The Ramblings of the Titanium Don

Explorations of Conscious Reality Creation and Other Matters

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Pathwalking 26

I regularly use the phrase Consciousness Creates Reality.  The question you might ask is – what does that mean, and how does it relate to Pathwalking?

I borrowed this phrase long ago from my best friend, and find it is probably the truest phrase I have ever heard or spoken.  The meaning is both deeply simple and utterly complex.

Consciousness – this is awareness.  Awareness of the self, awareness of one’s surroundings, the general acknowledgement of being.

Creates – the process of creating.  To cause to come into existence.  To make, substantial or otherwise.

Reality – the world we all live in.

Ergo:  Awareness makes the world we live in.  Being aware of your thoughts, being aware of your surroundings and such causes to exist the world as you wish it to be.

To all intents and purposes, this is the whole point of Pathwalking.  On this path, I am seeking to create the way I live my life, and go as I want to go, be as I wish to be.

This is challenging, as previously mentioned, due to working against outside forces, keeping focused, feeling rather than just thinking – but when all is said and done, this is utterly worthwhile.

This notion has become increasingly popularized over the years.  Some have even achieved commercial success with marketing the concept.  You have probably heard of one or more of these: The Power of Positive Thinking, The Secret, How to Win Friends and Influence People, the Law of Attraction, etc.

No matter what label you choose, even if you chose no label at all, the gist of Pathwalking is to do exactly this.  Creating your reality consciously.

Certainly it is easier to just go with the flow of the day to day.  It takes no effort to just let whatever is going to happen, happen.  When all is said and done, letting life simply happen is easy.  I suppose, for some people, this is a perfectly acceptable lifestyle.  And I suppose, arguably, there needs to be people out in the world doing just that.   This would not work for me, but I suppose some might prefer simple, uncomplicated lives.

I find living that way to not only be dull, but to be tremendously unfulfilling.   I’ve lived that way for extended periods in much of my adult life, and spent large amounts of time thinking there had to be more…there was something beyond this simplicity.  At first I thought it was a matter of achieving some sort of fame or greatness…but then I realized that it was much more important to fulfill my own heart.  That is what truly matters.

I have made numerous attempts over the years to make my own way.  I have tried with limited success to choose and walk my own path.  This time, I am taking it to the next level.  This time I am putting forth this entire notion, and using my own consciousness to create the reality I desire.  And I am sharing my process with you with all of these posts.

Every week I am putting forth ideas for choosing the direction and doing the action of walking a path of my own choosing, and I share this to help myself succeed in this quest.  Applying consciousness to create this reality is a sometimes daunting, constantly evolving, never-ending task.

But everything I am encountering on this journey, every new discovery, every obstacle and opportunity I encounter as I walk this path is fulfilling that which I have been looking for, providing for that more interesting life I have always wanted to lead.

And not more interesting due to accident and coincidence.  More interesting because I am consciously working to create my reality.  I am making every effort to discover, and walk the path of my choosing.  Rather than accepting my “destiny”, I will choose it.

Am I aware of what I am thinking about, what I am feeling, and what my consciousness creates?  Are you?

 

This is the twenty-sixth entry in my series.  These weekly posts are specifically about walking along the path of life, and my desire to make a difference in this world along the way.  Thank you for joining me.

An open letter to the President of the United States

Dear Mister President,

The odds of you actually reading this letter yourself are slim, I’m sure.  But I still feel this urge to write to you, and hope that maybe, just maybe, you will see this.

When you ran for office just a few short years ago, your message was hope.  It was a message of change.  A message that if we elected you, you would change the course of our nation, get us out of this downward spiral, bring us to a better place.  A message of coming together.

You chose members of your cabinet from both parties.  You showed that you wanted to bridge the divide, work with both sides of the political aisle, and strive to make things better.

What happened?

You have been sabotaged.  Sabotaged by three entities, really.  The first, and easiest target, is the Republicans.

I do not recall the members of the other party actively calling for the ousting of the sitting President.  Not like this.  I don’t recall such vehemence, such opposition.  I do not recall this kind of obstructionism.  Let’s not do anything useful – let’s just sit on our hands, hope it makes the President look bad so we can get our own guy into the office.

The second target is the Democrats.  They had control of the House and the Senate while you sat in the White House – and got NOTHING done.  They have stood against you, they have pandered to the Republicans and to big business and bickered amongst themselves.  They can’t agree on the color of the sky, I have no doubt – let alone actually pass a useful bill.  We don’t need REAL health care reform OR sensible taxation OR jobs.  We need our own job security!

Yes, I believe the political parties share that blame.  But there is a third entity that has sabotaged you.

That would be you, President Obama.

You are the leader of the United States of America.  You are our President.  You should be choosing our direction.  You should be leading us.  You should be setting the tone.  You should be showing us the way.

And so far – all you’ve done is show us how quickly you will back down.  You’ve shown us that you will compromise to the point of nothing really useful getting done.  You’ve gotten to the point where you are constantly reacting to Congress and the two parties and all the partisanship – and looking weak and easily swayed.

I do not believe that is who you are.  I still believe in you.  I still think you can do something, something AMAZING.  I still think you can make the direction of our nation, and you can LEAD us, ALL of us.

And this is how:

Rise above the politics.  Stop pandering to the parties and take the reigns.  LEAD us.  Lead the nation.  Lead the congress.  Show us the way.

Berate the partisanship.  Express displeasure at the state of the people of this nation.  If we are so great – how can 1 in 6 Americans live in poverty?  In what way is that acceptable?

This is your chance.  Yes, the election year is coming – and have you seen what is being run against you?  Fear mongers.  Haters.  People who put their faith ahead of reason and logic, people who will only divide us further.  And your silence, your inability to speak out for fear of political reprisal just gives them strength.  The squeaky wheel gets the grease, the saying goes.

Before it is too late – before the government truly collapses, before the nation divides and we find ourselves in a class war or civil war  – PLEASE take the initiative, rise above the politics, and show us WHY we elected you in 2008.  Stop taking the middle road, stop trying to please everyone and take the position of authority you hold and LEAD THE WAY.

Unite us.  You have the ability.  Don’t let the dividers, the haters, the fear mongers break us apart and instigate a societal collapse.  Give us hope again.  Please.

With hope,

MJ Blehart

A form letter to your representative

Feel free to cut and paste this, and send it to the appropriate people:

Joe/Jane Average American

123 Any Street

Somewhere, USA 00000

 

Senator/Congress(wo)man *insert name here*

http://www.contactingthecongress.org/ (to get the necessary address for your rep(s))

 July 14, 2011

Dear (Congress(wo)man, Senator) *insert name here*

I am a concerned, average American citizen, and I continue to feel that my voice is not heard.

“We the people” begins the preamble to our constitution.  And in theory, “We the people” elect you to your office every (2,6) years.  But if that is so, why does it feel like “the people” have no voice anymore?

We need jobs.  We need affordable health care.  We need to see that our economy matters.  We need to see you tax those who are paid astronomical amounts of money more than you tax the middle class.  We need education.  We need Social Security to be there for us.

The news keeps inundating us about the people who intend to run for President next year.  The media keeps reporting about the stalemate over taxes, spending cuts and the debt ceiling.  And through it all, we average Americans watch you fight one another, tow the line of your parties, but appear to do nothing that will make our lives better.

Did we elect you to represent only yourselves?  Did we elect you to subsidize big business, and pander to your wealthy contributors?  Or did we elect you with the notion that you are in Washington to represent us?

Please end the partisan politicking and the constant squabbling and work for us.  Please do things that will help generate jobs, spare Social Security, and make sense of the tax code.  Please think about the middle class when you make your decisions about cuts you want to make.  And think about the future, but don’t do so at the expense of the present!

Remember “we the people” rebelled against the tyranny of an Empire over 300 years ago, “in order to form a more perfect union”.  We sought to create a better nation to live in.  We did this to escape tyranny, be it a governing empire or a corporate empire.  Please take that into account before you continue to play your blame games, and pander to these entities.  Please think about the vanishing middle class, before you continue to destroy us, and take the United States of America out in the process.

Do your job.  Stop playing the political games you are playing and govern this nation.  Think about the now, and take care of business.  Do the job you are being paid to do.  Please.

 

With deep concern,

An Average American.

 

Happiness

What do we really want?

What drives us?  What gets us up in the morning, what motivates us to do what we do day in, day out?  What is our ultimate goal?

Happiness.

I think, when all is said and done, we want to be happy.

Dictionary.com defines HAPPY as:

–adjective, -pi·er, -pi·est.

1. delighted, pleased, or glad, as over a particular thing: to be happy to see a person.

2. characterized by or indicative of pleasure, contentment, or joy: a happy mood; a happy frame of mind.

3. favored by fortune; fortunate or lucky: a happy, fruitful land.

Is that, or is that not what we ultimately are after?

Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  One of the most quoted lines from the Declaration of Independence.

I would argue that this drives everything we do.  We go to work to earn money in order to have things that we believe will make us happy.  We seek relationships in order to have someone to share our life with…to be happy.  We do all kinds of activities to bring ourselves happiness.

Happiness is a FEELING.  You sense it, feel it, experience it.  A smile.  A laugh.  That sense of elation and ultimate comfort.  Happy is GOOD.

So why are so many people UNhappy?

Depression, discontent, anger, unhappiness.  Every day we face these forces, and all too often they manage to interfere, and derail the attempt to find happiness.  All too often they manage to dominate our lives.

We are told that we have to earn happiness.  We are told that we have to do all these other things in order to be happy.  And we are told happiness is fleeting.  Denis Leary sums it up thusly: “Nobody’s happy, ok!? Happiness comes in small doses folks. It’s a cigarette, or a chocolate cookie, or a five second orgasm. That’s it, ok! You cum, you eat the cookie, you smoke the butt, you go to sleep, you get up in the morning and go to fucking work, ok!?”

And the trouble is, most of us have come to believe that.  Most of us look at that and say, yup, too true.

But if that is true, then I suggest you spend time with a child under the age of five.  Happiness is NOT fleeting – it’s more, it goes deeper.  It’s a familiar face, a friend, a sandbox, a push on a swing, a toy train, or a butterfly passing by.  Happiness can last for HOURS.  Watch the smiles, listen to the laughter, see the animation on their faces, and see if happiness is a far simpler thing than we make it out to be.

Because that is REALLY what the problem is.  We work hard, we strive to get all these things we THINK will make us happy.  But things are not the answer.  Happiness cannot be bought – happiness is a FEELING.  Happiness just IS.

Whether we choose to believe it or not – we have control over our feelings.  We CAN choose to be affected by our environment, or others – but we make that choice.  We ultimately control our emotional state.  But it is not the easy way.

Our society is all about quick fixes nowadays.  Take a pill.  Cast the blame elsewhere.  Take the easy way out.  Find the quickest path.  We don’t like to look too deeply at things, we fear intellect and depth.  And the notion that FEELINGS are complex, and hard to codify and explain means this is something we seek a simple explanation for.

In too many ways, we strive to NOT feel.  Feelings are scary!  And rather than experience the negative feelings (which we actually need in order to recognize the positive feelings) we strive for unemotional.  We want to be Vulcans – all logic, no feeling.

YES, feelings are SCARY sometimes.  Because you can feel love and joy and happiness.  But you can also feel pain and sorrow and anger and hate and sadness.  And it is quicker and easier to feel and empathize with the negative emotions.  As such, some people think it is just easier to not feel.  And yet…they still seek happiness.

So how can you seek happiness, and at the same time, seek feeling NOTHING?

And that is one of the great contradictions of our society.  Don’t feel – but be happy.

Let me be blunt and clear on this – you CAN’T HAVE IT BOTH WAYS!

We have this amazing capacity to be ENORMOUS!  The meat sacks we run around in are nothing but a shell.  What they contain is equivalent to a TARDIS – FAR larger on the inside than on the outside.

We are afraid to explore that potential.  We turn to superficial answers, like religion, in order to explain it.  And then we get so caught up in the greater meaning of this facet of our existence, that we neglect to address it in the here and now.  And the here and now is what we NEED to consider, more often than we do.

We dwell on the past.  We dream of the future.  And the here and now just passes us by.  I was hurt by this, but down the line I want that.  I recall the pain, but want to feel the pleasure.  And what about RIGHT NOW?  Where is the focus on NOW?

I don’t care if you are Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Agnostic or Atheist.  I don’t care if you believe in an afterlife or not.  What I care about is that we ACKOWLEDGE this being, consider how we ALLOW ourselves to feel – and I care that we make an effort to act on this.

If we accept that we CAN be happy, that we have the RIGHT to be happy, that it is not owed to us or earned – we can have SO MUCH MORE in this life.  All these superficial trappings – money, possessions, people we surround ourselves with – these will not make us happy.  WE make us happy.  WE choose to be happy.

Or not.

Next argument I will get is “You can’t be happy all the time.”  You’re right.  You can’t.  You WILL have bad days.  You will feel sad.  You will feel blue.  You will feel angry.  You will be upset.  And I am not suggesting you discount those emotions.  On the contrary – you need to acknowledge them.

What I WILL argue is that there is a difference between acknowledging your emotions, and DWELLING on them.  If you make the choice to hold onto these negative emotions, that is a different problem.  They happen, and you need the negative to know the positive.  But do you choose to acknowledge them and move on – or do you choose to hold onto them, feed them, give them the power?

Because that is my whole point.  We have the power.  We control the emotions.  We control the feelings.  And we choose to feel, or not feel.  And maybe, if we are more conscious of that choice, if we stop giving the power and energy to the negative, and feed the positive – MAYBE we might actually be able to BE HAPPY.

Do you want to prove me wrong?  Go ahead.  I am sure it is easy to do.  Refute my claim.  Then I ask that you show me that you are not doing precisely what I am saying.

THINK about it.  And don’t let life live you – CHOOSE.  Make choices when it comes to how you allow yourself to feel.  Take the control you have every right to.

Then – let yourself feel happiness.  Allow yourself to be happy!

Accountability

Accountability.

This is the key.  This is link that connects pretty much every woe we face today.  The one factor that I am totally convinced is most responsible for the state of this society – Accountability.  And in truth – the utter, complete, and contemptuous LACK of accountability on the part of pretty much EVERYONE.

From Dictionary.com:

Accountability

–noun

1. the state of being accountable,  liable, or answerable.

2. Education . a policy of holding schools and teachers accountable  for students’ academic progress by linking such progress with funding for salaries, maintenance, etc.

The state of being accountable.  And what does mean?

Accountable

From Dictionary.com:

–adjective

1. subject to the obligation to report, explain, or justify something; responsible; answerable.

2. capable of being explained; explicable; explainable.

Responsible, Answerable

From Dictionary.com:

Responsible:

–adjective

1. answerable or accountable, as for something within one’s power, control, or management (often followed by to  or for ): He is responsible to the president for his decisions.

2. involving accountability or responsibility: a responsible position.

3. chargeable with being the author, cause, or occasion of something (usually followed by for ): Termites were responsible for the damage.

Answerable:

–adjective

1. liable to be asked to give account; responsible: He is answerable to a committee for all his decisions.

2. capable of being answered: a question answerable by mail.

3. proportionate; correlative (usually followed by to ).

There is a common thread among these.  They all tie together.  Accountable.  Responsible.  Answerable.  All of them make up accountability – to be accountable, responsible, and/or answerable for or to something.

And this is the single greatest issue we face today.  Accountability.

Why do I say that?  Because NO ONE seems to be willing to actually TAKE accountability for their actions.  Or words.  Or ideas.  Or mistakes.  Or whatever.

The blame game dominates our world, our lives.  We have become so keenly adept at placing blame that we automatically seek an outside responsible party before we even CONSIDER if the source is closer.

Every stratification of our lives does this.  A man blames his mother for being overbearing for his inability to hold down good relationships.  His mother blames her overbearing nature on his father for his inability to show love.  His father blames his inability to show love on his employer for working him too hard.  The employer blames the IRS for forcing him to work his employers so hard.  The IRS blames Congress for making the tax laws.  Congress blames the President for presenting them with impossible budgets.  The President blames China and their currency valuation for the budget.  Need I go on?

NO ONE wants to be accountable for their own actions.  It is so very much easier to throw around blame.  It is so very easy to pass the buck, and let it be someone ELSE’s problem.  Because if we are accountable – we become responsible.

A woman gets fat from eating McDonalds for dinner three nights a week.  She sues McDonalds for not better controlling portions or calories in their products.  She blames them for making her fat, rather than actually looking at the fact that SHE is the one consuming that food.  Instead of looking at her OWN patterns, behavior and habits, she throws the blame to another.  This is in no way taking responsibility for her actions.

A parent buys their child a video game.  The child plays that game for four to five hours a NIGHT.  It is a violent game.  The child is unchecked, the parent didn’t see if the game was at all appropriate for their child.  The child commits an act of violence on another kid.  The video game is blamed.  The company that made the game is sued.  But neither the parent nor the child is answerable to the problem.

Why should they be accountable?  There is a whole legal system that can be finessed and tweaked and played with that will allow these people to NEVER be accountable.  Where is the reward for taking accountability?  Where is the profit?

And that is the problem.  We look for the profit, we look for the reward, we demand that we be entitled – and forget that what goes around, comes around.  We prefer to cast aspersions and blame rather than to take responsibility, take accountability, and CORRECT the issue.

EVERYBODY makes mistakes.  Everyone says something they will regret.  Everybody screws up.  And rather than find the blame, as we so very often seek out – we need to take the necessary accountability.  We need to fix this from the source, NOT by finding whom we can blame.

We need to be accountable.

THIS HAS TO START SMALL.  This has to start with EACH AND EVERY one of US.  WE need to be accountable for our words, our actions, our doing, our mistakes.  WE need to not throw about blame, WE need to not find the faults outside, and be accountable for OURSELVES.  If we become accountable, if we take the responsibility, we can make this world a better place.  We can live more full, more fulfilling lives if we can be accountable to ourselves.

Let’s be responsible.  Accountable.  Answerable.  And let’s not look for where to place the blame.  Let’s do our part to start the revolution, start being accountable to ourselves and those around us…and then let’s request that of our friends, our coworkers, our bosses, our religious and political leaders.

Please think about it.

The Electoral College and You

I want to talk about a topic that most people know pretty much nothing about, really:

The Electoral College.

In the interest of blissful ignorance, I have to wonder just how many people are aware of just how this antiquated system works?

Did you know that we do not elect the President and Vice President of the United States?

Nope.  We do not elect them.  We cast a vote, sure…but the actual election is done by 538 people.

That’s right, READ THAT AGAIN.  With a population of more than 310 million people, more than 200 MILLION of whom can cast a vote – 538 people actually select the most powerful office in the nation, arguably in the world.

538/200,000,000.  Don’t do the math, it will only hurt your brain.

How did this come to pass?

It was the founding fathers, during the constitutional convention.  It came about as a check and balance whereby a number equal to the number of legislators allotted to each state (2 senators plus ‘x’ congresspeople – or, in the case of Washington, DC – 3) would be chosen to vote for the President and Vice President.

From Article II, section 1 of the Constitution:

The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America. He shall hold his Office during the Term of four Years, and, together with the Vice President, chosen for the same Term, be elected, as follows:

Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress: but no Senator or Representative, or Person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the United States, shall be appointed an Elector.

The Electors shall meet in their respective States, and vote by Ballot for two Persons, of whom one at least shall not be an Inhabitant of the same State with themselves. And they shall make a List of all the Persons voted for, and of the Number of Votes for each; which List they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the Seat of the Government of the United States, directed to the President of the Senate. The President of the Senate shall, in the Presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the Certificates, and the Votes shall then be counted. The Person having the greatest Number of Votes shall be the President, if such Number be a Majority of the whole Number of Electors appointed; and if there be more than one who have such Majority, and have an equal Number of Votes, then the House of Representatives shall immediately chuse by Ballot one of them for President; and if no Person have a Majority, then from the five highest on the List the said House shall in like Manner chuse the President. But in chusing the President, the Votes shall be taken by States, the Representation from each State having one Vote; a quorum for this Purpose shall consist of a Member or Members from two thirds of the States, and a Majority of all the States shall be necessary to a Choice. In every Case, after the Choice of the President, the Person having the greatest Number of Votes of the Electors shall be the Vice President. But if there should remain two or more who have equal Votes, the Senate shall chuse from them by Ballot the Vice President 

The Congress may determine the Time of chusing the Electors, and the Day on which they shall give their Votes; which Day shall be the same throughout the United States.

No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.

Ok, so no one had spellcheck back then.  We can ignore that part.

But, hey – the 12th Amendment altered it…a little:

The Electors shall meet in their respective states, and vote by ballot for President and Vice-President, one of whom, at least, shall not be an inhabitant of the same state with themselves; they shall name in their ballots the person voted for as President, and in distinct ballots the person voted for as Vice-President, and they shall make distinct lists of all persons voted for as President, and all persons voted for as Vice-President and of the number of votes for each, which lists they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the seat of the government of the United States, directed to the President of the Senate.

The President of the Senate shall, in the presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the certificates and the votes shall then be counted.

The person having the greatest Number of votes for President, shall be the President, if such number be a majority of the whole number of Electors appointed; and if no person have such majority, then from the persons having the highest numbers not exceeding three on the list of those voted for as President, the House of Representatives shall choose immediately, by ballot, the President. But in choosing the President, the votes shall be taken by states, the representation from each state having one vote; a quorum for this purpose shall consist of a member or members from two-thirds of the states, and a majority of all the states shall be necessary to a choice. And if the House of Representatives shall not choose a President whenever the right of choice shall devolve upon them, before the fourth day of March next following, then the Vice-President shall act as President, as in the case of the death or other constitutional disability of the President.

The person having the greatest number of votes as Vice-President, shall be the Vice-President, if such number be a majority of the whole number of Electors appointed, and if no person have a majority, then from the two highest numbers on the list, the Senate shall choose the Vice-President; a quorum for the purpose shall consist of two-thirds of the whole number of Senators, and a majority of the whole number shall be necessary to a choice. But no person constitutionally ineligible to the office of President shall be eligible to that of Vice-President of the United States

So there you have it.  The constitutionally mandated mess that has come to be known collectively as The Electoral College.

So who are these select, powerful, 538 individuals who actually choose the leader of our nation?

Here’s the best part – they are APPOINTED, and not by any single standard means.  Nope, too easy.  There is not some federally mandated way in which electors get the duty – they are nominated by POLITICAL PARTIES, usually during conventions, sometimes in primaries – but each state gets to select HOW it will appoint the electors.

But wait – there’s MORE.  Yes, just in case THAT wasn’t enough – an elector CAN choose to not vote as they are mandated to do – and can even choose to cast no ballot at all!  Yes, that’s right – they can choose to do whatever they please.  Sure, there are ‘fines’ and ‘penalties’ if they act as a “faithless elector” – but so what?

Yes, there are still arguments about the inherent ‘stability’ of our two-party system, or the federalist ideals that led to this system of electors in the first place.  Sure, you can even make an argument about urban vs rural vote, greater vs lesser population state votes, you can even go ahead and argue that this is a tradition that should continue.

Seriously?  It is the 21st century.  Shouldn’t the election of the POTUS be an outright popular election?  Shouldn’t our already jaded vote count for REAL?

If there are between 200 and 250 MILLION eligible voters out there, and they are encouraged to all go out and vote – shouldn’t that vote count for MORE than providing direction, which can be disregard, to 538 unelected electors?

Yes, this means that, while we are at it, we should probably create a FEDERALLY MANDATED standard for voting.  Yes, I know – where will the money come from?  I think this might be a less important question than this:  How do we get anyone elected, legitimately, when all 50 states, plus DC, have no set standard they MUST follow?

Why are more people not enraged by this obscene, horrifically convoluted, outdated and outmoded system?  Why, after the fiasco of 2000 – yes, remember THAT disaster?  Why, after that, did NOTHING happen?  Why did NOTHING change?

There are, let’s face it, two key factors that keep this system alive today.  The first is legislative power.  We the people may go out and cast votes for our President – but the legislative branch still holds the power of electing the president through the constitution.

The second is, I think, the most glaring:

THIS PERPETUATES THE TWO PARTY SYSTEM.

Let’s be honest – no third party candidate can ever, possibly win a presidential election with the PARTY APPOINTED 538 electors.  Period.  Doesn’t matter if he or she can get better than 50% of the popular vote – the popular vote pretty much doesn’t count.

I was stunned to learn the insidiousness of this system, and didn’t even realize it went back as far as it did.

I won’t deny, I can see legitimate justification for this in the days of the 13 colonies, no mass communication systems and no computers.

But not anymore.  We can easily calculate a popular vote.  And the power of the individual states to elect a president, who will represent the WHOLE NATION, should not matter. I believe this election should be decided BY THE PEOPLE.

Why aren’t we outraged by this travesty?  Why do we not DEMAND our politicians fix this?  We are so very lulled into a sense of false security, that our government will do our will – we do not take action.

This is another issue that should no longer be ignored, either by us, or by our politicians.  The antiquated electoral college system should be done away with, and the vote of the people should decide our chief executive.

P.S.  Just an FYI – I DID, after my last post, forward the open letter to my Congressman and Senators.  Never found any direct email addresses, but found forms I could drop the letter into for email purposes.  I got back a lovely canned response from the 87 year old Senator.  It sort of touched on ONE point of my open letter.  Nearly.  Any other ideas?

Webpage Ramblings

When I got published in the anthology Rum and Runestones, I was given a chance to write a bio about myself.  Well, I did…and in that bio mentioned my personal website, MJ Blehart.  At the time I mentioned my website, it was nothing but a domain I owned – but it was unhosted.  When I learned the actual release of the anthology was days away, I determined that I had better not leave the site without content.

SO – I set out to create content for my personal website.  I determined to reuse the template my friend Mike gave me for Off the Compass Solutions – only I recolored it and made a few other small changes for my other site.  I started out with a front page, a bio page, and then a few random photos.  I then decided to add a sample of the poems I have written over the years.  I also determined that a page of some of my photos might be kinda cool, too.

The next item was what stories do I share?  The Source Chronicles have a web page – and the first 6 chapters of book 1 are there.  So that wasn’t what I wanted to put here.  So I decided to put up some shorter, completed novels – a couple of my NaNoWriMo projects.  In the 5 years I have participated in National Novel Writer’s Month, I have finished 3 stories.

I am pretty sure no one wants me to post a 200+ page story directly to the web.  SO I determined to save them in sections as PDF.  And I chose to put up first Shades of Mediocrity from 2008, and then The Journey of a Thousand Miles…Begins with a Trip to the Post Office from 2006.  Both of these are not my usual sci-fi and fantasy genre I work from.  But I think it’s a good example of the range of my writing abilities (there are plenty of advertisements and press materials I have created in the business world over the years, too).  I also feel both are fairly strong stories.

I had a great deal of trepidation about putting out Journey.  It is NOT the most flattering piece of work – I in fact paint myself as quite the asshole at various parts.  However – I think it is a great piece of dark humor that I created, and while I am semi-embarrassed by it, I am deeply proud of it.  So there it is…I have more or less laid myself open for the world to see.

Now I just need an agent to see this work, and offer to represent me so I can get some stand alone work published.  Or an enthusiastic publisher would be ok, too.

What to share, what to share?

I have a private blog I keep on LiveJournal.  I’ve had that one up and running for a number of years now.  And unless you happen to be a friend of mine, I don’t share what I put there.

But now I have this blog.  And so far…no content.  What do I put here, that I am willing to share with anyone and everyone, versus what I post to my LJ for just my closer friends?

I will start to talk about personal things like writing and my business and stuff like that which I am comfortable sharing.  I might also get into more controversial stuff like religion and politics in a way I don’t on my LJ.  This IS all about ramblings, after all.  And ramble I shall.

Today I added content to my new writing website – mjblehart.com.  I decided to include one of the stories I did for National Novel Writer’s Month a couple years back.  Not my usual genre – this is a technothriller.  (Think Tom Clancy and the like).  I think this helps provide more depth of my overall work on my new webpage.

Next up, I want to figure out how to do a podcast.  I intend to podcast The Source Chronicles: Seeker.  Working on the exact details…and the HOW of this idea.

So that is where I am at today.  Thanks for reading.  I will work on more interesting content along the way.

What is a titanium don, anyhow?

Not so much a what, as a who, really.

Hi there.  I am MJ Blehart, also known to many as Malcolm Bowman.  MJ Blehart is a writer and entrepreneur residing in New Jersey.  Malcolm Bowman is a persona of MJ Blehart in the Society for Creative Anachronism, hailing from the late 16th Century England, residing in the East Kingdom.  MJ Blehart is a Mister.  Malcolm Bowman is a Don.  And due to a shoulder composed largely of titanium following a serious accident near the end of 1999, a Don made partially of titanium.  And now you know the story behind the name.

Join me as I explore my new business and avenues in writing.  Make sure you have an appropriate beverage and snack for the journey. 

Enjoy!

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