Failing children

Jan
31
2011
by
Lynne McTaggart
/
46
Comments

I’ve just returned from a Transformational Leadership Council conference in New Orleans.  Although I had a wonderful time and celebrated my birthday surrounded by friends and the Big Easy’s Dixieland music, I have to say that I was shocked by what I saw and read while I was there. 
During our visit, we drove around some of the areas that had been hit by Hurricane Katrina.  Naturally, I was disturbed by the devastation still apparent in some quarters, which the richest country in the world had not rebuilt more than five years after the disaster. Nevertheless, that was not the main source of my alarm. What shocked me most was the nature of my country’s statistics these days.
 While I was there, USA Today published an editorial about the state of today’s American children, in raw numbers, which were so bad that the newspaper had to keep reiterating that the figures were not misprints:

  • One-third of American students either drop out or don’t finish high school.
  • Three-quarters of all American children are ineligible for military service for one reason or another: poor health, drug-taking, criminal records or low level of education
  • Twenty-three per cent of all young people who try to enlist in the services fail the basic entrance exam
  • One third of all children are either overweight or obese
  • Forty-one per cent of American children are born out of wedlock (nope, not a misprint).  This includes:
  • 73 per cent of black children
  • 53 per cent of Hispanic children
  • 29 per cent non-Hispanic white children.

Gun deaths
I then had a look at Time magazine’s statistics on gun violence, in the wake of the Arizona shooting.  In any given year:

  • More than 100,000 Americans are shot in murders, assaults, suicides or accidents or by police intervention
  • 31,224 people die from gun violence
  • 12,632 people are murdered
  • 17,352 people kill themselves
  • 3,067 children and teenagers die from gun violence.

This translates into 268 people who are shot for any reason every single day.
Many pundits on both the left and right have been quick to finger the obvious suspects, whether lack of marriage (the right) or poverty (the left).  Creating and sustaining commitments in relationships, fighting poverty, cracking down on guns and improving schools are all definitely to be applauded.  But they are only part of the problem. 
The death of American society
The real problem with America, as indeed most of the nations in the west, is that it is no longer a country, in the sense of a cohesive society.
Increasingly it is fragmenting into enclaves of the very wealthy and the very poor, in which the driving force is every man, woman and child for himself.  Indeed, I recently came across a gated community, nestled behind an elaborate front gate, which has unapologetically labeled itself ‘The Enclave.’
In this polarized situation, everyone suffers, billionaire and single mother alike. Two British epidemiologists, Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett, spent more than thirty years painstakingly examining why certain human societies live longer and healthier than others, the results of which are contained in their remarkable book, The Spirit Level: Why More Equal Societies Almost Always Do Better.
After researching the social conditions of virtually every Western country, Wilkinson and Pickett discovered an astonishing statistic: the more unfair a society—which is to say, the more economically unfair and hierarchical—the worse off everyone is, both rich and poor, in terms of virtually every social problem.
Everyone suffers
In countries with great income disparity between the very rich and the very poor, both the most affluent and the very poorest suffer from higher rates of ill health, crime, mental illness, environmental problems, and violence.
The United Kingdom, the United States, and many countries in Europe, with their vast differences between rich and poor, are among the worst off in virtually every social indicator compared with countries like Japan and Sweden, which have less wealth disparity in the population.
Although one of the wealthiest countries in the world with half the world’s billionaires, America has far and away the highest level of all social problems—crime, lack of education, mental illness, suicide, disease of all varieties, and the United Kingdom has the third highest.
Although one in every thirty-nine Americans is a millionaire, one in seven, or 39.1 million Americans, live below the poverty line.
One quarter of American have been diagnosed with mental illness—the highest percentage among the most advanced developed countries—compared to less than one in ten in Germany, Japan, and Spain.
Unfairness indicators
Although the United States spends nearly half the entire world’s expenditure on health for only 5 per cent of the world’s population, a baby born in the U..S has a 40 per cent higher risk of dying during its first year than a baby born in Greece.  Greece is one of the poorest countries in Europe, where the population makes half as much on average and the country spends half as much on health care, as the U.S.
Furthermore, that Greek baby can expect to live 1.2 years longer than the American.
Fairness indicators have nothing to do with the amount of public and governmental expenditure that aims to redistribute wealth and equalize society. For instance, New Hampshire has the lowest levels of social problems in the whole U.S., and it also has one of the lowest public expenditures of any state. New Hampshire simply does not have a huge disparity between the income of its richest and poorest inhabitants.
We have lost the very basis of our society, established from our pioneer days and often referred to as the ‘wagon train morality’.  It was the promise not to leave any bodies behind. 
The U.S. newspapers were also reporting on the American politicians who have been attempting to score cheap points in Congress by reading out the American Constitution.  We might all do well to study it carefully, particularly the first line.  America, and indeed many countries, can only see its way out of its current mess by embracing a larger definition of ‘we’ to mean what it originally meant:  all the people.

Lynne McTaggart

Lynne McTaggart is an award-winning journalist and the author of seven books, including the worldwide international bestsellers The Power of Eight, The Field, The Intention Experiment and The Bond, all considered seminal books of the New Science and now translated into some 30 languages.

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46 comments on “Failing children”

  1. The transfer of the western industrial base to the east, and the lack of organised labour, and fair labour laws in the US has suppressed wages, while at the same time vastly increasing the power of huge banks. People who owned their homes were encouraged to use the equity by taking out loans and this practice for a long time hid the loss of wealth caused by the exit of the industrial base. Eventually that bubble had to burst and now it has. The country is bleeding away money in two wars, and on political foreign aid. The US spent $785 million just training the Lebanese army. The political system is so broken that no meaningful reforms can take place. There are some very rich people such as Bill Gates who are really trying to help, but so many of the rich and powerful simply sit on their hands or encourage the system as it is. The propaganda machine controlled by Rupert Murdoch seems determined to maintain the staus quo and they have been enormously successful in transferring the anger away from the real culprits and on to others who are trying to reform the system. I see no hope for the US, unless and until, the vast majority of the people recognise the truth of what is going on. That does not appear likely any time soon. So many of them have never seen conditions outside their own state, let alone the country, and people who try to educate them, such as Michael Moore are simply vilified. It looks like a sad end to something that started out so well. Money and mens greed, have ruined what was a beeautiful dream.

  2. Thank you for speaking so clearly and plainly Lynne. Although your information refers to the USA, the truth is Australia heads down the same path as fast and as hard as it can go.
    I would wish with all my heart for the people to rise up and insist their government act correctly and properly on their behalf. Anything else is treason against the country by the Government.

  3. It is so depressing to read these statistics, i live in Portugal where it is just the same. Yes, we do need to all do something very serious very quickly, our youth are suffering because of the baby boom generation who want it all and dont want to parent!! Children are exposed to mindless violence every day , corrupt governments and selfish people...we need to help people who are in trouble...families need to stick together .Sad times are ahead i am afraid.

  4. What keeps America going, despite all the inequalities between people is hope that anyone can become rich. And when they do, they sure don't want to pay any taxes. Crazy isn't it?

  5. I've given the website of the film I'm editing at the moment. I'm not the writer, I'm the video editor and commited to the underlying message of it's intention which is held in the Gandhi phrase 'be the change that you want to see in the world'.
    I think given the place and times we find ourselves in these statistics are not surprising. They merley confirm what a lot of people already know and feel. I think more, it's about a sense of alienation from what's important in life. By far the most important media is still television. Despite the immense advance of alternative thought, knowledge, information, which is actually all there on the internet, not many tap into it let alone begin to see it could make a change in our lives. I think it was Buckminster Fuller who said that 5 mins of prime time television could change the world more quickly than any other form. Unfortunately now, the mainstream media is totally controlled by the controlling elite and where there's any forsight it's usually self censored before it probably even gets voiced. I would suggest though that anyone whose working within the mainstream media who has any sense of how this world could change and the speed with which it could once the information began to be diseminated in the kind of way it needs to be should be dilligently working to make it happen. This is just my thought for the day. Good luck with all your work.

  6. I am a mental health practitioner. The problem these societies have, particularly Western society is addiction to the ego, which manifests every single character defect of what is referred to Biblically as the seven deadly sins.
    The only cure is spiritual awakening...
    Spiritual Enlightenment.
    Spritual Education.
    Spiritual Enpowerment.
    Hence, God-consciousness.
    Spiritual studies that teach that men and women are co-creators (The Secret and others), have caused this polarization.
    Only God is God. God gave man dominion over the Earth, however, man is the potential of God's Son, not God as Creator.
    We need to get the First Commandment in check!

  7. I applaud Wikileaks. Facebook,Twitter and My Space seem to be all about entertainment and fairly useless.. Nevertheless,the net is a place anyone can go to find relevant info on world affairs easily. We are all in this together. The higher(forced) education system, used to pass ridiculous standardized tests, is just too much for young people who don't have the time to explore who they are creatively and artistically. The competition and fear of not getting equal grades have kids committing suicide in Korea from not being good enough and feeling worthless. All this education for what?...no jobs. I believe this will be the year people go nuts whether rioting in the streets and /or corrupted officials and businessmen finally being exposed in the open. It has to start somewhere on a large scale and will cause great hardships for a year or two. It has to happen this way for things to change. The revolution will need to be spiritual and I believe the US will have to be the worldwide example. The collective shadow of the world will be exposed and we must individually process our own to begin lifting the darkness that surrounds humanity. It's not even a moral issue or hoping "everything will be alright again". It won't! It's all lie to entrap us. Complacency only gives evil it's strength. Wait for the next 911,which will happen, and watch the stock market go belly up.Love your animals and neighbors,however difficult it might seem at times.

  8. Hi Lynne,
    Thanks for writing your blog.
    As a Canadian I have lived my whole life as a flea next to an elephant. Everything in my country follows the US.
    The distance in time for adopting American ways was 5 to 10 years in the 1950-60's and now the distance has shrunk to moments.
    Americans have become very hard on themselves. Lets not forget the entire world owes the US a huge dept of gratitude and respect. This US economy and it's people have build the economy of the "entire" world and lifted billions of people out of poverty. After WW11 to even today, every place of prosperity on this planet has come from American encouragement if not facilitation. All other systems have failed miserably for their people.
    I think, and believe, things are as they should be. We are growing and evolving and we will acquire the skills and the training to deal with our collective reality in the appropriate amount of time and at the right time. This is not make-believe, this is intention!
    The tsunami of change is gathering force and speed and we must seek to speak to as many people as we can, without evoking old frightening stereo types. Living in a heaven or a hell is an intention at the basis of existence. You could even call in a Karma.
    Those who despair over these statics must keep in mind the mentality that the Germans or the Japanese in May 1945, had, when they thought this was the end of the world.
    Looking back, and that's what this trauma causes,
    they started to ask and to seek out a re-birth. And look what the USA gave birth to, and it's still doing it today with China.
    Let's be honest. The "gravitas" represented by the US is not imaginary... it's real.
    Where in a NEW world. Stop worrying and have faith.
    Ross

  9. Why does the poor common man in USA suffer ?
    Why do some guys get richer?
    punch into google search THE MURKY SECRETS OF INFLATION AND GLOBALISATION, VADAKAYIL.
    first , be ready to get surprised!
    I have been visting US ports since the past 38 years as a ship captain.
    My cadet's first foreign port was Carville , deep in Missisipi river in Aug 2010. He has a vision of USA , by watching countlesss serials like the "bold and the beautiful " on TV.
    I dont want to write what he said after he came back fom shoreleave-- for he was mugged by a huge guy with a gun.
    CAPT AJIT VADAKAYIL
    ..

  10. These figures are plainer when they are not
    wrapped up in %.
    Fact id the US is a bankrupt country as are all other countries.
    It's to do with the money and the fraudulent actions of the hierarchy of the banking systems worldwide.
    Its to do with the press who only print the news when it CAN'T be hidden any longer.
    They tell nothing but scare stories and also
    salacious gossip.
    There is the truth to be found on youTube and worse still much disinformation and
    misinformation is mixed so much that it is
    hard to tell what IS the truth any more.
    Aaron Russo made a serious documentary called 'The Money Masters' anyone can watch
    in 22 parts on youTube - but try telling
    people about that and they will accuse you of being a conspiracy nutter. They are just about to find out when the dollar et al gets massively devalued. The governments want you to think of aliens, fema camps and other major threats to survival to distract people and terrify them to death.
    It's going to be up to us individually now to correct the situation which can be done. There are more of us than there are of them albeit sick and sleepy.
    We have to adopt comon law and start asking
    questions en masse of anyone in government.
    The thing is that they are, at lower levels schooled to believe what they are told as well.
    So if you ask them questions they have to find out the truth.
    We the people are schooled to believe that the only help will come from the 'authorities'
    You just try to tell them and they will say
    "What can I do? if I protest I'll lose my job
    or end up in prison - I have a mortgage/family to feed."
    Protest is no good anyway the governments just do not have any money other than which the people create with their toil. It's not enough to pay the governments' "national debt". It is not the people's debt believe me.
    So they want twice as much and devaluing (printing fraudulent paper notes & bonds) is their only recourse to maintaining their control, based on deception, force and the ongoing theft of the people's wealth.
    Find out the truth and ask questions.
    And there's no point being scared or worried because we need all the health and presence of mind we can muster.
    And love.
    Jackie

  11. thnx lynne for again bringing relevant specifics. what does this mean in terms of the Field? it must be something like, it's not out there, the media, the gov't,.... rather, it's in here, my distortion is what's causing all that distortion out there. and i'm evolving. it's my responsibility and my destiny and my bliss to take it all into my heart and live from there, not to add to the negatiity by imposing judgments on the world as it appears, but taking responsibility for my consciousness in this moment.
    love,
    michael

  12. I believe Rose has hit the nail on the head. Everything is as it should be for the evolution of mankind. Be prepared and don't worry. Mr. Milton and his friend Michael Moore would have us believe they are the sole custodians of the truth. Typical elitist agenda.
    Thanks Lynne, for providing such an interesting forum.

  13. My maternal parentage has been rooted in a gentle faith that my Swedish immigrant great-grandparents brought with them to Montgomery County, Iowa just after the turn of the twentieth century. Primarily Swedish Lutherans and members of the Swedish Covenant Church, they regarded religion as a necessary component of civil society.
    William Bennett expressed it best in 1992 when he wrote: “Religion is a wellspring of the civic virtues that democracy requires in order to flourish, At its best, it promotes hard work and individual responsibility. It lifts each citizen outside himself and inspires concern for community…. It is a call for kindness, decency and forgiveness in our homes, our schools, and our communities. At the same time, it offers a sense of purpose and a frame of reference that transcends everyday politics….”
    During the twentieth century, contrary to the beliefs of America’s Founding Fathers, the intellectual elite of the United States in collusion with their peers of Europe declared war on all religion, not just the institutions that used it for purposes of self-aggrandizement, misapplied power and behavioral control over the masses which was rightfully challenged. No, unfortunately the reformers and liberalizers went too far and tossed out the Baby Jesus with the bath water, so to speak.
    Looking back from my present perch in the early twenty-first century, I can see how unbelievably devastating this philosophic rebellion was to the common folk of society. From the years 1900 to 2000, over one-hundred million human beings, the meek and the ‘salt of the earth’ were slain by the arbiters of the new atheistic enlightenment.
    It is no wonder that we must now contend daily with the golems, demons and ghostly manifestations of humanity’s moral bankruptcy.
    The time is nigh for a new world, a new awakening of the Sacred Spirit that created this universe in which we all participate.

  14. It`s a mad , mad , mad world .
    Division and isolation of any part of society inveriably leads to discord , fragmentation and eventually disintegration of the whole of that society .
    Mankind as an organism cannot be healthy if any one part of it is left to decay through indiverence and fear .
    Fear leads to fragmentation . The haves fear losing what they possess to what they see as the great mob , uncivilised hordes . While the have nots fear being trampled under the feet of the haves , being turned into modern day slaves to a welfare state that determines their ability to continue living healthy lives . This frustration leads to isolationist communities born of fear springing up in responce to the perceived danger they see . The poor feel alienated even more on seeing this , and see revelutionary change through violent action as their only recourse . Look at world history , the evidence is clear to see : cycle after cycle .
    As the author Frank Herbert wrote : " Fear is the mind killer , the little death . "
    Mankind must become a cohesive whole if we are to grow and expand in a positive and mutually beneficial direction .
    Why do we continue to repeat the horrors of the past ? I personally think that only the power of collective thinking whose genesis is love and non violence can solve this current cycle of destructive human actions .
    Inequality balances the scales of harmony . A

  15. Why are we sitting back and waiting for the government to rebuild? It's because the people that has not rebuilt were already living off the government,we have become a people of welfare. If the government is paying why do I need my neighbor? That also means that my neighbor is expendable. When we became a nation that looked to the government for our answers we lost our reason to do better.

  16. Lynn
    I think that this report will shed some light on more accurate stats for your information on dropouts. I agree, dropout rates are high, but I
    know that dropout rates in 1967 were still at around 30% (a 70% graduation rate). My work involves working with children and teens who are identified by many as the troublemakers or delinquents. Some do a turn around that is remarkable, others struggle. There is always lots of blame to go around...... Worldwide there is a crisis of no work for the young people who are coming out of school, much less those who dropped out of school. Youth are asking what is the meaning of life, what can they do that is important. How can they make a difference. Fortunately there are still people who care and who work for change.
    Under the stats from Time Magazine for gun deaths, please be aware that other stats from the NY Times cite 81 deaths per day....horrible still, but less than 268. The stats are all over the place, depending on who you read, etc. The reality and bottom line is that the US is a country where guns are easy to obtain and used for criminal activity daily. The mix of a large and disenfranchised young population and easy access to guns is not a good formula for ensuring peace.
    I encourage everyone to get involved with their community and identify themselves as a being a force of active change.
    I too am angry at the culture of greed and hidden agendas of the powerful. Anger can eat away at one's soul if no productive action is taken. Rage or possibly apathy can set in, neither emotion being particularly productive.
    Thanks for your blog. Always thoughtful and stimulating. Hope to see you at the ACEP conference.
    Nancy
    http://www.edweek.org/media/cities_in_crisis_2009.pdf

  17. Hi Lynne, most of us have always believed that life revolved around money and hoped to get "rich" at some point. The problem with our way of thinking is that the Earth holds our future, we have heard about the demise of the dinosaurs and history will repeat itself again, after all, we are 2nd generation dinosaurs. To put it simply, the Earth cannot support the amount of human life that currently exists for much longer. The commerce that exists today is built on the same principle as network marketing (growth) and commerce was never in the Creator's Plan to begin with, it is wrong! We are soon going to hit the wall and only those who are attached to the Earth will survive, and they will be few. We have forgot what is real physically and Spiritually and have allowed commerce and religions to blind us. Until we overcome our blindness things will continue to fall apart and the suffering will be beyond all expectations of mankind. Those who have built their lives around success and $$ are soon to be in for a rude awakening!

  18. Nice post, Bob... and I agree.
    There is no more "room" left in our collective for PRIDE. The spiritual elite are no different from the academic or political elite.
    Deflation of the collective ego is the ONLY THING that will help restore balance.
    Humility, please!

  19. As I read the comments here as well as your blog Lynn, which is awesome by the way, it dawns on me that as necessary as awareness is with regard to changing the many things happening in the world, it's also vitally important that the masses hold the mindset of moving forward, creating "desirable change" and keeping their eye on what's possible. I fully agree with Ross yet at the same time action by the collective is equally important as believing and having faith. Faith without works is dead.
    My perspective as to what Ajit asks...
    Why does the poor common man in USA suffer?
    Why do some guys get richer?
    Because they choose to. Unconscious choices perhaps but choices nonetheless. There are no "common" people...only perceptions and beliefs of commonality which creates inaction resulting in"common results" that the vast majority experience.
    Denis Waitley said it best...
    "It's not what you are that holds you back, it's what you think you're not."
    Faith and abundance is ALL there is in the physical and non-physical world. What we choose to look at, perceive and believe is a projection of faith, yet a fear based faithfocus combined with inaction can only allow an abundance of "less than desired" results. The process NEVER fails. It's the collective focus that creates "perceived" failures whether economically or otherwise. Faith never fails and the abundance of results that show up are always a mirrored reflection of that choice.
    There's much "data" available on the web of every conceivable quality. "Fear based" and the polar opposite. It's only data and useless unless and until someone "chooses" to move and take action. The doors we can knock on are Infinite in nature and those we knock on open without fail. The answer is knocking "consciously and intentionally" and choosing to enter into the room, and then doing something that aligns and harmonizes with what we desire to see.
    Collective power begins at the individual level. It's quite easy to fret and worry and fear and doubt and the way most "choose" to do things all the while wondering why the world is "going to hell in a handbasket." They "choose" to remain limited by fear, creating inaction due to paralysis by analysis which unfolds in the world around us just as we choose.
    The "tangible shift" is going to happen when we as individuals quite focusing on what is feared and DO something individually that aligns and harmonizes with what we'd "love" to see. Waiting for the world to change and waiting for the collective to DO something isn't going to "allow" the world to change. Nothing will ever "get done."
    Creating change is a choice and it begins at the individual level. Go DO something today that aligns and harmonizes with what you "desire" to see and you'll "see" a massive transformation in the world.
    Thanks for what you DO Lynn. It's a powerful and much needed contribution. If everybody else would "step up to plate" and DO their part fear and less than desired "conditions" will become a thing of the past.

  20. In education, I am terrified by the things I see. We have very talented children who can't read and write - this is simply a time bomb. These children are labelled with various learning difficulties that have recently been escalated in the UK to Learning Disabilities. These are very talented children who learn visually and are thoroughly confused by our education system that is designed for purely auditory learning. We know exactly how to change this, the challenge is getting people to listen. Just imagine how it would change the world if almost everyone could read and write well - more engagement, less frustration, less anger, etc, etc. I believe our children are here to teach us, -help them to learn in the way that best suites them.
    You may be interested in the International Association for Health and Learning http://www.tiahl.org that shares my mission to achieve dramatic improvements in literacy.

  21. The U. S. Constitution was established from the concept of individual freedom, not social justice. Justice is of God, not society, and is for the individual to decide by free-will.
    A goverment trying to control the will of a people is just another way of control not unlike numerous organized religions, theocracy by men to control men.
    It's the governments we don't see manipulating those we do that need to brought out into the light. The shift is drawing near.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gFtHIFXZ6Fk

  22. Don't let statistics scare you, There are Higher Powers are work here. Look for the Good it is all around you. Before you can fill your cup you must empty it... Let us choose Love, Good Will and Charity to fill it with 😉

  23. Giving deference to both Sweden & Japan, Americas problem is a Spiritual one. The family stats tell the story. Broken homes=moral decay. America has failed its Spiritual Convent Relationship with that which Created (I hear the great IS does not like to be called GOD any more. The PR Department up stairs says that has a bad rap.
    The fact is we have sacrificed our moral covenant responsibility, our God Given Freedoms & have according to my Scriptures become Babylon The WHORE that sits on the many waters & causes the nations to SIN. I suggest you read about the outcome of such a thing.
    Lynn I do follow your books & positive thinking but it is not a substitute or a stand in for the power of the Creator or what he has charged us with
    PS I am not a adherent of the Church of Constantine i.e Christian Religion. I do fellowship in SPIRIT with all true believers who fellow God's commandments, Love your neighbors as you should love yourself, where ever they are.
    Peace & Blessings throughout all Eternity,
    Mike H.

  24. I'm reminded of the time that I spent in New Zealand a little over a year ago. The people there were all friendly and very welcoming to many different kinds of people -- tourists. There is very little hierarchical feel to their country as there isn't the disparity of wealth that we have in the US.
    I wonder if, and when, the West will shift to a less hierarchical wealth system, or if maybe it will be forced into a less hierarchical wealth system.
    Only time will tell...
    With Love and Gratitude,
    Jeremiah

  25. I found one of the most interesting things in Lynne's blog to be the paragraph about New Hampshire. They spend the LEAST on government social programs - and have the FEWEST social problems and the MOST social equality. Could it possibly be that the more we focus on problems the larger they grow?

  26. perhaps we should hold a mass meditation to end greed...that would seem to solve everything.

  27. Thanks Lynne.
    We all have a duty to make a difference to these stats. My poem below gives my take on it.
    Universal Eyes
    What to you see? What human landscape has your attention?
    Do you allow you ego to set this scene?
    Do you see us and them, you and me?
    The ego desires total respect, a yearning to be served.
    It’s this strong sense of self that creates the barrier
    the division, the wall of disconnection.
    Battle that ego hard and reduce it’s voice to a faint whisper.
    Then allow the expansion to travel far and wide
    using the fuel of love to create a human connection and harmony
    that is out true destiny.

  28. Sorry, the last line above should read our true destiny.
    I have foggy eyes this morning not Universal ones.

  29. David Korten has written some excellent books, including An Agenda for a New Economy, outlining the current environmental and social crisis on the planet, suggesting that Wall Street Capitalism and the belief in unimited growth on a finite planet needs to collapse. We need to localize economics and food production, redistribute wealth - close the gap between rich and poor, among other suggestions for creating greater social and environmental justice.

  30. I may have mentioned this before but the idea of redistribution of wealth is based on the lie that there is a limited amount of wealth. Wealth is being created every hour, every day and every year. If the amount of money in the world was limited then that would mean it is the same as it was when the idea of money came about and we would be squabbling over a bunch of shells or wampum.

  31. It's not that wealth is limited but the capacity for growth at the rate in which the western econimies have been expanding is not infinite and therefore limited. Redistribution is not an idea it's an application based on economic indifferences that create global inbalence.
    Lisa's Quote
    "We need to localize economics and food production, redistribute wealth – close the gap between rich and poor, among other suggestions for creating greater social and environmental justice."
    Ghandi was an advocate of this in India and battled hard to close the gap between the social classes in India at the time around 1935. This was not a notion that was that well supported at the time by the have's, more the have not's.

  32. I'm an American yet I find it irritatingly humorous to hear someone say, 'I'm proud to be an American'. I usually ask them, 'So you're a native Indian? After all, the native Indians are the only true Americans'. Of course, that brings on a look of confusion. My next comment might be, 'You believe America is the greatest country in the world but what exactly did you do to deserve to be born in the greatest country in the world?' Again, more confusion along with frustration or anger but not because they have no answer to the question but because I would have the gal, as an American, to ask such a question. I certainly don't dislike this country or any country. I wish all people in all countries would understand that we're all the same, i.e., kindred spirits in human bodies.
    Who created the borders, the countries of this earth? Man. It's sad how separate we are as individuals and individual countries. Although the blame for virtually every major problem we have today can be laid at the feet of religion, government and big business, it is also the fault of people who refuse to question the status quo which continually perpetuates the problems.
    The good news is that more and more people are waking up and asking the hard questions. When hard questions are asked, the typical answers that we've been taught become illogical if we're open and honest with ourselves. With the number of people changing their thinking, the overall consciousness of the planet will change for the good of all...

  33. We have to develop a habit of not to judge and to love unconditionally. This is what will save us from the slippery slope.

  34. When the spiritual "leaders" of this world start giving their books and wisdom away for free, maybe then I'll consider redistributing some of my "wealth."
    Oh wait, I already do that...it's called service, the true "Secret!"
    The House of Prayer for some has become a den of thieves.
    "Faith without works is dead."
    All these problems of the world is the new leprosy...mental illness, addiction, physical disease, etc.
    Grace is the means to overcome the world which requires the transcendence of Law....including the Law of Attraction.

  35. Bringing awarness to a problem is the first step to finding a solution. Am not an American citizen but the stats are scary enuf to make you sit up, especially if it pertains to the young as they are the future, they give us hope. Am sure many countires will show similar or worse stats. All countries need to come together and create Youth Without Borders for a better world..Fragmented families and lack of spiritual guidence are the bane of youngsters today..good contribution Lynn

  36. The seven deadly sins have been mentioned in these comments and I couldn't remember all seven so I googled them. Some interesting reading there.
    My belief is that the most loving and compassionate thing we can do for others is to let them know that they are powerful beings.

  37. I live in Perth Western Australia and on the whole we have a much more equal society but we have a drugs, alcohol and violence problem amongst the younger population that is escalating. Some would come here and say "what a fantastic place to live", pristine beaches and a beautiful city and lovely houses etc., but within us all like a ticking time bomb lies unresolved emotional issues. If you understand the the wisdom of "AS above so below" it lies within each and everyone of us to dig deep and release what is a reflection of our outer world.
    As the world has just witnessed - the floods in Queensland has brought out a tremendous ground swell of compassion (they had traffic jams of cars going into Brisbane ) and most of them were people going in to help clean up. An american here on holiday remarked on the news that there were no traffic jams after Katrina happened. What does that say about the USA - yes ~ there is a piece of paper that has great words written on it about democracy and equality but within the american dream lies a huge flaw that only the people themselves can firstly become aware of and then decide to move on from. There is an old saying that the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence ~ maybe it is time for all of us to concentrate on greening up the grass where we live~~~~Lezley from OZ

  38. I'm with Ross- as bad as it may seem, this "downward" turn is accompanied by a great consciousness of light which is monumental. Just think of all the positive intention that you have inspired, Lynne!

  39. Congratualtions Lynne on yet another timely and insightful piece of journalism.
    Another statisitc to contemplate: The economically strapped city of Windsor Ontario is separated by an equally troubled city - Detroit Michigan. All that separates them are a couple of bridges over a river (an the huge spiritual & culterual gap between USA & Canada). The homicide rates in Detroit went down from 364 in 2009 to 307 in 2010. The homicide rate in Windsor Ontario for 2010 was 0 (yes, a big fat ZERO).
    What is the difference between these two troubled auto towns? More to the point, what is the influence on the people in, (what is physically one city) divided by a river & border? Is it the gun laws? or is something else going on?
    It behooves the USA to study this.
    The websites with these news stories are
    http://www.cbc.ca/canada/windsor/story/2010/12/30/wdr-murder-free-city.html
    and
    http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2011/01/unpacking_detroits_2010_crime.html
    Good luck
    M. C.

  40. i have a piece of advise for the super rich ( 1 out of every 39 in USA is a millionaire, right? ).
    punch in MUKESH AMBANI AND DONALD TRUMP, THE NORTH AND SOUTH POLES in google search.
    something about over fishing, human ego and the great divide !
    CAPT AJIT VADAKAYIL
    ..

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