“Kill Your Inner John Bolton” by Caitlin Johnstone 

“We each have a miniature John Bolton,” Caitlin Johnstone says, writing in Taki’s Magazine.  And he’s “living rent-free inside our heads, ruining our peace and promoting world domination at every opportunity.”

She continues:

“The most common objection I hear when I advocate non-interventionist foreign policy can essentially be boiled down to something like, ‘But- but- but if we’re not controlling the world all the time, then the world will be out of our control!’ The argument, as I understand it, is that if the US-centralized empire stopped waging endless wars, staging coups, inflicting siege warfare upon civilian populations, patrolling the skies with flying death robots, arming terrorist militias, and torturing journalists who expose US war crimes, the bad guys might win.”

What she finds funny about this, apart from the obvious, is how it relates to meditation.

“‘This is all fine,’ the mind interrupts constantly while the meditator struggles to find peace. ‘But there are tasks we must attend to, and there are wrong people on the internet who simply must be put in their place. Life is cold and hostile and we must protect and secure ourselves against it if we’re to be safe. You can keep sitting there doing that breathing nonsense if you must, but I’ve got plans, schemes and witty comebacks to formulate. The world simply cannot get by without my being there to control it.’”

Her argument is that foreign policy would be a lot more effective if it modeled itself on meditation. “You simply allow everything to be as it is. You sit without trying to manipulate or control any aspect of your experience.”

When you meditate, you don’t try to control the thoughts and feelings that move through your head. You give those things permission to be there – and by leaving them alone, they move on.

And that works out, she says, because you enter a state of “benevolent detachment” in which “the deep and pervasive peace underlying the appearance of all forms is in fact our true nature.”

But it is not easy to attain this state of consciousness, she acknowledges. It takes a leap of faith, a “conscious decision to honor the sovereignty of everyone and everything.”

Just as non-interventionist foreign policy would.

“In exactly the same way that Trump’s National Security Advisor John Bolton argues that the ‘anarchic international environment’ is so dangerous that any means necessary must be employed to bring it under control, we too have a shrill, mustachioed voice in our heads continually arguing that life must be brought to heel at any cost. But in both cases it is the agenda to control the world, and the inability to simply trust it, which is our real enemy. Our enemy is not a cold, hostile world which resists our attempts to control it, no: our enemy is the John Boltons, both within and without.”

Johnstone argues that the natural, “default” position of both human consciousness and human civilization is peace.

“It is only by the most rigorous efforts to control and manipulate our world that we drag ourselves kicking and screaming out of that natural state. We will come to peace, both within and without, when we choose to trust the world and take that leap of faith into our true nature. The path to all peace necessarily follows this one unifying trajectory.”

What about the Russians? What about China? What about Al-Qaida?

She believes that such objections are fast becoming irrelevant, that we are approaching a point where we will either make sweeping changes or we will all perish.

“One way or the other we are going to wake up one day in a world without any John Boltons, either in our heads or in Washington, DC. The only say we have in the matter is in whether this will happen because we chose to rid ourselves of the evil mutant death walruses who are driving us toward death and destruction, or because they succeeded in doing so.”



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purview (noun) 

Purview (PUR-vyoo) is the range or limit of authority, competence, responsibility, concern, or intentions. As used by Uzodinma Iweala: “Around the world, our cities are not the idealized open, accessible, and cosmopolitan spaces of our dreams. More often than not, they are sectioned and controlled purviews of the radically wealthy, surrounded by clusters of have-nots.”


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Good News from Abundance Insider: Scientists Reverse Aging in Rat Stem Cells 

A team of researchers at the University of Cambridge… has uncovered a potential mechanism for reversing a loss of function in brain stem cells. The discovery centers on oligodendrocyte progenitor cells (OPCs) – a type of stem cell critical for normal brain function and myelin reformation. When they put OPCs of older mice into the far softer brain tissue of younger animals, the older cells became rejuvenated.

They hypothesized that the aging was not exclusively within the brain cell, but in response to being surrounded by the harder cell walls of older brain cells. They tested this theory by removing Piezo1, a protein on the cell’s surface that detects whether its environment is soft or stiff.

Once Piezo1 was removed, the OPCs were essentially tricked into believing their environment was soft, subsequently resuming normal, healthy function.

Why it’s important: According to Abundance Insider, this discovery “holds the extraordinary potential to alleviate the pain of patients with Multiple Sclerosis, who suffer the loss of function in both the brain and other parts of the nervous system.”

But it also provides a new and encouraging direction for anti-aging research: this idea to study the link between the “extracellular environment” and the human aging process, opening new avenues for research and therapeutic applications.

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Pops: Fatherhood in Pieces by Michael Chabon

Most of these essays were published elsewhere. They are reminiscences of Chabon’s experiences with his children and about his efforts to navigate the uncharted waters of parenthood. Some are better than others. The first essay, which ran in GQ, talks about his son’s fascination with fashion. It is a great example of one of Chabon’s skills as a writer: doing the hard work of identifying the details that make a story feel rich and true.


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Iceland is a small country with a small population, but among them are some of the strongest men in the world. Here’s a little clip of these big guys with the Minnesota Vikings.

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