I joined here on Nov 9, 2003, coming here as a "Clarkie". Unfortunately the smartest guy in the room didn't make the cut. Over the years most of my diaries have drifted away from politics and towards peace making. I have tried to highlight the individuals and groups that in their own small way are trying to make a better world through their efforts.
One of my favorites is APOPO and their HeroRats.
APOPO's trained Mine Detection Rats (MDRs) provide a cheap, efficient and effective solution to the global landmine problem. The framework for all of APOPO’s mine action support is to develop and utilize appropriate and efficient land release methodology that will enhance the work of APOPO and potential partner organizations.
APOPO offers second-line screening to our partner hospitals, which has increased new case detection rates in partner hospitals and DOT centers by over 30 percent. Our detection rats technology meets the seven top priorities required for a diagnostic method, as determined by the TB diagnostic group of the World Health Organization.I adopted a HeroRat several years ago for $7 a month, best automatic withdrawal I've got.
I was a member of Veterans For Peace for many years and engaged in rallies, marches, counter recruiting, meeting with elected representatives and the other activities you would expect from a bunch of peaceniks.
The Sight Program is LaunchedHaving been blind for 8 years, they struck a chord with me.
Dr. Grasset introduced the group to Dr. G. Venkataswamy, a retired eye surgeon in India known as "Dr. V" who was just setting out to fulfill his vision of making cataract surgery as "ubiquitous as McDonalds," and therefore affordable to the poor. That was the beginning of Seva's partnership in the high-volume eye clinic that would become the internationally known Aravind Eye Care Systems.
Since then, Seva programs have helped 3.5 million people to see again. In just the past year, Seva's Sight Program has provided one million people with eye care services worldwide.
And then there is Playing For Change.
Playing for Change is a multimedia music project, created by the American producer and sound engineer Mark Johnson with his Timeless Media Group, that seeks to inspire, connect, and bring peace to the world through music. Playing For Change also created a separate non-profit organization called the Playing For Change Foundation, which builds music schools for children around the world.They lift me up when I'm down.
After 10+ years here, every day seem to be groundhog day, a Deja Vu all over again. Sure there's been some wins for the good guys and gals, but mostly its the same old shit. Stupid people getting on TV and given credibility, endless war, stupid people with guns, workers getting screwed, corporation getting away with murder, governments getting away with murder, etc..
I'm getting old. I'm sort of stuck where I am because of some medical issues. And I'm tired of the same old BS. So instead of engaging in issues which, although I'm reasonably knowledgeable about, are not going to change, I'll content myself with throwing out a pithy quote in the comments, post a funny picture or post a music video that might have some relation to the subject matter.
Aging bitter Vietnam Veteran
Repentant ex member of Murder Inc.
Southeast Asia Division
Our motto, "Kill Anything That Moves"