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Archive for July, 2010

President Obama’s DOE released a nuclear weapons stewardship plan as part of its 2010-2011 budget that manages to spend more money on fewer warheads. Or will there be fewer?  Because along with reducing the nuclear arsenal 40-50 percent (but with budget numbers $2 billion higher than for the full arsenal) it includes an additional $8 billion ($175 billion over the next 20 years) on” new weapons production, testing and simulation facilities…That price tag does not include the cost of maintaining and operating nuclear weapons delivery systems, which are covered by the Department of Defense budget.” (quote from the Federation of American Scientists.)

This is yet another example of do what we say, not what we do. YOU must cut back on your nuclear stockpiles, and YOU must not start nuclear weapons program. But WE are special, WE need to be able to build new nukes really really fast if another bad guy shows up.

Or WE need to keep some politicians and defense contractors really really happy.

And exactly where is all the nuclear waste from this program going to? I’m pretty ticked off, Mr. Obama. My grandson just turned five, and this is the gift you’re giving him?

Y-12 Nuclear Weapons Complex protest

At least some folks keep up the fight to make US pay attention:

http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2010/jul/05/nuclear-weapons-protested/

Photo courtesy of The Nuclear Resister

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Yesterday was my grandson’s 5th birthday party. I asked him if he was excited to be five. He gave a little shrug and said, “Um, ya see, it’s a lot like being four.”

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This is a video I took at the 2006 International Assembly of Nonviolent Peaceforce in Nairobi Kenya. Nobel Peace Laureate  & NP supporter Mairead Maguire led us in a tree planting ceremony at the end of the gathering. (Sorry for the big flickr label, just click play.)

Mairead is a warm, generous and wise woman. I was thrilled she took time to chat with me, and she offered advice which I’ve taken to heart and action. She knew I was going to be carrying responsibility on an international level, and told me to “remember, family comes first, then  your local work, and then doing  international work.”  And so for me, for now, it’s back to family because I’m needed. And while I’m sad to lose the Peaceforce community, I feel good about my choice to turn toward home.

I’ve also come to realize how important my friends are. Friends from school, from my peace and nonviolence work, from my day job, friends who are also family, neighbors…whatever work I do, in the end, as Mairead says, it’s about the friends I’ve walked with.  My deepest gratitude to all of you.

truth, love and friends

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I found another quote, this time written in a black and white faux marbled mini-notebook that I bought at Walgreen’s a few years ago, three for a dollar.

I almost remember watching a c-span show about Willa Cather and scrambling to find something to write the quote in. Found a page in the middle of “things to pack” and a Christmas shopping list.

“That is happiness, to be dissolved into something complete and great.”

I often lose exact words between hearing and writing, so I questioned… Did she say dissolved? Not absorbed? But of course a web search says dissolved. Dissolve to be happy.

How many of us manage to find that kind of happiness? Perhaps we all do, in brief consuming moments after which we reconstitute into our normal solidified selves.

Can we learn to stay longer in that dissolving completeness?

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