go to a brain that's stone cold dead. There'll be no smelling, no touching, no speaking. Those all-important five senses will have no means of functioning, without what a friend of mind has described as a five-sensed, carbon-based wet suit.

The belief that something astral and composed of spirit goes on is appealing, but I'm not convinced it does. Appealing anecdotes are out there. My second wife and step-daughter were certain they dealt with ghosts in Tombstone. Phyllis is also sure she saw a ghost once. People are absolutely sure in their own minds that existence goes on. The reality I have to consider is that people see all sorts of things that aren't really there all the time. Even courts of law have to cross examine eye witnesses and individual accounts of the same event can vary greatly because no two people see things exactly the same way.

There's only one way to find out, and I'm in no hurry to run that experiment quite yet. I know I'm going to "sleep with my fathers" one day. I'm just not sure "sleep" is the perfect metaphor. However, when I'm asleep, except for an occasional dream, I'm blissfully unaware of everything, even that recurring sharp pain in the top of my foot I wrote about last night.

Ah, questions and musings. They never end.

Sunday, June 15, 2014


I was eating breakfast and reflecting on Father's Day when my son called to wish me a happy day to which I reciprocated. We've both been privileged to continue an inexorable process that began way back -- clear to that nebulous "big bang," in fact.

In the beginning, all was pure hydrogen (maybe a little helium, I'm not sure). It's taken billions of years for that hydrogen to give parenthood, through the process we call evolution, to everything that exists and has existed. Stars had to be born out of the primordial gas clouds and eventually die explosively to spill all those heavy elements necessary for you and I to exist into the cosmos. I have no idea how many now extinct stars lived and died to make me possible.

Then, there are all those struggling lifeforms that probably started out in the seas that came along, slowly mutating and evolving with most being dead ends. But, enough live ends with just the right physical setup continued on, leading inexorably to the complex being that is me. I passed my half of those complex genes on to my four children and two of them have in turn passed the torch first kindled in those long ago stars on to a new generation.

So, today, I honor that long evolutionary process and am happy I had the opportunity to take part in it. Who knows where it will all end?

Nobody! Absolutely Nobody!

It's just been a privilege to be a conscious part of it.

Thursday, June 12, 2014


(From Facebook.)

I just made a comment on Bill Flavell's post about attending an origin of life gathering in London which I wish I could attend. I hope the discussions will be made available online.

Anyway, abiogenesis is inevitable. Everything had to have a beginning somehow, someway, including any god people have dreamed up. Even that fiction about Jesus shows that. He had some father, and it certainly wasn't any supernatural being. I know how children are made and so do you, if you have been even minimally observant -- or complicitory, as have I.

Creationists and other daft devotees of superstitious nonsense have to push that abiogenesis back beyond the beginning of this universe and assume that something beyond comprehension for magnificence and all-everything power just magically happened and never had to evolve painfully and slowly as everything since then certainly has. (Technology is another example of the ievitability of evolution in producing anything.)

A particularly stupid ex-friend of mine who is also one of those incredibly dumb and irrational tea partyists had the balls to tell me god just always has been. He knows the universe hasn't always been, but his god could have always been. Of course, none of the equally implausible gods that preceded his christian religion, could and also always exist -- just his god dreamed up by warring hebrew tribes and desperate prelates ordered by Constantine to come up with a new religion for the empire or else. That god has to be real, because he just couldn't have grown up in a society and culture that got anything wrong. Everybody else can be wrong, but not him and his perfect in all things progenitors.

Yes, one of these days, we will advance enough to explain why life, including the life you and I possess and pursue, arose by abiogenesis and subsequent slow and steady evolution. It's just as inevitable as admitting the earth is not flat, that the heavens do not revolve around the earth, that the sun is not a god but a stupendous fusion plant, etc.

Suck on that, creationists!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014


It's a bitch to get old and even more so in a rethug dominated nation. Every day that goes by, I struggle with my declining physical prowess and the worries of expenses coming along that threaten to put us under. Month by month, everything costs us more, just like everyone else, but I have fewer and fewer options to blunt the effect

I went to look at a carpet job today which I was pretty sure was too much for me, even though the guy was willing to help out. It was a nightmare in the making of somewhere around 80 to 90 yards with no tack strip remaining in old flinty concrete and the idiot thought some fool was going to do it all for around $200 or he would be better off going with Home Depot's deal.

First of all, I'm not up to tackling a nightmare job like that, and I'm no damn slave either. I took the opportunity to slip in my feelings on politics and religion before I left. Don't know whether he appreciated them or not, and I frankly don't give a damn. I'm no longer one to hold my tongue on anything any more. I've replaced my grandfather's favorite statement about "that goddamn Hoover" with "those goddamn republicans." (That's only a convenient common way of saying something and not a recognition of any f=====g god, but I sometimes substitute that common word instead.)

What a difference in old Al in about five decades! I guess no more mister nice guy pretty well describes me these days. I'm mad as hell, as the saying goes, and I refuse to hide it.

Friday, June 6, 2014


While I was driving today, an analogy popped into my ever-active mind. Recently, I've seen a lot of pictures of trees ripped out of the ground by high winds and often sent crashing into homes, cars and people. It can be quite disastrous.

The similarity to economics flooded into my consciousness. An economy is much like a tree. We see the glorious part that waves around in the sunshine, rain and wind, but we tend to not consider much those all important roots that keep the whole thing tethered and flourishing. They'd better be sunk very deep into very solid soil. If anything stunts their development or weakens the soil in which they're anchored, disaster is on the way.

Our trickle down economic system is very much like one of those trees. Oh, it looks very stable and glorious if you happen to have a fat job and bank account. You can dazzle anyone who happens by and strut your stuff as someone special, gifted and important. A lot of people are dazzled by the prospect of being such a glorious success as they fight for advantage in our unbalanced system which tends to ignore both the soil and roots that make for a long-lasting, healthy tree. The consumer is constantly being deprived of everything that sustains the nourishment of that tree and firmly stabilizes it for the benefit of the opulent few joyfully cavorting in the economic breezes.

What they don't realize is storms are inevitable, and one of these days one is going to come along and uproot the whole unstable mess. It's inevitable that all will someday, and probably soon, come crashing down!

Sunday, June 1, 2014


Ah, the inanities and insanities taught in religious faiths. The nonsense of heaven and hell first comes to mind.

Can you imagine the isufferable boredom of sitting around gazing rapturously at some god's face for eternity (what's that mean?) and endlessly shouting out praises to him (it's always a "him" it seems)? One day of that would get old -- but, an eternity? Says a bit about the mindset of the males who drempt up the nonsense, in my opinion. Their ideal existence is probably sitting around in their dirty skivies drinking beer, eating some dietary trash while their beer gut rumbles away and everyone in the vicinity competes to tell them how wonderful they are.

Then, how about an ever-burning hell which is supposed to afflict you when you are in a supposed state of pure energy with no physical pain mechanisms existing?

Ever-burning? Even stars don't burn forever. Give enough trillions of years and the universe will end up bleak and cold, unless there is some renewal mechanism we haven't yet fathomed.

Just some Sunday morning ruminations and thinking outside the ridiculous box people like to confine themselves and others to. I could go on, but there are other things waiting to be done.