Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Real Life in a Virtual World Part 2

Every society is conditioned to believe that modern life, the here and now, is better than any other previous civilization in the history of mankind. Who or what determines that? ~T. Glady

Over the next few posts I’m going to explore this concept of ‘better’ based on my own observations and frustrations with the struggle to cling to a semblance of real life while embedded in the Matrix, which is not even close to being real.
You can find Part 1- Easy -  HERE.

My cute father-in-law was a card carrying member of the Greatest Generation. He used to love diving whole hog into spirited discussions with me about all kinds of topics from low-fat diets–he was for it, I was against it–to what Clinton did behind closed doorshe believed it was no one’s business, I believed behaviors and choices that reveal a president’s integrity or lack thereof is everyone’s business especially when done behind the Oval Office door.

We would often engage in light-hearted, respectful sparing and usually, if it appeared I might be close to making my case, he’d pull out and slap down his ace in the hole–the ‘Expert Card”. He’d hunker down, tighten his lips, shake his head and say, with a tone of finality clearly meant to trump me, “They plainly say...blah, blah, blah (topic of the moment).

One day, for no other reason than I am ornery, I asked, “Reggie, who is ‘they’?”

He gave me the look. You know, the ‘what you talking about Willis?’ eyes squinted down, eyebrows knitted, slitted no-teeth-showing non-smile smile. 

“What?” He responded. 
“Who are ‘they’? I pressed. “You keep saying ‘they plainly say...’ So, who are these all knowing ‘they’?” 

A great big annoyed sigh escaped as he shook his head, he took in a deep breath pulling together all he had to set me straight, “ know...the experts!” 

End of discussion.

And there it was, the sum up of how easy it is to herd an entire population into a common stream of consciousness. Credentials, titles, sometimes nothing more than a wide reaching broadcast forum, and one can firmly establish an untruth to be an accepted guideline for the electorate.

This is the norm in the Matrix. What is real and true is anathema and akin to acid thrown onto a well-oiled machine churning out feel-good trust in an alternate reality. And the clueless citizens don’t seem to care, so long as their small cell within the illusion is not disturbed.

They plainly say...and thus it is so. 

Take this miracle wait, that was last year...get a lawyer and join the class action suit. Delete. Tell your doctor you want this drug instead, in rare cases it causes death. Wait.... Delete.

The earth is cooling.’s’s changing. Has nothing to do with volcanic activity and earth tilt toward the blazing sun. It’s definitely mankind’s carbon footprint. They plainly say that something very mass controlling and expensively burdensome must be done before we all die of.... Delete.

Radiation is bad for living things. Crippled Japanese nuke plant dumps tons of radiated water into Pacific. Sea life is melting. Scientists are baffled. Baffled I say! Delete.

Trust the man in the black broadcloth suit and white collar. He is the expert on God. Wait...never mind, he’s a pedophile. Delete. 

Trust the credentialed and titled who demand that education of children must be revised even though those who are changing and revising the way children are educated rose to their positions of intellect, knowledge and power by being educated the old-fashioned way. And, I might add, had summers off to be kids. Delete.

Trust the scientist, the professor, the engineer, the movie star, the reality TV show star, the athlete, the lawyer, the judge, the congressman, the wealthy evangelist, the famous book author, the billionaire software mogul, the activist teacher, the governor, the chemist, the news anchor with really good hair, the rap-singer, the manufacturer, the law-makers, the president...they know what they are talking about. They have...Matrix Credibility. 

They have what? They know what? 

They know what they think, and some might even sort of believe they think they know what is true, especially if they are continuously told they do. Some have book-learning and years of experience. That matters when you need a stable building or a bridge built or a safe fast moving vehicle or a non-poisonous food product or heart surgery. Some are just robots with artificially programed intelligence. Input/output. Many have knowledge but that which is no longer acceptable or does not align with the current trending truths so they have good reasons, mostly personal reasons regarding steady employment, for you to accept what they say without questioning their revision of truth. 

Statistics are great tools but are hardly static and are as suspect as the great faceless ‘they’ when deciding who or what to believe.

What is true in the Matrix seems to be somewhat organic and is constantly evolving. It’s never a solid standard or a foundation to build upon. It’s more a means to an end. Buried in the deep operating system of the Matrix there’s always an agenda to be thrust forward so it must be constantly manhandled and remolded to accommodate shifting necessity.

The only constant in the Matrix is the law that demands that everything that was true yesterday, might not be true today, but pay no attention to that. Delete.


There is so much irony here one could build a battleship. 

For all our opposite points of view there is one thing I know Reggie would agree with me on. A real expert, the one you could trust with your life, is the one who is armed with common sense, who knows how, and is not afraid to use it. One who may not have a title or letters following his name but who has a knowledge of and faith in a Greater Truth and so manages to survive the negative consequences of the power and authority of the false ones who are temporarily in charge. 

For Him,

It is a law of the human soul that people tend to become like that which they admire most intensely. Deep and long continued admiration can alter the whole texture of the mind and heart and turn the devotee into something quite other than he was before. For this reason it is critically important that we Christians should have right models. It is not enough to say that our model should be Christ. While that is true, it is also true that Christ is known mostly through the lives of His professed followers, and the more prominent and vocal these followers are the more powerful will be their influence upon the rank and file of Christians. If the models are imperfect the whole standard of Christian living must suffer as a result. ~A.W. Tozer

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Real Life in a Virtual World - Part 1

Every society is conditioned to believe that modern life, the here and now, is better than any other previous civilization in the history of mankind. Who or what determines that? ~T. Glady

Over the next few posts I’m going to explore this concept of ‘better’ based on my own observations and frustrations with the struggle to cling to a semblance of real life while embedded in the Matrix, which is not even close to being real.

Those who have only a cursory knowledge of history to compare to would argue that it is modern technology that makes things better in this era because it makes life easier.

Easier. Easiest. Easy. What does that mean? Less labor or physical exertion? Less need for time spent training, learning, preparing? Fewer hours working, more hours relaxing? Does ‘easy’ ever come with consequences? Is there no price to be paid in exchange for ease of doing? 

Cherry picking a point, yes, certainly it is easier to do laundry in an electric washing machine and dryer than to scrub clothes with soap you made yourself on a washboard before you hang them one at a time out to dry. I’d definitely prefer to keep my washer/dryer. But... let’s say I had to give them up. First off, I’d quickly make some life-style adjustments, like choosing not to wash things after just one use, like towels but not like underwear. Maybe I’d change the sheets once a month instead of once a week? 

I might complain a bit and recall longingly of the days when I could do three loads of clothes, washed, dried, put away in three hours while doing other things in between loading, unloading, sorting, folding and distributing back to their holding places in drawers and closets.

While doing other things. Things I have determined are more important, less tedious or just funner than doing laundry. Ease of doing laundry, which used to be a tough day’s work certainly qualifies as better. Right?

But what about those days when I know I have laundry piled up and I just can’t seem to find the time to get it sorted and the first load started? What about the days when, as I am sorting the darks, lights and in-betweens into separate piles I grumble under my breath about having to do laundry at all? Didn’t I just wash this pair of pants on Tuesday?

Fortunately, I have a built in Matrix alarm that stops me in my tracks when I dare to go down that pitted ingrates road. I take a breath and tell God how much I appreciate my washer/dryer and I have a flashback of my mom washing clothes in a wringer-washer and then being overjoyed at the upgrade to her front-load electric washer but still having to go out to the backyard and hang the heavy soggy clothes up with wooden pins on a wire line stretched between two poles. Even in the winter. Every Monday. Sometimes rainy Mondays. Wash days in my mother’s housekeeping days were relegated to Mondays. Nothing else was more important. 

Reality check! 

So, I say, “Thank You, Lord” again, knowing that without some effort or impetus, perspective that has been formed and nurtured in the Matrix is hard to reorder.

But isn’t this about as human as it gets? We are never satisfied. How soon we forget. We are easily spoiled and find things to complain about, no matter how much easier/better our lives are because of modern inventions, like electricity, indoor plumbing, air conditioning. Cell phones, the Internet. Gadgets, tools, faster-than-the-speed-of-light vehicles. For every modern convenience at our fingertips, for each and every moment of ‘have to’ labor freed up for a moment of unstructured time or other ‘choose to‘ activity that we deem to be time better spent, we step away from real life into a complex manufactured world where the new customary is defined by the idea of ‘EASY’. It’s an adjective fused into all the mind control advertising we are subjected to across multiple mediums night and day. 

Easy to Use. Easy Button. It’s So Easy. Take It Easy. Easy Does It. The Easy Life. Super Easy. Easy Street. Easy Sneezy. Free And Easy. Quick And Easy.

In the Matrix, the goal seems to be less about elevating and refining humanity and more about simply making everything easy. Easy job, easy life. Minimal effort. Let the technology do what man once did by hand to free up man’s mind to do...more important things.

What might those important things be, one might ask? An easy life, divested of hard labor or the physical exertion that sheer survival requires, allows time for important interactions with others via Twitter and texting, and Facebook. Then there’s hours available to spend online, utilizing the instant ease of playing games or shopping or researching the nuances and reflections of the good, easy life that then can be emulated. Those are certainly important endeavors that promise to exercise and strengthen humankind’s intellect.

No one could argue that the greatest advance to civilization was the harnessing of electricity that now courses through the wires to homes and businesses making it possible to work all day and all night too, now. No need to be dependent on the light of the sun. No more boundaries of laying down the plough at dusk to go back to a hot meal with family and well-deserved rest. Artificial light also makes playing and enjoying leisure around the clock a boon to the modern civilized world. Las Vegas comes to mind, where all night is lit up as bright as day, providing lots more hours of important civilizational advancement activities.

Then there’s availability of 24/7 televised information, both fictional and fiction pretending to be real. In the Matrix most televised information is not even close to real but the citizens are desensitized so that nothing spoken is believed anyway. Whether it is news, art or sales pitch it’s all good and Easy! Disposable! Quick! Instant! Amazing! [insert favorite superlatives here].

So, back to the original question, is there a price to be paid for technology providing more leisure, and less work? 

Reminds me of an old English proverb - An idle mind is the devil’s playground.

For Him,

[1 Corinthians 15:58]  ...Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord.

Sunday, May 18, 2014


So. They gathered together to eat, drink and honor my sixty-seventh birthday. Over-the-top merriment and delight in each other always ensures when this crazy bunch assembles, whatever the excuse. Though it cannot be denied that the kids are the biggest benefactors of the memories made in real time. 

Of course, they don’t realize this but they are quietly being shaped by these events and will, one day, pull them out, all melded together as reinforcement against and antidote to the overwhelming tides of time. As long ago as it was, I still vividly recall the fish-fries of my childhood family and later, the celebrations of my own young family. 

As I soldier on I continue to find treasure in the sounds of kids whooping and hollering, adults visiting, sharing, laughing and those intangibles that underwrite, unbeknownst to all, the real importance of family. 

We live in an age that seems determined to redefine the family unit, but regrettably not in a good or uplifting way. The object is ostensibly to demand inclusion in the determination of what a ‘family’ is or is not. But I think the agenda is much more sinister than that. The goal is to make family, the time-proven influence in positive human development, passé, antiquated and unnecessary. If that objective could be met, then it would be a short final step to belonging to nothing but the state and thus beholden to what the state deems acceptable or not, what to think, believe, and follow. 

Unfortunately, this isn’t new. It’s been tried many times. It always fails because there is one small glitch, that pesky component called human nature. Humans are instinctively tribal. This can never be regulated or educated out of us. It is a condition that continues on, even if it has to morph and appear to be something else.  

I’m blogging about this as a way to thank my family for the memorable joy they give me all the time. And more than that, I am making this an opportunity to express my deepest gratitude to God for all my blessings. I couldn’t possibly list them all. While a few are material things, most are the outstanding individuals who, altogether, define my reason for being. 

Thank you. Thank You.

For Him,


(Ephesians 3:14) For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father,  (3:15) from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named,  (3:16) that he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, that ye may be strengthened with power through his Spirit in the inward man;  (3:17) that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; to the end that ye, being rooted and grounded in love,  (3:18) may be strong to apprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth,  (3:19) and to know the love of Christ which passeth knowledge, that ye may be filled unto all the fulness of God.  

Monday, May 12, 2014

Rotten Core

During my senior year in high school, I participated in a group test sponsored by the Ohio State Employment Bureau. My peers and I took a field trip to the State office and spent several hours being subjected to a battery of examinations, the object of which was to determine our individual strengths and weaknesses through kinesthetic, psychological and knowledge-based analysis. 

Once the results were tallied we each sat with a counselor who was ostensibly endowed with the skill to interpret the results and therefore guide us toward solid career choices. 

I sat in reserved anticipation for my guide to reveal to me what I thought I already knew. Not to say I knew what I would do with my life at age seventeen, but I believed that whatever it was it would involve creative arts and right-brained function. I was a closet poet and writer even then. I had been a member of the same small select group of Advanced English class since ninth grade; molded by the same teacher for four years in the fine art of written communication. I was a Thespian, I had been involved in every play and musical produced by my high school for three years. I had not yet discovered art, design, or photography. But then, again, I was only seventeen. I had years ahead to dabble and express myself in all manner of mediums. 

The counselor was clearly hesitant to tell me what all the cold data pointed to. He knew I was an A student in a college preparatory school. Finally, he found the words couched in apologetic tone, “You know, you scored high in nearly every area but. . . [wince]. . . where you really excel. . . suggests that. . . you would be great. . .on. . .an. . .[cough]. . . assembly line."

We stared at each other in a silent pause. Then he back-peddled with a weak laugh as though it had all been just a big joke. I don’t really recall the rest of the conversation. He probably gave me some good advise about doing my best at whatever I tried.  

I have pulled out, dusted off, and set this incident here for examination now, fifty years later, to make a point. Tests, data gathering, good intentions and evil ones hidden inside good sounding intentions, cannot, in anyway, channel humans because the one thing that is always missing in the robotic garnering is the ever serendipitous–human factor. The reason fixed rules and regulations, herding, determining and the mechanics of a Brave New World where nothing is left to chance, no individualism is allowed, no thinking outside of strict established boundaries, can never, ever, EVER, predict what a human is capable of doing. Ever. 

Of course, from a Christian perspective, the flawed human condition is more than capable of rising to astounding heights.  I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. (Phil 4:13) 

I have been warning in as many ways as I know how that the “New” education standards are, in fact, not new. If you care to find out exactly what is happening and why so many are now standing up to resist it, there are more than enough resources from intelligent and credible people. At its best, Common Core, and all the other aliases it has used and now morphs into every time there is push back, is social engineering. At its worst, it is one step away from totalitarianism. 

Is that what you want for your children and grandchildren? To be herded into their lives based on sterile ‘standardization’? To be predetermined what job they must fill for the “good of the whole”? To be probed and searched and categorized by criteria as established by some unknown group, committee and/or ruling political entity? Does this sound like America or Communist China? 

I have a small following here with this blog but all it takes is one person telling another and another telling another to get a concept up and out in the air. This is an election year, a decidedly short-lived powerful condition, whereby constituents have a narrow window of influence on those seeking election and at least until the votes are in and the worn out rhetoric is stored away. 

The many lone voices who have been shouting out warnings about how this diabolical system is already deeply embedded in our schools and how many are fleeing to homeschooling because of it are finally gaining attention because of the impact the system is having on real kids and their parents. And now good teachers are fleeing the profession as well. Parents who can’t homeschool are standing up and speaking out. Some are risking rebuke, vilification and/or arrest to do so. Does this not raise concern? At least a curious look-see? Home-schoolers should not ignore that the ‘standards’ will impact them as well. 

Michelle Malkin has a body of work online on the subject. In Robin Eubank’s blog and book Credentialed To Destroy - How and Why Education Became a Weapon, you can discover how it all began, where it came from and why it’s so counter to individualism, common sense and critical thinking that was foundational to the birth and development of the greatest country in history. And why it is so much worse than just data mining. 

If you don’t have time to read a book, you can download THIS PDF file which is a synopsis and about as clear as the writer Lou Hohmann can make it. It doesn’t matter if you don’t have kids in school. If this system is allowed to fundamentally change this country from what’s left of the free society known for its creative enterprise and innovation to a dystopian state that compartmentalizes humans by profiling, then everyone, old and young alike, will lose. Big. A single generation hence there will not be a trace of what made America the envy of the world. 

It is a grave mistake to believe that a great nation is not vulnerable to those who hate it and desire to compromise it into failure. All it takes is for good people to look the other way; to ignore the man behind the curtain. If I had allowed the results of my skill set testing to determine what I was best at, I would have had to set aside my creativity, ignore my muse, give up my vision, my hope and my enthusiasm for making things, especially for invention, designing, building and writing. 

True, I might have been a star employee for a manufacturer of widgets because the test could clearly see that I had great dexterity in my hands. To be clear, there is no shame in that. Many good people make honest livings doing those jobs that suit them, including my mother-in-law, who worked more than thirty years for Westinghouse. My point is not about the kind of jobs or those who are good at them but rather their conscious choice to do them. Their own individual, personal choice. 

And my point is that the test, nor any other, could ever have seen inside my human heart and what I was better suited for. More importantly it could never have predicted all the things that God had planned for me. 

Never, ever. 

For Him, 

Thursday, May 8, 2014

To All Moms

Because you have to laugh so you won't cry all the time. For Him, Meema