Monday, June 26, 2017
Authors Posts by Rafael Chavez

Rafael Chavez

Rafael Chavez
13 POSTS 1 COMMENTS
I am an Environmental Science Educator at a U.S. University. I have worked in the nuclear weapons industry, the National Laboratories and for various Environmental Remediation and Waste Management clean up projects. My vision is to facilitate environmental understanding and stimulate action towards sustainable relationships with our environment and with each other. I leave you with a quote: The "catastrophe" everyone feels is "... the poignant enormity of our life experience. It includes crises and disaster but also all the little things that go wrong and that add up. The phrase reminds us that life is always in flux, that everything we think is permanent is actually only temporary and constantly changing. This includes our ideas, our opinions, our relationships, our jobs, our possessions, our creations, our bodies, everything." The challenge of being human: to master "the art of conscious Catastrophic Living". Jon Kabat-Zinn

0 856

The catastrophe that awaits the construction of the Nicaraguan canal is the contamination of the fresh drinking water supply for most of the population that comes from Lake Nicaragua. The bottom line is Nicaraguans can have one or the other. As stated by biologists;

“Construction of the canal and conservation of water for human consumption are mutually exclusive – you either have a canal or you have a reservoir of water for the population,”

For this reason I think that the canal will not be built. It is one thing to sell out the country to foreign interests, (the Chinese) in order to bring prosperity; it is totally another issue to purposely take away its water supply.

Clean water is a fundamental right as well as a necessity for life and prosperity. It is the primary job of leaders to insure their people a potable water supply. Unclean and contaminated water represents the #1 cause of health issues in poor tropical regions.

Destroying the water supply is not what a socialist politician like Daniel Ortega, (Nicaragua’s president) wants the people of his country and future generations to remember him for.

The engineers, for what would be the largest engineering project ever built, say they can design systems to keep the salt water out of the lake and avoid contamination. But this would at best, only be true in theory.

It does not factor in risks such as human error, mechanical malfunction and the big ones, earthquakes and hurricanes that are prevalent in this area of the world. Rosy engineering claims can only be based on a scenario where disasters do not happen. We all know however, that they do.

Dams would have to be constructed in the lake for creating the canal’s lock system. As with the Panama Canal, salt water along with pollution from ships would likely infiltrate the areas around those locks. That according to biologists would transform “a free-flowing freshwater ecosystem into an artificial slack-water reservoir combined with salt water.”

This means good-bye fresh drinking water—

canal 2

Global capitalists however and Chinese billionaires need not despair. All can be saved. President Ortega and the Chinese have a plan B.

Plan B

Ortega will grandstand to heroic proportions by canceling the canal due to what would be its horrendous environmental impact to his beloved people and country as well as its unthinkable damage to Lake Nicaragua, its main water supply.

The canal project will continue however as a “dry canal”

The dry canal will consist of a super heavy transport train to link the two coasts and two new super cargo ship ports. The new ports will allow the easy unloading of containers to the train, which would then zip across the country to be reloaded on a waiting cargo ship.

This scenario is the one that makes the most sense. It is much cheaper to build, far less than the estimated 50 -100 billion dollars for the wet canal. It will make Ortega a very popular president and will further his ambitions in the realm of the world’s socialist leaders.

This also explains why the US has not involved itself, or protested in a time of very fragile relations with China and Russia (which has partnered with China on this project). And finally it explains why the canal, (which broke ground in December 2014) has not yet been fully funded, while at the same time The China Railway Company is feverishly working on surveying the route of the railway and access roads.

While there are complex Geo Political agendas at work in the Nicaraguan canal project, (some of which are top secret) this author feels in the end everyone will play nice. China will have another profitable foothold in the West. Nicaragua will prosper and US companies will find their niche as commercial partners. The Americans have already received contracts for media and public relations.

canal 3

 

 

canal 4

0 1049

Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge?
Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?

–T.S. Eliot (The Rock)

Are we lost in information technology? We are blessed to live in an age of unlimited information at our fingertips. We all have the capacity to be connected anytime, anywhere anyplace. Has this made us better citizens and better people? Are we smarter, more fulfilled and happier now that information technologies run our lives?

I say no. That is because it has become less of a useful tool, than an obsession, a distraction. Everyday, people are hit by cars while engaged in their information devices, failing to pay attention to their environment. That points to a lack of wisdom, bordering on stupidity.

Knowledge derived from information, must be useful and practical, where it will make our lives better and helps us to expand and express ourselves. Knowledge as recreation and distraction reduces us to consumers, machines run by and filled with information that is, (at best) of marginal use.

Due to knowledge that leads to no wisdom, we have lost the capacity to discern and transform into practice what is really needed, to be independent, productive, self-actualized thinkers and doers; Personal Wisdom. That is personal wisdom as derived from rich experiences, filled with meaning, not droning information machines.

When was the last time you took a day off from information technology? When was the last time you physically (non cyber) connected to a person, or nature, a higher power or your emotional and spiritual self? Beware the tool becomes the master. We are what we pay attention to.

Ralph14

0 1164
Photo From www.growingbolder.com

Our culture is built for machines, corporations, and the rich – not for the poor and certainly not for the planet and most definitively not for the individual. For most of us our consciousness lies in the collective cultural social mindset. This is just the way our world has evolved and it makes us easy to govern. But what about our spiritual need to self-actualize and make the difference that only we as individuals can make.

What is keeping us from fulfilling our personal mission/vision, our quest? Is it because we are so overwhelmed with information, news, knowledge and external stuff that we no longer know what to do with it, how to process it, or make it useful? Do we then get lost, seemingly trapped in an unfulfilled auto mode lifestyle that comes from ignoring our innate self-expression or self-actualization?

“Upon this gifted age, in its dark hour, falls from the sky a meteoric shower of facts … they lie unquestioned, uncombined. Wisdom enough to leech us of our ill is daily spun; but there exists no loom to weave it into a fabric…”

– Edna St. Vincent Millay

We are all responsible for the weave that we make, from external stuff, (using our self-expression and life experiences) into the fabric of our life. We can weave it as a process of self-actualization, or it can be woven for us as a process of external oppression by economic, social/cultural forces and systems (the collective consciousness). The choice is ours.

The collective consciousness tells us that most of us are not in a position to change the world. Then after being ground down with the challenges of our day to day existence, we accept as fact that we really are not capable of improving the world around us. This is NOT true. As self-actualized individuals, we not only are capable of improving life on our planet, as we learn and grow it will happen automatically. Together it will make all the difference.

Rafa14

 Be great

Feel great

Act the greatness that you are and you will make a difference

“Each time a man stands up for an idea, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope… Those ripples build a current that sweeps down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance.”     – Robert Kennedy

Rafa15

0 1458

The Reality and Root Cause of Global Climate Change (It’s NOT CO2)

The best way to understand why climate change is happening is from the standpoint of pure energy and its movement through the earth’s systems. This is the fundamental element that drives the planet’s climate.

Carbon Dioxide (CO2) is only a form of waste energy stuck in our environment; it’s a symptom of climate woes but not the cause.

What I would like to do is provide a different perspective, (beyond the political and rhetorical) so the average person can gain an understanding of this extremely complex and diversely integrated environmental occurrence.

In simplified terms climate is driven by the earth’s energy systems, which is driven by the suns energy. This can take on different energy forms such as wind, cloud formations, photosynthesis and photochemical ion based reactions. These create atmospheric chemical compounds such as ozone, (O3) and carbon dioxide, (CO2).

The earths energy systems are also influenced externally by the gravity of the moon, creating ocean waves and tides, as well as geologically by the earth’s radioactive energy from its core. This produces the volcanic eruptions and the movement of the tectonic plates, or earth’s crust that greatly influences the energy system that is called our climate.

You can see how very complex climate is, as it involves the flow of energy thru the earth’s systems of atmosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere and geosphere. All of this interacts independently, dependently and most importantly dynamically, as it all shifts and changes moment by moment, as energy in different forms weaves its way in and out of individual systems and synergistically within all systems all the time.

So now you can see why it is so difficult to understand the root causes of even natural climate change. It is even more difficult to measure it, as the changes are happenings so rapidly.

Ralph10

 

What we have to understand is that the extremes of global warming/ cooling that we are experiencing now, are only the symptoms of a far deeper problem. That problem is fundamentally about the energy imbalances of our atmosphere.

Human activity is the “x” factor that is creating these imbalances of energy.

Under normal conditions the earth does a good job of balancing energy and specifically its own energy surpluses. It does this by using the water and wind as fluids to move it around through the planets other systems. This absorbs and balances excess energy within all earth systems, atmosphere, and water, geological and biological.

However it cannot handle the massive surplus energy put into its systems by human activity.

An example of this, is that only about 15 percent of the energy from the fuel you put in your gas tank gets used to move your car down the road. The rest goes into the earths systems, or if you will eventually climate.

The same goes for electricity generation. Less that 41 percent of energy available from coal or gas makes it to your outlet as electricity. Further losses of an additional 10- 25 percent occur during long distance transmissions.

Multiply these by millions of cars and trucks and by thousands of electrical generating stations and you begin to get a grasp of the enormity of the waste energy problem.

Ralph11

 

Natural law tells us explicitly that energy cannot be created or destroyed and is chaotic in its flow and absorption.

So you see it’s not so much about the greenhouse gases, carbon dioxide, ozone and methane that produces global climate change. It is about excess unabsorbed free energy. This turbo charges existing energy driven climate systems, to produce the extreme warming and cooling temperatures, monsoons and droughts that we are currently experiencing.

Think if you will of the earth’s climate miniaturized into as a very large office building. Then think counter-intuitively, that although it may be winter the building needs to be cooled instead of heated.

This is because the human energy, (activity) inside the building creates so much unabsorbed, or free energy, which manifests in this case as heat, that cooling may well be called for to make it comfortable even in winter.

This excess unabsorbed energy is caused by lights, computers, fridge’s, coffee makers, printers, copiers and the fact that every person in the building also gives off heat and vapor energy.

This example represents how excess unabsorbed energy can greatly influence our environment and climate. Until we can find ways of reducing this man made free agent energy, (that is unable to attach itself and be used by an earth system) it will become a radical that will create chaos in our fluid planetary systems and eventually our climate and weather.

We can talk of CO2 being the culprit of our climate woes. Or we can debate how inaccurate the measurement of CO2 is. Or we can ask ourselves why the earth now seem to be cooling and then heating, and why can’t science give us definitive answers?

But the bottom line is very simple.

CO2 is just a symptom of an unhealthy system; the real root cause is our grossly inefficient and clumsy attempts of converting and utilizing energy, the unintended consequences of which are wrecking havoc on our climate and whether patterns.

Ralph12

 This waste energy is what determines climate change.

0 926

Our story begins in the jungle wilderness of Nicaragua, an unmapped, uncharted region with only one road in and out to the outpost village of Wiwili. The native inhabitants of the region, now farmers, were once nomadic tribes who basically resettled to escape the rainy season lasting 8 months in some areas. The native Miskito people are subsistence farmers, who cultivate the deforested mountainsides with corn, beans, rice and some coffee. Most have approx. 4-5 acres of land and a house.   They gather rain water, have no electricity and use outhouses. Photos of their land and homes below

Nicaragua

 

nicaragua1

The Village of Wiwili

Nicaragua2

 I was asked by my friend Fernando to help him take provisions. (that were donated by our townspeople in Jinotega) to these indigenous people. We were responding to a cry for help from the people in Wiwili, as they had lost all their crops and were without food.

Always up for an adventure and especially a goodwill adventure, I agreed. Both of us where intrigued as to how such a prosperous region with fertile land and abundant water could be in crisis to the point where thousands of proud hardworking people were now without any food. We loaded up the “88 Toyota land cruiser with sacks of beans, rice, and corn and headed through 3 hours of dirt roads for the highlands of northern Nicaragua, to the edge of the jungle wilderness and the town of Wiwili.

We arrived in town to be greeted by other volunteers and Red Cross workers also loaded with provisions, while local women created makeshift tent kitchens to begin to feed the hungry.

We were directed to wooden/tin warehouses where we would unload the grains to be distributed to families in future days. The townspeople were surprisingly jovial. Their enthusiasm lifted all of our spirits, as people gathered in crisis, all eager to help each other, get food to those who needed it, and do what we could to insure that this problem would not happen again.

What was this catastrophe due to? Was it pestilence, as in hordes of bugs ate all the crops, or too much or too little rain fall or theft? What caused it? What could we do both short and long term to make things better?

Those were the questions we asked the mayor and the agricultural officials conducting the investigation.

We began by surveying the local farms and talking to the farmers. They attributed the lost corn crop to an infestation of the broca bug, which seemed to have come from nowhere and had never been seen in the area before.

The rice crop, the bean crop and what was left of the corn crop, had fallen to another infestation. This one was of mice and rats. Most of the farmers where convinced that the hordes of rodents was just the capriciousness of nature and God. For them it was just something that happened, that would fix itself and then things would return to normal.

Underlying the rodent problem of these simple farmers, was nature out of balance. Minor occurrences, (such as this one) of the natural imbalances we now all live with happen often. In Wiwili, people rose to the occasion. They are a strong people. They would persevere and eventually all would be well.

It is a beautiful thing when people have an infallible confidence in God and nature. As a scientist however I was not convinced that God or nature was to blame for this catastrophe. What bothered me was the infestation of mice and rats, something was not right here.

Rat

There were two reasons for me to doubt that what happened to these people was a natural occurrence.

One is that I have a farm in the mountains of Jinotega. I seem to be the only one in my area who does not have a problem with mice and rats. The simple reason for this is that I do not kill the snakes that co-exist on my land. They are not poisoned or killed. Instead they live peacefully, eating the mice and rats which are their dietary staple.

While on the other hand the Nicaraguans have a long rooted cultural fear of all snakes. They eliminate them wherever and whenever they show up. I presented my theory to the officials and farmers. And sure enough inquiries revealed that for more than five years the mayor had declared war on all snakes. They people of the town had created a snake free culture in Wiwili and its neighboring communities.

Catastrophe solved. The lack of snakes to keep the rat population in check had caused them to overpopulate, even evolving in size and aggressiveness so that they could break into warehouses in such numbers as to devour the grains and/ or remove them.

Furthermore their droppings contaminated the warehouses and brought flies and bugs from the countryside. Then birds gathered from long distances for a local bug feast. The birds had been the primary protection of the crops from bugs and flies. But once the birds had abandoned the fields, the alien broca bugs invaded the now unprotected land. Then the brocas overpopulated and feasted on the crops of the countryside.

The root cause of the problem was not a naturally occurring imbalance, but one that was created by humans. We failed to follow the laws of nature by disrupting the balance of the biomes and the food chains.

The abundance if nature was synergized into scarcity through our own ignorance, arrogance and willfull blindness. The snakes have now been welcomed back to Wiwili. And all is well and back to homeostasis.

Snake

What are the lessons learned or moral of this story? For me there were many. What are yours? If you have a moment do let me know.

0 511

Politics and Angels – Integrated Organic Nuclear Power Is Our Only Solution

Electricity Demand – We would not be discussing this subject in such detail if there wasn’t a desperate need to do so.

By 2040 electricity demand in the US will increase by 28 percent. Demand is increasing 5% a year worldwide, more so in the developing world.

Energy scarcity is the enemy of development. And renewable power cannot do the job without nuclear also in the mix. Poorer countries are seeking to vastly increase their energy consumption, as their populations get connected to the electrical grid for the first time.

nuc 3.2

Bolivia’s President Evo Morales, center, walks to Congress in La Paz on Jan. 22, 2014. Follow @TIMEWorld, The BBC reports that Bolivia is to build its first nuclear power station. The landlocked South American nation has been offered help from Iran, France and Argentina to develop atomic energy. At his annual State of the Union address in La Paz, the 54 year old President told members of the Bolivian Congress. “Bolivia cannot remain excluded from this technology, which belongs to all humankind”

With such enormous demand growth, it is a joke to think that wind and solar energy sources alone can meet all of our current and future electricity needs. The rising demand is the showstopper here. Wind and solar are clearly feasible and contribute, but are not the long- term solution.

The sun and the wind drive the earthly systems that sustain our planet, but they are not meant to power our factories as we bring production home from China and it’s not enough to power billions of 60” TV’s and computers.

The bottom line is that wind and solar are intermittent sources, power that is variable hourly, daily, or seasonally and geographically dependent. The wind is erratic, never constant. Solar has a peak operation of 6 hours per day and must be stored in batteries to be used at night.

And finally both of these energy sources are deeply subsidized by governments and therefore no one really knows the true cost of the energy produced.

Some experts feel that Fracking and cheap natural gas, burned in modified jet engines is a good solution. But the trade-off is in not meeting the CO2 emission’s protocols for global warming, which many feel are necessary to avoid a future global catastrophe.

While fracking to many seems to be a long- term solution, the problem is the x- factor chemicals used as catalysts to fracture shale rock. Once the top- secret formulas for these chemical catalysts are revealed, people will learn that they are shockingly toxic to water aquifers and US! When this information becomes public the fracking bubble is likely to burst, or become as controversial as Fukushima style nuclear energy.

If the goal is to meet CO2 emissions, than using natural gas for power generation is not the solution.

Or are people going to alter their lifestyles and consume less electricity? That is highly unlikely.

The US government is mainly concerned with the politics of nuclear power. That would be strategic nuclear power, weapons and billion-dollar prototype pressurized reactors that amount to little more than corporate welfare, all well hidden in the Department of Energy’s budget.

President Obama, for example announced $8 billion in loan guarantees for nuclear power, the main objective of which is to create nuclear weapons and cleanup the nuclear waste debacle that the US government created in the first place through its own negligence.

Washington has no time or money for authentic solutions like Organic Nuclear. Is it too much to ask our Department of Energy to work furiously on these elegant, safe and environmentally correct solutions as its top priority and mission, instead of the creation of nuclear weapons, which should belong to the Department of Defense anyway?

Perhaps the best solution would be to buy the weapons from the Russians. They seem to be better than ours anyway and billions will be saved that can be put towards integrated organic Nuclear Power.

Since this is not going to happen, then we need what entrepreneurs call an angel. Someone who can make it happen, who can so to speak bring it to market.

Organic Nuclear Power has its angel and it is none other than Bill Gates. His company TerraPower is working to make traveling wave reactors, that use depleted uranium as fuel and can go as long as a century without needing to be refueled.

In comparison, traditional light-water reactors need to be refueled every few years. Bill Gates is so confident in the project that he plans to invest billions of dollars of his own money into building the reactor. Here is the Bill Gates video that will put it all into perspective.

Toshiba and other companies worldwide are also working on a small-scale, self-contained nuclear reactor that measures only 20 x 6 feet and can produce 200 kilowatt for as long as 40 years without further maintenance. Obviously, Toshiba thinks that the system is safe enough to be installed in cities and hopes to install the first units in Japan next year.

In summary, for our accelerating global power needs we need an integrated solution that would include PV solar, wind and SMR organic nuclear. Together this will bring the reliability and increased production that the energy hungry masses and growing economies of the world are asking for.

This is, as of now our only solution.

Disclaimer: The author has no commercial or financial interest, in Bill Gate’s company TerraPower nor in any SMP nuclear product or component.

nuc 3.3

0 1443

New Generation Small Modular Reactor with Passive Nuclear Safety

A new generation SMR small modular (passively safe) reactor has emerged from the dark ages of the bomb based generation 1 reactors.

nuc 2.4

Organic nuclear power will consist of implementation of these new generation, small modular passively safe reactors which address the major issues surrounding nuclear power: cost, waste, proliferation, safety, and fuel availability.

Fundamentally these reactors are built in the factory and transported to site, lowering construction costs. They are sealed and work for 20-30 years (or more) without needing fuel or maintenance.

At that time they are replaced with a new module. No one can steal the material for bombs or accidentally contaminate the environment, and the waste is sealed in the module.

The reactor is sited in an underground containment vault to provide isolation from the environment, prevent intrusion or tampering, and avoid accidents from human or from natural disasters.

Safety – they are cooled by liquid metals which will shut down automatically in a critical event and the core is contained and sealed by a concrete and steel enclosure which will not allow radiation to escape into the environment.

Passive Nuclear Safety Fuel – Uses readily available enriched uranium pellets in steel rods for protection.

Advanced models will use waste U238 and plutonium. These are today considered to be hazardous nuclear waste and a radiation danger. Thanks to the old style bomb technologies, there is a huge amount of this nuclear refuse all over the world.

See chart below as to the tons of plutonium currently existing by countries (Russia’s stockpile should raise an eyebrow or two).

nuc 2.3

 Stockpiles of U239 weapons grade nuclear material by country

 Using waste U238 and U239 is a brilliant solution that solves our enormous nuclear waste management problem worldwide. It would also provide virtually free nuclear fuel for hundreds of years.

For me the final selling point is that SMRs will not, in any way rely on human operators.

These SMR reactors, (like Oklo natural reactor) are sealed in their own self-sustaining environment. They maintain themselves and are self-regulating.

And finally the best that Organic nuclear offers, is that the SMR’s are part of an integrated power solution that incorporates PV solar and wind farms, that supplement each other to satisfy the varying and increased demand of our modern electrical grid systems.

Overall systems costs are lower than solar or wind alone, because of higher efficiencies, lower construction costs of factory built units and when the deep government subsidies relating to solar and wind are taken into account.

In my mind this is the only reasonable solution, with the least trade-offs to lifestyle, environment and reliability/demand. Integrated Organic Nuclear is our future power source.

Full Disclosure. Neither the author, nor his family, has any commercial relationship with any manufacturer of Small Modular Reactors, nor any products or materials related to them.

To be continued in Part 3,  “Politics and Angels – Integrated Organic Nuclear Power Is Our Only Solution”

0 574

Organic Nuclear Power – Nature’s Model

This story begins in Africa where a natural occurring nuclear reactor has existed for ages producing energy without producing any traces of dangerous nuclear waste. The Oklo reactor is a force of natural laws that has evolved without any human assistance.

Its geological formations that synergized the necessary composition of uranium for fuel, granite rock for excess particle absorption and water for cooling excess temperatures have created the same fundamentals that make-up any man made nuclear reactor.

This geo-physical phenomenon has proven to be an inspiration for the revival of nuclear power for the production of electricity. By studying this process, new generation reactors have been designed that follow nature’s model to produce energy safely without harmful byproducts.

The existence of this phenomenon was discovered in 1972 at Oklo in Gabon, Africa.

The most significant discoveries were that the groundwater passing through the Oklo deposit was a highly effective neutron moderator, but also that its boiling away at times accounted for the self-regulation that protected these natural reactors from destruction.

In this regard, it was extremely effective, allowing not a single meltdown, radioactive contamination to air, water, or earth, or explosion during hundreds of thousands of years.

The fundamental problem of our current nuclear industry, is that it originates from a military, mass destruction, war, industry model. In other words they took a nuclear bomb and made it into a nuclear reactor with minimal concern for by product radioactive waste, and consequent public safety. This was the trade-off, for the promise of virtually free energy for the world.

This government military technology was then tech transferred to industrial infrastructure giants like GE and Westinghouse to build public reactors to produce electricity based on the bomb model, which they did.

These Franken-reactors where the first generation nuclear power plants which suffered from technical and design issues resulting in overheating, meltdowns and release of radioactive material into the environment. These where dangerous machines.

What is Organic nuclear Power?

Let’s begins with what it is not. It is not a synthetic over-designed weapons hand me down. Nor is it a highly political or controversial power source, as is the state of the nuclear industry today. It has not taken a natural occurring physical nuclear process and exploited it to create death machines, weapons of mass destruction.

What it is is a naturally occurring productive energy source, that can exist ecologically in earth’s geological and biological systems.

In a recent national poll, 72 percent of respondents expressed concern about potential accidents at nuclear power plants. Some opinion-makers have encouraged this trepidation: Steven Cohen, executive director of Columbia University’s Earth Institute, has called nuclear power “dangerous, complicated and politically controversial.”

Organic nuclear power, consists of the design and implementation of the passive safety and melt down proof fundamentals and best practices put before us by the Oklo organic nuclear power generation model.

This model will be discussed further in Part 2 – The Organic Nuclear Power Model Unfolded.

nuc pic 2

 

0 715
Photo From www.scmp.com

It has been widely written that the deal that Greece’s finance minister Yanis Varoufakis made with the Eurogroup last week was a defeat, if not a humiliating defeat at least relative to the government’s pre- agreement rhetoric. In reality there was little that Yaroufakis could have done.

He was “negotiating” with words while the Germans were negotiating with a canon. This did not happen because Yaroufakis is the finance minister of a “bankrupt” country, because that is a liability for the Troika, (IMF, The ECB and the European Commission) to whom it owes 80% of its debts, as well as it is to Greece.

The real problem was that the Eurogroup could have shut down the Greek banking system within days, throwing the country into chaos, if Yaroufakis did not ink the deal that Berlin effectively dictated to him.

But all that meant was that Athens got a life line, bridge loan for four months by accepting the status quo that had been agreed to by the old Samaras government, which was wholly owned by the Mega Banks.

In reality Greece was not ready for these negotiations because Syriza had been in office for too short of a time to make adequate preparations. Yet they were forced to go into this hostile environment, (where they were badly outgunned) in order to get the bridge loan, so that they could play for time.

That is now done. It was neither a victory nor a defeat.

The real question is what will, or can Syriza do (when the loan runs its course and they have to negotiate again in June) so they will be able to, best practices blunt any threat of a financial cut off from the Eurogroup?

The key to building a Greek canon, is to fully be prepared for a cut off of financing from the Eurogroup, so that if it were to happen, Athens would be able to minimize the pain to its citizens and prevent financial and social chaos.

The first order of business is that Athens will have to establish currency controls, so that what will be for a time “hard currencies” will not be able to hemorrhage out of the country.

The next key and the more difficult and time consuming step, is to have all things Drachma ready for a seamless changeover should the worst happen. That means that billions of Drachma notes and coins have to be printed and minted. Drachma deposits have to be set up in all Greek banks, even if no real accounts will exist at the time. All computers in bureaucracies have to be set up to accept Drachmas to pay all bills such as utilities, taxes etc.

And a retail system of bill paying has to be set up so the government, businesses and individuals can pay their bills in Drachmas as easily as they now can in Euros.

Syriza has to set up the financial system of the country, so that if the Eurogroup were to cut them, off they could switch over to Drachmas overnight.

But how big and powerful will Athens’ cannon be? Since Greece is a small country, going up against the juggernaut of the Global Anglo Banking Empire, it will be life saving if they could get some help from a well healed friend. And China is always potentially that friend.

So Greek diplomacy over the next four months should be 1/3d in Europe and 2/3ds in Beijing. How much can China help them? And of course at what price? It is a no brainer that Greece and China will both be looking for Chinese investments in the country. But Greece needs China’s help to defend against an immediate danger of a Troika cutoff of funds.

While one can never know just how evil the bankers’ flunkies will be, it is best to prepare for the worst. And the worst would be that after Greece would switch back to Drachmas, Wall Street and London will attack it, (as they just tried to do against the Russian Ruble) trying to make the new currency worthless. That would create more and deeper chaos and financial misery in the country, (while making an example of its people) to instruct others as to what will happen to them should they try and flee their Euro debt prison.

China with its trillions of dollars in fire power can do two things to help. First Beijing can guarantee convertibility of the new currency into the fully convertible Chinese RMB. And secondly China can back the Drachma against a likely speculative attack of the Mega Banks, the way it did the Ruble, which ended the Ruble’s slide.

Then the Greek people need to be fully prepped that the June negotiations may not be successful and that they are going to have to get ready for what might be a huge shock. But they should also be told that after the shock, things should stabilize and improve. That would mean that whether the negotiations are successful or not, the Troika and ECB will no longer rule their lives.

This will be a HUGE message to Washington as well. Because it will ask Obama whether he REALLY wants NATO member Greece to leave the Euro Zone and perhaps look to become the first European member of the BRICS?

If proper preparation is done by Syriza they should come to the next round of negotiations locked and loaded. Then they can shut the mouth of the infinitely arrogant German finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble, who crowed after he backed down a powerless people by threatening to throw them into financial chaos; ““Being in government is a date with reality, and reality is often not as nice as a dream”

If Syriza does its homework and particularly if it can a get a little help from a friend, Schaeuble and the Eurogroup bullies are going to learn that the knife of reality cuts both ways.

But Syriza is going to have to get serious. If Greek Prime Minister Tsipras thinks for one moment that his people can get on their hands and knees to bankers and beg them to be kind, or worse threaten them with nothing more than words, then he is going to be fully humiliated in June.  And unless Tsipras gets the message very soon, that all these bankers and Eurocrats understand is power, then Syriza will become a laughing stock both at home and in the rest of the continent.

The ball is in the court of Greece’s leadership and people. Let’s see how they play it. The whole world is watching.

2 2283

Right after 911 I was on a good will mission to the Native American pueblos in New Mexico, (The Navajo Nation). That is the third world right inside of the United States.

Ralph4a

A bit of background. At the time I was employed by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, providing hardware, software, internet and training support computers and technology to rural library programs in the state of Montana.

In a staff meeting we were discussing how dis-connected some rural libraries were and how it changed the community once connected.

I happen to mention the Pueblo communities of New Mexico, where previously I worked as an Outreach Teaching Fellow and Science Advisor. In these communities approximately half the population lived in earth Hogan’s, (see photo below). They have no running water, indoor toilets, telephones or electricity.

Ralph5

The community school had no Internet. They did have diesel generated electricity. Teacher duties included supervising mandatory showers to remove lice and fleas from students daily, as well as rattlesnake duty, where all school property was surveyed for snakes and when found removed.

And finally to put it all in perspective, the average yearly income per Hogan was around $3000. No one could believe me. This is the USA. This cannot be happening. Needless to say funds and staff were dispatched immediately.

I had occasion to talk with the governor and elder of the Pueblo community. I asked her if she had been following the 911 situation? Her response was surprising and for me life changing, she replied; ‘That is your world not mine. I have nothing to say about it”.

Upon querying her further she said: “Just as we each create our relationship with the earth and the god force, we must also create our relationship with our world” and “again what you mentioned has nothing to do with my world, Excuse me I must go”.

I leave you to ponder the significance of that statement which for me was an epiphany.

Ralph6

Perhaps “that is your world not mine”, summarizes our general consensus attitudes about our external world, which includes our values and beliefs about war, poverty, social justice and global climate change to name a few.

If it is not our business and bread and butter, then perhaps it is the problem of government, corporations, politicians and scientists who are in charge and work on these issues? And finally if your opinion mattered and you were asked about these issues would you in all honesty reply; “that is your world not mine”, and is it, really?

This experience in this Native American community affected me greatly, as I began to examine the depth and breadth of my personal worldview, or my philosophy for living. It made me evaluate, or more precisely re-evaluate my perspectives on government, corruption, social justice, freedom, nature/environment and my relationships and daily interactions with these.

Ralph7

But mostly it reminded me of the utmost importance of how an individualized authentic worldview is critical for our days of catastrophic living. What is your “Worldview”?

Authors

Arman Matthews
35 POSTS1 COMMENTS
0 POSTS0 COMMENTS
Rafael Chavez
13 POSTS1 COMMENTS
Robert
375 POSTS135 COMMENTS

STAY CONNECTED

LATEST