10 Preposterous Examples That Orwell’s 1984 Police State Is Alive & Well

Think

TheBreakaway | BreakawayConciousness
Zy Marquiez
March 24, 2017

There has been an undercurrent of corruption growing in certain sections of Big Government.  Even Orwell might be shocked by such government overreach.

For America being a country that’s supposed to be the paragon of Freedom, one must wonder askance about the developments that have taken place below.  Yes, not all cops carry out such overreach, but the one’s that do should be called out for it.

The fact that such ludicrous things even happen show something is amiss, and the fact that the mainstream media doesn’t cover these instances should be a clue.

#1:  One would think water, that thing that comes from rain, would be free.  Apparently not.  An Oregon man was forced to destroy his pond in a clear example of downright insanity.

#2:  Donating food and helping others is a great thing.  It is a virtuous act.  So why is it that in Florida Activists that were carrying out a “Food Not Bombs” were arrested for feeding the homeless – AGAIN?  So much for land of the Free.

#3:  Self sufficiency is something America used to be a pioneer in.  In fact, our ancestors thrived off of it.  This is one area that most modern individuals lack, and lack enormously in modern times.  So, one would figure that when someone does strive to become self sufficient, they should be applauded, no?  Say, you want to make natural products – that sounds like a good idea doesn’t it?  Recently, an Amish farmer faces 68 years in prison for theft murder making natural products.  Let that one sink in.

#4:  In one place, walking your child home from school and driving while caffeinated are now felony crimes.  No more comment.

#5:   Police are even being caught not uploading body cam footage.  One has to wonder why they’re not doing their job, especially when they work ostensibly to help the public.  It’s ironic because that very footage they need to upload is the very footage that will help in keeping them accountable to the public.

#6:  Police have also been caught spying on journalists attempting to uncover leaks.

#7:  The police state is escalating so such levels that merely filming the protests for the pipeline protest can get you facing 45 years in prison.

#8:  In Florida, again, residents are even being fined for growing vegetables on their own property.

#9:  Let’s think outside the box now.  When is the last time you heard of someone arrested for dancing?  No, really, for dancing.  What follows in the video in the link is disturbing considering nothing wrong was taking place.  This could have easily happened to me, any of my friends, perhaps you, or heaven knows anyone else.  Even those recording the video speak out against this glaring example of a police state.

#10:  Victoria Bloch explains here that she got arrested for selling products at a farmers market.  To watch her interview please click on the link.

As we can gather, a few of these examples target self-sufficiency.  Becoming self sufficiency is one of the greatest acts of rebellion and individual can carry out, because the individual ceases to be a cash cow for the system and that allows for greater latitude through life and finances.

It’s vital to realize what is taking place, because the above examples are not the only ones that showcase the growing Police State presence in America.

While it might seem ludicrous, and some of these very people would have never in a million years thought the above circumstances could ever happen, it has happened.  People need to find out, because if these issues do not get exposed they will never stop and only grow unabated.

Freedom requires responsibility.  And if we are to enjoy those Freedoms we have, we need to be cognizant so we can act responsibly.

Have courage, stand up for what is right, even if you stand alone.

Sometimes, all it takes is one person to change the tide of life.

Let’s each strive to become that person and bring about resounding change.

The future either flourishes with us, or dwindles with us.  It’s our choice.

Each of us individually should strive to make that choice a great one.

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This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.
___________________________________________________________
About The Author:

Zy Marquiez is an avid book reviewer, researcher, an open-minded skeptic, yogi, humanitarian, and freelance writer who studies regularly subjects like Consciousness, Education, Creativity, The Individual, Ancient History & Ancient Civilizations, Forbidden Archaeology, Big Pharma, Alternative Health, Space, Geoengineering, Social Engineering, Propaganda, and much more.

His own personal blog is BreakawayConsciousnessBlog.wordpress.com where his personal work is shared, while TheBreakaway.wordpress.com serves as a media portal which mirrors vital information usually ignored by mainstream press, but still highly crucial to our individual understanding of various facets of the world.

Book Review: On The Shoulders Of Hobbits by Louis Markos Ph.D.

OnShouldersOfHobbits
TheBreakaway
| BreakawayConciousness
Zy Marquiez
March 24, 2017

On The Shoulders Of Hobbits – The Road To Virtue With Tolkien & Lewis by Louis Markos Ph.D. is a book that seeks to rediscover virtues, as they were known to be in older times.  These virtues are exemplified through the works of J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis.

Peter Kreeft Ph.D., author of book gems such as Socratic Logic, Philosophy 101, etc. opens up the book with an apt foreword, which is followed by a salient introduction by the author Markos.

In the introduction Louis Markos outlines the fact that society needs a revived awareness regarding lost virtues which were inherent to individuals once upon a time.  The author also covers why fantasy and stories, such as those by Tolkien and Lewis, are vital in showcasing these lost virtues.  Along with that the author also gives us some background information on the subject, as well as what his approach will be in the breakdown of the messages and morals that he later tackles.

Although the book covers both Tolkien and Lewis’ work, a more sizeable portion will be of Tolkien’s work.  In a rough guesstimate, the book is perhaps two thirds Tolkien to one third Lewis or so.  This does in no way take away from the meaning of the book, but it’s something that the reader perhaps might want to know.  At least for me, the book was still plenty valuable.

In addition, the reason the that the author has chosen to cover Tolkien and Lewis’ work is because “though Tolkien was not a fan of The Chronicles of Narnia, the fact remains that the two men shared the same premodern Christian understanding of good and evil, virtue and vice, beauty and ugliness.”[1][15]

Since both authors have such similar philosophies, drawing from each authors’ books is in fact a no brainer.

At the nascent stage of each chapter the author begins with a particular message and/or moral that has been overlooked by modern society, and then that particular theme is then analytically coupled to information from The Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, or The Silmarillion, with the information further complemented with a passage from The Chronicles Of Narnia that helps buttress the theme further.

One neat part about each of these chapters, and lessons woven and analyzed therein is that there is a variety of ways one can learn from these given the information provided.  Given that the subjects of these books are so vital to healthy and robust human principles, having intriguing discussions regarding these themes should be something ruminated upon at length.  Families or friends could discuss the information bouncing it back and forth in thought, or it could even be covered in homeschooling or group discussion perhaps.  Heck, it would have been neat/awesome to have had a discussion about something like this in high school or college, instead other subjects that aren’t important to life.

In plain speak, what the author seeks to accomplish is help the individual learn why the works of Tolkien and Lewis are highly respected.

Each of the examples from the books of Lewis and Tolkien are quiet salient ones, and very meaningful.  In fact, some of the examples provided could arguably be some of the sagest lines written by each author, at least for this book’s purposes.

For what it’s worth, the book is split up into three sections.  In section one, the author’s main focus was the proverbial road – the individual journey – that each individually embarks upon which resonates with our deepest being.  Markos does a very remarkable job in showing how the quest that the characters in each of respective novels follows a specific journey, and in much the same way mirrors what individual people might go through in life.  Section two covers four classical virtues, while Section three breaks down three theological virtues, which contain also a fourth, which regard friendship, and was one of my favorite parts of the book.  Those latter stages really exemplify those virtues in the authors’ work in a way that helps the reader realize what society has lost, and how to help reboot the road to virtue.

At its closing stages, the book finishes with a very robust and enlightening Bibliographical Essay [Appendix A] regarding J.R.R. Tolkien and Middle Earth, which features substantial additional information regarding all things Tolkien.  A very notable addition for any serious fan, and will even prove useful for some casual fans that might not know where to start.  As someone who’s beginning to study Tolkien more and more, this part is absolutely invaluable.

The second bibliographical essay [Appendix B] touches upon C.S. Lewis and Narnia.  In similar fashion, the resources covering Lewis are discussed at length, and in rather salient fashion.  Markos does an exemplary job of really going above in beyond with both essays in supplanting a veritable truckload of information for individuals – enough to keep you busy for years surely!

All things considered, this book really gives the incisive and inquisitive mind much to ruminate upon, and for me it’s undoubtedly a great book, and a worthy book to have in any personal library.

In fact, considering the topic at hand – regarding society’s lost virtues – one could even make the bold argument that it’s even a great piece of modern literature.  Regarding that, perhaps Peter Kreeft said it best in the book’s foreword:

“That’s why reading great literature; next to meeting people is the single most effective way to learn not to flunk life.  Life is a story, therefore moral education happens first and foremost powerfully through stories, e.g., through books.”[2]

This book in particular, not only is educational, but helps readers sensibly reconnect with virtues that seem to be going by the way side.  And in an age where society’s values keep getting overlooked, a book like this is worth its weight in gold.  That alone is worth the price of this book.

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Footnotes:

[1] Louis Markos Ph.D., On The Shoulders Of Hobbits – The Road To Virtue With Tolkien & Lewis, p. 15.
[2] Ibid., Peter Kreeft, Foreword, On The Shoulders Of Hobbits, p. 8.
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Suggested Book Reviews and video:

The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien
Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit by Corey Olsen Ph.D.
The Lord Of The Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien
How To Read J.R.R. Tolkien
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This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.
______________________________________________________________
About The Author:

Zy Marquiez is an avid book reviewer, researcher, an open-minded skeptic, yogi, humanitarian, and freelance writer who studies regularly subjects like Consciousness, Education, Creativity, The Individual, Ancient History & Ancient Civilizations, Forbidden Archaeology, Big Pharma, Alternative Health, Space, Geoengineering, Social Engineering, Propaganda, and much more.

His own personal blog is BreakawayConsciousnessBlog.wordpress.com where his personal work is shared, while TheBreakaway.wordpress.com serves as a media portal which mirrors vital information usually ignored by mainstream press, but still highly crucial to our individual understanding of various facets of the world.

Preventable Medical Errors Are The Third Leading Cause Of Death In The United States

bigpharmamoney

TheBreakaway | BreakawayConciousness
Zy Marquiez
March 22, 2017

“Probably as much as 75% of the medicine of sickness is unnecessary and its cost can be avoided.”
–  Dr. Ghislaine Lanctot, Author Of The Medical Mafia

It was reported by the British Medical Journal [BMJ] – although it had already been reported for quite some time by various researchers who outlined Dr. Barbara Starfield’s study for more than a decade – that preventable medical errors were the third leading cause of death in the United States.

Its quite unfortunate downright disturbing that such a system kills 250,000 [conservative estimate] a year, like clockwork, and still fosters so much trust even though prescription drugs are in fact 16,400% deadlier than terrorists.

There are many things that Big Pharma doesn’t want you to know.  And given that the Big Pharma literally pays the Mainstream Media’s bill, we can’t expect decent coverage of such deleterious issues.  Furthermore, coverage of Big Pharma’s dirty laundry would crack the reality egg and wake people up.  The establishment will always make sure that doesn’t happen.

Think about it, if terrorists were killing 250,000 Americans EVERY YEAR, people would be out for blood, asking for war, justice, everything. 

But the medical establishment killing 250,000 people EVERY YEAR?  That’s standard procedure.

That’s really no big deal.  It happens. Nothing to see here, move a long now.  That’s standard procedure.

And if you happen to still believe that the mainstream media reports the truth, where are they now covering this?  This was published in arguably the most prestigious medical journal in the world. Where is the coverage?

Nothing but crickets.

There should be some serious discussions taking place considering that people are dropping like flies at hospitals.

What’s more, disturbingly, Newsweek reported:

“The researchers for the study from Johns Hopkins say their findings suggest the CDC’s method for collecting data on causes of death is flawed, leading to inaccurate estimates on just how dangerous a visit to your local hospital has become.

Death certificates currently don’t have a separate coding classification for medical errors, which means estimates are not accurate.

The medical coding system used by the CDC was originally developed for physicians and hospitals to determine what to bill health insurance companies for individualized patient care. The authors recommend an overhaul of how cause of death data is collected.”[Bold Emphasis Added]

That’s overwhelmingly significant, considering that this could mean there are even more big-medica-caused deaths that are not being counted.

Furthermore, with prescription drugs being doled out at the tune of 4 Billion per annum, it’s no wonder that medications are also injuring 1.5 Million people a year.

Not only are there 400,000 injuries that can be prevented each year at hospitals, but there are also 800,000 injuries that occur in long-term care facilities. 

When does this stop?

By becoming aware that there is a problem, first.  Secondly, this begins to change when the individual decides to not become a statistic.

There are alternatives, which is why alternative medical care, which usually has no side effects, keeps growing at an unprecedented rate.

Don’t allow what happened to my family, losing two family members and nigh becoming a third loss myself, happen to yours.

Awareness is the key.  And awareness of this issue might just saved your life, or that of your loved one.
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This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.
___________________________________________________________
About The Author:

Zy Marquiez is an avid book reviewer, researcher, an open-minded skeptic, yogi, humanitarian, and freelance writer who studies regularly subjects like Consciousness, Education, Creativity, The Individual, Ancient History & Ancient Civilizations, Forbidden Archaeology, Big Pharma, Alternative Health, Space, Geoengineering, Social Engineering, Propaganda, and much more.

His own personal blog is BreakawayConsciousnessBlog.wordpress.com where his personal work is shared, while TheBreakaway.wordpress.com serves as a media portal which mirrors vital information usually ignored by mainstream press, but still highly crucial to our individual understanding of various facets of the world.

American Corporate MSM Is Merged With CIA & Has Been Since The 1950s

breakaway3
Source: WashingtonsBlog.com
Brandon Turbeville
March 16, 2017

Hat tip to Washington’s Blog for collating much of this information.

With the recent back and forth seemingly taking place between two different factions of the American Deep State and playing out before the entire country, a few alternative media outlets have begun to question whether or not certain mainstream media outlets are actually connected to the Deep State, most notably the CIA. With an unimaginable scale of disinformation being released and promoted throughout mainstream channels on a daily basis, all propagandizing the public to go along with the desired direction of the American establishment, few could assume otherwise. However, such connections between American mainstream outlets and the CIA are more than mere conjecture, they are well-known and have been documented for some time.

For instance, back in the late 1940’s and early 1950’s, Operation Mockingbird, a plan known to many researchers today but known to virtually no one at the time it was originally being implemented, was a secret CIA effort to influence and control the American media and, thus, to influence and control the information received (as well as the opinions) of the American people. The first report of the program came in 1979 in the biography of Katharine Graham, the owner of The Washington Post, written by Deborah Davis.[1]
Davis wrote that the program was established by Frank Wisner, the director of the Office of Policy Coordination, a covert operations unit created under the National Security Council. According to Davis, Wisner recruited Philip Graham of the Washington Post to head the project within the media industry. Davis wrote that, “By the early 1950s, Wisner ‘owned’ respected members of The New York Times, Newsweek, CBS and other communications vehicles.” Davis also writes that Allen Dulles convinced Cord Meyer, who later became Mockingbird’s “principal operative,” to join the CIA in 1951.[2]

But while Davis’ book may have been the first mention of Operation Mockingbird by name, Carl Bernstein addressed the CIA influence over the media in 1977. According to Bernstein’s Rolling Stone article, after 1953, the media control program was overseen by Allen Dulles, the CIA Director. Bernstein says that, at that time, the CIA had influence over 25 newspapers and wire agencies. Bernstein wrote,

Among the executives who lent their cooperation to the Agency were Williarn Paley of the Columbia Broadcasting System, Henry Luce of Tirne Inc., Arthur Hays Sulzberger of the New York Times, Barry Bingham Sr. of the LouisviIle Courier‑Journal, and James Copley of the Copley News Service. Other organizations which cooperated with the CIA include the American Broadcasting Company, the National Broadcasting Company, the Associated Press, United Press International, Reuters, Hearst Newspapers, Scripps‑Howard, Newsweek magazine, the Mutual Broadcasting System, the Miami Herald and the old Saturday Evening Post and New York Herald‑Tribune.
By far the most valuable of these associations, according to CIA officials, have been with the New York Times, CBS and Time Inc.

The CIA’s use of the American news media has been much more extensive than Agency officials have acknowledged publicly or in closed sessions with members of Congress. The general outlines of what happened are indisputable; the specifics are harder to come by. CIA sources hint that a particular journalist was trafficking all over Eastern Europe for the Agency; the journalist says no, he just had lunch with the station chief. CIA sources say flatly that a well‑known ABC correspondent worked for the Agency through 1973; they refuse to identify him. A high‑level CIA official with a prodigious memory says that the New York Times provided cover for about ten CIA operatives between 1950 and 1966; he does not know who they were, or who in the newspaper’s management made the arrangements.

The Agency’s special relationships with the so‑called “majors” in publishing and broadcasting enabled the CIA to post some of its most valuable operatives abroad without exposure for more than two decades. In most instances, Agency files show, officials at the highest levels of the CIA usually director or deputy director) dealt personally with a single designated individual in the top management of the cooperating news organization. The aid furnished often took two forms: providing jobs and credentials “journalistic cover” in Agency parlance) for CIA operatives about to be posted in foreign capitals; and lending the Agency the undercover services of reporters already on staff, including some of the best‑known correspondents in the business.

In the field, journalists were used to help recruit and handle foreigners as agents; to acquire and evaluate information, and to plant false information with officials of foreign governments. Many signed secrecy agreements, pledging never to divulge anything about their dealings with the Agency; some signed employment contracts., some were assigned case officers and treated with. unusual deference. Others had less structured relationships with the Agency, even though they performed similar tasks: they were briefed by CIA personnel before trips abroad, debriefed afterward, and used as intermediaries with foreign agents. Appropriately, the CIA uses the term “reporting” to describe much of what cooperating journalists did for the Agency. “We would ask them, ‘Will you do us a favor?’”.said a senior CIA official. “‘We understand you’re going to be in Yugoslavia. Have they paved all the streets? Where did you see planes? Were there any signs of military presence? How many Soviets did you see? If you happen to meet a Soviet, get his name and spell it right …. Can you set up a meeting for is? Or relay a message?’” Many CIA officials regarded these helpful journalists as operatives; the journalists tended to see themselves as trusted friends of the Agency who performed occasional favors—usually without pay—in the national interest.

. . . . .

During the 1976 investigation of the CIA by the Senate Intelligence Committee, chaired by Senator Frank Church, the dimensions of the Agency’s involvement with the press became apparent to several members of the panel, as well as to two or three investigators on the staff. But top officials of the CIA, including former directors William Colby and George Bush, persuaded the committee to restrict its inquiry into the matter and to deliberately misrepresent the actual scope of the activities in its final report. The multivolurne report contains nine pages in which the use of journalists is discussed in deliberately vague and sometimes misleading terms. It makes no mention of the actual number of journalists who undertook covert tasks for the CIA. Nor does it adequately describe the role played by newspaper and broadcast executives in cooperating with the Agency.

THE AGENCY’S DEALINGS WITH THE PRESS BEGAN during the earliest stages of the Cold War. Allen Dulles, who became director of the CIA in 1953, sought to establish a recruiting‑and‑cover capability within America’s most prestigious journalistic institutions. By operating under the guise of accredited news correspondents, Dulles believed, CIA operatives abroad would be accorded a degree of access and freedom of movement unobtainable under almost any other type of cover.

American publishers, like so many other corporate and institutional leaders at the time, were willing to commit the resources of their companies to the struggle against “global Communism.” Accordingly, the traditional line separating the American press corps and government was often indistinguishable: rarely was a news agency used to provide cover for CIA operatives abroad without the knowledge and consent of either its principal owner, publisher or senior editor. Thus, contrary to the notion that the CIA insidiously infiltrated the journalistic community, there is ample evidence that America’s leading publishers and news executives allowed themselves and their organizations to become handmaidens to the intelligence services. “Let’s not pick on some poor reporters, for God’s sake,” William Colby exclaimed at one point to the Church committee’s investigators. “Let’s go to the managements. They were witting.” In all, about twenty‑five news organizations including those listed at the beginning of this article) provided cover for the Agency

In addition to cover capability, Dulles initiated a “debriefing” procedure under which American correspondents returning from abroad routinely emptied their notebooks and offered their impressions to Agency personnel. Such arrangements, continued by Dulles’ successors, to the present day, were made with literally dozens of news organizations. In the 1950s, it was not uncommon for returning reporters to be met at the ship by CIA officers. “There would be these guys from the CIA flashing ID cards and looking like they belonged at the Yale Club,” said Hugh Morrow, a former Saturday Evening Post correspondent who is now press secretary to former vice‑president Nelson Rockefeller. “It got to be so routine that you felt a little miffed if you weren’t asked.”

. . . . .

From the outset, the use of journalists was among the CIA’s most sensitive undertakings, with full knowledge restricted to the Director of Central Intelligence and a few of his chosen deputies. Dulles and his successors were fearful of what would happen if a journalist‑operative’s cover was blown, or if details of the Agency’s dealings with the press otherwise became public. As a result, contacts with the heads of news organizations were normally initiated by Dulles and succeeding Directors of Central Intelligence; by the deputy directors and division chiefs in charge of covert operations—Frank Wisner, Cord Meyer Jr., Richard Bissell, Desmond FitzGerald, Tracy Barnes, Thomas Karamessines and Richard Helms himself a former UPI correspondent); and, occasionally, by others in the CIA hierarchy known to have an unusually close social relationship with a particular publisher or broadcast executive.1

James Angleton, who was recently removed as the Agency’s head of counterintelligence operations, ran a completely independent group of journalist‑operatives who performed sensitive and frequently dangerous assignments; little is known about this group for the simple reason that Angleton deliberately kept only the vaguest of files.

The CIA even ran a formal training program in the 1950s to teach its agents to be journalists. Intelligence officers were “taught to make noises like reporters,” explained a high CIA official, and were then placed in major news organizations with help from management. “These were the guys who went through the ranks and were told ‘You’re going to he a journalist,’” the CIA official said. Relatively few of the 400‑some relationships described in Agency files followed that pattern, however; most involved persons who were already bona fide journalists when they began undertaking tasks for the Agency.

Forty years later, Bernstein’s article is still a must read for understanding the CIA’s relationship to the corporate media.

Indeed, a declassified memo from 1965 confirms much of what Bernstein wrote about in 1977. This memo was addressed to the Deputy Director of the Directorate of Intelligence, Ray S. Cline, and revealed the names of several high profile journalists who were “receiving intelligence” from Cline. By “intelligence,” however, one can read simply that reporters were receiving their marching orders for publication and print from the CIA. The memo contained the names Joseph C. Hersch, Walter Lippmann, John Scott, Joseph Alsop, Wallace Carroll, Cy Sulzberger, Henry Gemill, Charles Bartlett, Max S. Johnson, Harry Schwartz, Bill Shannon, Jess Cook, Stewart Alsop, William S. White, Chalmers Roberts, Murrey Marder, Charles J.V. Murphy, Russell Wiggins, Alfred Friendly, Tad Szulc, and Kay Graham. The outlets listed include Christian Science Monitor, Los Angeles Times, NBC, TIME, Publishers’ Newspaper Syndicate, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, U.S. News and World Report, Saturday Evening Post, United Features Syndicate, Washington Post, Fortune, and Newsweek.

Even the U.S. government’s official summary of the overthrow of the elected President of Iran in the 1950s admits that the CIA was planting stories in the American Press. It reads, “In cooperation with the Department of State, CIA had several articles planted in major American newspapers and magazines which, when reproduced in Iran, had the desired psychological effect in Iran and contributed to the war of nerves against Mossadeq.”

In 1975, the U.S. Senate Select Committee to Study Governmental Operations With Respect To Intelligence Activities found that the agency did indeed submit stories to the press. Chair of the Church Committee, Senator Frank Church, stated publicly, “I thought that it was a matter of real concern that planted stories intended to serve a national purpose abroad came home and were circulated here and believed here because this would mean that the CIA could manipulate the news in the United States by channeling it through some foreign country.” In other words, the type of propaganda that was supposed to be relegated to use against overseas enemies and target foreign populations was now being used at home.

During a question and answer session of the Church Committee, a CIA representative was asked a series of questions related to the possibility that the CIA was planting stories in the press. There are scarcely any lines to read between as the representative’s answers were obvious enough for what they did not contain; namely, a denial.

Question: “Do you have any people being paid by the CIA who are contributing to a major circulation — American journal?”

Answer: “We do have people who submit pieces to American journals.”

Question: “Do you have any people paid by the CIA who are working for television networks?”

Answer: “This I think gets into the kind of uh, getting into the details Mr. Chairman that I’d like to get into in executive session.”

(later)

Question: “Do you have any people being paid by the CIA who are contributing to the national news services — AP and UPI?”

Answer: “Well again, I think we’re getting into the kind of detail Mr. Chairman that I’d prefer to handle at executive session.”

In Deborah Davis’ book, Katharine the Great, it is reported that a CIA operative once told Washington Post owner Philip Graham that “You could get a journalist cheaper than a good call girl, for a couple hundred dollars a month.”

That the program is continuing to this very day is now more of an open secret than anything deeply hidden in the way it was in the 1950s to 1970s. The extent to which news is entirely produced by the CIA and other interested government parties, however, is what is generally kept from the American public tightly under lock and key. In 1975, the idea that the corporate media would lie and that the CIA would push fake stories for propaganda purposes was shocking but, in 2017, not so much.

Indeed, many things were shocking in 1975 that scarcely appear on the radar screen today. This is how far Americans have come down a path of acceptance of the loss of rights or even the appearance of honesty. This is, in part, due to the very programs I am writing about in this article. This says nothing of the massive amount of control the CIA and other related interests have over the entertainment industry. The entertainment industry, however, is a topic far beyond the scope of this article.

The United States continues to this day to pay journalists to write propaganda pieces that suit their agenda. For instance, it was reported by the New York Times itself in 2006 that the Bush administration paid journalist for anti-Cuba stories.

Remember also, Dr. Udo Ulfkotte, journalist and German political scientist who came out on public television and stated that, while working as a journalist, he was forced to print the work of intelligence agents under his own name. His refusal, according to him, would result in the loss of his job.

He said,

I’ve been a journalist for about 25 years, and I was educated to lie, to betray, and not to tell the truth to the public.

But seeing right now within the last months how the German and American media tries to bring war to the people in Europe, to bring war to Russia — this is a point of no return and I’m going to stand up and say it is not right what I have done in the past, to manipulate people, to make propaganda against Russia, and it is not right what my colleagues do and have done in the past because they are bribed to betray the people, not only in Germany, all over Europe.

In 2014, more revelations mirroring the declassified memo from 1965 came to light, with journalists regularly receiving “information” from the CIA, attending CIA events, and even handing their stories over to the CIA for input and rewrites. As Ken Silverstein wrote for The Intercept in his article, “The CIA’s Mop-Up Man: LA Times Reporter Cleared Stories With Agency Before Publication,

A prominent national security reporter for the Los Angeles Times routinely submitted drafts and detailed summaries of his stories to CIA press handlers prior to publication, according to documents obtained by The Intercept.

Email exchanges between CIA public affairs officers and Ken Dilanian, now an Associated Press intelligence reporter who previously covered the CIA for the Times, show that Dilanian enjoyed a closely collaborative relationship with the agency, explicitly promising positive news coverage and sometimes sending the press office entire story drafts for review prior to publication. In at least one instance, the CIA’s reaction appears to have led to significant changes in the story that was eventually published in the Times.

“I’m working on a story about congressional oversight of drone strikes that can present a good opportunity for you guys,” Dilanian wrote in one email to a CIA press officer, explaining that what he intended to report would be “reassuring to the public” about CIA drone strikes. In another, after a series of back-and-forth emails about a pending story on CIA operations in Yemen, he sent a full draft of an unpublished report along with the subject line, “does this look better?” In another, he directly asks the flack: “You wouldn’t put out disinformation on this, would you?”

Dilanian’s emails were included in hundreds of pages of documents that the CIA turned over in response to two FOIA requests seeking records on the agency’s interactions with reporters. They include email exchanges with reporters for the Associated Press,

Washington Post, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and other outlets. In addition to Dilanian’s deferential relationship with the CIA’s press handlers, the documents show that the agency regularly invites journalists to its McLean, Va., headquarters for briefings and other events. Reporters who have addressed the CIA include the Washington Post‘s David Ignatius, the former ombudsmen for the New York Times, NPR, and Washington Post, and Fox News’ Brett Baier, Juan Williams, and Catherine Herridge.

. . . . .

The emails also show that the CIA asked the Post‘s Ignatius to speak at a May 2012 off-the-record conference, “Political Islam’s Future: Challenges, Choices, and Uncertainties,” for U.S. government intelligence analysts and policymakers. The invitation was extended in an email from the press office, which said that the conference organizers “would like you to draw upon the insight from your field experience, reporting, and broad network of contacts during the lead up to the Arab Spring to share how journalists sense that major political, social, or religious changes are in the making.”
Ignatius replied that he would be “pleased and honored to do this,” but unfortunately he would be traveling in Europe on the day of the conference. The CIA then proposed “a smaller round table with our…folks sometime in the future.”

“Smaller round table would be great,” Ignatius replied.

. . . . .

Fox News’ Bret Baier gave an address about the importance of charity in 2008 (which was reported at the time), and the then-ombudsmen for NPR, TheWashington Post, and The New York Times (Jeffrey Dvorkin, Michael Getler and Daniel Okrent, respectively), appeared together on a CIA panel. The event description said that journalism “shares some of the same missions that intelligence analysts have—presenting information in an unbiased fashion and challenging prevailing opinions.” The ombudsmen, the invitation said, could help the CIA “see how journalists deal with some of our common professional and ethical difficulties.” (It’s not clear from the documents when the ombudsmen event was held, but it would have been in 2009 or before.)

In 2007, Juan Williams, then at NPR in addition to his role at Fox News, gave a “standing-room-only” speech sponsored by the agency’s Office of Diversity Plans and Programs. During his speech Williams praised CIA personnel as “the best and brightest,” and said Americans admired the agency and trusted it “to guide the nation and the nation’s future.”

Also in 2007, revered journalist John Pilger gave a speech to the Socialism 2007 Conference describing how propaganda has become such an important and ubiquitous factor in our lives. He said,

We now know that the BBC and other British media were used by the British secret intelligence service MI-6. In what they called Operation Mass Appeal, MI-6 agents planted stories about Saddam’s weapons of mass destruction, such as weapons hidden in his palaces and in secret underground bunkers. All of these stories were fake.

***

One of my favorite stories about the Cold War concerns a group of Russian journalists who were touring the United States. On the final day of their visit, they were asked by the host for their impressions. “I have to tell you,” said the spokesman, “that we were astonished to find after reading all the newspapers and watching TV day after day that all the opinions on all the vital issues are the same. To get that result in our country we send journalists to the gulag. We even tear out their fingernails. Here you don’t have to do any of that. What is the secret?”

A year later in the Independent, Nick Davies wrote the following,

For the first time in human history, there is a concerted strategy to manipulate global perception. And the mass media are operating as its compliant assistants, failing both to resist it and to expose it.

The sheer ease with which this machinery has been able to do its work reflects a creeping structural weakness which now afflicts the production of our news. I’ve spent the last two years researching a book about falsehood, distortion and propaganda in the global media.

The “Zarqawi letter” which made it on to the front page of The New York Times in February 2004 was one of a sequence of highly suspect documents which were said to have been written either by or to Zarqawi and which were fed into news media.
This material is being generated, in part, by intelligence agencies who continue to work without effective oversight; and also by a new and essentially benign structure of “strategic communications” which was originally designed by doves in the Pentagon and Nato who wanted to use subtle and non-violent tactics to deal with Islamist terrorism but whose efforts are poorly regulated and badly supervised with the result that some of its practitioners are breaking loose and engaging in the black arts of propaganda.

***

The Pentagon has now designated “information operations” as its fifth “core competency” alongside land, sea, air and special forces. Since October 2006, every brigade, division and corps in the US military has had its own “psyop” element producing output for local media. This military activity is linked to the State Department’s campaign of “public diplomacy” which includes funding radio stations and news websites. In Britain, the Directorate of Targeting and Information Operations in the Ministry of Defence works with specialists from 15 UK psyops, based at the Defence Intelligence and Security School at Chicksands in Bedfordshire.

In the case of British intelligence, you can see this combination of reckless propaganda and failure of oversight at work in the case of Operation Mass Appeal. This was exposed by the former UN arms inspector Scott Ritter, who describes in his book, Iraq Confidential, how, in London in June 1998, he was introduced to two “black propaganda specialists” from MI6 who wanted him to give them material which they could spread through “editors and writers who work with us from time to time”.

In 2013, another blaringly obvious connection between the Washington Post and the CIA became apparent when it was revealed that the Washington Post’s sole owner, Jeff Bezos, also the owner of Amazon, saw Amazon clinch a deal with the CIA regarding cloud technology infrastructure. This calls into question the independence of the Washington Post’s coverage on the activities of the CIA and the ability of the outlet to choose to report or not report the planted stories by the agency. As RootsAction.org stated, “the Amazon-CIA deal is apt to be just the start.” The group added: “Amazon’s offer wasn’t the low bid, but it won the CIA contract anyway by offering advanced high-tech ‘cloud’ infrastructure. … Bezos is personally and publicly touting Amazon Web Services — and Amazon will be seeking future CIA contracts.”

Robert McChesney is co-author of Dollarocracy: How the Money and Media Election Complex is Destroying America and author of Digital Disconnect: How Capitalism is Turning the Internet Against Democracy, as well as professor of communications at the University of Illinois. When asked to comment on the Washington Post-Bezos-CIA-Amazon relationship, he responded,

“When the main shareholder in one of the very largest corporations in the world benefits from a massive contract with the CIA on the one hand, and that same billionaire owns the Washington Post on the other hand, there are serious problems. The Post is unquestionably the political paper of record in the United States, and how it covers governance sets the agenda for the balance of the news media. Citizens need to know about this conflict of interest in the columns of the Post itself.”

. . . . .

“If some official enemy of the United States had a comparable situation — say the owner of the dominant newspaper in Caracas was getting $600 million in secretive contracts from the Maduro government — the Post itself would lead the howling chorus impaling that newspaper and that government for making a mockery of a free press. It is time for the Post to take a dose of its own medicine.”

One of the most recent instances of CIA involvement in media is the ouster of former and short-lived National Security Advisor to President Donald Trump, Michael Flynn. While virtually every mainstream outlet is joining in the hysteria regarding Flynn’s resignation, a fact that is, in and of itself, reason enough to suggest a coordinated campaign, it is also important to note that the “leaks” of the conversation was originally printed in the Washington Post, an outlet that has long been known as a “leak outlet” for the CIA as demonstrated in this article. In fact, it was the acting Attorney General left over from the Obama administration, Sally Q. Yates, who issued the warning to the Trump administration regarding Flynn’s statements and conversation with the Russian ambassador.

Even more so, the attack on Flynn was initiated before Trump ever took office. During the last days of the Obama Administration, CIA Director John Brennan and James Clapper, the Director of the Office of National Intelligence, two individuals who were instrumental in cocking up the ridiculous “Russian Election Hacking” scandal and its evidence-bare reports were involved in monitoring Flynn’s conversation and arguing that his appointment would be a potential risk to national security and the Trump administration. As the Washington Post itself wrote,

In the waning days of the Obama administration, James R. Clapper Jr., who was the director of national intelligence, and John Brennan, the CIA director at the time, shared Yates’s concerns and concurred with her recommendation to inform the Trump White House. They feared that “Flynn had put himself in a compromising position” and thought that Pence had a right to know that he had been misled, according to one of the officials, who, like others, spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss intelligence matters.

As former Ohio Congressman Dennis Kucinich pointed out, it is important to remember that a phone call from the incoming National Security Advisor to the President-elect of the United States was “intercepted” by the intelligence community and then given to the media for dissemination. This is an incredibly important piece of the puzzle, demonstrating that the entire affair is clearly part of an intelligence operation.

“What’s at the core of this is an effort by some in the intelligence community to upend any positive relationship between the U.S. and Russia,” Kucinich said.

“And I tell you there’s a marching band and Chowder Society out there. There’s gold in them there hills,” he said. “There are people trying to separate the U.S. and Russia so that this military industrial intel axis can cash in,” Kucinich added.

Kucinich also stated “There’s a game going on inside the intelligence community where there are those who want to separate the U.S. from Russia in a way that would reignite the Cold War.”

“What’s going on in the intelligence community with this new President is unprecedented. They’re making every effort to upend him. Who know what the truth is anymore?”

“There’s something very wrong here in the intelligence community,” he said.

When asked what Donald Trump should do, Kucinich answered, “First of fall, he has to get a hold of his own intelligence apparatus. You know? This isn’t a joke. This is a serious matter. If he doesn’t get control of where the information’s coming from, he’ll never know the truth, the American people won’t know the truth and we can be set at war with almost any country. Be very careful is my warning this morning.

If the CIA/intelligence community was behind the controversy, the story had to get out somehow and that “somehow” was the notorious CIA-laden Washington Post as well as its other corresponding outlets.

While literally volumes of material could be written documenting and explaining the CIA connection and manipulation of mainstream American (and foreign) media, the fact remains that virtually everything reported in the corporate press has been, at the very least, approved and allowed to be aired by much higher powers than bumbling editorial staff. It is notable, then, to point out that one mainstream outlet – generally Reuters or Associated Press – reports a story and every other major outlet follows suit, reporting the same story with the same perspective as all the others. In a sense, it is only necessary to influence the two and one has drastic levels of influence over the entire corporate media (now made up of only about 6 companies). The CIA, however, has influence over many more outlets than Reuters and AP.

Unfortunately, Americans, victims of the very propaganda outlets that have fed them the line that the United States is the freest country in the world with the freest press, will continually run back to the abuser and defend their media as if it is the world’s gold standard. As Zbigniew Brzezinski once said, “Shortly, the public will be unable to reason or think for themselves. They’ll only be able to parrot the information they’ve been given on the previous night’s news.” That information is provided to them by the worker bees of an elite oligarchy who are intent on controlling the opinions, thoughts, and direction of the American people, a goal they have very nearly reached, if they haven’t already, partly due to the fact that the CIA has access to the massive amounts of digital data willingly given to corporations and funneled to the NSA for the purposes of surveillance, profiling, and manipulation. This data alone has allowed the Department of Defense to create individual Avatars that can predict the behavior of every man, woman, and child in the country.

The information contained in this article is only the tip of the iceberg regarding one aspect of Anglo-American establishment’s technique of perception management.

[1] Davis, Deborah (1979). Katharine The Great: Katharine Graham and The Washington Post. Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. ISBN 0151467846.

[2] Davis, Deborah (1979). Katharine The Great: Katharine Graham and The Washington Post. Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. ISBN 0151467846.

Read More At: WashingtonsPost.com

 

Common Core Crisis [Part 6] – The Seven Lesson School Teacher

conformity2
TheBreakaway | BreakawayConciousness
Zy Marquiez
March 20, 2017

Continuing on our series in which we are taking an increasingly widening glance into the true nature of public schooling, what follows will be a snippet of the information covered in Dumbing Us Down – The Hidden Curriculum of Compulsory Schooling by John Taylor Gatto.

Gatto has come out speaking at length about many of the pervasive and troubling issues that young [and future] generations have to contend with, and the information which proceeds will shed light into how this has come to be.

Within the curriculum of public schooling, Gatto states the following lessons are “universally taught from Harlem to Hollywood Hills  They constitute a national curriculum you pay for in more ways than you can imagine, so you might as well know what it is.”[1]

Gatto, in his own words states public schooling teaches:

#1: Confusion[2]

Throughout his books, Gatto has touched upon how confusion is installed into the minds of the young – thorough the fragmentation of education.  This fragmenting of education and teaching things out of context is what’s responsible for the inculcation of what is unnatural to the mind, which only cover superficial narratives and never anything of substance.

School doesn’t teach things that are in perfect harmony with each other – a natural order.  This issue prevents kids, who turn into adults, from connecting the dots, from synthesizing information.  And this goes to explain how people cannot understand how two separate issues such as Genetically Modified Foods [that continue to be banned in dozens of countries] could ever be connected with health issues.  That’s just the beginning, though.

#2:  Class Position[3]

Class position leads to an acquiescence to conformity ideals, even though in life people of all ages, types, creeds and religions connect and interact with people from all over the spectrum.  There’s no hindering structure of conformity anywhere in nature.  This takes place only in public schooling and sections of society.

As Gatto notes:

“If I do my job well, the kids can’t even imagine themselves somewhere else because I’ve shown them how to envy and fear the better classes and how to have contempt for the dumb classes.  Under this efficient discipline the class mostly polices itself into good marching order.  That’s the real lesson of any rigged competition like school.  You come to know your place.”[4]

And then people wonder where the seeds of division are sewn.    If that were it, that would be bad enough, but school also teaches…

#3:  Indifference [5]

This is accomplished by the way subjects are taught by mere cursory glances instead of an in depth approach.  This further pulverizes possible education into fragments of disciplines and knowledge, rather than building a robust set of ideas that can help the individual connect dots see what matters.  As Gatto notes:

“…[students] must turn own and off like a light switch.  Nothing important is finished in class nor in any class I know of.  Students never have a complete experience except on the installment plan.”[6]

When you only experience slivers of knowledge, how can complete pictures of life ever be grasped?  How can one come to a meaningful understanding to the depth that life harbors?  One cannot.  Such instances lead to nothing of importance ever being learned, which of course naturally leads to the pervasive indifference part of society has been indoctrinated with.

#4:  Emotional Dependency [7]

Gatto intimates that:

“Rights may be granted or withheld by any authority without appeal, because rights do not exist inside a school – not even the right to free speech, as the Supreme Court has ruled – unless school authorities say they do.”[8]

If children can depend on themselves, who can they ‘depend’ on?  The high priests of education of public schooling, predictably.

#5:  Intellectual Dependency [9]

This issue is best encapsulated by the following statement:

“Good students wait for a teacher to tell them what to do.  This is the most important lesson of them all; we must wait for other people, better trained than ourselves, to make the meanings of our lives.  The expert makes all the important choices; Only I, the teacher, can determine what my kids must study, or rather, only the people who pay me can make those decisions, which I then reinforce.”[10]

This couples into mindless consumption, which the system is build upon.  Gatto minces no words:

“It is hardly an exaggeration to say that ten entire economy depends upon this lesson being learned.”[11]

What else could one expect when dependency is taught at the outset, and people learn to are indoctrinated to seek experts and not think for themselves?

Most importantly:

“We’ve build a way of life that depends on people doing what they are told because they don’t know how to tell themselves what to do.  It’s one of the biggest lessons I teach.”[12]

#6:  Provisional Self Esteem[13]

Simply stated:

“A monthly report, impressive in its provision, is sent into a student’s home to elicit approval or mark exactly, down to a single percentage point, how dissatisfied with the child a parent should be.  The ecology of “Good” schooling depends on perpetuating dissatisfaction, just as the commercial economy depends on the same fertilizer…the cumulative weight of these objective-seeming documents establishes a profile that compels children to arrive at certain decisions about themselves and their future based on the casual judgment of strangers.   Self-evaluation, the staple of every major philosophical system that ever appeared on the planet, is never considered a factor.  The lesson of report cards, grades, and tests is that children should not trust themselves or their parents but should instead rely on the evaluation of certified officials.  People need to be told what they are worth.”[14]

Unfortunately, much of society echoes this without a second thought down to the letter.

#7:  You Can’t Hide[15]

In school children are taught that there is no privacy, and you are under constant surveillance.  Personal independence and self sufficiency have no place in school.

“I teach students that they are always watched, that each is under constant surveillance by me and my colleagues.  There are no private spaces for children; there is no private time…Students are encouraged to tattle on each other or even to tattle on their parents.  Of course, I encourage parents to file reports about their child’s waywardness too.”[16] If that’s not a system that breeds a SpyCulture – the very one we’re seeing right now – I don’t know what is.

Moreover:

“The meaning of constant surveillance and denial of privacy is that no one can be trusted, that privacy is not legitimate.”[17]

Once pondered, the above statements reverberate deep into the psyche.  Such are the seeds from which much of the pervasive issues society is dealing with stem from.  The lack of respect for privacy, dependence on the government, materialism, empty concept of the future, lack of critical skills, the conformity crisis, class distinction, and more, all have the inception within the nascent stages of public schooling.

This coalescence of societal issues cannot change unless that which casts the foundation – public schooling – changes.  And Public Schooling has never shown any meaningful changes coming from the inside, which is why individuals need to learn to become self-directed learners and autodidacts in order to be better prepared for the world that we live in.

The world that we live in has much more to offer than what we are taught it does.  Even so, a limited understanding off an individual’s ability will only yield a limited point of view in life, like seeing life with perpetual tunnel vision.

Only by breaking away from that marginalized reality will the individual see life for what it is, and only by asserting your power will you be able to control your path.

Then and only then can true unbounded freedom and education be had.

___________________________________________________________
Footnotes:

[1] John Taylor Gatto, Dumbing Us Down – The Hidden Curriculum Of Public Schooling, p. 1.
[2] Ibid., p. 2.
[3] Ibid., p. 4.
[4] Ibid., pp. 4-5.
[5] Ibid., p. 5.
[6] Ibid., p. 6.
[7] Ibid., p. 6.
[8] Ibid., p. 6.
[9] Ibid., p. 7.
[10] Ibid., p. 7.
[11] Ibid., p. 8.
[12] Ibid., p. 9.
[14] Ibid., pp. 9-10.
[15] ibid., p. 10.
[16] Ibid., p. 10.
[17] Ibid., p. 11.
___________________________________________________________
This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.
___________________________________________________________
About The Author:

Zy Marquiez is an avid book reviewer, researcher, an open-minded skeptic, yogi, humanitarian, and freelance writer who studies regularly subjects like Consciousness, Education, Creativity, The Individual, Ancient History & Ancient Civilizations, Forbidden Archaeology, Big Pharma, Alternative Health, Space, Geoengineering, Social Engineering, Propaganda, and much more.

His own personal blog is BreakawayConsciousnessBlog.wordpress.com where his personal work is shared, while TheBreakaway.wordpress.com serves as a media portal which mirrors vital information usually ignored by mainstream press, but still highly crucial to our individual understanding of various facets of the world.

___________________________________________________________
Suggested resources reviewed below for those seeking ideas to self-teach and become autodidacts:

13 Great Reasons To Study Logic
Socratic Logic V3.1 by Peter Kreeft Ph.D.
The Trivium – The Liberal Arts Of Grammar & Rhetoric by Sister Miriam Joseph Ph.D.
How To Read A Book – The Classic Guide To Intelligent Reading by Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren
Philosophy 101 – An Introduction To Philosophy Via Plato’s Apology by Peter Kreeft Ph.D.
The Complete Workbook For Arguments – A Complete Course In Critical Thinking [2nd Ed.] by David R. Morrow & Anthony Weston
The Imaginative Argument – A Practical Manifesto For Writers by Frank L. Cioffi
Sherlock Holmes – The Complete Stories by Arthur Conan Doyle

The following books reviewed below cover the disturbing issues within the public schooling system:

Rotten To The Common Core by Dr. Joseph P. Farrell Ph.D.& Gary Lawrence
Dumbing Us Down – The Hidden Curriculum Of Compulsory Schooling by John Taylor Gatto
A Different Kind Of Teacher – Solving The Crisis Of American Schooling by John Taylor Gatto
Weapons Of Mass Instruction by John Taylor Gatto
Drilling Through The Core, by Sandra Stotsky & Contributors

 

 

Book Review: Sherlock Holmes – The Complete Novels & Stories by Arthur Conan Doyle

A Veritable Critical Thinking Continuum Wrapped Up In Fiction

SherlockHolmes
TheBreakaway | BreakawayConciousness
Zy Marquiez
March 20, 2017

Ironically, it was through the most serendipitous of circumstances that this novel was suggested to me.  Following a lengthy discourse with my economics professor a long time ago in which I asked what he thought was the best way to learn logic, he, in his classic fashion, suggests not a textbook, but Sherlock Holmes!  At the time, thought it was a joke myself.  Interestingly enough, he wasn’t joking.

Here, now, many years later, the adventures of Sherlock Holmes were the way that yours truly was introduced to logic, and great fiction to boot, too.

Arthur Conan Doyle’s magnum opus, Sherlock Holmes, features characters that are rather unique but very believable; the setting is always top-tier and authentic, the mysteries abound, and there’s puzzles wrapped in enigmas all woven into phenomenal fiction as well.  This is one of the great reasons rereading this series is so easy and serves as a fictional fall back for reading, especially when a lot of modern fiction is quite lacking.

In more modern times, there have been great mystery writers, and many imitators in countless ways, but none has truly come close to creating a fun, readable, witty, critical thinking, logical, and intriguing series in the way that Arthur Conan Doyle did when the Sherlock Holmes series.  Those who attempt to follow in the author’s footsteps fall quite short, even when the authors have a template of what worked in the past.  This is why, after my third reading of this series, it’s still a great as ever, and nothing really compares.  And what’s more, there’s always something to learn from it, too.

Let’s boil it down.  Great fiction is great, because it allows wonder, and sparks the imagination like nothing else.  Sherlock Holmes definitely creates an auspicious and believable adventure upon which any curious mind would love to venture.

This fictional series does way more than that though.  If it had only sparked imagination, it would have been a really good, or even great series.  But even so, it offers so much more.  Sherlock Holmes is a veritable crashcourse into how to critically think and employ logic, wrapped up in a fantastic fictional package that is as timeless as it is robust.

For me, this book falls within what Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren referred to as the top tier of books.  As the authors note in their landmark How To Read A Book – The Classic Guide To Intelligent Reading:

“Of the few thousand such books there is a much smaller number – here the number is probably less than a hundred – that cannot be exhausted by even the very best reading you can manage.  How do you recognize this?  Again it is rather mysterious, but when you have closed the book after reading analytically to the best of your ability, and place it back on the shelf, you have a sneaking suspicion that there is more there than you got….In fact, you cannot put your finger on it, but you know it is there.  You find that you cannot forget the book, that you keep thinking about it and your reaction to it.  Finally, you return to it.  And remarkable things happen.”[1][Bold Emphasis Added]

Furthermore, the authors elucidate:

“…if the book belongs to the highest class – the very small number of inexhaustible books – you discover on returning that the book seems to have grown with you.  You see new things in it – whole new sets of new things – that you did not see before.  Your previous understanding of the book is not invalidated; it is just as true as it ever was, and in the same ways that it was true before.  But now it is true in still other ways, too.”[2] [Bold Emphasis Added]

For me, this book – all of its fictional stories – accomplishes all of the above and more.

Sure, there are many other books that offer many life lessons, and the classics are riddled with them. However, none teach the individual the foundation for critical thinking and logic like Sherlock Holmes does.  This is why this stands above and beyond countless other books when it comes to those two crucial points for me personally.

If you homeschool, if you’re an autodidact, a self-directed learner, or simply someone that wants to read a great book, then read this.  You will not regret it.

__________________________________________________
Footnotes:

[1] Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren, How To Read A Book – The Classic Guide To Intelligent Reading, p. 333.
[2] Ibid., p. 333.
__________________________________________________

This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.
__________________________________________________
About The Author:

Zy Marquiez is an avid book reviewer, researcher, an open-minded skeptic, yogi, humanitarian, and freelance writer who studies regularly subjects like Consciousness, Education, Creativity, The Individual, Ancient History & Ancient Civilizations, Forbidden Archaeology, Big Pharma, Alternative Health, Space, Geoengineering, Social Engineering, Propaganda, and much more.

His own personal blog is BreakawayConsciousnessBlog.wordpress.com where his personal work is shared, while TheBreakaway.wordpress.com serves as a media portal which mirrors vital information usually ignored by mainstream press, but still highly crucial to our individual understanding of various facets of the world.

 

Breakaway Ruminations #6 – Individual Decisions

HitchYourWagonToTheStars
TheBreakaway | BreakawayConciousness
Zy Marquiez
March 19, 2017

“A thousand fantasies…Begin to throng into my memory.”
– John Milton, Comus

Ruminating a bit about how one is able to detach from the system that wishes to harvest us for every single drop of money, energy and life, it occurred to me that before we can see the macro view of reality, and how we fit into that, we have to see where we fit into this whole grand scheme.

How do we go about doing that?

Before we answer that, we would have to know, where we come from, and where we are going, and who we ultimately are as an individual.

Who we are is highly dependent about where we come from. Our nascent stages in life help mold our virtues, and ultimately allow doors to appear by the path we choose to take.

Each door is a new opportunity, a new beginning. Some get opened, many do not. Based on which doors we opt to open, we get to continue on our path, or reroute into something else.

The path a person takes will ultimately dictate the struggles and circumstances that make a person who they are. Every single one of us has a story to tell. What is your story?

What have you gone through? Have you had any hardships that, although excruciating, made you glad you were alive? Was it an accident?   Was it the loss of someone? Was it the loss of a job? Was it a cheating death? Something else entirely?

Are you not glad that you are here now, and have overcome said obstacle? Why are you glad? Is it because you get to have your old life back? Or is it because you realize how precious life is, and you now want to push yourself to the limits?

Have you pushed yourself? Or are you still going day by day in your life? Why or why not?

Many times after facing dire circumstances, most people seep back into their daily routine, myself included, and don’t even try and chase their dreams and become something greater. However, how can we know what we are capable if we don’t even try? How can we know if we’ve never pushed ourselves beyond anything conventional?

Where would humanity’s greatest minds – Plato, Tesla, Bach, Socrates, Aristotle, Da Vinci, Galileo – be if they settled for the common life and/or followed the crowd? It would surely be an insipid world, that’s for sure.

Ever wonder what life would be without the contributions of all those before you?  Those contributions by those before us have facilitate our life in many ways.  It would be great to appreciate them because life itself could be vastly more difficult if people weren’t proactive in seeking a life of purpose, a life of meaning.

Let that sink in for a bit. Just remove one of those individuals – and all their contributions – and see how much life changes for humanity as a whole. And how did each of those individuals get started? With imagination.  Without being able to imagine a better path for themselves, optimal choices, they wouldn’t have been able to accomplish what they sought out to do.

Ponder this: when is the last time someone asked you where you are going in life? What are your goals in life?  What is meant by goals is more than just “get a job, make money, etc.”.  What’s meant is the things that really bring value to your life, the things that fuse meaning into your every day life, that bring joy to waking up.  What are those goals?  Is it to help others?  To help your family?  Something else?  And why or why not are you following those goals?

That said, let us take a side road for a moment.

Old cultures lived in harmony with the earth. They conquered issue after issue harnessing their creative power – because that’s all they had – and all without the luxuries that are given/allowed to us, and that most of us take for granted. Not everyone in the modern world has these option. Perhaps half the people on Earth truly have the ability to use most modern technology in its many forms, but we all have the ability to use our imagination to push forth into whatever we wish will suit us.

The fact that you are reading this blog is proof enough that you live in an age where information is ever present, in its many forms. The fact that you are here, now, being able to engage with other people in what is called the internet, shows the capacity for human imagination.

When growing up, nigh everyone has incredible, boundless, and inspiring aspirations. But as we grow older, due to many circumstances, it seems most people have settled for what’s been laid out for them, rather than grabbing life and taking charge and creating reality themselves. A truly wonderful one. Not the one that the mainstream media is claiming exists. But the one that makes you and only you, truly happy to not only be alive, but to push the boundaries of your life in every way shape or form.

Waking up to a world of limitless ideas – every single day – is a wonderful thing. It allows you to face life from countless angles, and be able to take whichever path you wish to follow, rather than what people think you should take.

You’ve been there, right? When someone tells you what they think you should do. Often times this comes from concern, but even then, your life is ultimately yours, and only you can know what path is best for you.

Even if you haven’t reached the point of knowing what you want to do and your destination, perhaps ruminations will help.  Or perhaps, sampling the kaleidoscope of life might offer some ideas which might resonate with your soul.  It’s hard to know without even attempting, though.  Trying is key; trying is the first step to success.

Trying, sometimes seeming like jumping into the deep end, is really the only way an individual can know what they are made of, what they are capable of.  For example, how do you know you can run 20 miles straight if you haven’t even attempted 10?  How will you know you what storms you will weather if your ship doesn’t set sail?

Only by allowing ourselves to attempt something will we ever truly arrive at our destination. And to choose a new one thenceforth.

Ruminate upon this: how many people that you know are really living their dream, truly? It’s a serious question, and one that might get askance looks or sad responses, but its worthy of such query because you will realize that most people haven’t followed their dreams for a variety of reasons. They could however overcome much of the stigma and mental hardships if they just tried. Again, how can you know if you don’t try?

If you are searching for something more, then ponder deeply about that. Spend some time bouncing questions with other inquiring folks and see where that takes you. It’s an excellent exercise, and one that nets great benefits the more time one ponders.

Ultimately, your path is your own. But for the love of everything amazing, including yourself, do not settle for good, when you know great is looming around the corner.

It only takes one thought. Just one.

Pull that blank canvas out of the mental closet. Begin to paint the world that you want – the ceaseless one that will satisfy your every dream.

That, or just go back to your daily scheduled programming.

In the end, You decide. You always decide.

___________________________________________________________
This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.

___________________________________________________________
About The Author:

Zy Marquiez is an avid book reviewer, researcher, an open-minded skeptic, yogi, humanitarian, and freelance writer who studies regularly subjects like Consciousness, Education, Creativity, The Individual, Ancient History & Ancient Civilizations, Forbidden Archaeology, Big Pharma, Alternative Health, Space, Geoengineering, Social Engineering, Propaganda, and much more.

His own personal blog is BreakawayConsciousnessBlog.wordpress.com where his personal work is shared, while TheBreakaway.wordpress.com serves as a media portal which mirrors vital information usually ignored by mainstream press, but still highly crucial to our individual understanding of various facets of the world.

Book Review: Everyday Tao – Living With Balance & Harmony by Deng Min-Dao

EverydayTao
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
March 19, 2017

Eastern philosophy is a rather intricate subject that has many different viewpoints.  This particular book couples well into that philosophy.

Everyday Tao – Living With Balance & Harmony by Deng Min-Dao is a very insightful book.

Split up into 15 different sections, Everyday Tao covers a variety of ways into which individuals are able to get in tune with the Tao.  The 15 sections are: nature, silence, books, strategy, movement, skill, craft, conduct, moderation, devotion, perseverance, teaching, self, simplifying and union.

Using Chinese ideograms, which contain inherent stories therein, the author brings about much meaning showing the reader what each ideogram breaks into and what insights can be had.

The way the book is set up, each individual insight covering no more than a page, makes this the type of book that can be read straight through, or on a day-by-day basis.  For me, the latter offered much enjoyment and meaning because I was able to digest and discern much of what the book provided and ponder it deeply therein without rushing.

Through and through, the book offers a no-nonsense approach into Taoist insights.  As someone who’s relatively new to Eastern Philosophy and am open minded about it, there was much to appreciate, regardless if one is locked within a particular paradigm or not.  This volume offers much value, and if you’re seeking more to read on Tao or Eastern Philosophy, do not hesitate – get this book.

Creative Potential: Endless Possibilities, Endless Solutions

Fantasy
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
March 17, 2017

What is imagination?

Imagination is the creator of every single tangible thing you have used in your life.

For the savvy and willing, it’s a powerful tool.  It’s creative consciousness in all its wondrous glory.

Coupled with intention, it’s an unstoppable weapon that the individual has under lock and key.

Imagination used correctly will give you insights which will pave the way for the journey through your life.

If the individual maintains himself mired within the endless possibilities available via the use of their creative consciousness and imagination, then their life will not only be full of meaning, but they will view reality through a kaleidoscope of possibilities.

What are the possibilities available to help push you beyond the threshold of stagnation and into the realm of action?

What are the possibilities available to push your knowledge and scope of reality beyond what you ever thought possible?

What are the possibilities available for you to solve issues plaguing you at this very moment?

There are two options: individuals can live life in neutral, allowing their thoughts to drift where they may, or the individuals can take over the reins of their life, use imagination to turbo-charge their realities and breakaway from the doldrums that plague them so.

The beauty of it this conundrum is that it’s only a choice.

The active life, or the vapid life.

Creativity, or stagnation.

Imagination, or conformity.

You decide.

Book Review: Exploring J.R.R.’s Tolkien’s The Hobbit by Corey Olsen

ExploringTheHobbit
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
March 17, 2017

The Hobbit has been one of the landmarks in epic fantasy literature for quite some time, and for great reasons.  The Hobbit served to ignite the imagination of the populace at a time where fantasy was nigh non-existent.  How the author managed to do that, through Bilbo’s character, is one of the most interesting parts in the book.  And that’s just the beginning.

Exploring J.R.R.’s Tolkien’s The Hobbit by Corey Olsen Ph.D. is a methodically explored breakdown of The Hobbit which sifts through countless critical details contained within the story and woven seamlessly within.  Olsen shows extreme erudition in mining gems of wisdom from the book, and those very treasures make The Hobbit vastly more enjoyable and meaningful then one would without knowing his insights.

Although some of J.R.R. Tolkien’s books tend to be a bit [or a lot more!] complex, The Hobbit isn’t one of them, which is one of the main reasons why it’s one Tolkien’s most popular ones.  It’s not that the other books within the same Tolkien Universe – the Legendarium – aren’t great, because many are.  It’s just that the latitude and precision with which Tolkien expanded the Universe is so enormous it takes a very focused individual to slog through it all.

That is also why The Hobbit shines in the opposite side of the spectrum.  Because, although, The Hobbit is part of Tolkien’s Universe, it’s self contained and is the platform from which the classic The Lord Of The Rings was launched.  It sure helped that when the book was first ruminated upon, and created, it was done for children.

In any case, some of the notable nuggets of information Olsen sifts through are important recurring themes within the book and also specific ideas that develop along the way.  Instances of these are the idea of ‘luck’ and ‘destiny’ perhaps guiding and assisting Bilbo.

What is more, a rather unique, but much appreciated thing the author does an exemplary job with is how he establishes the inner conflict Bilbo is going through in respect to his family background –  the Took side and The Baggins side.  This helps add another layer of authenticity within the Bilbo himself, and also within the story.

Arguably, what’s most impressive about what Tolkien accomplished in The Hobbit is the fact that Tolkien published the book in an era where fiction wasn’t seen as favorable.  Because of this, Tolkien took a very unique, and yet thought-out approach to how he would pull the readers of the time along gently into this new and profound universe.

Oslen notes this best in the following passage:

“Tolkien was very aware of the artistic challenge he faced in writing a work of fantasy, especially since fantasy literature was far from the literary mainstream in the early twentieth century.  He knew that when they encountered his story in The Hobbit, his readers would have to leave their mundane and comfortable world behind and invest their imaginations in a world that contains magic and unexpected marvels.  In chapter One, Tolkien gives us a model for this very process within the story itself.  We begin in our safe and predictable world, and in the first chapter, we find ourselves in a world of wizard and dwarves and dragons.  In this transition, we find ourselves coming alongside a protagonist who is struggling through the exactly the same process, a character who himself internalizes the conflict between the mundane and the marvelous   Our first introduction to this magical, grim, and dangerous world of adventure is also his introduction, and his reluctance and difficulty in adjusting to it give us time to ease past our own discomfort and reservations.  Bilbo Baggins serves as a perfect touchstone for readers, both exploring and embodying the trickier frontier between the predictable and the unexpected.”[1]

As if that were not enough, the author goes further, and proceeds on with a fine-toothed comb and breaks down the complexity of many of the songs and their inherent depth and subtle meaning.  This part gave many of the characters a lot more depth given what the author discussed.  If that were all, the book would be great.  But there’s more!

Arguably, my favorite part was how the author goes on to systematically show how Bilbo’s riddle game with Gollum showcases their diametrically opposed extremesNot only are the inner natures of Gollum and Bilbo woven within the riddles that each employ throughout, but how each character chose to retaliate with each riddle also shows a completely separate dimension that couples to their nature.  This is hands down the anchor in the whole book.

Another great part about this book is that although it’s a fantasy book, Bilbo’s story has so many relatable and believable parts that it challenges individuals to ponder not only about the book, but about life itself, and many aspects within it.

Exploring J.R.R.’s Tolkien reminds me of a diary, although it clearly is not. The reason for that is that central to the book are all of the changes that Bilbo goes through, how he grows, and what this means for his life.

Without this book, readers would be hard-pressed to comprehend the sheer scale of how much critical thought was put into the Hobbit and its revision.  Tolkien went above and beyond in creating a Universe that’ll stretch the bounds of imagination for generations to come, and with much daring depth as well.

For those reasons, and more, this is a great book.  Tolkien fans all over should BUY this book.  They will NOT be disappointed.

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Footnotes:

[1] Corey Olsen, Exploring J.R.R.’s Tolkien’s The Hobbit, p. 35

Consciously Creating The Road Of Change, The Road Of Tomorrow

BeTheChange
TheBreakaway | BreakawayConciousness
Zy Marquiez
March 15, 2017

“I never see what has been done; I only see what remains to be done.”
– Buddha

Change is ever-present in our society.

Everywhere we look, in every realm we glance at, in every discipline we gaze into, there is a salient stream of change taking place.

Change is inherent to being part of a living system, that of nature – it is the rollercoaster upon which our life rides from beginning to end.

Throughout history we have examples of conscious individuals that have spawned ceaseless change through their individual actions and creative potential.  One of these individuals was Martin Luther King Jr.

Many people are quite familiar with King’s ‘I have a dream’ passage, and rightly so.  The  thoughts he expressed via that remark spawned wildfires that still burn to this day.

Another salient quote of his was:

“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’”

In a world where many people want change, where many people expect change from elsewhere , where many people demand change from outside avenues, it would be wise to take King’s words to heart.

Can we help other people with some health issues?  Can we help individuals with any particular setback they may run into?  Can we seek to make ameliorate the pain someone else might be feeling due to some troubling issue?  The question echoes endlessly:  What can we do for others?

Speaking of others, there is a certain section of the populace who seem to think that the only meaningful change that ever can happen must come from the outside – from others [i.e. politicians].  Ironically, the very change that can help us and help others is by putting our very consciousness and creativity into action.

Understanding that it is the individual who holds the power is emblematic to knowing that it is the light that shuns the darkness.  The one holding the most power in your life is you.  In each of our lives, it is us – the individual – who holds the aces in the deck.  However, we’ve been taught from youth to become dependent on others.

Need to learn about health?  Seek doctors.  Need to learn about spirituality?  Seek religion  Need to learn about schooling?  Seek schools.  Etc, etc, etc.  Rinse and repeat, endlessly.  We are taught to seek answers from elsewhere, never from ourselves.  Rarely will individuals here it is they who are the power players in their own game of life.  Rarely will we hear as individuals that it is us who are capable of creating our own solutions for ourselves, that is is us who can pave or own path.  But that is the truth.

Each and every one of us has power to attain understanding of countless issues, and its a lot simpler than most think, although it does take some work.  Perhaps modern life with endless conveniences and nigh everything at hand has made most of us lazy, and we have all gotten soft – when compared to our ancestors – when it comes to self sufficiency, but the fact remains that knowledge and awareness for us, and for other individuals remains at arms reach, ready to be had.  All we need to do is grab hold of it and bring it closer to us.  Awareness of what’s possible for all individuals is key.

Helping others attain an awareness of what’s working against them in life is an idea that’s become a catalyst in my life for quite some time.  This is because the burgeoning issues we are facing physically, mentally, psychologically, and so on are only getting more pressing by the day, and it’s imperative for cognizant individuals to come to terms with it, because they stand to get run over by the very system they work for, the very system that harvests their every branch of life.

Being keenly aware of the dastardly clever comptrollers that work behind the scenes and their modalities is but a start.  Be it incessant propaganda with the mainstream media, an onslaught of social engineering in its many forms, or a veritable storm of mind control, the scale at which we are facing troublesome issues is compounding quite rapidly.

Be that as it may, attaining individual self empowerment through proactive, responsible action is the gateway to our solutions.

By each of us employing conscious creativity and our unending inherent potential, we will finally be able to detach from the system-imposed paradigm we are brought into and reach more mindful pastures.

Therein, as we begin [or continue] to transition from a reactive and stagnant state, to a proactive and conscious state, those meddlesome issues that have plagued us will begin to melt away like snow in the dessert.

Always remember, the impetus for change begins with you, with your deeper consciousness.

Ponder a bit, what would Martin Luther King Jr. have accomplished if he chose to stay stagnant over the pressing issues that he faced?  The course of history would be far, far different.  Thankfully, that potentiality went by the wayside.

Ponder about what drives you; fight for what you believe in.  Don’t wait for issues to arrive at your doorstep before taking action because it will be too late.

Let’s quit falling into the whirlpool of twisted lies that are becoming more and more obvious every day.

Only through conscious action will we be able to reach the potential/goals that we each as an individual inherently has.

Keep searching.

Keep growing.

Keep learning.

Keep planting seeds.

Realizing how much we are capable of as individuals is far more important than anything else, and to be inactive when our own life needs us the most is the pull the plug on our own tomorrow.

Enjoy life – your gift – and make it count.

Become emboldened by your creative potential and let it take you into tomorrow.

After all, if you put your mind to it your creative potential cannot be thwarted.
___________________________________________________________
This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.

___________________________________________________________
About The Author:

Zy Marquiez is an avid book reviewer, researcher, an open-minded skeptic, yogi, humanitarian, and freelance writer who studies regularly subjects like Consciousness, Education, Creativity, The Individual, Ancient History & Ancient Civilizations, Forbidden Archaeology, Big Pharma, Alternative Health, Space, Geoengineering, Social Engineering, Propaganda, and much more.

His own personal blog is BreakawayConsciousnessBlog.wordpress.com where his personal work is shared, while TheBreakaway.wordpress.com serves as a media portal which mirrors vital information usually ignored by mainstream press, but still highly crucial to our individual understanding of various facets of the world.

Book Review: The Lord Of The Ring’s by J.R.R. Tolkien

A Laudable Landmark In Epic Fantasy

thehobbitlotr
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
March 15, 2017

If The Hobbit is Tolkien’s opening salvo into the world of epic fantasy literature, then The Lord Of The Rings [LOTR] is his full fledged assault on the genre cementing his name in epic fantasy’s timeless lore.

Thankfully, The Lord of The Rings picked off right where The Hobbit left off, building and expanding on Tolkien’s Universe to a whole different level.

The Lord Of The Rings is, as many of you may know, the sequel to The Hobbit, which is set in Tolkien’s Legendarium, and also plays a part in the world of Arda.

One of the simplest ways a reader may note the quality of a fantasy book is asking themselves: does it conjure magic?

Evoking literary mastery in a genre that was nigh nonexistent, and which many outright shunned, what J.R.R. Tolkien did with his entire Middle-Earth Series [check name] was nothing less than astonishing.  Not only did Tolkien write a veritable milestone in literature to boot, but he did so in a time where not many souls cared to venture upon the genre of fantasy.

Touching upon this very issue,medieval literature specialist and writer Corey Olsen Ph.D. puts it in his intriguing and in-depth book, Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit:

Tolkien was very aware of the artistic challenge he faced in writing a work of fantasy, especially since fantasy literature was far from the literary mainstream in the early twentieth century.  He knew that when they encountered his story in The Hobbit, his readers would have to leave their mundane and comfortable world behind and invest their imaginations in a world that contains magic and unexpected marvels.  In chapter One, Tolkien gives us a model for this very process within the story itself.  We begin in our safe and predictable world, and in the first chapter, we find ourselves in a world of wizard and dwarves and dragons.  In this transition, we find ourselves coming alongside a protagonist who is struggling through the exactly the same process, a character who himself internalizes the conflict between the mundane and the marvelous   Our first introduction to this magical, grim, and dangerous world of adventure is also his introduction, and his reluctance and difficulty in adjusting to it give us time to ease past our own discomfort and reservations.  Bilbo Baggins serves as a perfect touchstone for readers, both exploring and embodying the trickier frontier between the predictable and the unexpected.”[1][Bold Emphasis Added]

This goes to show that Tolkien wasn’t simply a savvy writer, but understood societal challenges he was facing at the time and made sure to do his best to address this notable issue.  What’s more, Tolkien simply didn’t stop there.

The Lord Of The Rings shows why Tolkien’s imagination was not only gratifyingly limitless, but how it was rather robust with meaning in many ways.

In fact, the power of this book is so profound and meaningful that philosopher and writer Peter Kreeft Ph.D. said the following words of it:

“The deepest healing is the healing of the deepest wound.  The deepest wound is the frustration of the deepest need.  The deepest need is the need for meaning, purpose, and hope.  And that is what The Lord Of The Rings offers us.”[2]

And still there’s more:

“…The Lord Of The Rings is infused with the same light that illumined the man who wrote it. And that light is true, for it reveals the reality of the world and life.  And it is also good, because it heals our blindness.  Like the Fellowship itself, Tolkien’s philosophy fights.  It conquers what George Orwell called the “smelly little orthodoxies” of political correctness that have twisted and wounded our souls.  In other words, it is like the healing herb athelas.”[3]

Such is the potentiality held within Lord Of The Rings.

Although at times called a trilogy, The Lord Of The Rings is in fact a stand-alone novel that is split up into six separate books.[4]

The mythical and expansive universe created by Tolkien is one that still ignites the imagination in a way that nigh no other books do, except the greatest ones.  In like fashion, not only does Tolkien fuse fantasy with Norse myth and folklore, but The Lord Of The Rings features a plot that is robust, characters that grow and change with the plot, a setting that is phenomenal and enchanting, all woven within a seamless story that vaults the imagination into other worlds.

Throughout the book, the uniqueness and authenticity the characters echo shows the realism of the novel.  For instance, temptation sinks its teeth into Boromir and Galadriel, each displaying their own set of circumstances in battling against this malevolence.

Instances as the above and many more show many examples that this particular book is chock-full of life lessons to boot.

That’s what makes this particular book great piece of literature.

On the forward of On The Shoulders Of Hobbits – The Road To Virtue With Tolkien & Lewis Peter Kreeft Ph.D. comments:

“That’s why reading literature, next to meeting people, is the single most effective way to learn not to flunk life.  Life is a story, and therefore moral education happens first and foremost powerfully through stories, e.g., through books.”[5]

Why this is so is because:

“…Tolkien bequeathed to the world a new treasure trove of heroic tales and adventures with the power to reinvigorate classical and medieval virtues that our modern technological age has deemed irrelevant.  Together with The Hobbit and its prequel (the Silmarillion) The Lord Of The Rings stands as a lighthouse in a world that has not only lost its way, but has lost much of its virtue, its integrity and its purpose.”[6]

In a modern age that is starving for virtuous souls from which to learn from, Lord Of The Rings by J.R.R Tolkien has much depth to offer.

For all of the above reasons, Tolkien’s crown jewel – The Lord Of The Rings – has stood the test of time and will continue to enthrall readers for ages to come.  Just like the characters in it, the story grows with every new pass you give it.

This understanding is best grasped by what J. Adler & Charles Van Doren shared in, How To Read A Book – The Classic Guide To Intelligent Reading, which is the touchstone of critical reading:

“…if the book belongs to the highest class – the very small number of inexhaustible books – you discover on returning that the book seems to have grown with you.  You see new things in it – whole new sets of new things – that you did not see before.  Your previous understanding of the book is not invalidated; it is just as true as it ever was, and in the same ways that it was true before.  But now it is true in still other ways, too.”[7][Bold Emphasis Added]

Lord Of The Rings helps expand the bounds of imagination the more an individual journeys within its realm.  Even better, this book helps one see whole new perspectives and ideas that one had not previously considered.  Just like life offers ample opportunities for much learning, this book does as well.

Whether you’re looking for a great story, epic fantasy, incredible depth, mindful philosophy, or simply want to take a audacious adventure into a different setting, this book has much to offer.

Tolkien’s crown jewel – The Lord Of The Rings – has stood the test of time and will continue to enthrall readers for ages to come.  It has enthralled readers not simply because it’s a great piece of fantasy fiction, but also because this book and the lessons of virtue woven therein echo directly into your soul.   For those very reasons, this book will continue to be a touchstone for life, for not only does it teach you what happens when evil rises unabated, but more importantly, it teaches you what happens when individuals with high quality of consciousness help good conquer evil.  That alone makes this book a timeless possession in an age where virtues and goodness continue to dissipate

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Footnotes:

[1] Corey Olsen Ph.D., Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit, p. 35
[2] Peter Kreeft Ph.D., The Philosophy Of Tolkien, p 17.
[3] Ibid., p. 3.
[4] J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship Of The Ring, p. 9., HoughtonMifflin.
[5] Louis Markos, The Shoulders Of Hobbits – The Road To Virtue With Tolkien & Lewis, p. 8, citing Peter Kreeft in the forward.
[6] Ibid., p. 14.
[7] Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren, How To Read A Book – The Classic Guide To Intelligent Reading, p. 333.

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About The Author:

Zy Marquiez is an avid book reviewer, researcher, an open-minded skeptic, yogi, humanitarian, and freelance writer who studies regularly subjects like Consciousness, Education, Creativity, The Individual, Ancient History & Ancient Civilizations, Forbidden Archaeology, Big Pharma, Alternative Health, Space, Geoengineering, Social Engineering, Propaganda, and much more.

His own personal blog is BreakawayConsciousnessBlog.wordpress.com where his personal work is shared, while TheBreakaway.wordpress.com serves as a media portal which mirrors vital information usually ignored by mainstream press, but still highly crucial to our individual understanding of various facets of the world.

This Doctor Left Her Job After She Learned This About Vaccines!

Source: iHealthTube.com
March 15, 2017

Dr. Suzanne Humphries had a high paying job in a hospital. But her experience when she questioned some vaccine protocols, and the push back she received, led her to leave that practice. You won’t believe how she was treated by colleagues and others in the health community! Watch and share this.

Imagination Rises Out Of The Jaws Of Defeat

Imagination&Obstacles
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
March 14, 2017

“Imagination should be used, not to escape reality, but to create it.”
– Collin Wilson

“Imagination is more important than knowledge.  For knowledge is limited to all we know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire word, and all there ever will be to know and understand.”
– Einstein

Imagination is the skeleton key to life, for it opens all the doors that allow the individual to venture through all of the possible roads of life.  Having the option to venture upon the unknown to travel the roaring roads of life allows the individual not only to become more cognizant through life experience and learn from such ventures, but also to employ imagination in order to seek and attain mastery of the self.  This allows the individual the ability to live life to the fullest extent.

This is why it’s vital to respect the creative consciousness of the individual, because there is no path imagination won’t venture upon, there is no solution that can’t be attained by the open-minded skeptical individual who ceaselessly seeks to attain understanding through constant employing of the triumvirate that is the heart, mind, and spirit.

As imagination is employed boundlessly, a more thorough understanding of life is achieved with the acquisition of experience and wisdom each new day brings forth.  This serves as further impetus for the individual as they continue to seek new untapped ground to learn from while also exploring the conscious streams of life, because they realize with each new set of experiences, new possibilities arise, new solutions are to be had.

Regardless of the path one takes, with each new obstacle that arises, the individual grows further with each new choice made.  The more one grows, the more capable one feels.  The more capable one feels, the more they accomplish.  And the more they accomplish, the more they grow.  Therefore, growth serves as a catalyst for additional growth and experience, which is all fueled by endless inspiration of being able to tackle any problem that arises with the employment of imagination.

This is why imagination and creativity will continue to serve as an engine of growth by which the individual evolves, ultimately raising their quality of consciousness with each new well thought out and pondered idea that is ruminated upon deeply.  This growth undoubtedly couples to the life lessons that help us persevere through life doggedly, while also serving as sparks that ignite the embers of creativity.

As individuals embrace the resonant feeling of inspiration and creativity that follow the use of imagination and how those spawn new streams of consciousness and possibilities, they realize that imagination is the one tool in life that cannot be overlooked.  Without imagination, one cannot achieve anything.

And when imagination and inspiration couple, there is no end in sight to the type of accomplishments an individual may unleash.

New ideas arise, old shackles melt, and imagination becomes the key to a healthy and fulfilling life.

The precious and vast streams of consciousness that abound us are the canvas upon which imagination artfully creates its dreams – the individual’s dream.

In fact, writer, philosopher and naturalist Henry David Thoreau once intimated saliently:

“This world is but canvas to our imaginations.”

Humanity is here to create, and individuals cannot create without imagination.

Imagination leads to dreams, and dreams lead individuals to change one’s life; dreams help individuals inspire others; dreams have also throughout history helped change the course of civilization.  All of these dreams that are inherently woven within the core of our being, and are entwined within the web of life serve to vault the pallid, mediocre, and dull components of life into a completely different constellation of possibilities altogether.

Individuals whose insights and aspirations made them employ imagination in creatively unique ways, time and time again turned seemingly inalterable tides of destiny and transformed them into something new and fresh hitherto inconceivable.

Individuals such as Einstein, Steve Jobs, Michael Jordan, The Beatles, and more, all had ‘epic failures’.  And yet, failure does not define them.

They imagined something better, something greater.

They imagined a better life for themselves, made a plan, CHANGED their paths, and each set a new rousing course the likes of which nigh nobody has followed.  Promptly, the jaws of defeat were smashed shut and not allowed to feed on their dreams.

Countless individuals such as the above have shown that when individual mindsets are lucid and precise, there is nothing that can stop them and their imagination.

Doubt no longer exists.

The insipid fades into the past.

Obstacles become opportunities.

Setbacks become turning points.

Life’s journey becomes an inspiring adventure.

And the creative individual becomes ultimately free.

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This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.

Note: This Article was originally submitted to TheNewAgora – Elect To Govern Yourself and was published in their online and print magazine which features many great articles about a variety of salient and interesting topics.
___________________________________________________________
Zy Marquiez:

Zy Marquiez is an avid book reviewer, researcher, an open-minded skeptic, yogi, humanitarian, and freelance writer who studies regularly subjects like Consciousness, Education, Creativity, The Individual, Ancient History & Ancient Civilizations, Forbidden Archaeology, Big Pharma, Alternative Health, Space, Geoengineering, Social Engineering, Propaganda, and much more.

His own personal blog is BreakawayConsciousnessBlog.wordpress.com where his personal work is shared, while TheBreakaway.wordpress.com serves as a media portal which mirrors vital information usually ignored by mainstream press, but still highly crucial to our individual understanding of various facets of the world.

300 Word Memories #5 – Friendship

friendship
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
March 6, 2017

Friendship is something that we all share with someone to varying degrees, and under a variety of circumstances.  Friends, true friends, should be able to go through thick and thin, no matter what the obstacle.  The greater the obstacle, the quicker one will find out who their friends are.  With that said, with the recent divide and conquer left-right paradigm political climate that always takes place during election, lots of friendships were tested.

Recently, noticed myself that a lot of people kept throwing other individuals they considered ‘friends’ under the bus, simply because those people employed varying beliefs.  Saw this take place literally dozens of times over the last six months, and it’s quite mindboggling to say the least.  In fact, it’s still taking place to some extent.

All of these issues make me wonder if the virtue of friendship hasn’t been cheapened, when compared to what it was like in the past, when say, people like J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis were friends.  Mind you, Tolkien and Lewis, although sharing much in common, did not agree on everything.

This increasing pattern makes me wonder whether or not what people call friendship nowadays is nothing more than a shell of its former ideal.

Ironically, the very people throwing others under the bus for being who they really are, are themselves the ones demanding other individuals to respect those very same qualities.   Talk about hypocritical!

In a world where people gain ‘friends’, seemingly with every new minute, it does seem that to some extent the quality of friendship/acquaintances has been cheapened.  But perhaps, by that very nature, when true unbounded friendship is achieved, it is vastly more meaningful than it ever could be.

It seems with time, more and more people just want others to be a clone of themselves.  They want to talk to a mirror for the rest of their lives.  They want the mirror to reply, exactly how they themselves would reply.  Every.  Single.  Time.  That’s a highly disturbing proposition.

What’s the world coming to when other people want to literally program you to be who they want you to be?  Perhaps, this is taking place because from the bottom up, that’s exactly what the system does to us.

From youth, the public school system has taught society how to conform in astounding degrees.  This can be seen here, here, and here.  So it’s no wonder that now the people that have been conforming their whole lives want others to conform.  That doesn’t justify what’s taking place, but it helps shed a shred of light unto this conundrum.

Regardless of that, however, if there’s one positive thing to take from this it is that, if someone’s not your true friend, they will just be an anchor upon your ship, and hold you back.  Nothing positive can come from someone that wishes you to conform, regardless of what you believe.  That simply shows these people did not respect nor value the friendship and what it truly means.

Just as a ship can’t move while being held back by the weight of a broken anchor that can’t be pulled back, some individuals won’t be able to move forward through life with people holding them back in similar fashion.  That’s why it’s vital to breakaway from toxic relationships.

After all, those who really are your friends, deep down inside, will never put you through such circumstances.  In fact, they will go with you above in beyond, through hell and back and always be there, right by your side, to the end – because that’s what true friendship is about.

___________________________________________________________
This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.

300 Word Memories #4 – Solitude

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TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
March 4 , 2017

“The important thing in our understanding is to have a smooth, free-thinking way of observation.  We have to think and to observe things without stagnation.  We should accept things as they are without difficulty.  Our mind should be soft and open enough to understand things as they are.  When our thinking is soft, it is called imperturbable thinking.  This kind of thinking is always testable.  It is called mindfulness.”
– Shunryu Suzuki, Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind

“Conversation enriches the understanding, but solitude is the school of genius.”
– Edward Gibbon

There are two ways to live life.  Individuals can live in total awareness, like a newborn child who’s fully in tune and engaged with the full scale of their surroundings, which echoes wonder in every way shape or form.  Or, on the other hand, we can live in unawareness, where we are so detached where even the simplest things get by us.  This state is not unlike floating through life, like a leaf in the wind, letting life take you where it may.  In contrast, the opposite of that is the fish that is aware of its environment, and will swim with the tide when it’s advantageous, but will immediately change course and go against the tide when life demands it.

When individuals lack awareness, really simple things get by their defenses.  Examples of these are when we lose our keys, misplace our phone or the remote, forget an appointment, etc.  Each of these circumstances shows our lack of being in tune with our environments, which stems from being out of sync with our inner self.

On the opposite side of that spectrum lies awareness.

Awareness is walking outside, and noticing the warmth of the sun as it seeps through your skin; breathing in and feeling a full breath of fresh air as it goes fully into your lungs and feeling the energy it gives you; hearing how the birds chirp down the street even though the sound of traffic strains to override it; sensing someone’s emotions on a deeper level, even though you’ve only had a moment’s notice to pay attention to them; or even sensing something on instincts which would drift by someone if they weren’t paying attention.  All of these instances are felt deep down inside the individual, because they are aware.  But perhaps, one of the best ways to realize your awareness is locked in, like an athlete in the zone, is by being able to hear the stillness in your mind – the silence; full solitude.

In the silence we are capable of ascertaining more.  When the mind is cluttered, however, and filled to the brim, it is like a full cup of water, incapable of taking one more drop.  Worse, when merely one more drop of water gets added to the cup, the critical point arises where that one drop helps dislodge more than a magnitude of the single drop that went in, not unlike the person who faces one problem and has it spiral out of control into many issues.  Most of us including myself are probably familiar with these types of circumstances.  That is why pumping the breaks is crucial before we get to the point of no return.

Slowing down from our proverbial warp speed is when we as individuals are capable of understanding more, when we retain the maximum efficiency of our capabilities since we are fully engaged.   That very moment is when we are – as individuals – capable of functioning at a higher degree of understanding, a higher degree of knowing.  And one of the highest degrees of knowing is that of the self – that of your inner-most being.

It’s in the silence that our answers reside, in the stillness of the vacuum – in the solitude of life.

But don’t believe any of this; in fact, strive to disbelieve.  Seek your own answers – through every step of your life, throughout every breath, in full awareness, always.

____________________________________________________________
This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.

Common Core Crisis [Part 5] – What Led To Award Winning Teacher John Taylor Gatto To Quit Public Schooling

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TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
March 3, 2017

“Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all.”
– Aristotle

“Wherever a man desires to know, that is the place proper for his education; whenever he desires to know, that is the time proper for his instruction.”
– Socrates

The last few weeks we have begun to catalog many disturbing aspects of common core within public schooling.  Not only is American education on a catastrophic decline [see here], but as has been documented by insiders such as John Taylor Gatto, Charlotte Iserbyt, and others, that’s exactly what the system aims to do.

For those that might react in an askance manner to such statements, in previous posts [Example #1, Example #2, Example #3, Example #4] we have begun to slowly construct much of the downright nonsense individuals have to deal with within the corrupt public school system.

Continuing along the same lines, below follows a passage taken from award winning teacher John Taylor Gatto, which was shared by him in his phenomenal Underground History Of American Education.

Gatto states why he chose to resign from the corrupt system in 1991, and the troubling reasons follow below:

Gatto decided to throw in the towel in 1991, and the reasons for this follow below:

“In the first year of the last decade of the twentieth century during my thirtieth year as a school teacher in Community School District 3, Manhattan, after teaching in all five secondary schools in the district, crossing swords with one professional administration after another as they strove to rid themselves of me, after having my license suspended twice for insubordination and terminated covertly once while I was on medical leave of absence, after the City University of New York borrowed me for a five-year stint as a lecturer in the Education Department (and the faculty rating handbook published by the Student Council gave me the highest ratings in the department my last three years), after planning and bringing about the most successful permanent school fund-raiser in New York City history, after placing a single eighth-grade class into 30,000 hours of volunteer community service, after organizing and financing a student-run food cooperative, after securing over a thousand apprenticeships, directing the collection of tens of thousands of books for the construction of private student libraries, after producing four talking job dictionaries for the blind, writing two original student musicals, and launching an armada of other initiatives to reintegrate students within a larger human reality, I quit.

I was New York State Teacher of the Year when it happened. An accumulation of disgust and frustration which grew too heavy to be borne finally did me in. To test my resolve I sent a short essay to The Wall Street Journal titled “I Quit, I Think.” In it I explained my reasons for deciding to wrap it up, even though I had no savings and not the slightest idea what else I might do in my mid-fifties to pay the rent. In its entirety it read like this:

Government schooling is the most radical adventure in history. It kills the family by monopolizing the best times of childhood and by teaching disrespect for home and parents. The whole blueprint of school procedure is Egyptian, not Greek or Roman. It grows from the theological idea that human value is a scarce thing, represented symbolically by the narrow peak of a pyramid.

That idea passed into American history through the Puritans. It found its “scientific” presentation in the bell curve, along which talent supposedly apportions itself by some Iron Law of Biology. It’s a religious notion, School is its church. I offer rituals to keep heresy at bay. I provide documentation to justify the heavenly pyramid.

Socrates foresaw if teaching became a formal profession, something like this would happen. Professional interest is served by making what is easy to do seem hard; by subordinating the laity to the priesthood. School is too vital a jobs-project, contract giver and protector of the social order to allow itself to be “re-formed.” It has political allies to guard its marches, that’s why reforms come and go without changing much. Even reformers can’t imagine school much different.

David learns to read at age four; Rachel, at age nine: In normal development, when both are 13, you can’t tell which one learned first—the five-year spread means nothing at all. But in school I label Rachel “learning disabled” and slow David down a bit, too. For a paycheck, I adjust David to depend on me to tell him when to go and stop. He won’t outgrow that dependency. I identify Rachel as discount merchandise, “special education” fodder. She’ll be locked in her place forever.

In 30 years of teaching kids rich and poor I almost never met a learning disabled child; hardly ever met a gifted and talented one either. Like all school categories, these are sacred myths, created by human imagination. They derive from questionable values we never examine because they preserve the temple of schooling.

That’s the secret behind short-answer tests, bells, uniform time blocks, age grading, standardization, and all the rest of the school religion punishing our nation. There isn’t a right way to become educated; there are as many ways as fingerprints. We don’t need state-certified teachers to make education happen—that probably guarantees it won’t.

How much more evidence is necessary? Good schools don’t need more money or a longer year; they need real free-market choices, variety that speaks to every need and runs risks. We don’t need a national curriculum or national testing either. Both initiatives arise from ignorance of how people learn or deliberate indifference to it. I can’t teach this way any longer. If you hear of a job where I don’t have to hurt kids to make a living, let me know. Come fall I’ll be looking for work.”[1][Bold Emphasis Added]

Coming to terms with all of the above, can you really blame Gatto?  And to think, this took place over two decades ago.  The public schooling system has only gotten worse.

Those facts lead Gatto to speak over 750 times throughout the world in the following years to discuss the inherent issues within public schooling.  And he hasn’t stopped, thankfully.

Gatto found that individuals from all over the world were beginning to see the shadows of the system for what it was, and are were beginning to speak out, and rightly so.

The only way to avoid the conformity crisis is to breakaway from the system that makes you conform from the ground up.  Gatto and many others have spoken about this at length.

Seek to learn and teach children [and adults!] not only how to think critically [which school doesn’t teach], but how to employ logic [which modern schooling also doesn’t teach, although was taught for centuries in classical education].  Don’t allow others to make you, nor your children conform.  Strive to live life to the fullest extent, learning from moments – every single one of them, especially the bad ones – rather than by disciplines, or worse, methods. 

Life has everything you need to learn.  It only takes open eyes and an open mind to take it all in and use every day as a teaching platform as every opportunity is ruminated upon, pondered, learned from, and digested at length.

Anyone can teach another person something, and it happens on a day by day basis.

It’s just that we don’t get hammered to see those experiences as teaching.  The curious part is that, life lessons happen ALL the time, and it doesn’t take a public school system to teach that.  Not that schools teach that anyways.

Learn from every moment.

Learn from every person.

Learn from yourself.

And teach others what you have learned.

Then and only then are we going to begin creating a new system, from the ground up.

And all it takes is individuals rising up, as they have throughout history.

Don’t hold back.  Education is too important to forgo, or to leave to others.

Change starts with you.  Don’t let anyone else tell you otherwise.  For if we don’t take time to teach ourselves about the lessons of life, we will arrive at life’s end having learned nothing.

_________________________________________________________
Suggested resources reviewed below for those seeking ideas to self-teach and become autodidacts:

Socratic Logic V3.1 by Peter Kreeft Ph.D.
The Trivium – The Liberal Arts Of Grammar & Rhetoric by Sister Miriam Joseph Ph.D.
How To Read A Book – The Classic Guide To Intelligent Reading by Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren
Philosophy 101 – An Introduction To Philosophy Via Plato’s Apology by Peter Kreeft Ph.D.
The Complete Workbook For Arguments – A Complete Course In Critical Thinking [2nd Ed.] by David R. Morrow & Anthony Weston
The Imaginative Argument – A Practical Manifesto For Writers by Frank L. Cioffi

The following books reviewed below cover the disturbing issues within the public schooling system:

Rotten To The Common Core by Dr. Joseph P. Farrell Ph.D.& Gary Lawrence
Dumbing Us Down – The Hidden Curriculum Of Compulsory Schooling by John Taylor Gatto
A Different Kind Of Teacher – Solving The Crisis Of American Schooling by John Taylor Gatto
Weapons Of Mass Instruction by John Taylor Gatto
Drilling Through The Core, by Sandra Stotsky & Contributors
_________________________________________________________
Source:

[1] John Taylor Gatto, Underground History Of American Education, pp. xv-xvi.

Book Review: Summerhill School – A New View Of Childhood by A.S. Neil

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TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
March 3, 2017

Having read three books by John Taylor Gatto’s, who has spoken out at length about the inherent issues within public schooling, while also having met some people through discussing these books, someone was kind enough to recommend this particular book.  To say the least, this book is outside of the box as outside of the box can be.

Summerhill School – A New View Of Childhood by A.S. Neil is a book that details the venture of those who took part in the school known as Summerhill, which sought to achieve a new standard of learning and growth.

A.S. Neil was the person mainly responsible for this audacious undertaking, and his actions echo still to this day.

What Neil sought to do was create a place where the idea/value of Freedom is wholly respected, through and through.  For this, this new school required a different way of thinking – a whole new mindset.  This venture required the removal of preconceived notions of childhood schooling, coupled with the open-mindedness that to achieve true education in the school system the child must govern entirely free to govern themselves.  This means that the child would be active in most of what the child chooses for their own development, which may include various aspects learning or playing.

Neil’s individually democratic style education is quite evocative, because when carried out correctly [as myriad examples show in his book] it shows that children can self-govern themselves, and also do so quite well.  This takes place also with little to no interference from the adults, except in some very unique circumstances.  For the most part though, children were left to their own devices, to choose what type of learning they would undertake.

To gauge what Neil strove to achieve, let’s take a gander at his own words:

“The goal was to use childhood and adolescence to create emotional wholeness and personal strength.  Neil thought that once this wholeness had been achieved children would be self-motivated to learn what they needed academically.  The key to this growth was to give children freedom to play for as long as they felt the need in an atmosphere of approval and love.   The children were given freedom but not license; they could do as they pleased as long as it didn’t bother anyone else.”[1]

Therein lies the beauty, for the child who ends up not playing, ends up not using one of the most important parts of life for learning and growth.  Furthermore, the children that have unfinished childhoods so to speak, later in life seek to do things that could have already taken place, and which end up slowing down the progress of growth as an adult.  That’s what Neil seemed to notice anyhow.

Within the book there is a wide array of topics discussed.  Everything from social structure, emotional problems, particularly with children who are a bit older, meetings, self-government, what are called ‘problem children’, play and self-regulation and much more is discussed at length.

Perhaps, the best way to understand what Summerhill is truly about comes from the following piece:

“You don’t have Summerhill in order that children should study or learn to become “ists” of any kind.  You let them function in their own play-work fashion, and you postulate no purpose for them at all.”[2]

The genius of the idea is that because their core individual foundation in childhood was so enjoyable and emotionally robust children end up learning vastly quicker when they choose to follow their path than students that follow the public school system.  However, is that growth is not allowed when children are forced through compulsory schooling [Read: Dumbing Us Down – The Hidden Curriculum Of Compulsory Schooling by John Taylor Gatto] which crushes their individuality and imagination.  Those very circumstances turn children in robots, only capable of following orders and never taught to critically think.  Only memorization of facts becomes important, and not arriving at the facts.

For that reason, many of the topics of the book do delve into the idea of playing.  Neil does make it a point about focusing on the benefits of playing quite a bit.  What the author states constitutes play is:

“…not thinking in terms of athletic fields and organized games; I am thinking of play in terms of fantasy.  Organized games involve skill, competition, teamwork; but children’s play usually requires no skill, little competition, and hardly any teamwork.”[3]

In other words, true play, like a whetstone, hones the development of imagination.  And imagination is integral, because a child whose imagination hasn’t developed has had his childhood stultified, as well as their imagination, and will be a conformist child, and thus, a conformist adult at the drop of a hat.  Disturbingly, this is exactly what we see in society more and more with time.

The book is split up into two parts. Firstly, the book covers all facets regarding Summerhill, which are covered at length from a variety of angles, citing dozens and dozens of examples of how children responded to particular scenarios and whatnot. Everything from classes, theater, music, sex, teachers, and much more is discussed here.  The second part of the book covers many aspects of Neils life, as he takes us through the journey of what brought him to taking part in Summerhill.

All this considered, the book is a really great read.  Admittedly, the first half appealed to me a lot more than the second part, but that’s because the interest for me was in the process for the individual and not so much in how the author came to be part of it.  Regardless, the book really is something worth pondering for anybody that thinks the one-size-fits-all public schooling and compulsory conformity system that western education has become is good, really needs to take a look at the conformity crisis that’s taking place.  That, however, is a whole different can of worms.  One that John Taylor Gatto discusses at length in all of his books.

If you have read any of John Taylor Gatto’s book, then you will know how indoctrination and conformity are the aim of public schooling, and there’s many documents showing this.  Because of that, and more, an honest view into a different paradigm such as this one brought about by Neil is needed.  Summerhill has shown that education and personal growth can actually be enjoyable for once.

Summerhill has already broken new ground for a new paradigm.  Now it’s up to individuals to ruminate upon how to learn from it and see where it may take them.

_______________________________________________________________
Suggested resources reviewed below for those seeking ideas to self-teach and become autodidacts:

Socratic Logic V3.1 by Peter Kreeft Ph.D.
The Trivium – The Liberal Arts Of Grammar & Rhetoric by Sister Miriam Joseph Ph.D.
How To Read A Book – The Classic Guide To Intelligent Reading by Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren
Philosophy 101 – An Introduction To Philosophy Via Plato’s Apology by Peter Kreeft Ph.D.
The Complete Workbook For Arguments – A Complete Course In Critical Thinking [2nd Ed.] by David R. Morrow & Anthony Weston
The Imaginative Argument – A Practical Manifesto For Writers by Frank L. Cioffi

The following books reviewed below cover the disturbing issues within the public schooling system:

Rotten To The Common Core by Dr. Joseph P. Farrell Ph.D.& Gary Lawrence
Dumbing Us Down – The Hidden Curriculum Of Compulsory Schooling by John Taylor Gatto
A Different Kind Of Teacher – Solving The Crisis Of American Schooling by John Taylor Gatto
Weapons Of Mass Instruction by John Taylor Gatto
Drilling Through The Core, by Sandra Stotsky & Contributors
_______________________________________________________________
Sources:

[1] A.S. Neil, Summerhill School – A New View Of Childhood, p. xviii
[2] Ibid., p. 217.
[3] Ibid., p. 32.
_______________________________________________________________
This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.

Book Review: The Hobbit By J.R.R. Tolkien

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TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
March 2, 2017

“Real books disgust the totalitarian mind because they generate uncontrollable mental growth – and it cannot be monitored.”
John Taylor Gatto, A Different Kind Of Teacher, p. 82.

“Books are not made to be believed, but to be subjected to inquiry.  When we consider a book, we musn’t ask ourselves what it says but what it means.”
– Umberto Eco, The Name Of The Rose

J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit is one of his landmark pieces, which is part of Tolkien’s legendarium.  Tolkien’s legendarium revolves around the world of Arda.

Unknown to many, The Legendarium was created by Tolkien to serve as fictional mythology about the remote past of Earth, in which Middle Earth is the main stage.

The Legendarium is composed by phenomenal fiction such as The Lord of the Rings and also The Hobbit, as previously mentioned.  But also, the Legendarium features works such as The Silmarillion, The History of the Middle-Earth, The History Of The Hobbit, and more.

Undoubtedly one of the most significant books in the 20th Century, The Hobbit takes us through the adventures of Bilbo Baggins, whose life early on echoes predictability, comfort and simplicity.

However, after an unexpected party, Bilbo’s life changes most auspiciously.  After repeatedly stating he was not interested in being privy to an adventure, Bilbo was tricked into going by his guests, the dwarves, appealing to Bilbo’s more adventurous side – his Tookish side. There in the adventure begins.

On Bilbo’s quest to the Lonely Mountain, he and his companions traverse through Rivendel, the Misty Mountains, the dark forest of Mirkwood and even Lake Town, before anchoring at the Desolation of Smaug for the apex of the story.

On the way, Bilbo and his gang run into all sorts of folks: elves, humans, eagles, wargs, orcs, and even intricate characters such as Beorn and Gollum, all of which serve to make this phenomenal fantasy into one of the most intriguing mental escapes any fictional book has ever accomplished.

Throughout the epic, Bilbo’s journey mirrors that of the readers in the time which Tolkien published the story in 1937.  Just as Bilbo was reticent of going in the journey, being rather conservative, and being comfortable in his rather run-of-the-mill cookie-cutter everyday life, so were the people of the time of Tolkien a bit reserved about venturing on a journey into the realm of epic fantasy.  Mainstream folks weren’t interested in fantasy, and some even felt askance to it.  This was the reason why Tolkien used Bilbo as an analogy for the reader to familiarize itself with this Universe.

In fact, as medieval literature specialist and writer Corey Olsen Ph.D. puts it in his in-depth book, Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit:

“Bilbo’s initial perspective is so narrow, so domesticated, that being made late for dinner apparently counts as very serious hazard.  When Gandalf suggests sending him on an adventure, Bilbo runs into the house in panic.”[1][Emphasis On Original]

That’s how reticent Bilbo was!

These very circumstances, which mirror those of the readers of the time, are best exemplified by the following words:

“Tolkien was very aware of the artistic challenge he faced in writing a work of fantasy, especially since fantasy literature was far from the literary mainstream in the early twentieth century.  He knew that when they encountered his story in The Hobbit, his readers would have to leave their mundane and comfortable world behind and invest their imaginations in a world that contains magic and unexpected marvels.  In chapter One, Tolkien gives us a model for this very process within the story itself.  We begin in our safe and predictable world, and in the first chapter, we find ourselves in a world of wizard and dwarves and dragons.  In this transition, we find ourselves coming alongside a protagonist who is struggling through the exactly the same process, a character who himself internalizes the conflict between the mundane and the marvelous   Our first introduction to this magical, grim, and dangerous world of adventure is also his introduction, and his reluctance and difficulty in adjusting to it give us time to ease past our own discomfort and reservations.  Bilbo Baggins serves as a perfect touchstone for readers, both exploring and embodying the trickier frontier between the predictable and the unexpected.”[2]

And yet, no matter what Bilbo thought on the surface, deep down inside part of his deepest self was quite intrigued with the prospect of an adventure.  This insight is best viewed in the following passage, which takes place right when the dwarves begin an impromptu musical performance at his abode:

“Bilbo “forgot everything else, and was swept away into dark lands under strange moons, far over The Water and very far from his hobbit-hole under The Hill”.  He is transported into the land of the dwarves, and their song even brings him to share for a moment their own perspective and experience.  As they sing, he “felt the love of beautiful things made by hands and by cunning and by magic moving through him, a fierce and jealous love, the desire of the hearts of dwarves.”  For a little while, Bilbo is moved by the music and the poetry of the dwarves, and he steps imaginatively out of his little world and into their story.  At this moment, “something Tookish woke up inside him,” and Bilbo finds that there is a part of him that desires adventure after all.”[3]

Once Bilbo’s imagination is unleashed it was like Pandora ’s Box, and there was no putting it back.

The contrast within Bilbo is best noticed when compared with Gandalf, as each represent two sides of the same coin.

As Olsen elucidates:

“Bilbo’s settled, Baggins life is like prose, plain and businesslike, and the magical world of Gandalf and the dwarves is more like poetry, full of wonder and marvels, but also strange and sorcerous like Gandalf’s smokerings. Bilbo may adhere to the Baggins point of view, but his Tookish heritage does give him a tendency toward that other, adventurous life, a tendency that is lurking beneath the surface when Bilbo meets Gandalf.”[4]

This tendency towards  what’s intriguing and portentous is what helps Bilbo grow throughout the journey as he finds the core of his Tookish side, and uses it to help himself and his newfound friends in this journey.

Intriguingly, as Bilbo grows accustomed to the wondrous and imaginative changes that magic brings about, so did the readers of the time.

The best part of this The Hobbit is that it’s so in depth and profound that there’s much to be had from it.

Truth be told, as Louis Markos Ph.D. notes in his book, On The Shoulders Of Hobbits – The Road To Virtue With Tolkien And Lewis:

“So greatly did The Hobbit delight adults and children hungry for the lost realm of fairy tales that the cried out for a sequel.  In response, Tolkien spent the next decade and a half crafting a far richer and more mature work that would ratchet up its predecessor from a humble fairy tale to a full-scale epic in the tradition of The Iliad, The Odyssey, and Beowulf.”[5]

The Hobbit is truly an upper echelon book.  This book resides within a class of books that belongs in an entirely different realm.  Some of the greatest books of all literature treat life as a journey, and this book is no different.  Moreover, not only that, but the book is so in depth, and offers so many subtle themes, that people for ages will be learning from it.

Touching upon this very subject, Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren speak about these type of books in their own touchstone piece, How To Read A Book – The Classic Guide To Intelligent Reading:

“There is a second class of books from which you can learn – both how to read and how to live.  Less than one out of every hundred books belongs in this class – probably it is more like one in a thousand, or even one in ten thousand.  These are the good books, the ones that were carefully wrought by the authors, the ones that convey to the reader significant insights about subjects of enduring interest to human beings.  There are in all probably no more than a few thousand of such books.”[6]

The Hobbit offers many profound lessons of life.  Through fantasy fiction Tolkien creates a story which is analogous to what each of our own journeys are individually.  And just as life offers us countless lessons from which to learn from, so offers The Hobbit many germane gems of wisdom that are for the taking which are woven throughout the story.

In sum, the best reason to read this book is encapsulated in the following words by Markos:

“All ages at all times need stories, but our needs them so much more…The stories that we need are precisely those that will beckon us to follow their heroes along the Road; that will embody for us the true nature of good and evil, virtue and vice, and then challenge us to engage the struggle between the two…”[7]

And The Hobbit, for those very salient reasons, and more, is just one of those stories.

____________________________________________________________
Sources:

[1] Corey Olsen Ph.D., Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit, p. 21.
[2] Ibid., p. 35.
[3] Ibid., p. 24.
[4] Ibid., p. 23.
[5] Louis Markos Ph.D., On The Shoulders Of Hobbits – The Road To Virtue With Tolkien And Lewis, pp. 13-14.
[6] Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren, How To Read A Book – The Classic Guide To Intelligent Reading, pp. 332-333.
[7]Louis Markos Ph.D., On The Shoulders Of Hobbits – The Road To Virtue With Tolkien And Lewis, p. 187.
____________________________________________________________
This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.

Book Review: A Workbook For Arguments – A Complete Course In Critical Thinking [2nd Ed.] by David R. Morrow & Anthony Weston

WorkBookForArguments1.jpg
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
March 1, 2017

Having read A Rulebook For Arguments by Anthony Weston and finding it quite useful, the prospect of reading a book along very similar lines but offering more expanded thought seemed quite intriguing.  Thankfully, the following book delivered in spades.

A Workbook For Arguments – A Complete Course In Critical Thinking by David R. Morrow & Anthony Weston is a very comprehensive, incisive, and detailed foray into what it takes to create a critical thinker.

Not only does A Workbook For Arguments contain the text from A Rulebook For Arguments with further extensions which help the reader become more robust with the content broken down, but it also features simple, and yet acute advice for the individual to become more apt in argumentation.

In conjunction with that the authors break down about half the exercises in the book with model responses in the back of the book.  Most of these exercise detail real world issues one is likely to hear often, detailing the pros and cons of whatever answers were employed, and how each of those may affect an individual or society as a whole.

Also included in the book is a rundown of some of the most common fallacies, which is also useful since fallacies are employed far more often than most realize, and aren’t really taught in school, when in all actuality they should be.  Knowing these fallacies is vital to understand not only someone else’s argument and their inherent flaws, but also in constructing and fine-tuning one’s own.

Arguably, the most important part of this book is that from the beginning it guides the reader through the steps in constructing a critical argument in a very logical fashion.  Consistently throughout the book, new topics continually build on the prior ones, rather than there being no coherent design.

Personally, this is the kind of book whose contents should be mandatory to learn in school and should definitely not be overlooked for homeschooling, autodidacts and self-teachers.

Simply stated, anyone who is seeking to employ critical thinking, use logic in argumentation and become more robust in most key aspects of argumentation should get this book, if not file it under careful consideration.  If you think about it, even if it was priced at double or triple the price, it would STILL be worth it, because college courses covering the same subject are often more costly, and offer barely a fraction of what’s here, IF they offer anything of such high quality.

If you happened to have read A Rulebook For Arguments, and appreciated it, then get this one.  You will not regret it.  It’s worth it in more ways individuals could imagine.
________________________________________________________________
Suggested Book Review Reading:

Socratic Logic V3.1 by Peter Kreeft Ph.D.
The Trivium – The Liberal Arts Of Grammar & Rhetoric by Sister Miriam Joseph Ph.D.
How To Read A Book – The Classic Guide To Intelligent Reading by Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren
Philosophy 101 – An Introduction To Philosophy Via Plato’s Apology by Peter Kreeft Ph.D.
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This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.

300 Word Memories #2 – Perseverance

perseverance
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
February 27, 2017

“We acquire strength we have overcome.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

“People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.”
– George Bernard Shaw

It seems that no matter where one ventures in life, no matter where one attempt to make berth, there’s always going to be obstacles in the way.  Sometimes, these obstacles can be overcome with perseverance and determination.  Other times, it is not so simple.

Whether it is family, work, business, school, relationships, it seems that each of these areas always has something to offer for growth that keeps us on our toes, although many times we might not see it, or even want to come to terms with it.

Living in a society in which governments overlook freedoms, schools overlook education, businesses overlook quality, the medical establishment overlooks health, religion overlooks morality, it’s no wonder many people disappointed with what life has to offer.  In great part, people’s point of views and virtues are literally molded, from the ground up in clay-like fashion, by these very institutions.

Regarding this disturbing trend, regarding those pulling the strings, Edward Bernays, the father of public relations, once had this today, which he shared in his book Propaganda [review here]:

“The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. …We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard ofIn almost every act of our daily lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons…who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires which control the public mind.”[1][Bold Emphasis Added]

Such truly is the state of the world, and has been for nigh a century.

If the groups socially engineering these changes were not morally bankrupt, then many significant issues would be a lot simpler and perhaps better.  On the flip side, though, one could also argue that there would be less to learn as a society, and as individuals, if these obstacles opportunities were not available.  Of course, this is not to give silence to evil acts nor to justify them.  This is simply to point out that from every obstacle, there is something to be learned, and we usually learn the most when we are put to the test in keen fashion.

There are times that no matter what we do, it seems like the storm is coming, and we will be in its path, no matter what we do.  When that time comes, we need to be resolute in our character, and realize that facing obstacles, no matter how tough it may seem at the time, will always yield a more robust individual repertoire.

Only by weathering the storm do each of us as individuals end up being forged by the fire, like a sword that is cast ironclad, but in our case, we are cast in the profound lessons of life.

Only by being aware of the door opening, may we find a new path.

And only by walking through the fire will we know that we are immune to the flames.

Stay strong, because you are forged by the very thing that the Universe is made of.  And since we are each a reflections of the Universe, as the Universe is boundless, so is our resolve.

________________________________________
Sources & References:

[1] Edward Bernays, Propaganda, pp. 37-38.
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This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.

Book Review: The Trivium – The Liberal Arts Of Logic, Grammar & Rhetoric by Sister Miriam Joseph Ph.D.

thetrivium
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
February 24, 2017

In their How To Read A Book – The Classical Guide To Intelligent Reading [review here], Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren postulated that most published books out there will not be complex enough to teach the reader anything of true substance.

However, the authors also argued that there is a second tier of books “from which you can learn – both how to read and how to live.”[1] Am venturing to say that The Trivium is one of those books, from which an immense amount can be learned because of its inherent nature of all it teaches.

The Trivium – The Liberal Arts Of Logic, Grammar & Rhetoric by Sister Miriam Joseph Ph.D., is an exemplary book that touches topics which do not get the light of day in modern times, although surely did centuries ago.

As this passage by Marguerite McGlinn relates, which speaks incisively:

“Ultimately, Sister Miriam Joseph speaks most eloquently about the value of this book.  She explains that studying the liberal arts [The Trivium] is an intransitive activity; the effect of studying these arts stays within the individual and perfects the faculties of the mind and spirit.  She compares the studying of the liberal arts with the blooming of the rose; it brings to fruition the possibilities of human nature.  She writes, “The utilitarian or servile arts enable one to be a servant – of another person, of the state, of a corporation, or a business – and to earn a living.  The liberal arts, in contrast, teach one how to live; they train the faculties and bring them to perfection; they enable a person to rise above his material environment to live an intellectual, a rational, and therefore a free life in gaining truth.”[2][Bold Emphasis Added]

The book doesn’t just speak of The Trivium, but shows all of its main components to boot, and furthermore how to employ them.

By covering the vital topics of Logic, Grammar & Rhetoric, The Trivium goes above and beyond most books that are ‘mandatory’ in the public school system.

Given that the once mandatory subjects of rhetoric and logic are all but gone from mainstream education and only shadows of those remains while what is taught of grammar is very superficial, a book like this blows away anything that regular schooling could offer.

Why such a bold statement?  Because the Trivium is the foundation upon which classical education was built.  However, after a shift away from these tenets, the Trivium has been removed from the system of public schooling to the detriment of the students.

In any case, The Trivium features not only a very methodical approach into the learning/teaching of Grammar, Logic and Rhetoric, but the book is also chock-full of myriad examples coming straight from the upper tiers of literary history which are used to cement each component of the Trivium.

Further, not only does this book explain in detail the core concepts of the Trivium, but at certain junctures it even offers some exercises in order to apply what one has learned and gauge an individual’s progress.

The Trivium is really a thorough presentation that encompasses everything from poetics, fallacies, syllogisms, propositions, grammar, composition, enthymemes and much much more.

If you’re a homeschooler, an unschooler, an autodidact, a self-teacher, or simply someone that is seeking to teach someone, or simply wish to learn about these integral components of education, then ruminate deeply about getting this book.  Its lessons would benefit every individual come to terms with the greater capability that they always could have, but never found a way to achieve through the terribly lacking public schooling system.

Those seeking additional educational tools may appreciate:

Socratic Logic [V3.1] by Peter Kreeft Ph.D.
A Workbook For Arguments [2nd Edition] – A Complete Course In Critical Thinking by David R. Morrow & Anthony Wesson
How To Read A Book – The Classic Guide To Intelligent Reading by Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren

Each of these books will build a more robust mental repertoire, and are highly recommended for everyone.

_______________________________________________________________
Sources & References:
[1] Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren, How To Read A Book, Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren. p. 332.
[2] Sister Miriam Joseph Ph.D.,The Trivium – The Liberal Arts Of Logic, Grammar & Rhetoric, pp. x-xi.
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This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.

Recent Declassified Documents About Mars Discuss A Pyramid & A Lost Civilization 1 MILLION Years Ago

Late spring on Mars (centered on roughly 305 degrees longitude).
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
February 23, 2017

For quite a long time, Mars has served as a place of wonder.

In fiction, there have been many authors that have sparked the imagination of individuals in respect to the red planetary body.  It can be argued, however, that The War Of The Worlds, by H.G. Wells, was perhaps the quintessential turn in fiction which served to firmly inculcate consistent focus on the ancient Red Planet.  Another notable writer, Edgar Rice Burroughs, added to the Red Planet mythos when he published A Princess Of Mars, which was part of part of a series of stories he published on the red planet.

In modern times, it has been argued, that in addition to Mars containing pyramids on its surface, the red planet also contains a face on its surface.

Former NASA consultant, researcher, author and writer Richard C. Hoagland covers in his highly intriguing book, The Monuments Of Mars – A City On The Edge Of Forever [review here] that Mars features extensive evidence for artificial edifices, which do not seem natural in form, as well as many other anomalies which have mathematical properties on the surface.

To add a few more buckets of fuel onto the embers of the subject of Mars, the CIA recently declassified documents on Mars, which will undoubtedly bring forth much rumination and speculation.

The recent declassified CIA document in question is named “CIA-RDP96-00788R001900760001-9“.  This document is aptly titled Mars Exploration.  This declassification by the CIA was part of an extensive declassification of documents that took place in January, which cover a variety of highly thought-provoking topics.

Dating back to May 22, 1984, the document purports to be a transcript of an experiment conducted a few decades ago which attempted to remote view Mars approximately at approximately 1 Million years B.C.

Before continuing, as a preamble, it’s highly intriguing, and profoundly suggestive, that each of the exact coordinates that were given yielded rather astonishing results.  The possibility of this being a ‘random’ remote viewing probe ceases to decrease, and the probability of it being a follow up remote view and reconnaissance session at that time  increases quite drastically.  If this contention is correct, Mars would have to have been under some type of remote viewing surveillance for at least some time.  That’s just my personal speculation however.

After beginning to remote view the object, the subject begins:

rvm1
As we can gather, the remote viewer has spotted what seems to be a pyramid-like structure, which could go on to corroborate the possibility of there being pyramids on Mars, as covered by Richard C. Hoagland in his book.

After proceeding to new coordinates, the subject covers another notable point in the document, which is quite evocative:

rvm2

As we can gather, we begin by noting that there is an object that seems like an obelisk found, which is very peculiar to say the least.  However,the fact that the CIA individual that was  prompting the remote viewer made no effort to spend additional time on the object [or the pyramid for that matter], which should have put their suspicion meter into the red zone, leads me to believe that this particular remote viewing session, or at least this particular coordinate reading, was carried out to confirm previous readings carried out prior to this.

Ironically, a place on Earth where we see Pyramids and an obelisk is Egypt.  Now, to double-down, or triple-down on our ‘coincidences’, let’s take a gander at an excerpt that was published in the renown Journal of the British Interplanetary Society, which contained a chapter heading named, Signpost to Mars.  This was mentioned by Richard C. Hoagland, in his book The Monuments Of Mars – A City On The Edge Of Forever:

“One of the weirdest coincidences of the whole affair is that Cairo, the site of the (two greatest) pyramids, was originally named El-Kahira, from the Arabic El-Kahir – “Meaning Mars…””[1]

As Richard C. Hoagland excitedly intimates:

“Again – what were the random probabilities that there would exist two isolated worlds, both with “pyramids” and “sphinxes,” and now, that the one site on this planet where the most perfect, most archetypal form still stand – Cairo – would also form the key linguistic bridge that links those worlds…!?”[2][Bold Emphasis Added]

It surely boggles the mind, does it not?

Now, getting back on track, let’s take a look at the last tidbit of evidence which moves these ‘coincidences’ from the realm of randomness, and into the realm of coordination, by taking a gander at the last peculiar bit of data:

rvm3
rvm4

Although the document alludes to many different topics which that be covered, for our purposes, we will focus only on the fact that the document speaks of there being an ancient civilization that lived on Mars.  The remote viewer himself states that he perceived them to be ancient people.

A pyramid, an obelisk, and a civilization, all on Mars, all covered within a declassified CIA document.  What else does the Red Planet harbor within its confines?

Admittedly, remote viewing isn’t an exact science, and it’s more like an art, but this document isn’t the only piece of evidence showcasing oddities on Mars.

In fact, the book The Cydonia Codex – Reflections from Mars by George J. Haas & William R. Saunders [Review Here] brings forth extensive evidence for there being a correlation between geoglyphs on mars, and geoglyphs found throughout the Earth.  Some of the cultures that feature these geoglyphs on Earth are the Aztec, the Olmec, Maya and more.[3]

Lastly, but surely not less important, plasma physicist, and former NASA employee, Dr. John Brandenburg Ph.D., has postulated that Mars contains evidence of a nuclear catastrophe in its past.  Dr. Brandenburg came to this particular conclusion based on the fact that Mars contains Xenon-129, thorium and uranium, which are elements that are not of natural origins, and only come about from what he postulates as nuclear explosions, in extremely enormous yields.

For more information on Dr. Brandenburg’s hypothesis, please watch the presentation below, which took place at the Secret Space Program & Breakaway Civilization Conference in Bastrop Texas, in 2015, which yours truly was lucky enough to attend.  If you have any interest in these types of subjects, there are many more presentations which took place at the conference from many notable speakers such as Dr. Joseph P. Farrell, Jim Marrs, Catherine Austin Fitts, and more, all of which are just as intriguing as this one, albeit covering a variety of topics, and which have resounding implications.

____________________________________________________________
Sources & References:

[1] Richard C. Hoagland, The Monuments Of Mars – A City On The Edge Of Forever, p. 289.
[2] Ibid., p. 289.
[3] George J. Haas & William R. Saunders, The Cydonia Codex – Reflections from Mars.
[4] CIA Declassified Document CIA-RDP96-00788R001900760001-9.
____________________________________________________________
This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.

Book Review: Weapons Of Mass Instruction By John Taylor Gatto

weaponsofmassinstruction
TheBreakway
Zy Marquiez
February 20, 2017

For quite some time there has been a growing undercurrent of displeasure and outright disdain for the current public schooling system and its repeated failures throughout the years.  Predictably, driving reason for these displeasures are the consistent failures of students within a public schooling.

No matter how many new additional methods are added and no matter how much more money – usually in the hundreds of millions – is employed, the dumbing down of society continues, like clockwork.  And yet, the same suggestions by government and school officials keep getting mentioned, even though the results are abysmal at best, and exactly what some want, at worse.  Didn’t a wise man once say that doing the same things over and over again and expecting different results is text book lunacy?

A voice of reason that has come out swinging in this battle against pedagogical propaganda and this creature of conformity is John Taylor Gatto.

Not only is John Taylor Gatto the former NY City and NY State Teacher of the year [1991], but he has made numerous efforts in detailing not only the pervading dumbing down of the public school system which has been in play for many decades now, and which he touches upon Dumbing Us Down – The Hidden Curriculum Of Public Schooling, but Gatto also touches upon the conformity crisis that’s taking place with children brought about through the deliberate social engineering of youth from the bottom up.

For instance, as is detailed in the book, and has been mentioned in documentaries and other books:

“In our dreams, people yield themselves with perfect docility to our molding hands. The present education conventions of intellectual and character education fade from their minds, and, unhampered by tradition, we work our own good will upon a grateful and responsive folk.
We shall not try to make these people, or any of their children, into philosophers, or men of science. We have not to raise up from them authors, educators, poets or men of letters. We shall not search for great artists, painters, musicians nor lawyers, doctors, preachers, politicians, statesmen — of whom we have an ample supply
.  The task is simple. We will organize children and teach them in a perfect way the things their fathers and mothers are doing in an imperfect way.”[1][Bold Emphasis Added]

There is no ‘beating around the bush’ here.  That’s the agenda, and has always been.  Countless quotes from this book and Gatto’s other book speak at length of this very issue.

In Weapons Of Mass Instruction, Gatto takes one step further and analyzes many of the components that set out to eviscerate imagination and critical thought in myriad ways.

Not to be outdone, Gatto not only shows why the public school system doesn’t work in its current form, but shows how particular individuals throughout history have performed downright amazing feats of human ingenuity without what the ‘experts’ would call ‘public schooling’.  Examples of these people are John Kanzius, who found a way to kill cancer that ‘experts’ hadn’t considered, and had no background in the field; Charles Webb, who wrote the film The Graduate; Ingvar Kamprad, who created IKEA; Frances Collins and Craig Venter, who had nigh no schooling, and wound up creating the human genome map for the Human Genome Project, and countless others.

Each of the above individuals did things, profound things, that went against the system, and showed that not only can you make it, but you can make it BIG as an individual.  And that’s also why Gatto’s words resonate with many.  Education is distinct to each individual, while public schooling is about homogenizing people and creating clones who are predictable, conform at the drop of the hat, and do not question anything, at all, whatsoever.

Don’t believe me?  Great, you’re skeptical, and even question, and that’s outstanding.  Now listen to what comes from one of the very people who pushed this indoctrination system on the masses.

To fully realize what’s taking place, let’s take a gander at what William Torrey Harris [the ‘premier Hegelian philosophers in America’], was thinking and mentioned about public schooling over a century ago:

Ninety-nine [students] out of a hundred are automata, careful to walk in prescribed paths, careful to follow the prescribed custom.  This is not an accident but the result of substantial education which, scientifically defined, is the subsumption of the individual…

The great purpose of school [self-alienation] can be realized better in dark, airless, ugly places…It is to master the physical self, to transcend the beauty of nature.  School should develop the power to withdraw from the external world.”[2]

It doesn’t get any more cut and dry than that.  And there are many more sourced quotes speaking of the intentional dumbing down of society, with verifiable sources, just like that, if not worse.  For additional information on this troublesome subject, please read Dumbing Us Down & A Different Kind Of Teacher, also by John Taylor Gatto.

In summation, if one could ever do a synopsis of such an issue that filters into the very strata of society, then what Gatto has been doing is nothing less than yeomen’s work in the field of Education – true education.  Not only has Gatto been active in fanning the fires of dissent within the corrupt public schooling system, but he’s also made it a point to show what it takes to breakaway from the current corrupt system and also what it takes for individuals to shine brightly enough to blare away the darkness.

If we as individuals and a society are ever going to regain the classical and robust education that we once had, at this moment in time we must do it ourselves – each and every one of us.  Furthermore, while becoming autodidacts and following paths of self-directed learning we need to show others the above truths and if need be take them under our wings and help them see the light of day.  We need to show them what’s possible because many individuals breakaway from the system and have rousing successes, as Gatto shows in his book.

___________________________________________________________
Sources & References

[1] John Taylor Gatto, quoting Rev. Frederick T. Gates, Business Advisor to John D. Rockefeller Sr., 1913, Occasional Letter Number One, General Education Board, Weapons Of Mass Destruction, p. 8
[2] John Taylor Gatto, quoting The Philosophy Of Education, 1908, Weapons Of Mass Instruction, p. 13

____________________________________________________________
Suggested resources reviewed below for those seeking ideas to self-teach and become autodidacts:

Socratic Logic V3.1 by Peter Kreeft Ph.D.
The Trivium – The Liberal Arts Of Grammar & Rhetoric by Sister Miriam Joseph Ph.D.
How To Read A Book – The Classic Guide To Intelligent Reading by Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren
Philosophy 101 – An Introduction To Philosophy Via Plato’s Apology by Peter Kreeft Ph.D.
The Complete Workbook For Arguments – A Complete Course In Critical Thinking [2nd Ed.] by David R. Morrow & Anthony Weston
The Imaginative Argument – A Practical Manifesto For Writers by Frank L. Cioffi

The following books reviewed below cover the disturbing issues within the public schooling system:

Dumbing Us Down – The Hidden Curriculum Of Compulsory Schooling by John Taylor Gatto
Rotten To The Common Core by Dr. Joseph P. Farrell Ph.D.& Gary Lawrence
A Different Kind Of Teacher – Solving The Crisis Of American Schooling by John Taylor Gatto
Drilling Through The Core, by Sandra Stotsky & Contributors

Breakaway Ruminations #4 – Divide & Conquer Left | Right Paradigm

LeftRightParadigm
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
February 16, 2017

There is nothing which I dread so much as a division of the republic into two great parties, each arranged under its leader, and concerting measures in opposition to each other. This, in my humble apprehension, is to be dreaded as the greatest political evil.”
– John Adams

“They don’t want to see us unite: All they want us to do is keep on fussing and fighting.  They don’t want to see us live together: all they want to do is keep on killing one another.”
– Bob Marley

Given the enormous amount of division taking place the last year or so, and specifically the last three months, it seemed prudent to take a gander at the Divide & Conquer Left-Right Paradigm again.

Nowhere was the socially engineered fracturing of the populace more obvious then within the bowels of social media, where individuals of all walks of life were attempting to make other people conform to their points of views, or cease their relationships altogether that in many instances were years in the making.  It is a quite unfortunate state of affairs that people’s values have declined so much to even ruminate on such possibilities.

Divide and conquer is a concept that takes an enormous portion of most of the populace’s time and yet receives no attention from mainstream media, and barely even the alternative media, and with good reason, for the media usually serves the job of stoking the fires of division.

What exactly is this system-installed and bifurcated left-right paradigm?

To simplify, the left-right paradigm is a concept from political sciences and anthropology which proposes that societies have a tendency to divide themselves into ideological opposites.

That’s certainly one way to look at it.

Another way of viewing this would be proposing the establishment carries out this division on purpose to make it seem like there are only two sides to every debate, thus making the populace a lot more malleable and easier to control.  After all, two sides are magnitudes easier to control than say, hundreds, or thousands.   Rarely are things ever that simple.

First things first, let’s take a cursory glance at some – although certainly not all – of the permutations that the left/right paradigm is often bandied as. Being cognizant of these will make it easier for an individual to center their mind onto particular divisive agendas that are taking place within the media.

The Left/Right paradigm includes, but is not limited to:

– Back people vs. White people
– Muslim vs. Christians
– Republicans vs. Democrats
– East vs. West
– US vs. Russia/China
– US vs. Middle East
– Poor vs. Rich
– Liberals vs. Conservatives [could dovetail into politics, but it need not]
– Religion vs. Atheism
– Gay vs. Straight
– Women vs. Men
– Young vs. Old
– Prolife vs. Prochoice

There are many more derivatives, but those examples are some of the most salient ones out there.

In any case, take a good minute or two to ponder at that list again. What don’t you notice anywhere?

The individual.

To those in power, the individual is antithetical to the establishment’s plans.  The individual is a rebel, someone to be avoided at all cost.  This is why from youth, particularly through schooling, society has been indoctrinated to conform to fit within these divide and conquer structures that fracture the populace.

A keen glance at how the system operates is crucial in order to understand the full breadth and scope of this issue.  For this we will take a gander at some snippets provided by John Taylor Gatto’s system breaking book, Dumbing Us Down The Hidden Curriculum Of Compulsory Schooling.

Below are a handful of the many countless passages within the book that speak a length about how this pervasive and constant divide and conquer issue takes place beginning in childhood, brought about through public schooling:

“It is absurd and anti-life to be part of the system that compels you to sit in confinement with people of exactly the same age and social class.  That system effectively cuts you off from the immense diversity of life and the synergy of variety; indeed it cuts you off from your own past and future, sealing you in a continuous present much the same way television does” [1][Bold Emphasis Added]

Not allowing individuals to be part of other points of views in life, to diversity – other shades in the endless spectrum of life – stultifies their growth because their mind doesn’t expand as it would if they were exposed to many points of views.  Furthermore, in inculcates the meme that the box – whatever reality the comptrollers are parading around – is all there is, and anything beyond the box is to be seen as suspect.  Ideas do not get considered and creativity gets incinerated at warp speed, like a snowman in a blast furnace.

Moreover:

The highest value to the Combine [those in control] is neither democracy nor accountability, but compliance, pure and simple, and its favorite stratagem is to divide and conquer.  And if that doesn’t work, there’s always drugs.”[2][Bold Emphasis Added, Italic Emphasis In Original.]

Life a hot knife that slices through butter, this particular thought by Gatto minces no words.

The favorite strategy is divide and conquer, which undoubtedly takes place by individuals being cut out from the diversity of life and is manifested from youth by behavior that’s been socially engineered to be predictable.

This is why ultimately, freedom from conformity is as vital as ever if the individual is to survive and keep their inherent nature, and if society is going to shed the shackles of division that benefit the comptrollers.

In fact, being free and not conforming and melting into the collective was so important, that Thomas Jefferson, echoed these poignant words:

I never submitted the whole system of my opinions to the creed of any party of men…where I was capable of thinking for myself. Such an addiction [to a party] is the last degradation of a free and moral agent. If I could not go to heaven but with a party, I would not go at all.”[Emphasis Added]

In other words, as long as the individual is lucid enough to think for themselves, and has the foresight, logic, and critical thinking needed to understand the issue, individuals should remain just that, individuals.

The self-cognizant and critical thinking individual will never be part of the group. They will always be a person within a group, there’s a difference, and this distinction is crucial.

How can an individual rectify this relentless situation?

Perhaps it’s best to heed the words of Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren, which they shared in their notable book, How To Read A Book

The best protection against propaganda of any sort is the recognition of it for what it is.  Only hidden and undetected oratory is really insidious.  What reaches the heart without going through the mind is likely to bounce back and put the mind out of business.   Propaganda taken in that way is like a drug you do not know you are swallowing.  The effect is mysterious; you do not even know afterwards why you feel or think the way you do.“[3][Bold Emphasis Added]

A person can’t tackle issues they are blind too.

And isn’t it ironic, that people, immediately after taking a hit from the mainstream media – and even alternative media – divide and conquer left right paradigm pill, soon forgo all logic and reason, acting in primal fashion based on the box-version of reality most media parades?  It’s almost like a scheduled hatred session, not unlike hateweek in Orwell’s 1984.[4]

And it always happens when and where the mainstream media tells you, and never otherwise.  This goes to show how integral the mainstream media is in socially engineering this divide and conquer at the outset.[5]

Knowing this, what’s an incisive individual to do?

Cut these issues off at the pass.  See the deceptions taking place by what your intuition tells you, and be wary about anything that stirs the fires of division.

Realize that following your intuition is merely the first step in a long process of growth that the individual will go through once their mind is open capable of discerning divisive mechanisms for what they are.

Once individuals fully comprehend how the system strives to use every single individual as pawns in a game, it’s easy to quit the nonsense altogether.

But more importantly, the individual should relish their inherent capability of knowing that, if they are cognizant of the modus operandi, no amount of propaganda or divisive tactics will ever seep into their mind.  Thus, this brings the ability to think lucidly, decisively, and proactively.

Breaking away into total awareness is the key.

___________________________________________________
Sources & References:

[1] John Taylor Gatto, Dumbing Us Down – The Hidden Curriculum Of Compulsory Schooling, p. 24.
[2] Ibid., p. xvii.
[3] Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren, How To Read A Book, pg. 194.
[4] George Orwell, 1984, in reference to Hateweek, at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hate_week
[5] Breakaway Guide To The Mainstream Media

Ghosts Within The Matrix

thematrixlife

TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
February 13, 2017

“It is absurd and anti-life to be part of the system that compels you to sit in confinement with people of exactly the same age and social class.  That system effectively cuts you off from the immense diversity of life and the synergy of variety; indeed it cuts you off from your own past and future, sealing you in a continuous present much the same way television does.”[Taylor Gatto, Dumbing Us Down – The Hidden Curriculum Of Compulsory Schooling][Bold Emphasis Added][p.24]

It can be seen nigh everywhere: people going through life, but not living life.

On sidewalks, people – especially teens – meander about paying attention to the phone, often times crashing into others with no semblance of reality or of manners for that matter.

On buses, people barely communicate anymore.   People are glued to their phones, Ipads, and the like, foregoing any conversations with actual human beings.

In restaurants, what used to be a portentous conversation with friends ends up being a facsimile fest with 5 people all around one table, all of them on the phone, and nothing of substance taking place.  Can’t say how many times the exact scenario has panned out.

In homes, people spend nigh 5 hours watching tv, while others spend countless more gaming, showing what a parody ‘quality time’ has turned into – if there’s any at all!

And one wonders where humanity’s humaneness has all but disappeared.

Through the use of Television, Phones, Computers and the like, Life itself has truly transformed into a spectator sport.

Regarding this, notable and outspoken critic of the public school system John Taylor Gatto, which has been largely responsible for socially engineering this very issue, had this today:

“Nightmare children are all about us; diseased by our indifference; some have capacity to heal themselves, most don’t.  These are nightmare children, I say; no vital interests, creatures trained to organize their time around spasms of excitement and amusement, or escape from punishment.  The maps they carry of the roads ahead are false.  The most curious commentary on these kids is the thousands of hours they spend in not exploring, not playing, not seeking opportunities for personal gain – but in watching other people on television, in music videos and computer games.”

“Sane children would never do this – the arc of anyone’s life is too short to accept passivity and fantasy to this degree.  Conjure with these numbers: in families where the husband and wife have never been divorced, and where the wife doesn’t work, the index of spectatorship – TV and otherwise – drops to one tenth the big-city average.

The institution you and I work for creates addiction.  It addicts children to prefer thin abstraction and dull fantasies to reality.”[1][Italics Emphasis In Original.  Bold Emphasis Added.]

Seeing this disturbing trend, what is next in this matrix-like reality?

Decades ago, if you would tell people that the above examples were not only true, but would increase with frequency every single year, they would have given you an askance glance. Heck, if you told them that the average person in America spending 5 hours watching tv, would be spending 1,825 hours per year doing something that was almost never productive, they would have thought you downright insane.

What’s taking place at an enormous level is that notion of true [organic] life itself, our tangible reality, is being replaced wholesale by an actual construct – a matrix – that’s woven an intricate web of distraction which seeks to overtake the individual and plug their consciousness into a larger system.

When this takes place, as aptly explained in the Matrix, when Morpheus told Neo, it’s hard for the individual to become free.

And perhaps it’s just like Morpheus elucidated in the Matrix explained:

“You have to understand, most of these people are not ready to be unplugged. And many of them are so inert, so hopelessly dependent on the system that they will fight to protect it.”

More keen words, for the current state of the word, might have never been spoken.

As a society, we are gaining technology at a monumental level.

But as individuals, we are losing ourselves at a more increasing rate.

Individuals on the outside always view these disturbing trends much easier than those who are still caught within the web of distraction.

Whether its health, money, work, or other, there’s people all over the world endlessly running on the hamster’s wheel thinking they’re going somewhere when the reality is totally opposite.  Ironically, all they have to do is step away, and just as so, the wheel stops turning, the Matrix begins dissolving.

Once an individual reaches an incisiveness in understanding the system for what it really is, their awareness reaches a truly lucid moment of reality – a moment of true freedom.  Once the system-imposed shackles are seen for the joke that they are, reality not only becomes much more tangible, but it also becomes more meaningful rather than the parody that is the Matrix.

To achieve this total awareness is the key, for the moment the individual realizes their true nature, their individual power of always being centered and aware, they will be ready to walk away from that which seeks to harvest their health, their money and their time.

The reality that’s projected at us is merely a cartoon-like version of what’s really out there.  The moment individuals see the true strands of reality, and not the BS that is peddled by the system in its endless media, is the moment individuals see reality for the first time, just like an individual who never wore a pair of glasses is able to lucidly see what the world truly is like once they put them on.

Reality is vastly greater than the perspectives individuals are allotted by all forms of mainstream media.

The individual that realizes how the system truly operates is the individual that doesn’t need the grid; it’s the individual who seeks their own solutions; it’s the individual that realizes that the left right divide & conquer paradigm is designed to keep us trapped, like a rat in a maze; it’s the individual that notices bullshit when they see it, and aren’t afraid to call it for what it is, even if it comes from mainstream media.

A vibrant and ruminating mind is an active consciousness, and thus translates to a strong individual.

And a strong individual that employs self-awareness, logic, and reason, is unstoppable.

Yet, the mind, like a seed, can only reach such a state when cared for properly.

The mind is like a mirror; if garbage is what the mind is being shown then garbage is going to be what it reflects.

It’s a great time to be alive.  Possibilities abound.

Imagination is helping people realize new solutions.

Curiosity is fanning the flames of creativity in many ways.

Regardless, our environment – our societal ecosystem – is what we make of it.

Find those that support you.  Seek those that understand, or attempt to, and speak with those that do not.  Strive for understanding, or at least for common ground upon which to build a better future.  See the divide and conquer games for the con games they are, and let the comptrollers play their own damn games.  Don’t buy into it.

Keep an eye out for the societal parasites that seek to zap all your energy, but don’t let it ruin your awareness.

And worry not, for the more the system gets exposed for what it is, the faster it dissipates, like the darkness when the sun rises.

And there’s no greater light that shines, than the individual that radiates authenticity.

______________________________________________________
Source:

[1]  John Taylor Gatto, Weapons of Mass Instruction, p. 82

January Book Haul 2017

bookhauljanuary
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
February 10, 2017

At to risk of sounding out of touch with reality, just recently saw my first book haul of my life on someone’s wordpress.  YES, REALLY.  It’s all good, you can laugh.  It’s like someone that loves gaming never hearing of a Playstation, no?

It really shows what happens when you ensconce yourself in a hobbit hole for-beyond-ever.  How does a bibliophile end up not knowing about other people’s bibliophiliness? [If THAT could ever be a word!] Well, by being a book-a-holic de jour, of course.

All jest aside, as someone who reads books like they’re going out of style, figured it would be interesting/different to try one of these out and am going to attempt to do these monthly as well.

In any case, what follows are the titles of each of the books, and a short reason as to why these books were picked up.

Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit by Corey Wilson

Making my way through The Hobbit and Lords Of The Rings for a second time, this seemed like a natural adjunct to The Hobbit, and it does not disappoint.  If you love Tolkien’s work, particularly The Hobbit, you will LOVE this.  The breadth and scope that Tolkien employed in The Hobbit was vastly more phenomenal than you could imagine.  But don’t take my word for it, do your own research.

Underground History Of American Education by John Taylor Gatto

Having read Gatto’s landmark books Dumbing Us Down [Review Here], A Different Kind Of Teacher [Review Here], and Weapons Of Mass Instruction [Review coming soon], this seemed like a nice way to round out my research into public schooling, particularly the historical side.  Of course, Gatto not only calls it how it is, but he’s methodical and precise in sourcing his material, showing how those within the establishment – in their own words – have wanted to dumb down education and create an enormous engine of conformity for over a century.  And it’s worked in spades, as can be seen here.  This book should really be a zinger.

Dark Matter, Missing Planets & New Comets by Tom Van Flandern

Having read Dr. Joseph P. Farrell’s Cosmic War – Interplanetary Warfare, Modern Physics And Ancient Texts, getting Tom Van Flandern’s book seemed essential to understanding the exploded planet hypothesis that Dr. Farrell discusses in his book.

LONG story short, the hypothesis is that where the asteroid belt now resides, there used to be a planet and it was destroyed.  Van Flander did research into this, and found strong evidence for this particular theory.  Furthermore, there’s also evidence that this event was deliberate and not natural.  Ironically enough, for those that might think that idea sounds ludicrous, check this out:

British Scientists To Lead Hunt For Fragments Of ‘Dead Planets’ Hidden In Antarctica

How ‘bout them apples asteroids?

Benjamin Franklin by Walter Isaacson

Having not been taught nigh anything of the founding fathers in school, this was a must read.  One of those topics that doesn’t get enough coverage, and it’s because most of the populace are ignorant of it, mainly because public schooling is all but removing any semblance of true history from school.

Ask yourself, why don’t schools – high schools / colleges / universities – have any courses in Freedom?  For a country that loves to parade freedom around, it’s quite troublesome that its one main tenet isn’t ever discussed…

Am also planning on getting Franklin’s short autobiography soon, but all in due time.

Disease-Mongers: How Doctors, Drug Companies, And Insurers Are Making You Feel Sick by Lynn Payer

After reading this particular link, getting this book was a must.  As an individual who’s always sharing information about the growing and rampant issues of Big Pharma in order to educate others, this book seemed indispensable.  Although a bit dated, am hopping the book still holds plenty of information valuable enough to share.

Before I Go – Letters To Our Children About What Really Matters by Peter Kreeft Ph.D.

It took a long time for me to find a philosopher/individual that not only talked about classical philosophy in a manner one can learn from, but also many other unsung topics within that realm, which are still vital nonetheless.  Enter philosopher Peter Kreeft Ph.D.  Why did Kreeft like a natural fit for me, when there are countless people out there?

Kreeft is methodical, logical, precise, not overly complex, isn’t afraid to ask tough questions, uses simplicity quite often, and thinks in an analogical manner.  If there was EVER someone who would have been awesome as a professor, at least from my point of view, this person would be it.  Heck, Kreeft’s range in thought/discourse is so wide that even has a book on J.R.R. Tolkien’s Philosophy, called The Philosophy Of Tolkien: The Worldview Of Lord Of The Rings, which is on the way as we speak.

In any case, having reading Kreeft’s Socratic Logic [review here], and Philosophy 101 by Socrates: An Introduction To Philosophy via Plato’s Apology [review here], which are two indispensable books, mind you, am making it a point of getting all of his books that appeal to me, and the book above fit within those parameters.

Reading has become a mainstay in my life, and am finding that am learning magnitudes more than ever thought possible when compared to public schooling, which was a complete waste of time and didn’t yield anything of substance that couldn’t have been taught by people in homeschooling or by private tutoring.  That’s why am making it a point to continue being an autodidact, while also researching topics that will be of interest to myself, but might also help others in the process.

Have any of you done any bookhauls?  If you’ve done any, please share them below as it would be great to see what books individuals have gotten – or are considering for that matter – these last few months.

22 Disturbing Facts Big Pharma Doesn’t Want You To Know

bigpharmabigmedica
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
February 10, 2017

“It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgment of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines. I take no pleasure in this conclusion, which I reached slowly and reluctantly over my two decades as an editor of The New England Journal of Medicine.”
–Marcia Angell, MD, New York Review of Books, 2009

Below follow 22 facts, each of which is individually disturbing enough, but when taken in conjunction paint a very ominous picture of the state of the medical establishment in America.

Embedded within the bowels of Big Pharma lie little known details most individuals are unaware of.

Most of these details rarely get reported by the mainstream media, and when they do, the slant is always in favor of Big Pharma, and if not, what the individual gets is a limited hang out, which barely even amounts to the ghost of the truth.

The following are some of the many issues that do not get to see the light of day, but should be spoken at length about:

#1: Did you know that the FDA frequently misleads the public regarding long term studies and health?

According to Dr. Peter Breggin, in his landmark book Toxic Psychiatry [review here]:

“People assume that FDA approval and the widespread distribution of a drug – with many patients taking it for months or years – means that longterm studies have found it safe in regard to side effects, drug interactions, dependency, addition, and withdrawal.  Thus, FDA approval grossly misleads the public, lulling it into an unfounded security.

The PDR admits that Prozac’s effectiveness has not been tested in controlled trials of “more than 5 or 6 weeks” and that “long-term” usefulness has therefore not been demonstrated.”[Bold Emphasis Added][1]

#2: Did you know that the U.S. and New Zealand are the only countries which allow drug companies to advertise directly to consumers?

Prior to 1997, there was a ban in place that restricted pharmaceuticals from advertising to consumers – known as drug-to-consumer-advertising, or DTCA- but this ban was removed, to the detriment of the populace.[2]

Why is this important?  Because that law was in place to protect individuals from the highly specialized, and yet misleading advertising of all drugs.

#3:  The great majority of prescription drugs sold is due to DTCA.  As Dr. Kelly Brogan notes in her landmark book, A Mind Of Your Own, The Truth About Depression [review here], in which she touches upon this specialized advertising:

“It’s been calculated that DTCA [drug-to-consumer advertising] is responsible for nearly half (49 percent) of requests for drugs.  And fully seven out of ten times doctors prescribe based on appeal by patients who learned through their computers and televisions that they have an “imbalance” that must be fixed with a pill.”[3][Bold Emphasis Added]

#4:  Coupled with the already disturbing above information, and with prescription drugs being doled out at 4 Billion per annum[4], it’s no wonder that Medical Errors are the third leading cause of death.[5]According to a new John Hopkins study, which is covered by the Washington Post:

“Their analysis, published in the BMJ on Tuesday [, shows that ‘medical errors’ in hospitals and other health care facilities are incredibly common and may now be the third leading cause of death in the United States — claiming 251,000 lives every year, more than respiratory disease, accidents, stroke and Alzheimer’s.”[6][Click here for the study named Medical Error – The Third Leading Cause Of Death In The US]

#5:  Unsurprisingly, given how Big Pharma & Big Medica have had no qualms in overstepping traditional boundaries, it’s no wonder that in many instances money from pharmaceutical companies sway Doctors’ prescriptions, which shows the serious conflict of interest.[7]

As Dr. Mercola elucidates:

“Not only was the receipt of drug-company money associated with a higher percentage of brand-name drug prescriptions, but the prescriptions rose with the amount of money received.”[Bold Emphasis Added]

#6:  Did you know, the FDA only requires two studies for drugs to be approved?

“…only two studies are required for FDA licensure of most pharmaceuticals, essentially leaving the population to participate in a post-marketing experiment in which adverse effects – casualties – are monitored passively.  It’s a fabrication of science to think these drugs have a place in medicine, what is meant to be the art of healing.”[8]

But there’s more.  Most drug research is in fact short term.  Dr. Brogan cautions:

Their patients have never consented to the long-term effects of these medications because pharmaceutical research is, by nature, short term.  There is no incentive on the part of the pharmaceutical companies to take a good look at what happens to the average individual when she takes a medication for a decade or so.”[9][Bold Emphasis Added]

#7:  This hyper-drugging of the populace has lead to prescription drugs in fact being 16,400% deadlier than terrorists.  But you won’t hear that in the mainstream media.[10]

#8:  Not only is our corrupt for-health for-profit medical system unsurprisingly the most expensive in the world[11], but our life expectancy is worse than that of a third world country.[12]

#9:  Heart surgery is 70 times more expensive in the US.[13]

#10:  Of course, with billions of prescriptions being filled yearly, it’s no wonder that 70% of Americans take prescription drugs.[14]

#11:  In fact, expensive treatment requests have predictably gotten so bad that Doctors are even calling for a ban for the duplicitous practice of DTCA.[15]

#12:  A large study, which was published in The Lancet, further debunks high cholesterol myths, admitting statin drugs are essentially worthless.[16]

#13:  Another study shows that combining multiple childhood vaccines isn’t safe, according to an article in the Journal Of American Physicians and Surgeons.[17]

#14:  The same statin drugs that were found to be worthless against cholesterol, are now going to be used as anti-cancer drugs.  You can’t make this stuff up![18]

#15:  Although the US has merely 5% of the world’s population, it consumes 80% of the world’s pain killers.[19]

#16:  A great portion of this is in large part to what is called “Disease Mongering” and the creation of disease.[20]

#17:  Pharmaceutical companies Genentech and OSI Pharmaceuticals have even been caught concealing adverse effects of drugs, and were ordered to pay a $70 million dollar fine.[21]

#18:   America has the worst infant mortality rate of all developed nations.  Let that disturbing fact sink in.[22]

#19: Since 1986 Big Pharma has had liability shielding preventing it from being prosecuted for endangering public health[23].  And some wonder why the medical establishment is so corrupt.

#20: Not long ago, medical conglomerate, Pfizer, paid over $2 BILLION Dollars for criminal and civil charges due to illegally promoting the use 4 of its drugs. [24]

#21: Merely months ago, a study proving that vaccinated children are 3 times more likely to be diagnosed with autism and other neurological issues was banned from the internet.[25]

#22:  Because of all of the reasons mentioned above, and more, Americans are spending over $30 billion dollars in out-of-pocket costs on alternative health[26].  Thankfully!

This overall pattern of dwindling care, that’s overly expensive, and only serves to fill the coffers of Big Pharma will only change when individuals quit buying in to the propaganda from the medical establishment.

And for all the technology, public schooling, and billions spent, our medical system isn’t even top 3 in the world, and the statistics prove it.

Instead of purchasing health insurance, perhaps individuals should focus on attaining health assurance.

The system in its current state sees people as nothing but cash cows, and the sicker they are, the more money they make.  And they also aren’t coming up with cures since that, also, will cut into their profits.
One must wonder, seeing that they have no virtues and are willing to throw the people under the bus with lies and fraud, what else are they willing to do?

Take control of your health, while you still got time.

Education will eviscerate ignorance; nutrition will beat disease; corruption will continue to be exposed; but only if the individual chooses to make it so.

Be mindful, stay aware.

Individuals can go with the flow, and take the tides as they come, or they can choose to rise to the occasion.

Pierce the veil.

Cast light on the shadows.

And become the solution you’ve always waited for.

________________________________________________________________
Sources & References:

[1] Dr. Peter R. Breggin, M.D., Toxic Psychiatry, pp. 168-169
[2] Dr. Joseph Mercola, The Great Bird Flu Hoax, p. 39.
[3] Dr. Kelly Brogan M.D., A Mind Of Your Own – The Truth About Depression, p. 52.
[4] http://www.naturalnews.com/037226_drug_prescriptions_medical_news_pills.htm
[5] https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/to-your-health/wp/2016/05/03/researchers-medical-errors-now-third-leading-cause-of-death-in-united-states/?utm_term=.d262ea291b26
[6] http://www.bmj.com/content/353/bmj.i2139
[7] http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2016/04/13/doctors-receiving-pharmaceutical-money.aspx
[8] Dr. Kelly Brogan M.D., A Mind Of Your Own – The Truth About Depression, p. 49.
[9] Ibid., p. 35.
[10] http://www.naturalnews.com/009278.html
[11] http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-06-22/us-healthcare-snapshot-most-expensive-yet-worst-developed-world
[12] http://www.salon.com/2013/10/22/life_expectancy_in_america_rivals_third_world_partner/
[13] http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2013-07-29/what-does-heart-surgery-really-cost-and-why-it-70-times-more-expensive-us
[14] http://www.cbsnews.com/news/study-shows-70-percent-of-americans-take-prescription-drugs/
[15] http://www.reuters.com/article/us-pharmaceuticals-advertising-idUSKCN0T62WT20151117
[16] http://www.naturalnews.com/054388_statin_drugs_medical_myths_Big_Pharma.html
[17] https://globenewswire.com/news-release/2016/06/14/848493/0/en/Combining-Multiple-Childhood-Vaccines-Not-Safe-According-to-Article-in-the-Journal-of-American-Physicians-and-Surgeons.html
[18] http://www.naturalnews.com/054707_statins_cancer_treatment_Big_Pharma.html
[19] http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2142481/Americans-consume-80-percent-worlds-pain-pills-prescription-drug-abuse-epidemic-explodes.html
[20] http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-larry-dossey/big-pharma-health-care-cr_b_613311.html
[21] http://edition.cnn.com/2016/06/07/health/genentech-lung-cancer-drug-settlement/index.html
[22] https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2014/09/29/our-infant-mortality-rate-is-a-national-embarrassment/?utm_term=.9f6b6a036ca9
[23] http://www.nvic.org/NVIC-Vaccine-News/November-2016/end-pharma-liability-shield-protect-human-rights.aspx#_edn79
[24] http://edition.cnn.com/2010/HEALTH/04/02/pfizer.bextra/
[25] http://investmentwatchblog.com/study-proving-vaccines-cause-autism-banned-from-internet/
[26] http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2016/06/22/study-americans-spend-billions-non-conventional-health-approaches/86200430/

The Biometric ID Grid: A Country-by-Country Guide


Source: James Corbett
corbettreport.com
January 31, 2017

In last week’s report on India’s demonetization disaster I began to connect the dots between demonetization, the push for a cashless society, and the biometric identification schemes that will eventually tie everyone’s fingerprints, iris scans, and other identifying details to every transaction they ever make.

Well, that game of “connect the dots” just became even easier to play.

First, it was reported last week that a key panel advising the government on its implementation of the “digital payments ecosystem” (that is being pushed and funded by USAID) is now recommending that India links its national biometric ID database directly to tax returns.

And now comes word that India is “working on a biometrics-backed payment system that will be connected to a user’s unique ID number, or Aadhaar.” (Who could have seen that coming?)

No, it doesn’t take a Nostradamus to understand where this is all heading: From the cashless society and the biometric ID grid to the cashless biometric grid. And we already know about the cashless society. Now it’s time to collect the data on the biometric ID grid.

And let’s not be naive: As I’ve demonstrated before, this is a coordinated plan to institute a worldwide biometric id system to track every human on the planet.

But given how fast and furious these new biometric databases are coming online, no one person can possibly keep track of them all. That’s why I’m calling on Corbett Report members to help assemble this information. Like last year’s open source investigation into the War on Cash, this country-by-country guide will be updated with input from the Corbett Report community. Members of the site are invited to log in and leave links to information about the biometric ID grid in their country in the comments section below.

The Biometric ID List

Afghanistan – In 2016 the US bragged about their role in helping the Afghan Ministries of Defense and Interior roll out biometric ID systems for their workers. Also in 2016 the Afghanistan Telecom Regulatory Authority revealed that they wanted to “start linking biometrics to new SIM card registrations, to improve national security.” As has been widely reported, the US military has been waging “biometric warfare” in the country as part of its invasion, occupation and (de)stabilization effort since at least 2010. The Afghanistan National Security Forces has now deployed their own Automated Biometric Information System with fingerprint, iris, and facial scan capabilities and is “compatible with the U.S. DoD ABIS and the FBI Integrated Automated Fingerprint Identification System.”

Albania – In 2009 Albania began issuing a new type of biometric identity card. The card is in compliance with ICAO standards and contains an embedded chip that stores fingerprints and a digital photograph along with biographical information.

Australia – Australia has been issuing biometric passports since 2005 and the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) has been running biometrics collection centres for years to issue visas tied to visitors’ biometric details. But now, Australia is about to lead us into a Brave New World with a world first: The DIBP is going to introduce the first “self-processing system” for travelers at Australian airports later this year using biometric details instead of a passport. Australian schools have implemented fingerprint scans as a method of tracking attendance at schools despite a strong backlash from parents that led to similar programs being suspended in the past.

BahamasLast month the Bahamas began issuing biometric passports. In keeping with international standards, the passports will require a digital photograph and fingerprints from the passport holder.

Bermuda – From June 2016 Bermuda has outsourced printing of its passports to the UK so that Bermuda’s “citizens” could enjoy the “benefits” of biometric passport technology, “which includes the highest level of internationally recognised security standards.”

Bolivia – In 2009 Bolivia’s elections were held using an electoral voter list created by using biometric data. In 2016 the Bolivian government began a 12-month program to perform a biometric census on the country’s foreign population.

Bulgaria – Bulgaria began issuing biometric identity cards (mandatory for all citizens) in March 2010. Bulgaria also issues biometric passports and driver’s licenses containing embedded biometric data.

Brazil – Brazil began issuing biometric identity cards in 2011 with the intention of issuing cards as part of its Registro de Identidade Civil, which intends to capture the biometric details of all 150 million citizens by 2020. Also in 2011 the Brazilian Electoral Justice approved the roll out of a biometric voter registration system that requires voters to register their fingerprints in order to vote (which is mandatory).

Canada – Under NEXUS, the joint Canada-US “preferred traveler” program, iris scans are used to identify passengers. In 2015 the Canadian government expanded biometric screening, including fingerprints and digital photos, to visitors from all 151 visa-required countries.

Chad – The European Union is funding a program in Chad to register the biometric details of refugees and returnees fleeing war-torn neighboring countries.

Chile – In 2013 Chile rolled out its new national ID and passport infrastructure including an eID card which “is based on a multi-biometric system comprised of an Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS) and a Facial Recognition System.” The country aims to issue all of its 18+ million citizens with a card by 2022.

China – In 2016 China debuted its first airport biometric entry system. The system takes travelers’ photos at security checkpoints within the airport, linking their faces to their boarding passes.

Finland – Finland introduced biometric residence permit cards in 2012. The cards include a chip that stores a digital photograph and two fingerprints.

France – France has issued only biometric passports since 2009. The passport requires the collection of a biometric digital photo and eight fingerprints.

Germany – Germany introduced biometric passports in 2005 and biometric residence permits in 2011, both of which require a biometric digital photograph and two fingerprints to be collected and stored on an embedded chip. Germany’s identity card does require a biometric photo, but so far fingerprint collection is optional.

Greece – In compliance with the dictates of Washington, the Greek government is set to issue new biometric IDs this year. As Greek Report notes: “Failure to create the new IDs in a timely manner could lead to a suspension in the visa-free travel to the US that Greeks currently enjoy.”

India – India has been fingerprinting and iris scanning its population for years in its quest to construct the largest biometric ID database in the world. The plan to collect and store biometric details on all 1.2 billion Indian citizens is proceeding apace, and has so far registered over 1.1 billion people, including over 99% of all Indians over 18.

Iraq – In 2016 the Iraqi government began a national identity card system that uses biometric identifiers. This system has been widely criticized for legally allowing discrimination of minorities.

Israel – In 2009 the Knesset enacted the controversial Biometric Database Law to pave the way for the implementation of a national biometric ID database. Last July it was reported that the “pilot program” had come to an end and all Israeli residents would be forced to register their biometric details with the government. In December it was announced that the mandatory implementation of the database was being delayed and that fingerprints may no longer be required.

Japan – In 2007 the Japanese government began requiring fingerprints and digital photographs from all foreign travelers. Now, the government is considering implementing a biometric ID payment system which will “allow” (sic) tourists to “register their fingerprints or finger vein patterns among other personal information with the service and then deposit a set amount of money in a connected account,” from which they can make purchases while in the country.

Kenya – In 2012 Kenya began biometric voter registration and in 2015 the government implemented a biometric registration system for all citizens aged 12 and over. The registration includes fingerprint collection and is tied to a national database.

Kuwait – In 2015 Kuwait passed a law requiring all citizens and visitors to submit to DNA testing for a national database. After a wave of protest, legal challenges, and opposition from the emir of Kuwait the parliament announced in October 2016 that they would “scale down” and potentially revoke the law.

Luxembourg – In accordance with EU standards Luxembourg issues biometric passports with a chip containing a digital photograph, two fingerprints and an image of the holder’s signature.

Mexico – In 2011 the Mexican government began a program to issue biometric identification cards to all children between 4 and 17 years old. The cards contain a digital photograph, a fingerprint and an iris scan. The scheme is part of a broader National Population Register that will eventually extend to adults and contain the biometric details of the entire population of Mexico.

Netherlands – Since 2009 the Netherlands has issued biometric passports containing an embedded chip with a digital photograph and fingerprints. Four Dutch citizens challenged the legality of the practice of collecting fingerprints but it was approved by the European Court of Justice. Although only two fingerprints are stored on the passport’s chip, four fingerprints are taken and stored by the local government in a central database that is also used to pursue criminal investigations.

New Zealand – New Zealand’s Inland Revenue Department rolled out “Voice ID” in 2011 to register “customers’” voice prints and identify them in future interactions. By 2015 1.4 million of the country’s 6.1 million taxpayers had registered their voice prints with the “service.”

Nigeria – Nigeria is contracting with Bio-Metrica to collect citizens’ fingerprint and facial biometrics for the nation’s 2018 census.

Paraguay – In 2009 Paraguay revamped its passports and mandatory identity cards for its New Identification System by adding biometric details including a thumbprint and digital photograph.

Peru – Last year Peru announced a 3-year program to issue 1.6 million biometric passports noting that these biometric documents are “required to consolidate the Schengen visa waiver process.”

Philippines – In 2014 the Commission on Elections announced that biometric registration would be mandatory for all voters in the Philippines’ 2016 election. However, “technical problems” meant the government had to allow some voters with incomplete or corrupted biometric data to vote anyway. Voters continue to register for polls, with the Philippines’ Commission on Elections allocating US$201,000 last month to voter registration machines (VRMs) and peripherals.

Saudi Arabia – In 2015 Saudi Arabia finalized its Automated Central System to collect and store the biometric details (including fingerprints) of all citizens and expatriates. Also in 2015 the country’s biometric border security system was launched.

Sierra Leone – Just last week the Sierra Leone government confirmed receipt of 4,066 biometric registration kits that will be used to register voters for the 2018 elections. The aim is to construct a single, biometric voter register “that will capture every resident in Sierra Leone.”

South Korea – In 2012 the Korean government began collecting fingerprints and digital photographs of all foreign visitors (except foreign government officials/international organization representatives and their accompanying immediate family members as well as persons under 17 years of age).

Switzerland – Switzerland launched its biometric passport in 2010 after a referendum was held to approve the measure. The referendum passed with 50.14% of the vote, making it one of the closest referendums in Swiss history. The passports adopt the “international standard” of collecting two fingerprints (one from each index finger) and a digital photograph of the holder’s unsmiling face.

Trinidad and Tobago – In 2012 it was reported that the country was moving to fully implement biometric passports within five years. In 2013 the Ministry of the People and Social Development announced they were launching a fingerprint-based biometric smart card for citizens to access social benefits, citing fraud and security as reasons for the switch. The very next year the company that was manufacturing the cards warned that the system was vulnearable to identity theft and left the door open for frauds and scams. The cards were rolled out in 2015. Last year Major General Edmund Dillon, the Minister of National Security, announced the government was considering the implementation of biometric border screening at the country’s two international airports in keeping with a “United Nations security resolution requiring the implementation of security mechanisms to stop terrorists from returning to the country from abroad, with passenger screening systems being an important component of such efforts.”

Ukraine – A law passed by the Yanukovych government in 2012 requires all Ukrainian citizens, regardless of age, to obtain a biometric passport.

United Kingdom – The UK under the Labour government of Tony Blair and later Gordon Brown attempted to implement a national identity register and ID card system that would have required the logging of an extensive amount of personal and biometric information in a central database. However, the program caused waves of protest and the government eventually gave in to the public outcry, scrapping the plan for the national registry and instead only implementing the biometric id scheme for foreign nationals. The UK does issue biometric passports and recent polling suggests UK adults “are now willing to embrace biometric identity for online banking.”

United States – President Trump’s new Executive Order on “terrorist” (sic) entry calls on the Department of Homeland Security to “expedite the completion and implementation of a biometric entry-exit tracking system for all travelers to the United States.” (This comes as no surprise to those who warned that Trump’s transition team was swarming with biometric industry workers and lobbyists.) The United States already takes digital fingerprints of all foreign tourists (except Canadians) and stores them in a database for 75 years.  The DoD has announced plans to replace Common Access Card access to information systems with biometric authentication. The US issues biometric passports and coordinates with the Canadian government on the biometric NEXUS preferred traveler program (see Canada).

Uruguay – In 2013 the Uruguayan government opened a open call for tenders for a new eID “solution.” In 2014 Gemalto won the tender and began work on the new biometric eID cards that can store up to four fingerprints.

Yemen – In 2014 it was announced that the country of Yemen would be deploying M2SYS Technology’s TrueVoter biometric voting platform for the upcoming constitutional referendum and national elections. The system is capable of fingerprint, iris, palm print, finger vein, palm vein, and facial recognition, but only fingerprint and facial recognition are collected by the Yemeni government.

Zambia – In 2015 Zambia announced that they would be phasing in biometric National Registration Cards for the 2016 election.

Zimbabwe – The government of Zimbabwe has ruled out biometric or electronic voting in the country’s 2018 elections, but will proceed with biometric voter registration this year.

Common Core Crisis [Part 3] – Low Standards

studying
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
February 8, 2017

In our dreams, people yield themselves with perfect docility to our molding hands. The present education conventions of intellectual and character education fade from their minds, and, unhampered by tradition, we work our own good will upon a grateful and responsive folk.  We shall not try to make these people, or any of their children, into philosophers, or men of science. We have not to raise up from them authors, educators, poets or men of letters. We shall not search for great artists, painters, musicians nor lawyers, doctors, preachers, politicians, statesmen — of whom we have an ample supply.  The task is simple. We will organize children and teach them in a perfect way the things their fathers and mothers are doing in an imperfect way.”
– [John D. Rockefeller Sr., Occasional Letter Number One, General Education Board

In previous posts [here and here] were shown the downright nonsense that students have to go through.  Below, additional evidence is shown illustrating why children’s test scores and intelligence keeps plummeting [as shown here], and its rather troublesome to say the least.

The example stems from the book, Drilling To The Core, which details a wide-ranging set of issues revolving around Common Core:

“In 1995, a student-teacher of fifth graders in Minneapolis wrote a letter to the editor of the Star-Tribune complaining about radically dumbed-down curriculum.  She wrote that 113 years earlier fifth-graders in Minneapolis were reading William Shakespeare, Henry Thoreau, George Washington, Sir Walter Scott, Mark Twain, Benjamin Franklin, Oliver Wendell Holmes, John Bunyan, Daniel Webster, Samuel Johnson, Lewis Caroll, Thomas Jefferson, and others like them in the Appletone School Reader, but that today:

I  was told children are not to be expected to spell the following words correctly: black, big, call, came, can, day, did, dog, down, get, good, have, he, home, if, in, is, it, like, little, man, morning, mother, my, night, off, our, over, people, play, ran, said, saw, she, some, soon, their, them, there, time, two, too, up, us, very, water, we, went, where, when, will, would, etc.  Is this nuts?”[1]

What’s stated above can be verified.  This was part of what older curriculums of true education – TRUE EDUCATION – involved, rather than what the facsimile of what we have now.

Education a century ago involved much higher standards than it does now, and its showing.  Not only have new studies shown the US Ranks 31 out of 35 developed nations in Math, but it also ranks 24th in reading literacy and 25th in science.

If the trend doesn’t change, all future generations will not only be stupid, but intellectually destitute, which is its true purpose, as can be seen here.

The only way to change that is now.

And the only way that will change is with individuals becoming proactive.

Don’t let your children settle for the parody of education we have now, for there are better alternatives. 

The only way individuals will reach excellence, is by pursuing excellence.

It’s been done before, and in much harsher conditions, and with much less information available.

Why not start now?

_____________________________________
Sources & References:

[1] Sandra Stotsky & Contributors,  Drilling To The Core, pp. 11-12.

Book Review: How To Read A Book – The Classic Guide To Intelligent Reading by Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren

howtoread
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
February 8, 2017

“A man is known by the books he reads.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Read not to contradict and confuse; nor to believe and take for granted; nor to find talk and discourse; but to weigh and consider.”
– Francis Bacon

This particular book is a book that helps you think better, shaper, more incisively.

At the behest of the author of Socratic Logic [review here], Peter Kreeft PhD, the following book was recommended.   Holding Kreeft’s opinion in high respect – and after doing some research into the book – getting this book seemed to be more than a safe bet.  In fact, it was much more than that.

How To Read A BookThe Classic Guide To Intelligent Reading by Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren is a phenomenal book in various ways.  Not only does it ‘teach’ the reader how to read different kinds of books – by reading proactively, by rather reactively – but it also provides essential tools for the synthesis of other great – and more meaningful – pieces of literature.  However, it also features much more than that.

As a caveat, the authors make the distinction in the fact different type of genres should be read in different ways.  To say it another way, poetry, plays or even fiction will be ready drastically different from nonfiction books.  This is something that’s not taught to individuals for the most part, and sometimes we miss out because of it.

Adler and Van Doren cover an extensive set of tools for reader’s to learn and implement – if they so choose – in order to maximize one’s understanding of the information held within books.  The book features a wide ranging set of suggestions that build on themselves throughout the chapters that help the reader navigate all the way from the basics to the more advanced.

Without a doubt, the authors show the lengths to which proper reading can be taken too, as well as the depth that can be gathered by undertaking their advice.  As an avid reader and researcher, the information within the pages of this book have helped me considerably not only in pushing myself as a reader, but in understanding – and even merging – the depth and scope of information that is stated, as well as sifting out deeper implications when information isn’t obvious.

Furthermore, covered within How To Read A Book are topics such as inspectional reading, systematic skimming, problems in comprehension, ‘x-raying’ a book, coming to terms with the author, criticizing a book fairly, reading aids, how to read practical books, how to read imaginative literature, suggestion for reading stories, plays and poems, how to read history, how to read philosophy as well as much, much more.

Particularly of interest to me related to the above point was the topic of syntopical reading, which is what the authors call ‘The Fourth Level Of Learning’..  In laymen terms, syntopical reading is the ability to essentially synthesize information from various sources.  Since synthesizing information is a process carried out [or attempted too] on nigh a daily basis by myself, the information for me in this particular section was quite noteworthy.  Admittedly, some of it was already being done by me since one learns how to streamline various components of one’s learning when done long enough, but the book still offered more than plenty in this and many other areas.

A book like How To Read A Book should be an integral component in everyone’s education, and that is no overstatement.  In an age where cognitive decline of education continues unabated, it’s those that push themselves into the realm of self-teaching or autodidacticism that will breakaway from the pack.

This book should function as a foundational piece in a school curriculum, because, after all, a large part of what individuals learn comes via reading.

All of the suggestions in this book seep into most if not all books [or reading] in some way shape or form.  When carried out, this undoubtedly filters into an individuals’ everyday lives proportional to how much its concepts are used.  It’s sure helped me in such a fashion.  There really isn’t too many books out there that urge the reader to go beyond the conventional baseline understanding of data within books, but this book is certainly one of those precious few.

Appreciatively, the authors also make it a point to strive for a greater education as individuals, to seek to further one’s education beyond the bounds of modern schooling.  Mind you, schooling and education are not the same thing, which is an important distinction because what society gets in America nowadays – given that we have strewn away from classical education – is barely a facsimile of schooling, and in no way shape or form the true education of times past.  Authors like award winning teacher John Taylor Gatto’s in his landmark Dumbing Us Down: The Hidden Curriculum of Compulsory Schooling, Dr. Joseph P Farrell & Gary Lawrence’s Rotten To The Common Core , and Charlotte Iserbyt, who served as the Senior Policy Advisor in the Office of Educational Research and Improvement, U.S. Department of Education, in her The Deliberate Dumbing Down Of America outline the deliberate dumbing down of America quite saliently, and these authors by far are not even the only ones talking about it.

In any case, at the end of the book the authors also thankfully feature a set of the greatest books of all time, and after having read the list it’s hard to disagree.  Having read perhaps a dozen or so of them, out of the more-than-one-hundred books recommended, it’s definitely something that’s worth considering.

Furthermore, the authors postulate that there exists specific books which fall into the category of what they call ‘Great books’, such as The Illiad, The Odyssey, Organon, The Republic, Paradise Lost, The Divine Comedy, et al.

The authors also postulate that only 1% of the millions of book out there – if not less – fall within this category of ‘Great Books’.  What makes this particular category of great books so unique?  That the gems of knowledge contained within these books and growth the reader will attain will not only be extensive, given the depth and immensity of the concepts within the book, but these books will teach you the most about reading and about life.  Moreover, regardless of how many times one reads these books, they are so profound and demanding of the reader that one will always learn something from them.

If you appreciate books, reading, classical education, or are striving to demand more from yourself or even plan on building a home-schooling curriculum, GET THIS BOOK!  This book really is for everyone.  Educated minds have great foundations, and this book helps lay those foundations in an ironclad manner.

The True Purpose Of Modern Schooling

conformity2
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
February 6, 2017

There are individuals out there that whittle facing the storm, and there are those who challenge the storm.  John Taylor Gatto is one of the latter.

John Taylor Gatto is the former NY City and NY State Teacher of the year [1991], where he inspired his students to achieve some amazing results through his nontraditional methods of instruction.

Not only has Gatto been relentless in detailing many of the inherent issues within the public school system for quite some time now, but he’s had the courage to take it a step further and detail that all of the issues within public schooling are not mistakes, it is done by design.

To illustrate this, an excerpt of John Taylor Gatto’s Weapons Of Mass Instruction will follow below.

Within Weapons Of Mass Instruction, John Taylor Gatto breaks down Alexander Inglis’s book Principles of Secondary Education, which “..makes it perfectly clear that compulsory schooling on this continent was intended to be just what it had been for Prussia in the 1820s: a fifth column into the burgeoning democratic movement that threatened to give the peasants and the proletarians a voice at the bargaining table.  Divide children by subject, by age-grading, by constant rankings on tests, and by many other more subtle means, and it was unlikely that the ignorant mass of mankind, separated in childhood, would ever re-integrated into a dangerous whole.”[xviii][Bold Emphasis Added]

Furthermore, as author notes that Inglis, who has an honor lecture in education named for him in Harvard, breaks down the natural purpose of schooling into 6 basic functions,” which are as follows:

1.  The adjective or adaptive function.  Schools are to establish fixed habits of reaction to authority…It is also pretty much destroys the idea that useful or interesting material should be taught, because you can’t test for reflexive obedience until you know whether you can make kids learn, and do, foolish and boring things.

2.  The integrating function.  This might well be called “the conformity function,” because its intention is to make children as alike as possiblePeople who conform are predictable, and this is of great use to those who wish to harness and manipulate a larger labor force.

3.  The diagnostic and directive function.  School is meant to determine each student’s proper role in society.

4.  The differentiating function.  Once the social role has been “diagnosed,” children are to be sorted by role and trained only so far as their destination in the social machine merits – and not one step further.  So much for making kids their personal best.

5.  The selective function.  This refers not to human choice at all but to Darwin’s theory of natural selection as applied to what he called “the favored races…Schools are meant to tag the unfit – with poor grades, remedial placement, and other punishments – clearly enough that their peers will accept them as inferior and effectively bar them from the reproductive sweepstakes.  That’s what all those little humiliations from first grade onward were intended to do: wash the dirt down the drain.

6.  The propaedeutic function.  The societal system implied by these rules will require an elite group of caretakers.  To that end, a small fraction of the kids will be quietly taught how to manage this continuing project, how to watch over and control a population deliberately dumbed down and declawed in order that government might proceed unchallenged and corporations might never want for obedient labor.” [xviii-xix][Bold Emphasis Added]

And just in case some wonder that Inglis was alone in these thoughts, he was not.  Horace Mann, James Bryant Conant, George Peabody, and many others shared the same sentiments.

Expressed above and incisive, and yet disturbing words is nothing more than Social Engineering from the bottom up, at a national scale, beginning with the most malleable minds in the land – those of children.  It doesn’t get any more cut and dry.

John Taylor Gatto is one of the few individuals out there whose wisdom seeps into all societal strata.  His words should be heeded, because the issue is only exacerbating [link] year after year.

In life, an individual can choose to write their own script, or be part of someone else’s.

And as we can see, if those in control of the system carry out their plans of mass conformity and control, children, an all future generations, will never write their own authentic scripts unless they breakaway from those proverbial shackles.

Education, true classical education, and not the facsimile society is being sold, is the only way out.  Everything else is merely a parody, and by public schooling’s repeated failures this is shown to be true.

_____________________________________________________________
Sources & References:

[1] John Taylor Gatto’s Weapons Of Mass Instruction, pp. xviii
[2] Ibid., pp. xviii-xix.

13 Great Reasons To Study Logic

logic3
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
February 1, 2017

In age where the public dumbing down is reaching new lows [Read Here For More], a much more proactive approach to an individuals education is vitally needed.  This will certainly aid them in gravitating away from the crumbling education paradigm that keeps failing us, because, as John Taylor Gatto stated in A Different Kind Of Teacher [Review Here]:

Schools were designed by Horace Mann, E.L. Thorndike, and others to be instruments of scientific management of a mass populationSchools are intended to produce, through the application of formulas, formulaic beings whose behavior can be predicted and controlledTo a very great extent, schools succeed in doing this.”[1][Bold Emphasis Added]

In other words, school system is about social engineering the masses, and not producing educated individuals.

Furthermore, as Professor Patrick Deneen shared in his landmark piece, How A Generation Lost Its Common Culture:

“Our students’ ignorance is not a failing of the educational system – it is its crowning achievement. Efforts by several generations of philosophers and reformers and public policy experts — whom our students (and most of us) know nothing about — have combined to produce a generation of know-nothings”[2][Emphasis Added]

It isn’t by accident that the school system has reached the state of decline it has.

Knowing that, what’s an individual to do?  Go back to the roots.

For this, there is no better place to go but to the realm of logic.

Why is Logic so vital?

To answer this poignant question, let’s take a look at the work of Philosopher Peter Kreeft Ph.D has to to say.  Kreeft, in his phenemonal book called Socratic Logic [Review Here] outlines the many reasons why logic is important to an individuals growth.

Kreeft minces no words in stating that in the past, most students were privy to was called “the old logic”.  Due to this, those individuals were much better prepared to “think, read, write, organize, and argue much better than they can today”.[3]

Getting back to classical education, which employed The Trivium – composed of Logic, Grammar & Rhetoric – is what will ultimately help individuals break away from the downward avalanche public schooling is manifesting.  And Logic undoubtedly is an integral component of The Trivium.

Please ruminate at length regarding what follows.  It shows how and why logic seeps into all areas of life.

Below follow salient reasons why to study Logic:

13 Good Reason Why You Should Study Logic

1. Logic brings order.

Logic builds the mental habit of thinking in an orderly way.

No course is more practical than logic, for no matter what you are thinking about, you are thinking, and logic orders and clarifies your thinking.  No matter what your thought’s content, it will be clearer when it has a more logical form.  The principles of thinking logically can be applied to all thinking and to every field.

2.  Logic brings power.  Logic brings the power of proof and persuasion.

The power of logic comes from the fact that it is the science and art of argument.  Any power can be either rightly used or abused.  This power of logic is rightly used to win the truth and defeat error; it is wrongly used to win the argument and defeat your opponent.

3.  Logic helps reading. Logic will help you in education and learning, for “logic will help you to read any book more clearly and effectively.  And you are always going to be reading books; books are the single most effective technological invention in the history of education.

On the basis of over 40 years of full time college teaching of almost 20,000 students at 20 different schools, I am convinced that one of the reasons for the steep decline in students’ reading ability is the decline in the teaching of traditional logic.

4.  Logic helps writing.  Logic will also help you to write more clearly and effectively, for clear writing and clear thinking are a “package deal”: the presence or absence of either one brings the presence or absence of the other.  Muddled writing fosters muddled thinking, and muddled thinking fosters muddled writing.  Clear writing fosters clear thinking, and clear thinking fosters clear writing.  Common sense expects this, and scientific studies confirm it.  Writing skills have declined dramatically in the 40 years or so since symbolic logic has replaced Aristotelian logic, and I am convinced this is no coincidence.

It is simply impossible to communicate clearly and effectively without thinking clearly and effectively.  And that means logic.”

5.  Logic brings happiness.  In a small but significant way, logic can even help you attain happiness.  We all seek happiness all the time because no matter what else we seek, we seek it because we think it will be a means to happiness, or a part of happiness, either for ourselves or for those we love.  And no one seeks happiness for any other end; no one says he wants to be happy in order to be rich, or wise, or healthy.  But we seek riches, or wisdom, or health, in order to be happier.

How can logic help us attain happiness?  Here is a very logical answer to that question:

(1)  When we attain what we desire, we are happy
(2)  And whatever we desire, whether Heaven or a hamburger, it is more likely that we will attain if it we think more clearly.
(3)  And logic helps us to think more clearly.
(4)  Therefore logic helps us to be happy.

Even fantasy is not illogical.  In fact, according to the greatest master of this art, J.R.R. Tolkien, “Fantasy is a rational, not an irrational, activity…creative fantasy is founded upon a hard recognition that things are so in the world as it appears under the sun; on a recognition of fact, but not a slavery to it.  So upon logic was founded the nonsense that displays itself in the tales and rhymes of Lewis Carroll.  If men really could not distinguish between frogs and men, fairy stories about frog-kings would not have arisen.”

6.  Logic helps with religious faith.  Even religion, though it goes beyond logic, cannot go against it; if it did, it would literally be unbelievable.  Some wit defined “faith” as “believing what you know isn’t true.”  But we simply cannot believe an idea to be true that we know that has been proven to be false by a valid logical proof.

It is true that faith goes beyond what can be proved by logical reasoning alone.  That is why believing in any religion is a free personal choice, and some make that choice while others do not, while logical reasoning is equally compelling for all.  However, logic can add faith in at least three ways.

First, logic can often clarify what is believed, and define it.

Second, logic can deduce the necessary consequences of the belief and apply it to difficult situations.

Third, even if logical arguments cannot prove all that faith believes, they can give firmer reasons for faith than feeling, desire, mood, fashion, family or social pressure, conformity, or inertia.

7.  Logic helps attain wisdom.  “Philosophy” means “the love of wisdom.”  Although logic alone cannot make you wise, it can help.  For logic is one of philosophy’s main instruments.  Logic is to philosophy what telescopes are to astronomy or microscopes to biology or math to physics.

8.  Democracy.  There are even crucial social and political reasons for studying logic.  As a best-selling modern logic text says, “the success of democracy depends, in the end, on the reliability of the judgments we citizens make, and hence upon our capacity and determination to weigh arguments and evidence rationally.”  As Thomas Jefferson said, “In a republican nation, whose citizens are to be lead by reason and persuasion and not by force, the art of reason becomes of the first importance.”[Copi & Cohen, Logic, 10th edition, Prentice-Hall, 1998.).

9.  Defining logic’s limits.  Does logic have limits?  Yes, but we need logic to recognize and definite logic’s limits.  Logic has severe limits.  We need much more than logic even in our thinking.  For instance, we need intuition, too.  But logic helps us recognize this distinction.

10.  Logic helps in testing authority.  We need authorities because no individual can discover everything autonomously  We do in fact rely on the human community, and therefore on the authority of others – parents, teachers, textbooks, “experts,” friends, history, and tradition – for a surprising large portion of what we know – perhaps up to 99%, if it can be quantified.  And that is another reason we need logic: we need to have good reasons for believing our authorities, for in the end it is you the individual who must decide which authorities to trust.

11.  Logic helps recognizing contradictions.  Logic teaches us which ideas contradict each other.  If we are confused about that, we will either be too exclusive (that is, we will think beliefs logically exclude each other when they do not) or too inclusive (that is, we will believe two things that cannot both be true).

12.  Logic brings certainty.  Logic has “outer limits”; there are many things it can’t give you.  But logic has no “inner limits”: like math, it never breaks down.  Just as 2 plus 2 are unfailingly 4, so if A is B and B is C, then A is unfailingly C, Logic is timeless and unchangeable.  It is certain.

And logic never becomes obsolete. The principles of logic are timelessly true.

13.  Logic helps one attain truth.  Logic helps us to find truth, and truth is its own end: it is worth knowing for its own sake.

Logic helps us to find truth, though it is not sufficient of itself to find truth.  It helps us especially (1) by demanding that we define our terms so that we understand what we mean, and (2) by demanding that we give good reasons, arguments, proofs.[4]

In the age of information, ignorance is no excuse.

And Logic, more than anything else, helps eviscerate that ignorance in a way that nothing else can.

That’s exactly why its been removed from the public school system, and exactly why all individuals need to employ it into their repertoire.

——————————————————-
Sources & References:

[1] John Taylor Gatto, A Different Kind Of Teacher, p. 16.
[2] Professor Patrick Deneen, How A Generation Lost Its Culture
[3] Peter Kreeft Ph.D., Socratic Logic, p. 1.
[4] Ibid., pp. 1-7.

Common Core Crisis [Part 2] – Brainwashing

commomcore
TheBreakway
Zy Marquiez
January 29, 2017

The topic of common core gets a lot of bad publicity, and for good reason.

With dwindling prodigiously precipitous decline of grades – and classical education content, for that matter – in many areas of public schooling, it begs the question, what really is being accomplished with public schofooling that’s causing the catastrophic decline of education [Click Here For More].

Let’s take a gander at two particular reasons as to why math scores, among others, are declining.

In the trenchant book, Drilling To The Core, Sandra Stotsky & Contributors elucidate:

“The math standard focuses on investigative math, which has been shown to be a disaster…With the new math standard in the Common Core, there are no longer absolute truths. So 3 times 4 can equal 11 so long as a student can effectively explain how they reached that answer.”  [P1]

If that doesn’t leave one’s mind spinning, nothing will.

If there is one subject that brings certainty, it’s mathematics.  The fact that this very subject is targeted by the comptrollers shows they are cutting reason off at its roots.

Furthermore:

The Common Core emphasizes teaching students to think of what they learn as “evidence” that can be put to use in making “arguments” as opposed to “facts” that help the student discern how things are.  For the most part, the Common Core steers away from giving students a concrete picture of the world.” [2]

Those are not abstract words.  What the authors are stating are as incisive as a laser that slices through steel.

If individuals and communities do not heed the warnings being put forth by these authors, and many more in society, the future will be bleaker than we could ever imagine.

Seek to educate yourself, and yours.  Become an autodidact.

Strive to achieve true education and not the facsimile that we are being sold.

For if you do not educate yourself, others will.  And we already know where that tide is heading.

We cannot as a society, and as individuals, continue to do the same thing and expect different results.  That’s the textbook definition of insanity.

As Einstein once intimated:

“We cannot solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them.”

——————————-

[1] Sandra Stotsky, Drilling Through The Core, pg. 48
[2] Ibid., pg. 35

Breakaway Ruminations #3 – The Power Of Curiosity

imagination7
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
January 26, 2017

“The first and simplest emotion which we discover in the human mind, is curiosity.”
– Edmund Burke

” People function better when they’re engaged and curious.”
– Tom Dotz & Tom Hoobyar, NLP – The Essential Guide

“The important thing is not to stop questioning.  Curiosity has its own reason for existing.”
– Albert Einstein

For the individual, curiosity is indispensable.  Without curiosity, the individual finds itself without the compass through which they would plot their journey in life.

In life, curiosity serves multiple purposes.  Curiosity is the path through which we achieve truth, but also the path where we unleash imagination.  Ultimately, one cannot strive for truth, if one cannot search for it.  And one cannot search for truth, if one is not inherently curious.  Conversely, imagination, on the other hand, cannot be employed if one’s intrinsic curiosity is dull at bay.  How can one imagine, if one cannot wonder?  How can one wonder, if one is not curious?

This is why it’s imperative to foster curiosity at every turn, for it will yield amazing results.

Who better to learn about being curious, then children?

Children are amazing beings; they always wonder what’s possible.

If you spend enough time around them you will notice children will do the most random, unexpected, delightful, or at times downright bewildering things.

However, it’s reasonable to argue that most persistent thing a child will do when they reach that age is to ask why.  This is because questions, to children, are natural.  They cannot know the world without inquiring; they inherently realize this.  How else can one attain knowledge, but by figuring things out?  How else can one attain knowledge, but by employing curiosity?

Curiosity is to questioning, as clues are to solving crimes.

Every person that has interacted at length with a child will eventually run into questions of all types.

[Sidebar]In fact, not long ago, got into a very mindful and lengthy conversation with my friend’s daughter who was 11 or so.  This young kid had more curiosity than any other adult that has interacted with me for a long time.  It was rapid fire consistent questioning that you never get in adult life, and not aimless either.  There was purpose.  Every question built on the previous one; everything was as precise as it could be.  It was quite refreshing.  It’s a pity most people seem to merely have the facsimile of curiosity, rather than the actual trait.[End Sidebar]

But overtime, this type of passion for questioning changes and nigh doesn’t exist in adulthood.

As adults, many tend to live life within the lines, never seeking life, or answers beyond societal-imposed boundaries.    Adults, or even adolescents for that manner, tend to have a different type of curiosity – a downgraded type of curiosity.  Adults tend to settle for the superficial answer.  And what’s worse, superficial answers barely even scratch the surface, and by their very nature are unable to get to the heart of issues.

Children, on the other hand, employ curiosity like precisely aimed arrows, which is their attempt to ascertain the world around them.  Moreover, just because they hit bullseyes doesn’t mean they will quit either.  If anything, they get more courageous, as if someone just told them there’s no limit to the amount of sugar they can have.

Children’s relentlessness for knowledge coupled with focused inquisitiveness helps hone the type of curiosity that gets to the heart of the matter.

Why is this?

In How To Read A Book [Review Here], Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren speak about very issue:

“The child is a natural questioner.  It is not the number of questions he asks but their character that distinguishes him from the adult.  Adults do not lose the curiosity that seems to be a native trait, but their curiosity deteriorates in quality.  They want to know whether something is so, not why.  But children’s questions are not limited to the sort that can be answered by an encyclopedia.”[1][Bold Emphasis Added]

Children, like detectives, will not be stopped until they achieve the answers they seek.

However, although children are inherently curious, by adulthood, that curiosity has morphed into something else, something more static and less malleable.  Why such a change?

Part of this is the stamping out of imagination from public schooling, and part of it is propaganda.  How can propaganda play a part?  Ponder, haven’t we all heard, “Curiosity killed the cat”?  If that’s not propaganda, nothing is.  It’s a statement made to slam down curiosity, as if it’s a gnat to get rid of in one swift blow.  Translation: don’t ask that, don’t’ do that, don’t’ go there.  One might as well say, “Live within that box, and don’t dare move beyond it.”  It’s emblematic of living in fear, except it chains curiosity to the box.

Unfortunately, corralling curiosity can have detrimental side effects.  Without curiosity, individual learning within the boundaries of the world gets stultified, and we settle for ready-made answers [provided by others, rather than arrived through by personal insight] rather than journeying through the mysterious, and adventuring through life in search of the unknown.

And it is within the unknown that the lessons of life reside.

Philosopher Peter Kreeft, in his introduction to Philosophy via Plato’s Apology, writes in his Philosophy 101 by Socrates, and encapsulates the above issue best:

“…Socrates loves the unknown rather than fearing it.  That is almost the definition, the essence of a good learner.  Children who at an early age are punished for exploring the unknown will find it hard later to trust their own curiosity and will prefer the safety of the known, like scared rabbits afraid to come out of their comfortable holes.  Children who have been encouraged to question and explore the unknown are reward for doing so, will make good students, make many discoveries, and be happy doing so. The unknown is to them not like poison but like food.”[2][Bold Emphasis Added]

The unknown shouldn’t be feared.  In fact, it should be welcomed.  It’s an opportunity for growth; an opportunity to test knowledge, character, insight.

Moreover, a child’s inherent curiosity – or for that matter, everyone’s curiosity – should be encouraged constantly.  How else is an individual to foster creativity, and help imagination bloom if without not curiosity?

And even though children can at times go a little overboard with questions, questions still remains the best avenue for curiosity to be employed, which undoubtedly leads to finding the truth, which is what questions are about.

Regarding this, in The Imaginative Argument [review here], Frank L. Cioffi states the following:

“A very fundamental human act undergirds and empowers this activity of arguing for truth.  It’s one that you see in children all the time, one that might even be annoying: the relentless asking of questions.  Just as a child might ask again and again, “why?” until the parent finally shushes him or her with a “Because that’s the way it works,” or “Just because.  Now leave me alone!” so you as thinkers and writers should be asking question upon question…You should ask questions that will help you understand, assess, contextualize, make sense of a given situation, a given idea, text, or topic.  And these questions should reach outward – “What do others say?” – at the same time that they should delve within: “How do I feel about this?”  Questioning allows you to open yourself to possibilities – an action that characterizes genuinely creative thought.”[3][Bold & Underline Emphasis Added]

When one ruminates about it, when children question, they are little philosophers, for they seek the truth.

Perhaps, just perhaps, the questions children ask, are vitally more important than what most realize.

In fact, the questions children ask – that stem from the curiosity children feature – are not as far-fetched and unimportant as they may seem at first blush.

In fact, Mortimer J. Adler and Charles Van Doren even go as far as comparing the questions children ask to great philosophical books:

“…we do want to recognize that one of the most remarkable things about the great philosophical books is that they ask the same sort of profound questions that children askThe ability to retain the child’s view of the world, with at the same time a mature understanding of what it means to retain is, is extremely rare – and a person who has these qualities is likely to be able to contribute something really important to our thinking.

“We are not required to think as children in order to understand existence.  Children certainly do not, and cannot, understand it – if, indeed, anyone can.  But we must be able to see as children see, to wonder as they wonder, to ask as they ask.  The complexities of adult life get in the way of the truth.  The great philosophers have always been able to clear away the complexities and see simple distinctions – simple once they are stated, vastly difficult beforeIf we are to follow them we too must be childishly simple in our question – and maturely wise in our replies.”[4][Bold & Underline Emphasis Added]

Thus, in the child-like simplicity of asking questions one may embark on a voyage of curiosity that might contribute something phenomenal to our understanding.  How else is an individual, be they a child or an adult, going to breakaway from the conventional stultification of life and gravitate towards something more intriguing, and more profound?

Knowing this we must be constant in our resolve, and impervious in our creative thoughts as we foster curiosity.

Then, and only then, do we have any chance to arrive at the answers that could truly change your life.

Perhaps, just perhaps, next time we talk to a child or have a genuine conversation with an adult we could remember that the next question you’re asked might just teach you something you’ve never known before.

An 11-year-old’s curiosity changed my life.  When the last time a child’s curiosity – or anyone’s curiosity for that matter – changed yours?

————————————————–

Sources & References:

[1] Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren, How To Read A Book, pg. 264.
[2] Peter Kreeft, Philosophy 101 by Socrates, pg. 54.
[3] Frank L. Cioffi, The Imaginative Argument, pg. xvi.
[4] Mortimer J. Adler & Charles Van Doren, How To Read A Book, pg. 265.

The Catastrophic Decline Of Public Schooling: Twenty One Facts About Why Public Schooling Performs So Poorly

education
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
January 18, 2017

“The historical record indicates that, if anything, the implicit collectivist impulse in standardized testing stands in stark contrast to the basic values of individual genius and responsibility that formed the central core of the founding of the republic itself.”[A][Bold Emphasis added][Dr. Joseph P. Farrell and Gary Lawrence, Rotten to the (Common) Core, pg. 5.]

“…such tests in the end punish, rather than reward, real ability, with the end result that such tests really measure the ability of an individual to conform to the outlook and interests of the elites composing such tests…”[B][Bold Emphasis added][Dr. Joseph P. Farrell and Gary Lawrence, Rotten to the (Common) Core, pg. 57.]

Every day, its growing more apparent that the current system of public schooling isn’t progressing from the relentless push for standardized testing we’ve been told would benefit public schooling.

It is no secret that US public education schooling keeps plowing down the mountain of stupidity/mediocrity.  And yet, we might have just reached new all time lows.

In recent news reported by ZeroHedge.com, new studies found that the United States performed dismally when compared to other developed nations in education.

The Article, “U.S. Kids Keep Getting Dumber; Ranked 31st out of 35 Developed Nations In Math, New Study Reveals” reveals that:

Our schools no longer teach reading, writing, and arithmetic.  Rather than be taught how to think and problem-solve, children are thought what to think and how to feel. All these money-making and money-spending schemes tend to sound nice, of course, but they inevitably fall flat.”[1][Bold Emphasis Added]

If this exacerbating/disturbing issue continues unabated, the US will continue to morph into the mindless police/technocratic/fascist state that it’s torpedoing towards, but at an increasing rate.

But it gets better!

The Unites States also ranked 24th in the world in reading literacy and 25th in science.

To illustrate some of the insidious reasons this is taking place, let’s take a gander at what award winning teacher with over 30 years of experience John Taylor Gatto has stated.

In his phenomenal book, A Different Kind OF Teacher, Gatto outlines 21 facts about schooling that we should all privy to:

1.  There is no relationship between the amounts of money spent on schooling and “good” results as measured by parents of any culture.  This seems to be because education is not a commodity to be purchased but an enlargement of insight, power, understanding and self-control almost completely outside the cash economyEducation is almost overwhelmingly an internally generated effort.  The five American states which usually spend least per capita on schooling are the five which usually have the best test results (although Iowa which is about thirtieth in spending sometimes creeps into the honored circle).

2.  There is no compelling evidence to show a positive relationship between length of schooling and accomplishmentMany countries with short school years outperform those with long ones by a wide margin.

3.  Most relationships between test scores and job performance are illegitimate, arranged in advance by only allowing those testing well access to the work.  Would you hire a newspaper reporter because he had “A”s in English?  Have you ever asked a surgeon what grade he got in meat-cutting?  George F. Kennan, intellectual darling of the Washington elite some while ago and the author of our “containment” policy against the Soviet Union often found his math and science grades in secondary school below sixty, and at Princeton he had many flunks, “D”s and “C”s.  “Sometimes,” he said, “it is the unadjusted student struggling to forge his own standards who develops within himself the thoughtfulness to comprehend.”  Dean Acheson, Harry Truman’s Secretary of State, graduated from Groton with a sixty-eight average…Is there anybody out there who really believes that grades and test scores are the mark of a man?

4.  Training done on the job is invariably cheaper, quicker, and of much higher quality than training done in a school setting.  If you wonder why that should be, you want to start, I think, by understanding that training and education are two different things, one largely residing in the development of good habits, the other in the development of vision and understanding, judgment, and the like.  Education is self training; it calls into its calculations mountains of personal data and experience which are simply unobtainable by any schoolteacher or higher pedagogueThat simple fact is why all the many beautifully precise rules on how to think produce such poor results.

5.  In spite of relentless propaganda on the contrary, the American economy is tending strongly to require less knowledge and less intellectually ability of its employees, not more.  Scientists and mathematicians currently exists in numbers far exceeding any global demand for them or any national demand, and that condition should grow much worse over the next decade, thanks to the hype of pedagogues and politicians. Schools can be reconstructed to teach children to development intellect, resourcefulness, and independence, but that would lead, in short order, to structural changes in the economy so profound it is not likely to be allowed to happen.

6.  The habits, drills, and routines of government schooling sharply reduce a person’s chances of possessing initiative or creativity.  Furthermore, the mechanism of why this is so hard has been well understood for centuries.

7.  Teachers are paid as specialists but they almost never have any real world experience in their specialties; indeed the low quality of their training has been a scandal for eighty years.

8.  A substantial amount of testimony exists from highly regarded scientists like Richard Feynman, the recently deceased Nobel laureate, or Albert Einstein, and many others, that scientific discovery is negatively related to the procedures of school science classes.

9.  According to research published by Christopher Jencks, the famous sociologist, and others as well, the quality of school which any students attend is a very bad predictor of later success, financial, social, or emotional.  On the other hand the quality of family life is very good predictorThat would seem to indicate a natural family policy directly spending on the home, not the school.

10.  Children learn fastest and easiest when very young; general intelligence has probably developed as far as it will by the age of four.  Children are quite capable of reading and enjoying difficult material by that age, and also capable of performing all the mathematical operations skillfully and with pleasureWhether kids should do these things or not is a matter of philosophy or cultural tradition, not a course dictated by any scientific knowledge.

11.  There is a direct relationship between heavy doses of teaching and detachment from reality with subsequent flights into fantasyMany students so oppressed lose their links with past and present, present, and future.  And the bond with “now” is substantially weakened.

12.  Unknown to the public, virtually all famous remedial programs have failedPrograms like Title I/Chapter I survive by the goodwill of political allies, not by results.

13.  There is no credible evidence that racial mixing has any positive effect on student performance, but a large body of suggestive data is emerging that confining one group of children with children of a dominant culture does harm to the smaller group.

14.  Forced busing has accelerated the disintegration of minority neighborhoods without any visible academic benefits as trade off.

15.  There is no reason not to believe that any existing education technology can significantly improve intellectual performance; on the contrary, to the extent that machines establish the goals and work schedules, ask the questions and monitor the performances, the already catastrophic passivity and indifference created by schooling only increases.

16.  There is no body of knowledge inaccessible to a motivated elementary student.  The sequences of development we use are hardly the product of “science” but instead are legacies of unstable men like Pestalozzi and Froebel, and the military governments from which we imported them.

17.  Delinquent behavior is a direct reaction to the structure of schooling.  It is much worse than the press has reported because all urban school districts conspire to suppress its prevalence.  Teachers who insist on justice on behalf of pupils and parents are the most frequently intimidated into silence.

18.  The rituals of schooling remove flexibility from the mind – that characteristic vital in adjusting to different situations.  Schools strive for uniformity in a world increasingly less uniform.

19.  Teacher-training courses are widely held in contempt by practicing teachers as well as by the general public because research has consistently failed to provide guidance to best practice.

20.  Schools create and maintain a caste system, separating children according to irrelevant parameters. Poor, working class, middle class and upper middle class kids are constantly made aware of alleged differences among themselves by the use of methods not called for by the task at hand.

21. Efforts to draw a child out of his culture or his social class has an immediate effect on his family relationships, friendships, and the stability of his self-image.[2][Bold & Underline Emphasis Added].

How can such dismal results be rectified?

In respect to this glaring issue, Gatto has not only spoken at length about scraping the public schooling system, but also speaking incisively and cogently about:

“The only way I can see after spending thirty-five years in and around the institution is to put full choice squarely back into the hands of parents, let the marketplace redefine schooling, and encourage the development of as many styles of schooling as there are human dreamsLet people, not bureaucrats, work out their own destinies.  That’s what made us a great country in the first place.”[111-115 – A Different Kind OF Teacher][Bold & Italic Emphasis Added][2]

Those reasons and more is why it’s imperative that individuals take full control of our destinies and education as individuals.  For if we do not, others certainly will.

The less individuals respect and appreciate true education and historical tradition, the more they shackle themselves to the comptrollers seeking control via a top-down technocratic society.  And if one were to seek total control of a society, vanquishing any semblance of education would be priority number one.

And as Gatto states, that’s exactly what they want.

The truth is that:

“…schools and schooling are increasingly irrelevant to the great enterprises of the planet.  No one believes anymore that scientists are trained in science classes or politicians in civics classes or poets in English classes.  The truth is that schools don’t really teach anything except how to obey orders.”[3] [Bold Emphasis]

To finalize, Gatto will be quoted at length, because he does a fantastic job at outlining what individuals can do:

Refuse to be trivialized by an economic order that assigns important work to titles like “Doctor of Philosophy” instead of to men and women.  Hold the authorities who clear-cut our forest and poison our water in contempt not awe.

Sabotage their undertakings in any way you can, even as small as misfiling their papers or dragging your feet on the way to jail.  Keeping score by income and status is a mark of a limited mind; past a modest point your possessions, your machines, and your tittles begin to own youPast a modest point they dictate your behavior, consume your time, dominate your human relations – and when that happens you have become a machine, however well fed and secure you are.  Instead, affirm a world of moral seriousness where everyday things are sacred to you.  When that happens the leaves and grass and water sprarkle and shine, lighting up the darkness.  When that happens you are wealthy beyond measure.

Trust in yourself.  Reject the insane claims that technological progress is human progress, that human destiny and machine improvement are wrapped up together in some way.  They are not.  The spirit of machinery seeks to infect living things and make them like machinery, too – that is, at the bottom of the cynical global system of industrial development.  Better to be John Henry than the steam hammer; better to be an outlaw than a votary if it comes down to that.  Live free or you won’t really be alive at all.  That, I can guarantee, really matters.”[4][Bold Emphasis added]

_______________________________________________________
Sources And References

[A] Dr. Joseph P. Farrell and Gary Lawrence, Rotten to the (Common) Core, pg. 5.
[B] Ibid., Pg. 57.
[1] John Taylor Gatto, A Different Kind Of Teacher, pg. 111-115.
[2] Ibid., pg. 115.
[3] John Taylor Gatto, Dumbing Us Down – The Hidden Curriculum Of Compulsory Schooling, pg. 21.
[4] John Taylor Gatto, A Different Kind Of Teacher, pg. 211.

Book Review: Socratic Logic [V3.1] by Peter Kreeft PhD

An Indispensable Piece For The Autodidact; A Vital Component To Education For Individuals Of All Ages

socraticlogic
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
January 17, 2017

Having not taken a logic course since the university, attempting to find a book on logic that would be ‘worth its weight in gold’ took a bit of time, but this particular book has more than delivered in spades.

Socratic Logic by Peter Kreeft PhD is an essential reading for anyone who values the use of logic.  In fact, going one step further, this book should be read by everyone, because we could all benefit from it in many ways.  Mostly though, most of us have not been taught logic in elementary nor high school, and rarely in college, especially how it was taught in the past.   This is taking place because logic, as well as the trivium have been nigh completely removed from most school curriculums and when they do have these courses, they are merely a facsimile of it, and nowhere near the quality of logic taught in times past.  You can conjecture yourself why this has taken place.

Moving forward, this particular book showcases a very in-depth approach into all the nuances that logic involves, while also keeping it simple so to speak.   Describing the book as ‘simple’ might be a misnomer, but when compared to The Organon by Aristotle, which is a much more complex/demanding read, this seems like a ‘walk in the park’.

Kreeft makes it a point to give the individual everything they might need to comprehend logic, sprinkled generously with many real world examples, historical quotes and issues that will make the book quite practical in its application once the concepts are mastered and implemented into one’s repertoire.

Socratic Logic serves as an excellent jump-off point into the realm of logic due to the pragmatic approach taken by Kreeft.

As the author himself states, the book is: simple, user friendly, practical, linguistic, readable, traditional, commonsensical, philosophical, constructive, clearly divided, flexible, short, selective, interactive, holistic, and classroom oriented [if the individual so decides], and those descriptions were rather apt.

Conveniently, the book also features a differentiation where one can find the basic sections (B) and the philosophical sections (P) marked in the table of contents.  This helps greatly in focusing on whatever specific area the reader might want to hone their skills in.

Also of note, the book – as mentioned by Kreef – may be used in at least 10 different ways:

[1] the basics only
[2] the basic sections plus the philosophical sections
[3] the basic sections plus the more advanced sections in logic
[4] the basic sections plus the practical application sections
[5] the basic sections plus any two of these three additions
[6] all of the book
[7] all or some of it supplemented by a text in symbolic logic
[8] all or some of it supplemented by a text in inductive logic
[9] all or some of it supplemented by a text in rhetoric or informal logic
[10] all or some of it supplement by readings in and applications to the great philosophers

What one gathers from the book will depend greatly on how much time one chooses to spend on it.  Socratic Logic may be studied independently for an autodidact, or used for schooling.  The book can be studied in single class lessons, once a week class lessons, semester formats, etc.

Another useful element in the book is that if featured a healthy amount of exercises throughout the book in order to further buttress one’s understanding of the material.  This definitely helps hammer in the concepts shown in the book with precision.

Taking all into account, Socratic Logic should have been the book taught in school.  In fact, it should be taught to everyone because our society lacks logic in myriad ways.  Then again, that is what happens with the removal of classical education and logic from the common-to-the-rotten-core type of school system we’re all “lucky” to have.

In the information age not being educated and not knowing foundational pieces of essential knowledge such as logic that venture into every crevice of our lives is folly.

And if conventional schooling continues on the downhill grade it’s at, knowledge in areas such as this will be worth more than its weight in gold, and that’s not an understatement.  With the student loans costing over a trillion dollars, and with real education dissipating right before our eyes within the conventional establishment, taking your education into your hands is not only responsible, but vital.

To seek or further one’s education is a choice, and luckily Socratic Logic makes it an easy to choice to make.

Breakaway Ruminations #2 – What Is Imagination?

imagination7

TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
January 16, 2017

“Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities; Truth isn’t.”
– Mark Twain, Following The Equator: A Journey Around The World

” The universe is waiting for imagination for revolutionize it down to its core.”
–  Jon Rappaport, [JonRappoport.wordpress.com | NoMoreFakeNews.com]

“Imagination should be used, not to escape reality, but to create it.”
– Collin Wilson

What is imagination?

Can imagination be described?  Can one adjective really suffice?

Is imagination a breathtaking landscape?  Is it an imposing mountain suffused with roaring streams and picturesque and vibrant scenery?

Is imagination a walk on the beach with a lover, while experiencing the warmth of the sun caressing your skin while the timeless moment freezes in time?

Is imagination a dream beyond a dream, to be taken to utmost extremes?

Is imagination, like venturing into uncharted territory, an endless voyage into the unknown?

Is imagination like sailing the timeless ocean from horizon to horizon, to make berth everywhere, nowhere, and cast anchor on the port of your dreams?

How can someone put a description on a concept so boundless that it is wholly infinite?

None of the above explanations comes even close to defining imagination in its totality.

Such a thought-form…stretches the imagination, doesn’t it?

And yet, imagination is, was, and always will be.

Like a book that never ends, imagination shows us that each new page in the book of our lives we willingly turn to experience is an astounding adventure unleashed, written by each and every one of us.  And the more creative we are, the more interesting our lives become.

In life, the individuals who are most successful have laid the foundations for their actions well in advance of the actual moment of the challenge – they have imagined it.

Those who use imagination efficiently employ this as their greatest strength because they accumulate great personal force and make themselves grow ceaselessly.  Then, when it comes time to act, the power of their imagination is so overwhelming solutions abound in myriad ways.  In the grand scheme of life, they have chosen to breakaway and become more than those who do not employ imagination in its totality.

Individuals that use imagination are simply the embodiment of a living art in full swing.

Such individuals do not try, they simply are.

Book Review: A Different Kind Of Teacher by John Taylor Gatto

a-different-kind-of-teacher
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
January 16, 2017

John Taylor Gatto is an award winning teacher and recipient of the New York State Teacher Of The Year Award with over 30 years experience within the public school system.  Many of the lessons he’s learned are expounded upon at length in his books, which continue to gain popularity with every passing year.

For me, A Different Kind Of Teacher follows a reading of Gatto’s book Dumbing Us Down – The Hidden Curriculum Of Compulsory Schooling.  In it Gatto did a phenomenal job of outlining many of the most insidious issues taking place with the current public school system.  The precision and pull-no-punches approach of Gatto’s work is what made Dumbing Us Down so notable, especially considering that he most pulled no punches when he stated that the main agenda of the public school system is to indoctrinate individuals how to follow orders so they can become unthinking cogs in the machine.

A snippet of some of Gatto’s most important points in Dumbing Us Down are:

“…schools and schooling are increasingly irrelevant to the great enterprises of the planet.  No one believes anymore that scientists are trained in science classes or politicians in civics classes or poets in English classes.  The truth is that schools don’t really teach anything except how to obey orders.”[1]

Schools are intended to produce, through the application of formulas, formulaic human beings whose behavior can be predicted and controlled.”[2]

It is absurd and anti-life to be part of the system that compels you to sit in confinement with people of exactly the same age and social class.  That system effectively cuts you off from the immense diversity of life and the synergy of variety; indeed it cuts you off from your own past and future, sealing you in a continuous present much the same way television does.”[3]

Scathing remarks such as the above leave no doubt Gatto’s quest for individuals is that of true education, and not the facsimile of it as we’ve been sold over time.

With that said, his other phenomenal book, A Different Kind Of Teacher – Solving The Crisis Of American Schooling by John Taylor Gato is a fierce examination into not only public schooling and its many inherent flaws, but also what type of steps are required to be carried out by individuals in order to transcend the current bankrupt/corrupt system from its current miserable state and into a more robust, grounded and resonant system that doesn’t sell out to corporate/government interests.

One intricate notion Gatto explores regards education in the past, which was considerably different than what it is now.  For instance, in Colonial America literacy rates were exceedingly high with no compulsory schooling whatsoever.  The same cannot be said of now.  In fact, one theme that Gatto convincingly explores is the damage inflicted on the human psyche through the many years of compulsory schooling.

When the reader reflects on how such actions instill the conditioning of the mind, and force it not to think but simply accept what it’s told, one arrives at the understanding of how a large part of society in this country continue to willingly accept the idea of public schools as a good thing

Thankfully, not everyone is following that pattern.  With more and more families continuing to homeschool their children, and individuals seeking to become autodidacts, considerable change is taking place at the grassroots level.

And much of that change is taking place in large part by individuals such as John Taylor Gatto, who are relentless in not only mincing no words in calling the system for what it is, but also by offering solutions to individuals seeking such.

Regardless, each of one of us are inherently responsible for our own continuing education.  When we pass that responsibility to the state, such as John Taylor Gatto has showed, we come to terms with the desolate fact of the education system’s cataclysmic decline.

The only way to stop such a system from continuing in tsunami-like fashion sweeping over everyone and everything is at the grass roots level, at the local level.

If we don’t, the country our forefathers conquered will be a ghost of the past, barely a facsimile of its former self, and the future will prove to be even murkier than now.

As Gatto elucidates:

“Figure out what matters.  Do it yourself; work hard at it; no one else can do it for you.  Relying on others in this regard or ignoring the necessity will ruin you thought you sit surrounded by machines in a rich school watching videos of spaceships.  Each of us has a design problem to solve:  to create from the raw material around us the curriculum for a good life.  It isn’t easy and it isn’t the same for any two people.  If you think you can buy it, look around you at the shambles my own generation has made of communal life and family life by trying to buy it or fashion it with machinery.”[4]

———————————————————-
Sources:

[1] John Taylor Gatto, Dumbing Us Down – The Hidden Curriculum Of Compulsory Schooling, pg. 21.
[2] Ibid., pg. 23.
[3] Ibid., pg. 24.
[4] John Taylor Gatto, A Different Kind Of Teacher, pg. 208.

Ray Kurzweil’s plan for immortality is missing one thing: you

DNA
Source: NoMoreFakeNews.com | JonRappoport.wordpresscom
Jon Rappoport
March 24, 2017

In a Wired interview (11/18/02), leading transhumanist and Google’s director of engineering, Ray Kurzweil, spoke about living forever. He was asked: “Will you have your entire body preserved or just your head?”

The usual method of preservation, upon physical death, is freezing. Then, when the technology exists, sometime later, there would be the unfreezing and the reanimation. The dead person would come back to life…

Kurzweil said: “I think there’s some part of our identity and valuable information in our bodies. There’s more in our brains, but there’s some in our bodies as well. It gets into some technical issues. There’s a better way of preserving the brain, which they haven’t been able to do with the whole body yet. The vitrification process, which does a better job of preserving structural integrity in the cells, they do with the head but not with the body. At any rate, I’d go for the grade A plan.”

Kurzweil would apparently have his brain and body preserved, for future reanimation.

There is, of course, an underlying question:

What about consciousness?

Assuming the technology will exist to “bring back” the body and the brain, will the consciousness of being alive exist? Or will the process reinstitute something entirely mechanical?

Mechanical, as in: “The car was sitting in the garage on blocks for 50 years, and then we fixed it and made it start again.”

Biologists and physicists are bothered by the “consciousness question.” When they discuss it, they assume the brain produces consciousness because, well, where else could awareness come from? In other words, they resort to unscientific circular reasoning.

At the same time, they assert that the basis for all matter and energy in the universe is tiny particles; none of those particles have consciousness; and the particles make up the brain; the brain is composed entirely of those non-conscious particles.

This is called a trap. Hard scientists have no reason to assume consciousness exists at all. Yet it does exist. That implies consciousness is coming from somewhere other than the brain, somewhere other than particles—but according to these scientists, that “other somewhere” doesn’t exist.

So they retreat back into “consciousness is in the brain”—even though by their own science, it isn’t.

Preserving body and brain in a state of suspended animation, and then bringing it back, would not, according to a proper reading of their own science, bring back consciousness.

What would come back is some sort of mechanical functioning, and nothing else.

A conscious Ray Kurzweil would never come back.

His body and brain might hum again, like an old car that was fixed, but that’s all.

People continue to argue, of course, that in some very complex way the brain causes consciousness, we just don’t know how yet, but we’re getting there. That’s not evidence. That’s a naked assumption. They may as well be saying the moon is surely made of cheese and one day we’ll prove it, so for now just accept it.

“Well, folks, we just brought back Ray Kurzweil from fifty years of suspended animation. Remember him? He was a futurist at Google, or the CIA, it’s hard to tell which. Apparently the two organizations were one. Anyway, Ray is back.”

“Wonderful. Is he talking?”

“There is brain activity. No talking yet.”

“Is he looking at anything?”

“We assume so. His eyes are open. Also, his hands are opening and closing.”

“Is he gesturing?”

“It’s theoretically possible.”

“Is he conscious?”

“Of course. There is brain activity.”

“Well, there could be brain activity without consciousness.”

“Where did you pick up that idea? Are you crazy? He’s conscious. That’s all there is to it.”

“Maybe there is no ‘he’. There are just electrical signals.”

“Idiot. Life is electrical signals. What else could life be?”

“Life could be conscious, as in ‘hello I’m alive and I’d like to take a walk and look at the clouds and read a book and here’s an interesting passage on page ten, let’s discuss it’.”

“What’s your name again? Guards, take this man to the re-education center. He’s lost his basic programming…”

Ray, your reanimated brain and body aren’t going to bring back conscious-you. (You might reincarnate in a quite different way, but that’s a different story for another time…)

But don’t despair. In the future, when there are 10,000 brains and bodies in a warehouse, and technology allows them to be reactivated, they might, combined, generate enough electricity to run, say, a toaster, a refrigerator, and an oven in a micro apartment in San Francisco.

More at: JonRappoport.wordpresscom

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Source: ScientificAmerican.com
Adam Piore
March 24, 2017

Excerpted from The Body Builders: Inside the Science of the Engineered Human by Adam Piore. Copyright © 2017 Adam Piore. With permission of the publisher, HarperCollins. All rights reserved.

It’s a frigid February afternoon, and I’m sitting in a hospital room in downtown Albany, New York, as a team of white-jacketed technicians bustle about the bed of a 40-year-old single mother from Schenectady, named Cathy. And they are getting ready to push the outer bounds of computer-aided “mind reading.” They are attempting to decode “imagined speech.”

I have been led here by Gerwin Schalk, a gregarious, Austrian-born neuroscientist, who has promised to show me just how far he and other neurological codebreakers have travelled since that day decades ago when David Hubel and Torsten Wiesel made history by listening in—and decoding—the patterns of neurons firing in a cat’s visual cortex.

Cathy is epileptic and plans to undergo brain surgery to try to remove the portion of her brain that is the source of her seizures. Three days ago, doctors lifted off the top of Cathy’s skull, and placed 117 tiny electrodes directly onto the right surface of her naked cortex so they could monitor her brain activity and map the target area. While she waits, she has volunteered to participate in Schalk’s research.

Now, next to my chair, Cathy is propped up in a motorized bed. The top of Cathy’s head is swathed in a stiff, plaster-like, mold of bandages and surgical tape. And a thick jumble of mesh-covered wires protrudes from the opening at the top of her skull. It flops over the back of her hospital bed, drops down to the ground and snakes over to a cart holding $250,000 worth of boxes, amplifiers, splitters and computers.

An attendant gives a signal, and Cathy focuses on a monitor sitting on the table in front of her as a series of single words emanate in a female monotone from a pair of nearby speakers.

“Spoon…”

“Python…”

“Battlefield…”

After each word, a colored plus sign flashes on Cathy’s monitor–Cathy’s cue to repeat each word silently in her head. Cathy’s face is inscrutable. But as she imagines each word, the 117 electrodes sitting atop her cortex record the unique combination of electrical activity emanating from 100s of millions of individual neurons in an area of her brain called the temporal lobe. Those patterns shoot through the wires, into a box that amplifies them, and then into the computer, where they are represented in the peaks and valleys of stacked, horizontal lines scrolling across the screen in front of the technician. Buried somewhere in that mass of squiggly lines, so thick and impenetrable it resembles a handful of hair pulled taut with a brush, is a logical pattern, a code that can be read if one understands the mysterious language of the brain.

Later Schalk’s team at the Wadsworth Center, a public health laboratory of the New York State Department of Health, along with collaborators at UC Berkeley, will pore over the data. Each one of Cathy’s electrodes records the status of roughly 1 million neurons, roughly 10 times a second, creating a dizzying blizzard of numbers, and combinations and possible meanings.

Yet Schalk insists he and his team can solve the puzzle and, using modern computing power, extract from that mass of data the words that Cathy has imagined.

It’s an effort Schalk has been pursuing for more than last decade. As part of a project originally funded by the Army Research Office, Schalk and others found evidence that when we “imagine” speaking, the auditory cortex, perhaps as an error-correction reference, receives a copy of how every word we speak should sound. That holds true even when we simply imagine saying a word.

Since that discovery, Schalk and his collaborators have demonstrated they can sometimes tell the difference between imagined vowels and consonants about 45 percent of the time. Chance is 25 percent. Rather than attempt to push those numbers up towards 100 percent, Schalk has focused on showing he can differentiate between vowels and consonants embedded in words. Then individual phonemes. And that’s not all.

From Cathy’s bedside, I follow Schalk to his office. On a large screen, Schalk pulls up a mass of brain signals, squiggly lines and different kinds of charts. Then he flips on some speakers. Over the course of many months, Schalk explains, he carried speakers into hospital rooms and played the same segment of a Pink Floyd song for about a dozen brain surgery patients like Cathy. Then Schalk handed the file of their recorded brain activity over to the UC Berkeley lab of Robert Knight for processing, to see if they might decode it.

Schalk presses a button. A bass begins to thump urgently like the furious beating of a human heart from a nearby speaker. It’s slightly muffled, as though heard from underwater, but it’s clearly a bass. A plaintive guitar echoes through an effects pedal, its notes accelerating with each new phrase. I recognize the song immediately—it is the mesmerizing, and haunting tones from “another Brick in the Wall,” on Pink Floyd’s the Wall. Aside from the vague muffling, the song is identical to the song I used to listen to in High School. But this version comes from brainwaves, not music.

“Is it perfect?” Schalk asks. “No. But we not only know that he’s hearing music, you know the song. It used to be science fiction, but it’s not anymore.”

This feat is possible thanks to the discovery that different groups of neurons in the auditory cortex fire more robustly in response to specific tones, and amplitudes. Hit an individual neuron’s sweet spot in the auditory cortex by playing the right tone and it fires robustly. Move away from a neuron’s preferred tone, and the neuron’s firing rate will slow. By training pattern recognition algorithms, Schalk and his collaborators have taught computers to “translate” the neural firing patterns in the auditory cortex back into sound.

Schalk and his Berkeley collaborators are now attempting to discern whether patients are imagining reciting the Gettysburg Address, JFK’s Inaugural Address, or the nursery rhyme Humpty Dumpty just by looking at brain data—and attempting to reproduce it artificially using the same techniques. Eventually they hope to use it to decode the imagined speech of volunteers like Cathy—and eventually patients who are fully locked in and have lost the ability to speak.

Read More At: ScientificAmerican.com

Dogs detect breast cancer from bandage: researchers

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Source: Yahoo.com
Mariëtte Le Roux
March 24, 2017

Paris (AFP) – Dogs can sniff out cancer from a piece of cloth which had touched the breast of a woman with a tumour, researchers said Friday, announcing the results of an unusual, but promising, diagnostic trial.

With just six months of training, a pair of German Shepherds became 100-percent accurate in their new role as breast cancer spotters, the team said.

The technique is simple, non-invasive and cheap, and may revolutionise cancer detection in countries where mammograms are hard to come by.

“In these countries, there are oncologists, there are surgeons, but in rural areas often there is limited access to diagnostics,” Isabelle Fromantin, who leads project Kdog, told journalists in Paris.

This means that “people arrive too late,” to receive life-saving treatment, she added. “If this works, we can roll it out rapidly.”

Working on the assumption that breast cancer cells have a distinguishing smell which sensitive dog noses will pick up, the team collected samples from 31 cancer patients.

These were pieces of bandage that patients had held against their affected breast.

With the help of canine specialist Jacky Experton, the team trained German Shepherds Thor and Nykios to recognise cancerous rags from non-cancerous ones.

“It is all based on game-playing” and reward, he explained.

After six months, the dogs were put to the test over several days in January and February this year.

This time, the researchers used 31 bandages from different cancer patients than those the dogs had been trained on.

One bandage was used per experiment, along with three samples from women with no cancer.

– Saving lives –

Each bandage was placed in a box with a large cone which the dogs could stick their noses into, sniffing at each in turn — four boxes per test.

The exercise was repeated once with each sample, meaning there were 62 individual responses from the dogs in all.

In the first round, the dogs detected 28 out of the 31 cancerous bandages — a 90-percent pass rate, the researchers announced.

On the second try, they scored 100 percent — sitting down in front of the box containing the cancerous sample with their muzzle pressed deep into the cone.

“There is technology that works very well, but sometimes simpler things, more obvious things, can also help,” said Amaury Martin of the Curie Institute, citing the many untested stories of dogs having detected cancer in their owners.

“Our aim was see if we can move from conventional wisdom to… real science, with all the clinical and research validation that this entails.”

This was the proof-of-concept phase of Kdog.

The next step will be a clinical trial with more patients and another two dogs, but the team is still in need of project funding.

Read More At: Yahoo.com

15 Foods You Didn’t Know Are High in Vitamin C

Source: Mercola.com
Dr. Mercola
March 24, 2017

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/art… Vitamin C is a vital component of healthy skin and strong immune system. Eat more of these vitamin C foods to stay fit and healthy. To read health articles, visit Mercola.com.

These Amazing Benefits Are Yours When You Drink Water on an Empty

... Widows & filed under Regional Water Cycle , Water , Water Conservation

[Editor’s Note]

My only contention with the article below is about drinking water before brushing your teeth.  This is because, as Dr. Bruce Fife shared in his incisive book, Oil Pulling Therapy – Detoxifying & Cleaning The Body Through Oral Cleansing, while you are sleeping, throughout the night the mouth generates many bacteria overtime.  If you happen to drink the water before cleansing your mouth, you will simply wash down bacteria into your intestines.  This is problematic because many studies have shown the correlation between bacteria in the mouth, bacteria in the intestines and dozens of diseases.   Just food for thought.
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Source: TheMindUnleashed.com
Christina Sarich
March 19, 2017

What if one of the simplest practices imaginable could crank up your health to a brand new level? What if you could start this practice tomorrow, first thing in the morning, before your eyes have even really opened, before you’ve brushed your teeth, and before you’ve had that coveted cup of coffee? It’s called the water treatment, and the Japanese culture has been practicing it for hundreds of years with some pretty astounding results.

Before I explain exactly how you do this mind-numbingly easy practice, you should know that the Japanese medical society found first-thing-in-the-morning-water-drinking as an assistant to curing the following diseases:

  • Headaches
  • Body Aches
  • Heart Problems
  • Arthritis
  • Bronchitis
  • Asthma
  • Meningitis
  • Kidney and urine disorders
  • Cancer
  • Ear, nose, and throat disease
  • Diarrhea
  • Piles
  • Diabetes
  • Constipation
  • Excess body weight
  • Womb diseases
  • Gastritis
  • Epilepsy

If this sounds like some kind of snake-oil miracle cure, don’t fret, I’ll explain exactly how it works. The Japanese Water Cure, as it has been called, does the following things to your body’s chemical and physiological processes:

  1. Purifies the colon, getting rid of putrefying waste, and allowing the gut to absorb more of the minerals, vitamins, and enzymes we need to be healthy.
  2. Drinking chilled water first thing in the morning creates what is called thermogenesis, whereby the body burns up to 24% more calories throughout the day with the boosted metabolism that results from drinking water as soon as you wake.
  3. Drinking water on an empty stomach balances the lymph system, an important part of your body’s immune function. The water helps to balance the liquids in your body and fight disease more easily.
  4. Increases the production of new blood and muscle cells, invigorating cellular metabolism.
  5. Drinking water alkalizes the body. Cancer cannot exist in an oxygen-rich alkalized body.
  6. Water consumption stimulates the liver and aids in the digestive process. Some say that our guts contain about 90 percent of our health, or lack thereof.

How to Practice the Water Cure

Here are the steps you should take to make sure you get the best results from the water cure:

1. When you wake up in the morning before brushing your teeth, drink 4 x 160ml glasses of water

2. Brush and clean the mouth but do not eat or drink anything for 45 minutes. This allows the water time to filter through the digestive system.

3. After 45 minutes you can eat and drink again.

4. After 15 minutes of breakfast, lunch and dinner do not eat or drink anything for 2 hours.

5. Those who sick or aged, and are unable to drink 4 glasses of water at the beginning of the day may try taking a little water at a time and gradually increasing it to 4 glasses per day.

The following list suggests the number of days of the water treatment should be practiced to address specific health concerns:

High Blood Pressure – 30 days

Gastric – 10 days

Diabetes – 30 days

Constipation – 10 days

Cancer – 180 days

TB – 90 days

Arthritis patients should follow the above treatment only for 3 days in the 1st week, and from 2nd week onwards – daily. (IN other words, start slowly to allow toxins to be cleansed form the joints).

If you are healthy, this healing protocol will simply boost your energy levels, encourage natural, side-effect free detoxification which can boost your mood and help the body recover from the introduction of invaders like viruses or bad bacteria more easily.

Read More At: TheMindUnleashed.com
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Christina Sarich is a musician, yogi, humanitarian and freelance writer who channels many hours of studying Lao Tzu, Paramahansa Yogananda, Rob Brezny, Miles Davis, and Tom Robbins into interesting tidbits to help you Wake up Your Sleepy Little Head, and *See the Big Picture*. Her blog is Yoga for the New World . Her latest book is Pharma Sutra: Healing The Body And Mind Through The Art Of Yoga.