Have you ever stopped to consider how lucky we Americans are to have the neighbors we have?

One American’s take on the U.S.- Canada trade war.

Canada US friendship

Have you ever stopped to consider how lucky we Americans are to have the neighbors we have?

Look around the globe at who some folks have been stuck sharing a border with over the past half century:

 
North Korea / South Korea
West Germany / East Germany
Greece / Turkey
Iran / Iraq
Israel / Palestine
India / Pakistan
China / Russia
 

We’ve got Canada! Canada. About as inoffensive a neighbor as you could ever hope for.Canada-US border

 
In spite of all our boasts of “American Exceptionalism” and chants of “America first,” they just smile, do their thing and go about their business.
 
They are on average, a more educated, have a higher standard of living, free health care, and no gun problems Country. They treat immigrants respectfully and already took in over 35,000 Syrians in the last two years.
 
They’re with us in NATO, they fought alongside us in World War I, World War II, Korea, the Gulf War, the Bosnian War, Afghanistan, the Kosovo War and came to our defense after 9/11. There was that one time when Canada took a pass on one of our wars: Vietnam. Good call.
 
They’ve been steady consumers of American imports, reliable exporters of metals and petroleum products (they are the biggest importer of products from 37 states), and partnered with NASA in our space missions.
 
9-11
During 911 many aircraft were diverted to Newfoundland, 9-11 newfoundlandan island province on the east coast where over 6000 Americans were housed, taken care of, and treated like royalty.  
In return this administration slapped a 20% tariff on the products of their only paper mill thereby threatening it’s survival.
 
And what do Canadians expect of us in return? To be respected for who and what they are: Canadians. That’s what I call a good neighbor.
 
But the King of Chaos couldn’t leave well enough alone.   Trump- smug face
 
Based on his delusions of perpetual victimhood, out of the clear blue, he’s declared economic war on Canada. On CANADA! And he did it based on Canada being a national security risk to the US! For no goddamn reason, other than the voices in his head told him it was a war he could win. So why not?
 
Trump went ahead and imposed his tariffs on aluminum and steel even though we have a trade surplus with Canada on those products! Trudeau retaliated in kind. And now this morning, the White House is preparing a new wave of tariffs in retaliation for Trudeau’s retaliation. This time he threatens a tariff on automobiles even though 70% of the components originate in the US! It’s just a temporary spat, right? Except for that smile on Vlad’s face in the Kremlin as the NATO pact unravels a little more with each passing day.
 
Again, we’re talking about Canada. Our closest ally, friend and neighbor.
 
On behalf of an embarrassed nation, people of Canada, I apologize for this idiotic and wholly unnecessary attack. Please leave the back channels open. We the People of the progressive persuasion stand with you.
Our Canadian Friends-Natl Geog article02,1990
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“I’m seemingly sentenced to solitary singleness.”

Single why-overqualified

“I’m seemingly sentenced to solitary singleness” was Hawkeye’s (Alan Alda’s) answer when someone asked him why he was unmarried. So is it Karma, or choice, or both, or neither? Why are so many choosing to be or stay single?

The 21st century is the age of living single.

Today, the number of single adults in the U.S. – and many other nations around the world – is unprecedented. And the numbers don’t just say people are staying single longer before settling down. More are staying single for life. A 2014 Pew Report estimates that by the time today’s young adults reach the age of 50, about one in four of them will have never  married.  http://theconversation.com/more-people-than-ever-before-are-single-and-thats-a-good-thing-74658

In my life, there have been many reasons why I’ve never married, and they’ve been different during every stage of my life?Joe_StThomas, Virgin Islands1984

In my 20s and early 30s, i was too busy having fun.

JR mid1990s

Then in my 40s, 50s and 60s, i was again passionate about my professions and busy doing what I loved & saw as my mission in this life.

JR2016

Now after six decades, i love my life so why change? After all, being single hasn’t meant either loneliness or a lack of loving relationships.

Single & unhappy 

But it’s also said that we can’t be happy with others until we’re happy with ourselves when we’re alone.

What do you think?

 

 

Then the options in the following posters might really  explain why so many people are choosing to be single; so do we all perceive ourselves to be superheroes? LOL  

single SuperheroineSingle Supero

 

 

 

 

Are your opinions what you depend on?

opinions2Opinions aren’t facts, but so many people never see the difference.

Are they afraid to face themselves, their own imperfections, or even to question their judgements and conclusions?

Or have they fallen under the control of their APEs?

apes-3

The APEs always affect us, and often try to control us.

  •  Assumptions feed our opinions ….

  • Perceptions are what WE see through our personal lenses …

and our ….

  •  Expectations, which colour everything we do, both positive and negative.

Mindfully manage your APEs; if you don’t, they will control your life. And it won’t be pretty!

 

 

Does Free Speech include the right to be overtly intolerant towards others?

bigotryDoes free speech mean people have the right to abuse others for any reason?

I assert regularly that I have zero tolerance for behaviour which abuses or disses others. But some, like this man on the internet disagreed with me; at least that is how I read his words.

He wrote “Zero tolerance is hate speech because it allows no leeway or room for difference or extenuating circumstances.”

So am I being unacceptably intolerant if I serve as an ally to those who are being abused or being subjected to overt sexism or bigotry?

My first direct experience with bigotry challenged me when I was about 9 years old, crossing a field near my house on the way home from school. Suddenly I heard someone yell “hey kike, ‘ and was accosted by two older boys. I had no idea what they meant since I had never before heard that epithet. I didn’t even know I was Jewish in those days. But I do remember how frightened I was as they explained to me how they had moved from Germany where they had been in some paramilitary youth group. They went on to explain how and why they hated Jews. Despite their threatening moves, the abuse stopped there. I didn’t react, so they must have seen something in the eyes or posture of the feisty 9-year-old I was then.

Haters-walking on water

I didn’t hate those probably-lying boys then, and even though I’ve been an activist for most of my adult life, I don’t hate anyone. In fact I feel sorry for those who have hate in their hearts instead of love. They’re rotting from within and “know not what they do.”

So do I believe that  “Free Speech includes the right to be overtly intolerant towards others?”

For me, not now, not ever.

I am always ready, willing, and able to respectfully discuss and debate free speech, intolerance, bigotry, or almost anything else.

Living lifeNevertheless, I will always also be an ally to those who are abused physically, emotionally, or psychologically.

That’s who I am.

 

.

Worry is a misuse of imagination….

aging-snoopy

Every day we spend worrying, is one less day we have enjoyed. 

As Dan Zadra wrote and Snoopy knows, worry is a misuse of your imagination.

But most people can’t just stop worrying because they’ve told themselves to stop.

Authors, Lawrence Robinson, Melinda Smith, M.A., Robert Segal, M.A., and Jeanne Segal, Ph.D. have posted this…..

worried-man-500Self-Help Tips for Anxiety Relief…

…by Lawrence Robinson, Melinda Smith, M.A., Robert Segal, M.A., and Jeanne Segal, Ph.D.

Telling yourself to stop worrying doesn’t work-at least not for long. You can distract yourself for a moment, but you can’t banish anxious thoughts for good. In fact, trying to do so often makes them stronger and more persistent. You can test this out for yourself. Close your eyes and picture a pink elephant. Once you can see it in your mind, stop thinking about it. Whatever you do, for the next 60 seconds, don’t think about pink elephants!

How did you do? Did thoughts of pink elephants keep popping in your brain?

“Thought stopping” backfires because it forces you to pay extra attention to the very thought you want to avoid. You always have to be watching for it, and this very emphasis makes it seem even more important. Instead of trying to simply distract yourself, there are steps you can take to retrain your brain and change how you look at the world.

stress overload

If worrying is stopping you from living a joyful life, check out their anxiety management options.

relaxation 4 anxiety relief
Just one of the many options available to all of us…

I almost died in a car accident 50 years ago; overnight I learned how fragile life can be, and how important it was for me to live every day as if it were my last. Worrying as my mother was prone to do would have been a waste was the way i saw it.

I’ve never regretted or forgotten those lessons which motivated me to live the life of my dreams.  Actually it’s been ‘lives’, since every 10-15 years, 4 times in fact, I decided to change, self-actualising to reinvent myself so i could experience the satisfaction of living life on my own terms always lovingly and joyfully.

May your life be everything you want and need.  As Nelson Mandela said, “Once a person is determined to help themselves, there is nothing that can stop them.”

He demonstrated his truth, and so have I.  

 

We can’t let leaders destroy Canadian-American friendships!

Our Canadian Friends-Natl Geog article02,1990

We can’t let Americans and Canadians be turned against each other by our leaders.

In February 1990, Gilbert M. Grosvener, President of The National Geographic Society posted this article entitled “Our Canadian Friends.”

His last paragraph said, “Canadian society, for me has always held an appealing mixture of tradition and new ideas, of hard work,and compassion and pride of place.  And if the U.S. and Canada are destined to grow even closer in the years ahead – as the U.S. and Mexico may also – we would all benefit from a fresh effort to know one another better.”

“Part of me would like to talk to Americans and say, there’s more up here than moose, mountains, and Mounties,”  Toronto pollster Michael Adams told Senior Writer Priit Vesiling,

But leaders may try to divide us for their own insidious political or personal reasons, with no consideration for our friendship. 28 years after this article was published, we’re seeing American President Donald Trump do just that with his divide and conquer mentality. And it’s not just Canadians he’s alienating; no population anywhere in the world is exempt from his dysfunctional compulsions.

The internet, with all its perceived negatives is an opportunity for us to keep our friendships strong and healthy. It is an opportunity to connect and build friendships across the planet, regardless of what our leaders want.

The future of our planet and its peoples depends on collaboration, not acrimony, aggression and manipulation.

People must accept that none of us are inferior or superior to anyone else. We are all humans with needs and aspirations. So as our resources shrink, it will be critical for all of us to work together to make the most of what we have.

Together, humans can achieve great things, but pitted against each other will lead to destruction, pain, and suffering. Either we all thrive together, or we will all suffer together. If nothing else, history has proven this truth.

Please pardon my vernacular, but we can’t let the greedy bastards bring us down! For over 65 years I have vacationed and worked both in the U.S. and Canada, have travelled through most of the U.S. states, have befriended and been befriended by many, and most of my family now lives in the U.S. One thing I can say unequivocally is that we are all alike yet individually unique,  regardless of which country we grew up in.

Cdn-American flags

May our friendships be strong enough to survive our leaders. 

 

Company Policies That Keep Neurodiverse Employees Out of the Workplace

Some Neurodivergent employees will demonstrate enhanced abilities if just given the opportunity. But those employers who prefer to implement the latest workplace-formatting fad with a one-size fits all approach may in fact be ignoring the special needs of their potentially most productive employees. Unfortunately, I’ve seen such realities more often than not.

Neurodivergent Rebel

Neurodiversity is the idea that neurological differences (Autism,  Tourette Syndrome, ADHD, Dyscalculia, Dyspraxia, Dyslexia, and others) are natural variations in the evolution of the human genome.

Neurodiversity seems like the new HR buzzword, and for a good reason. Neurodivergent employees are eagerly entering the workplace, bringing along fresh perspectives and valuable skills.

Employers claim they want to be more inclusive but often fall short when policies and company culture are set up in a way that is can be off-putting for neurodivergent employees.

Are your company policies unintentionally discriminating against autistic and neurodivergent employees?

Open Offices – Collaborative and fun, open offices are a popular option for creative agencies and tech spaces, but these work pits can be overwhelming for those employees who may prefer a calm quiet workspace.

If your workspace utilizes an open office design, try to create spaces for employees to work away from typical office noise and commotion…

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