Stop Internet Censorship!


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From: Watchdog.net

This is urgent. The TPP Internet censorship plan is being finalized in secret meetings right now. More than 100,000 Watchdog.net members have already spoken out against the TPP.

Now we’re doubling down and teaming up with several other organizations and millions of people to block it.

We need all hands on deck at this crucial moment. We’ll be delivering millions of petition signatures in about a week, and we want your name to be one of them — just click here.

Here’s the situation: President Obama himself is in secretive meetings with key political figures and lobbyists in Asia to lock the Trans-Pacific Partnership’s Internet censorship plan into place.

We know from leaked documents that this secretive plan will censor your use of the Internet and strip away your rights. If finalized, this plan would force ISPs to act as “Internet Police”, monitoring our Internet use, censoring content, and removing whole websites.

It will give media conglomerates centralized control over what you can watch and share online.

We urgently need your help to fight back. Add your voice right now and we’ll project a Stop the Secrecy message on key buildings in Washington D.C. to ensure Obama, the media, and everyone else knows this censorship plan must be stopped.

Once key leaders finalize TPP Internet censorship plans it will be used to globalize censorship across the world. This may be our only chance to stop it.

Our attention-grabbing message will shine a light on their secret plan and will make clear to Washington lobbyists that the Internet community will never accept the TPP’s secrecy or censorship. The more who speak out, the larger our projection will become, and the more people we can reach.

This is a decisive moment: we need to act right now — join us, OpenMedia, and DailyKos as we fight back.

Join with millions of people all over the world to shine a light on the TPP’s job-killing Internet censorship plan. Let’s send decision-makers and the lobbyists pulling the strings a message they can’t ignore: “Stop the secrecy now.”

With every voice that is added to our call the Stop The Secrecy projection in Washington bigger and brighter.

We’ve stalled them before and we can kill this censorship plan if we act together at this critical moment.


The bureaucrats and lobbyists think they can ram through this damaging binding plan behind your back and without your consent.

Click here to help make sure they don’t let them get away with it.

Thank you for being a part of history.

-Watchdog.net

The gods are my pals, I shall not sweat it! – Our Pantheons Way, Arlington, Texas Pagan Blog.


Unleash The Hilarity And The Wisdom

There is hilarity to be found everywhere. At work, home, out and about. Our kids, our pets and our co-workers can provide us with endless amusement at times. Have a few laughs and enjoy life. There’s no point in taking it all too seriously because none of us are getting out of it alive after all.

Facilities Maintenance Mechanic - Hilarity
There are only two things a Facilities Maintenance Mechanic can’t do: Light a match under water and slam a revolving door.

Considering some of the high expectations of some of the folks around the airport, I think they might have taken this a little too much to heart. These are the times that hilarity ensues.

Bet ya can’t do this!

Stair Surfing
Stair Surfing
If you are going to doubt something, doubt your limits!
If you are going to doubt something, doubt your limits!

Now here’s some wisdom worth sharing.

Some days just start off better than others.
Some days just start off better than others.

Indeed some do. 🙂

The purpose of the United States Constitution is to limit the power of the federal government not the American people.
The purpose of the United States Constitution is to limit the power of the federal government not the American people.

The government does not grant your inalieanable rights, and therefore no government can take them away. The Declaration of Independence says that among these rights are “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” Protection from: … having your life, liberty, or property taken “without due process of law”

Smash That Breathing Problem!

Smash That Breathing Problem
Smash That Breathing Problem

Hey everyone! Lets all help to channel our collective energies towards something amazing on Saturday, 4/26. That is the day that is most powerful for Breaking Down Barriers. We’d like to align everyone together to sync up and channel energy and prayers and well wishes towards Smash’s first priority: her lungs from 11:07 am to 11:07 pm. This is a “wherever you are” event.

Here is the story in her mom’s words:

Transverse Myelitis is the illness that our Ashlynn is suffering from. It’s debilitating, it’s disheartening, and there is no known cause or cure. She’s had some very rough spots over the last week and a half, spots so rough that we all dreaded a phone ringing. She is still in ICU fighting with all she has to recover.
Just 11 days ago, this happy, healthy, energetic 11 year old was dancing and singing and running around a campground with her family. In less than a day, Ashlynn went from having a blast in dance class to unable to walk or use her hands, and was completely numb from chest to just below the waist. At 3 days, it was discovered that she was not having the positive results that the doctors were expecting, and the next course of action would be plasma exchanges. After her 2nd exchange, Ashlynn began to show signs of an allergic reaction, hives popping up on her back, and a cough that was deep and rumbly that she couldn’t seem to clear out of her chest. In the early morning hours of day 6, she was rushed to ICU with a collapsed lung, and pneumonia like symptoms. A few days were precarious, to say the least. Breathing for Ash became harder, and her Oxygen levels dropped dangerously. She was intubated, and her lungs were cleared of muck as much as possible every few hours. Her blood pressure dropped dangerously and there were times her O2 levels dropped into the low 20’s. During one of the procedures, air got into the area between her lungs and her chest wall, which caused the lung collapse to worsen. To alleviate the collapse, a chest tube was inserted, and the difference was like night and day. Then the healing really started to be noticeable. Her pneumonia like symptoms began to abate, breathing became easier and a little of that attitude and spunk we know and love so well started coming back. In the last couple of days, she’s been successfully extubated, her chest tube has been removed, she’s been taken off the BP medication, and her O2 levels are staying mostly stable in the mid 90’s, going between the Bipap (assisted O2 with pressure) and regularly administered O2 (just the nose flow.)

Today (4-19) She is being moved back to PCU (kind of an in between ICU and a regular room) and will then (once she shows even more progress) be moved to a regular room.

I know that I’ve asked before, and I will ask again, and again, and again, until Ash is home and healthy – There are 3 way that you can help our beautiful girl, and the first two cost nothing but your time! The first – join her group Hugs for Smash https://www.facebook.com/groups/545997038854166/ and send her funny jokes, animal pictures, inspirational quotes, and love! The second – http://www.texaschildrens.org/Support-a-Patient/Greeting-Cards/ please send her an e-card with words of encouragement! The third – if you have some to spare, please consider donating to her family to help cover her medical costs and help the Spencer’s with day to day cost. They have both taken a leave of absence from work, and the financial strain of everyday living costs plus the hospital stay cost is a big weight on their shoulders. http://www.gofundme.com/8cv6no
Please, share, Ash and her family need all the love and well wishes they can get!!

The gods are my pals, I shall not sweat it! – Our Pantheons Way, Arlington, Texas Pagan Blog.

Earth Day Observations And SEO Too

Earth Day 2014 Display
Earth Day 2014 Display

I don’t get on many bandwagons. You know, things like the 30 days of gratitude in November or the G is for…, H is for…, whatever posts you see around on the blogosphere. I rarely post about pagan holidays or other holidays unless it’s an event announcement of some sort. I didn’t become involved in the whole Kenny Klein arrest hoopla recently because, A) before this I had never heard of the man to be honest and B) I am mostly more concerned with local stuff. Oh, I am not saying the conversations which followed regarding predators within the community and what we can do to deal with the problem weren’t beneficial and needed by any means. They most certainly were. I just didn’t feel I had much to add to that conversation which hadn’t already been said.

It’s not that I feel above all of that or that I look down on those who do take part in those types of posts. If they are on a topic which you feel you have something to say or if the structured post topic themes help you to focus then by all means go for it! It is by no means my intention to rain on anyone’s parade. They just, generally don’t work for me very well.

But, this particular Earth Day I noticed some things that got the gears turning in my head which usually leads to strange grinding sounds and smoke coming out of my ears. Much to the dismay of those around me when it happens I might add. 😉

“Conservatives” who say Earth Day as if it leaves a bad taste in their mouth.

As I have noted before, I work with a lot of people who like to describe themselves as “Conservative Christians” and over the years I have noticed many characteristics of these folks who tend to describe themselves this way that perplex me. One of them is, have you ever noticed that conservative and conservation have the same root word? There is a reason for that! So, why do so many of my “conservative” co-workers, aquaintances and others scrunch up their faces then spit out words like environmentalist, or conservation and Earth Day as if they are a terrible thing? Is it not conservative to leave a clean and livable planet to the generations to follow? Even if you do not subscribe to the belief that the earth is our mother and a living goddess as I do, is it not still wise to live gently on our world and not destroy it? After all, we don’t inherit the earth from our parents, we borrow it from our children.

Google Adwords charges a max bid of 5 times the value for the same pagan related keywords on April 22nd versus April 21st.

I still do some SEO work, internet marketing and the like on the side for a few old clients as well as some experimental tinkering for myself. Now days it’s more of a hobby for me than anything else as to really be up on the search engine optimization game you have to invest way more time than I have available to keep up with trends, changes in algorithms and mood swings of search engine gods. But, here recently I have been trying out some Google Adwords ads for Our Pantheons Way to try to drive up some traffic and learn a little about what works and what doesn’t these days. One thing I learned today is that pagan related keywords which had a maximum cost per click value of about 53 cents yesterday are valued at $2.51 today. Hmmmmm. I guess somebody put the word out that Earth Day is popular with Pagans?

The Earth Day display at work was far more low key this year than in years past and it was observed by one of the planners that mostly people just show up for the free SWAG and leave.

Yeah, that is our display for today at work pictured up top which the environmental team is taking over to the main building later today and offering free t-shirts (I GOT MINE!), cake and other goodies to those who come to learn a bit about recycling programs, water conservation, proper handling of hazardous waste and stuff like that. But as one of the planners of the event noted, most folks only show up for the freebies. But at least we’re getting the word out so we’ll take what we can get right? Maybe the message will sink in for a few and that’s progress right? Uh-oh, that’s another one of those words some of my “conservative” co-workers don’t like. “progressive”. Haha!.

Little Pagan Acorns For Homeschoolers

Little Pagan Acorns - For Homeschoolers
Little Pagan Acorns – For Homeschoolers

Homeschoolers and parents of all types are constantly looking for activities and learning tools for their kids and Pagan Parents are no exception. One website has devoted itself to providing printables for homeschoolers who are of a Pagan leaning to supplement their other activities and provide fun ways to learn about some of the ancient gods you don’t hear much about in standard public schooling formats as well as Sabbat Recipes, Tarot Card designs and stories.

Check out the Little Pagan Acorns site,  with printables for Pagan homeschoolers. Word searches, puzzles, mazes, worksheets, craft ideas and more are all on their way for anyone looking for an alternative to the prevalent Christian homeschooling world.

Even if you’re not a Pagan homeschooling parent, you can use lots of these pages to keep your kids amused and to teach them a little bit about various Pagan paths and pantheons.

http://www.littlepaganacorns.com/

If you’re a homeschooler and need some more resources you might like to check out some of the lessons, videos and other materials provided by Khan Academy as well. Also, if you need a way to build a transcript Homeschool Tracker might be just the ticket for you.

The gods are my pals, I shall not sweat it!

“A formal education will teach you to conform with society. Self-education will teach you how to get out of conformity so that you can fill your life with adventure and beauty.” – Debasish Mridha

Labels, Stereotypes and Libertarian Leanings

Real Eyes Realize Real Lies Libertarian?
Real Eyes Realize Real Lies

Over the years I’ve tried on various labels that I thought applied to me in one way or another but almost always I would find that I might agree with 90% of what a particular label might imply but there is always that 10% that never seems to fit. It’s pretty much that way for all of us though isn’t it? I basically gave up trying to identity myself on most things, especially things like politics and religion, because there is always that little bit that doesn’t quite fit. For you, it might seem a small matter but for someone else may be the entire definition of what makes that label who you are and if you don’t believe so and so you can’t possibly be a “insert your label here”.

Take libertarianism for example. If you go to the Libertarian Party website and read their party platform statement there I can pretty much agree with most of what is stated. Now, I say to look there because most people look at what a lot of candidates running under the Libertarian banner say on certain issues and believe that is the Libertarian point of view. I can name several instances in which a candidate’s stated view and the LP platform are polar opposites though. So, for awhile I thought, well maybe I am a Libertarian because I feel that basically everyone should be free to live their life as they see fit as long as they aren’t hurting anyone else or expecting anyone else to pay for the consequences of their actions unless they choose to do so by their own free will via charity or direct help.

But you see, most Libertarians subscribe to an economic theory that basically says free market capitalism is self correcting and that all government intervention hinders the process. While I can agree that too much government regulation is harmful I also believe we have already experienced the results of what happens when corporations are allowed to do as they please. It was called The Gilded Age which was characterized by things like company stores, child labor, extremely long work days and a lifetime of debt and servitude for most working class people. So, this economic policy I have a problem with and because of that there are people who will say, well you can’t be a Libertarian because you don’t believe….

This all or nothing attitude pervades most facets of human existence I guess. There is, after all, a reason there are so many different religions and within them so many denominations of that particular religion. Nothing, is ever, actually a 100% fit is it? But what if the powers that be used that divisive mindset to balkanize and manipulate people? What if people in power told people, well if you meet someone who believes XYZ then that means they also must believe QRS and maybe even TUV and if they believe that then they must represent everything that is wrong with the world today and you should tell that person off and give them what for.

Well, then pretty soon you have internet forums, chatrooms, blog comments, etc. full of people tearing each other down instead of discussing problems and working together to come up with solutions don’t you? What if the powers that be aren’t much interested in solutions because solutions might put them out of a job? What if they are much happier with the people arguing with each other over trivial matters while the big picture issues keep getting kicked down the road for someone else to have to deal with? Hmmmmm. Kind of makes me wonder.

Anyway, I’m just Cianaodh (Key-Ah-Knee) or Troy if that label appeals to you more. A guy with a few opinions of my own like anyone else. I don’t wear many labels because they always tend to fall off at some point. But I do like to see people discuss things and exchange ideas because I think that is how we all manage to learn and grow and maybe even come up with solutions now and then.

 

Support Local Music, Venues and Business!

Medicinal Bourbon - Local Band
Medicinal Bourbon

So, today my friend Jim Sutter of Medicinal Bourbon asked me and many others to share his sad tale of the plight of local musicians who are being pushed out of the market by big corporate, deep pocketed dealers. Here are his words along with some helpful links so you can support your local music scene!

It’s sad when local municipalities with a few “movers and shakers” take the quaint feeling of home – the things that made you fall in love with it in the first place, and replace it with mainstream, cookie cutter beliefs; bigger is better, get the franchises here – eliminate individuality and become – just another “place” – and not home. Put codes in place to make all the buildings look the same. Get “box” stores and franchises to raise the tax rate. And once a few of the “elite” get into positions of authority and influence, it’s amazing how fast a zone ordinance or a law can get changed. It’s not what you know – it’s who you know. I’ve lived here in Justin for 14 years. The changes in the last four alone have made me….well let’s just say I’m looking forward to retirement and getting myself someplace away from HOA’s and “Economic Development Committees.” There was time when we had local artists who painted murals on buildings, and festivals where local artists could show their wares. We had a quaint local newspaper, and the pharmacist knew me and my wife by name. Yup – bigger and better, you’ll see.

In the meantime, struggling local artists and musicians are still trying to get out there – for the sheer love of performing, not the $$$. I’ll share a couple of links – starting with this one. And if you still want to see artists and musicians pour themselves into the love of their craft and proudly represent where they came from, please check some out. I promise , they won’t be pandering for their next album or selling t-shirts and souvenirs – though they will pass a tip jar. Picks, guitar strings and drumsticks cost money, and many of us have day jobs with no roadies to carry our equipment. Peace.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/supoortlocalmusic/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/117674784933403/
Where The Local Bands Are Playing This Week

http://www.reverbnation.com/medicinalbourbon
June 7 you can catch us at Noon, at the Denton Community Market. We’re happy to be involved with a venue that still supports and believes in local music and artists.

Sallie R. also suggested:

Listen to 100% local music in DFW at www.SouthsidePirate.com & donate to help us get on the FM in Fort Worth!

The Southside Pirate

southsidepirate.com

Check out http://southsidepirate.com/

 

Pagan Census Revisited II Survey

The Pagan Census project is an attempt to learn more about contemporary Paganisim and those who identify with this spiritual path.

Once you awake, it's hard to go back to SHEEP. Census
Once you awake, it’s hard to go back to SHEEP

I filled out this survey yesterday and I think they came up with some very interesting and well thought out questions.

We would appreciate if you would answer the following short survey. These are follow-up questions to the Pagan Census Revisited that you may have responded to. We would appreciate your taking the time to answer these questions whether or not you have participated in the first survey.

The data from this survey will be used for writing books, articles and doing presentations on contemporary Paganism. All answers are anonymous.

By participating in this survey you are giving the researchers permission to use the data you provide in their research and writing. All responses are anonymous. While we appreciate if you answer all the questions in the survey you are free to stop taking this survey at any time. Your participation is voluntary.

Thank you for your help.

Helen A. Berger
Resident Scholar
Women’s Studies Research Center
Brandeis University
Email: haberger@brandeis.edu

James R. Lewis
Professor of Religious Studies
University of Tromsø (Norway)
Email: James.Lewis@uit.no

https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/PCR-II

 

Tuatha Dea at Groovy Goods in Arlington!

Tuatha Dea (Children Of The Gods)
Tuatha Dea (Children Of The Gods)

Wednesday, April 30 at 7:00pm – 10:00pm

Groovy Goods
3415 S Cooper Street, Arlington, Texas 76015

Come out to Groovy Goods for what will be a magical night of drumming, dancing and more with the national touring group, Tuatha Dea from Gaitlinburg, TN!

The evening will start with some basics for novice drummers, and there will be plenty of extra drums with them if you don’t have your own. As the night progresses, Tuatha Dea will build community by pyramiding individual rhythms, and weaving bits and pieces of music and song into the mix until an interactive symphony emerges that will both energize and mesmerize!

All ages are welcome, as are belly dancers, jugglers, flow artists – including fire!, and hoopers. We’ll be outside if Mother Nature cooperates, inside if it’s raining. Bring a chair if you have one. Love offerings for the band are very much appreciated but not required.

Show this band some groovy love and let’s make it a night to remember for everyone! Join, share & invite your friends!

Formed in 2009 by Lead Vocalist Damasqhs, the band has an eclectic sound that blends the tribal vibe of primitive drums with instruments such as guitar, bass, modern and Native American flutes, Didgeridoo and more. Find out more about Tuatha Dea and listen to their music at https://myspace.com/tuathadea.

Join the Event On Facebook

50 Odd And Random Facts About Me

Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself. - Rumi - Facts!
Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself. – Rumi – Facts!

Why don’t you give it a try on your blog?!

 

1) Favorite hobby? Blogging, music, sustainable living, folklore, finding facts.

2) How do you feel about your ex? Neutral. Haven’t seen or heard from her in years.

3) Do you own guns? Yes.

4)What do you add to your drink at Sonic? Usually cherries.

5) Do you get nervous before doctor appointments? Not really.

6) What do you think of hot dogs? Not very healthy but, facts are, they’re tasty once in awhile.

7) Favorite Christmas song? Deck The Halls.

8) What do you prefer to drink in the morning? Coffee.

9) Can you do push ups? Yes, but not as many as I used to.

10) Can you do a pull up? No.

11) What’s your favorite piece of jewelry? My Cernunnos necklace and my pentacle with tree of life pendant.

12) Do you like blue cheese? It’s ok.

13) Ever been in a car wreck? Yeah, when I was about 15. A 1963 Thunderbird versus a telephone pole. No winners. Sad facts of life.

14) Do you have ADD? No.

15) What’s one trait that you hate about yourself? My will power ebbs and flows. Sometimes I can set myself to a healthy and productive lifestyle and stick with it. Other times, not so much.

16) Describe yourself in three words: Random, creative, thinker.

17) Name 3 thoughts at this exact moment:

1) Is it Friday yet?
2) I hope the weather is nice this weekend.
3) I really need to go for a walk.

18) Name 3 things you bought today:

1) Dragon Ritual Drummers album.
2) Gasoline.
3) Buffalo Chicken Rollers at QuikTrip.

19) Name three drinks you regularly drink:

1) Coffee
2) Guinness
3) Water

20) Current worry? What are these yoyos going to decide to do with this place I am working at.

21) Current hate right now? Hypocrites.

22) Tell us a secret: If I tell you it won’t be a secret.

23) How did you bring in the New Year? Partied with friends and family and kissed my wife at midnight.

24) Where would you like to be right now? Ireland.

25) Name three people who might complete this? I haven’t the slightest idea.

26) Do you own slippers? Yes, two pairs currently.

27) What shirt are you wearing? A wizard t-shirt.

28) Do you like sleeping on satin sheets? Nah, kinda slippery and noisy to me.

29) Can you whistle? Yes.

30) What’s your dream vacation? Any place that involves nature and ancient sites.

31) Would you be a pirate? I dunno. Might be fun.

32) Do you sing in the shower or tub? Sometimes.

33) Favorite girls name? Amber, Heather, Erin.

34) Favorite boys name? Kyle.

35) What is in your pocket? My billfold, my leatherman wave, work keys, car and house keys, a tin of altoids, loose change.

36) Last thing that made you laugh? People. People are funny.

37) Best bed sheets as a child? Uhm. I never really thought much about it. What’s with all the sheet questions?

38) Worst injury? Third degree burns on 65 percent of my body when I was 12 years old.

39) Do you like where you live? Not so much. But it’s where the job is.

40) How many TVs do you have in your house? I think 3. I rarely watch television so I don’t pay them much attention.

41) Who is your loudest friend? Mel.

42) Who is your best friend? Layne has been my best friend since I was about 12 years old. We used to be like brothers. Although our lives have drifted in different directions I still consider him to be my best friend.

43) Does someone have a crush on you? Not that I know of.

44) Favorite book? Today? I guess if I had to choose just one I guess I might say Clan Of The Cave Bear. Tomorrow I will probably have a different answer.

46) What is your favorite candy? Today? Maple Nut Goodies.

47) Favorite Sports Team? None. Sports put me right to sleep.

48) What song do you want played at your funeral? ‘One Last Drink’ By Enter The Haggis

49) What were you doing 12 AM last night? Sleeping like a rock.

50) What was the first thing you thought of when you woke up this morning? Time to do my morning devotional and pull my rune for the day.

With thanks to Raven Emrys for turning me on to this list of odd questions.