Observations of and about my Great Uncle

My dad’s uncle was an interesting fellow. He lived with his pleasant and kind wife, Irene, on the outskirts of Grand Junction, Colorado.  It was a dry sagebrush landscape dominated by the presence of the Colorado River and the surrounding mountains. They had a small farm in a cluster of other small farms in a relatively flat area alongside a canal. They had chickens and a horse. They had ditch water on the backside of the house. He didn’t say much to me, but he was always tactful and direct. Other people had conversations with him when I was around, including me. And, this is much of what I got out of it:

Years before the family had a place on Roan Creek (“crick” it was called) where they raised cows, sheep and chickens on the small ranch in the dry mainly sagebrush hills. Looking at it from afar it would be hard to know that a rich microclimate nurtured by the many dams on the crick in the many small valleys alongside made for a nice place to raise a family in the years after the Civil War. I was fortunate enough to visit the area once when I was young, catching a brook trout in a small clear pond on the crick.

The family Franklin prospered in the crick drainage, albeit modestly. They ran cows, they were real cowboys and cowgirls, and rounded up wild horses on the mesa top desert above.  Horses were part of life, and Dwight always had at least one on hand. I often thought of myself as a cowboy in those days, like my Great Uncle Dwight was. He let me ride at least one time solo.

Of course, I was just a skinny little 10-year old at this time when my dad was off in Vietnam, but after some gentle but serious instructions from my uncle, I felt every bit a cowboy as I rode Dove on the dirt track along the canal. I was alone, which was like many a TV cowboy I had known. I felt normal and at home riding, and didn’t have a care in the world. Looking back, I think people that saw this sight of a full-sized horse with a tiny kid on its back wondering along the banks of the canal might have been a little curious, if not concerned. I don’t recall being allowed to solo again there.

Usually when visiting I spent many hours playing with the water striders, we called them water bugs, skating on the water surface.  I’ll tell you something that comes to mind about the visits and my studies of the water bugs, which I would be quick to spot even as I was floating a stick down the ditch. I played all kinds of sports growing up including football, American football many would say. What I learned watching the little critters moving about the surface of the water, I put into play on the football field. Again, I was a tiny little guy, but whether I was leading my flag football team to a championship or running in touchdowns in little league or just playing touch football in the backyard, I tried my best to dart around unpredictably to the opposition. It worked really well. I recommend studying those water bugs. It’s amazing what one can learn.

Dwight was very cool and generally slow to get excited. You could tell he loved and cared for Irene, and you could tell she reciprocated his feelings. My parents admired them. I only felt comfortable visiting there, if not a little bored as they had no other children around whenever we were there. I learned a lot even there though I spent so little time with them.

 

Request for help from the Great Mediator

Request for help from the Great Mediator

August 7, 2021

Daniel J Arthur

We have some serious divides happening in the United States of America. It appears that a very significant number of the nation have lost the ability to be truly rational. This in turn impacts all other Americans and their ability to be accurate thinkers and decision makers as well. How can we start moving closer together if not healing this divide? I will make a request.

Dear Great Mediator,

I have been living in the United States of America my whole life. I was born here. I was raised and went to school here. I have worked and played here as well as visiting a good number of places around the Earth; not enough, but a good amount. I believe that I have grown throughout the years in my ability to be rational and fair in all things. I am sure I am not perfect, and I probably get things wrong from time to time.

In recent years it seems to me that we have been having a greater and greater divide between our two major parties in our long standing democratic political system. The middle ground has appeared to have dissolved, and it has been replaced by a great chasm. I know that in reality, being that we are all human in this political endeavor, we actually share so many values and beliefs. But, somehow many of us are being misled and misinformed into a trap of inhumanity.

I don’t think I have been the problem at all. The major reason is that I have virtually no power in this system of things. I do not have enough money, connections, followers or charisma to have manipulated change. However, I have been fortunate enough to be able to observe through the many, many lenses available to me how this problem has grown to be very, very dangerous for all of us.

What I see happening is that people who do have great power in many cases are abusing their power in such a way as to brainwash many Americans. They basically want their votes. They have found that by using their monetary power they can influence Americans with bad information to get these votes for the wrong reasons, basically so that they can become more rich and powerful. They have been developing an underground non-democratic group of fiefdoms with the purpose of subverting our democracy into becoming an autocracy, which they are mistakenly thinking that they can control. There will be only one winner of this outcome, but only in the short-term.

We have many, many serious issues that need the immediate attention of our nation. This division is exacerbating the problems as no real decent and reasonable solutions are being brought forth and implemented. Information pollution is clouding and spoiling our minds. We need them to be healthy as can be – everyone’s. How else are we going to properly address climate change, the pandemic, affordable housing, health care without wealth depletion, incentives to learn, equality, systemic racism and gender bias, freedoms, healthy environments and helping all of our neighbors? There are many more serious and less serious issues unlisted here.

I am appealing to you, Great Mediator, to help us find a way to come back together. While I don’t think it is too difficult, I don’t see it happening without your help. We need your wisdom and we need it now. Please help us to be much more honest and caring in everything that we do. Help us to realize that we really have the same desire to live a good life and to be able to pay this forward to future generations. We are one and we are all unique. Please help us to live together in a mutually beneficial way. I am available to assist in any way you find helpful.

Thank you for your kind consideration and help.

Sincerely,

Daniel J Arthur

Market Failure is a White Lie?

November 11, 2020 (to be updated); November 13, 2020; November 21, 2020; November 22, 2020; December 1, 2020; December 17, 2020; January 5, 2020

by Daniel J Arthur

We keep hearing a lot of fear mongering by the Republican Party also known as the GOP and its supporters that the Democratic Party is a bunch of left wing socialists. They tell what they think of as white lies, but in reality are outright misrepresentations of the truth or false allegations. The GOP has been using these lies to scare many ignorant Americans into voting against good common sense policy.

You will hear a lot about free enterprise and competition and the market economy being the savior of mankind. That’s a bunch of manure going to waste. I don’t know many people, Democrats or otherwise, that are against private enterprise or what we often just call business. In fact, I know of no one personally who is against private ownership controlling business. These Democrats and Republicans that I know are capitalists and not socialists.

Now we don’t just have businesses doing their thing totally independent of the government. I don’t know of anyplace that runs just on a pure market economy. Can you guess why? Because in almost every instance there is some kind of market failure. It is natural for markets to fail, and they don’t adjust very well on their own. Why is that? Because when there is market failure the situation tends to get out of control and causes harm to individuals and/or things.

Nations the world over and for thousands of years have been struggling with these issues of market failure and how to deal with them. Governments of many kinds have been invented and have evolved from dictatorships like kings to all kinds of more inclusive democratic organizations of government. Basically, these governments deal with market failures.

What are some kinds of market failures that we typically think of as governmental goods and services? Personal and community safety, defining ownership, personal and community health, defining and protecting property rights, personal and community education, information, power, trade facilitation, environment, religion, culture, diversity, and much more. Can you imagine businesses trying to broker these goods and services? Probably not, and it would not eliminate the market failures.

How do we deal with these market failures? We either have the government provide the primary goods and services like currency, law enforcement and public schooling or we have government regulate the activities like environmental, public health and banking and securities regulations.

What are a few of the many, many market failures in the world of free enterprise? There is not likely to be a market that is without failure. A common example of a market failure is where a polluter, like a coal burning power plant or fracking operation, will just continue polluting the air and/or water without refraining without some kind of intervention from a third party like a government body. Why? Because the resource, air or water in this example, is freely available to deposit harmful and unwanted by-products of the operation. As a consumer or person using air and water, I want it to be very clean so that I may enjoy it and not be harmed by the pollutants. Most often the consumer has little to no power on their own to undo the polluting.

So, instead of foul air and water, which many in the current GOP don’t recognize as a problem, a government regulatory body like the EPA or a state or local environmental agency will set standards, monitor and modify a polluters behavior with fines or imprisonment to maintain what is considered to be a reasonable natural resource quality. Without regulation, we would end up with a ruined environment.

Another common example of market failure is when a company becomes too large a player. Many of you have heard of monopolies and maybe oligopolies that are huge and dominate a market. This creates a situation that is far, far from free enterprise or perfect competition. The monopolist can set their own price to maximize profits, produce much less than the consumers desire, and reduce quality at a whim. In these situations we have learned that we need government regulation to help gain better pricing for individuals and business organizations, ensure output meets demand needs and that quality is maintained.

Yes, government intervention can be excessive at times, but it recent years or decades there has not been enough government regulation to offset the market failure franchises in so many industries like pharmaceuticals, energy and housing. Therefore, often the business or misnamed free enterprise is able to charge consumers too much, not provide enough goods and services and pollute much more than is desired.

Remember these are but a few examples of the welfare for the super wealthy and corporations of the world. Do you see, too little regulating and intervention of market failure leads to the individual being harmed and exploited? The Republicans aka GOP have been leveraging transfers of wealth from individuals of usual means and less to those that can unduly influence our regulatory and intervention agencies.

These examples show how a modern society can actually make adjustments to the business world to ensure a more fair society with more competition and a place for all. However, the people calling themselves conservatives in America, members of the GOP or Republican Party, have been using their power to harm most Americans when there is market failure. In fact, they have been practicing socialism for the wealthy by encouraging huge transfers of wealth from 90% of Americans to the wealthiest. The amounts are in the trillions of dollars, and, in addition, includes terrible environmental and health outcomes as well.

Not mitigating market failures by a government with jurisdiction is in essence socialism. It is socialism for the wealthy as the wealth of the least economically capable will flow to the most economically capable. Is that fair? Desirable?

The GOP has been controlled by its international socialist rich donors (ISRD) to a very large degree. The ISRD has leveraged the GOP elected officials to help transfer tens of tens of trillions of dollars from the modest wealth of ordinary Americans into the pockets of the ISRD. This has left us with the empty cupboard of government options which should be stocked to help the victims of the pandemic – ordinary citizens and small and smaller businesses. This transfer of wealth needs to be thoroughly investigated. It appears to be the crime of the last two centuries.

The ISRD is not an ethnic or national group; rather, the ISRD is composed of super wealthy individuals who want to be permanent oligarchs or princes with government working for them. They will leverage market failures as income streams by controlling government response. This is about milking the system for money – trillions yearly. Democracy is the only system that has the potential to fight back, which is why they are trying to destroy it along with freedom.

A simple thing air. If we all had clean air, we would all be healthier and feel better. Certainly a market failure that we do not. Invest in air purification for your family, whether it be machines or better masks. It will help.

Stories to enjoy with your family and friends

April 6, 2020

A great activity to do with your family and friends while staying home and staying safe is to ready books and share your thoughts with one another.  I believe the books I’ve written will help you have hours of enjoyment.  Please check them out.  I welcome your input.

Young Hearts - Three Stories for Youth and All Book One Cover - great stories for discussion and hope
Great children’s stories by Daniel J Arthur

 

Link to children’s stories introduction video.

Tumblr link:  Young Hearts – Wonderful Children’s Stories

Daniel J Arthur Books

BWF All England Open Superseries 2017 results

March 12, 2017

The 2017 BWF All England Open Superseries badminton tournament was a big success this past week. There were some tremendous individual and team efforts in all five events – women’s singles, men’s singles, women’s doubles, mens doubles, and mixed doubles. It is worth watching matches on demand on YouTube especially as presented by badmintonworld.tv.

The champions were as follows:

Tai Tzu Ying, Chinese Taipei, Women’s Singles

Lee Chong Wei, Malaysia, Men’s Singles

Chang Ye Na and Lee So Hee, South Korea, Women’s Doubles

Marcus Fernaldi Gideon and Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo, Indonesia, Men’s Doubles

Lu Kai and Huang Yaqiong, China, Mixed Doubles

There were many wonderful performances that I hope to be able to report on, but feel free to check on those videos available on YouTube and elsewhere.

March badminton news: Dave Freeman and the All-England

March 5, 2017

I’m back from San Diego and the 60th Annual Dave Freeman Badminton Tournament for players from youth to elders, even top level national team participants. Although I had limited success at the C level, I enjoyed many aspects of this event, named after one of the best, if not the best, USA players ever – Dave Freeman.

The level of play at this tournament was fantastic for amateur players. The winners of the A level events were eligible for a nice cash prize, and I believe many of them would be competitive now close to the Superseries level. For instance, the Xu twins, winners of the Women’s Doubles event, looked ready to test their skills at international tournaments, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see them ranked in the top 20 within a few years. They deserve a chance to get out there and try their luck. These top USA players need some coaches to travel with them. Do we have the resources to support them?

After a few BWF Grand Prix Gold tournaments including the recent Yonex German Open, it’s time now for the Superseries to begin with the Yonex All England 2017. Qualifying starts on Tuesday for the Superseries events with the Finals scheduled for next Sunday, March 12th. Fans are looking forward to seeing all the highest ranked players competing for this first big title of the year. And, it should be an exciting year with fantastic new doubles teams and singles players. Get ready to go on YouTube and find BWF BadmintonWorld.tv for the best coverage beginning with the round of 16 on Thursday, March 9th – live or on demand (begins at 4:00 AM P.S.T in the USA).

Top badminton players and their chosen rackets – 2016

dja Badminton

Top badminton players and their chosen rackets

by Daniel A. Jones

It’s been a very interesting year in professional badminton with veterans and youngsters both having amazing campaigns. I have been impressed by so many performances of the top ranked singles players and doubles teams. Badminton World Federation has done an outstanding job of promoting the best sport on Earth – a healthy activity for your lifetime. I will write about the various tournaments and individual accomplishments throughout the 2017 season.

For now I want to introduce just a few of the top players for 2017, and I will list some of the current badminton rackets used by many of these players. These are rackets I have found that they have used in the 2016 season from either the racket maker or BWF as the main sources. Of course, many of the pros will change models for 2017.

Up and coming men’s and women’s players in doubles and singles –
CHEN Qingchen
Jhe-huei LEE
Yang LEE
Beiwen ZHANG

Top singles players –
TAI Tzu Ying
LEE Chong Wei
CHEN Long
Ratchanok INTANON
Jan O. Jorgensen

Top doubles players –
ZHANG Nan
CHEN Qingchen
Wee Kiong TAN
Misaki MATSUTOMO
Kevin Sanjaya SUKAMULJO
Keigo SONODA
KO Sung Hyun

Rackets used by selected professional badminton players –

Jan O. JORGENSEN
Yonex Voltric 80 E-tune

LEE Chong Wei
Yonex Duora 10

Markus Fernaldi GIDEON
Victor MX90

Kevin Sanjaya SUKAMULJO
Victor Jetspeed S 10

Wee Kiong TAN
Victor Jetspeed S 10

TAI Tzu Ying
Victor TI99, formerly Hypermano X 800

Carolina MARIN
Yonex Nanoray Z-Speed

NG Ka Long Angus
Victor TK8000

Akane YAMAGUCHI
Yonex Voltric 70 E-tune

Liliyana NATSIR
Victor JS 8 S Natsir L

Tontowi AHMAD
Victor JS S8 PS

SUNG Ji Hyun
Victor JS-8 ST and Victor Brave Sword 12 (per BWF profile)

SON Wan Ho
Victor Hypermano X 800

YOO Yeon Seong
Victor Brave Sword 12

Christinna PEDERSEN
Yonex Nanoray 800

Saina NEHWAL
Yonex Nanoray 900

Marc ZWIEBLER
Yonex Voltric 70 E-tune
Yonex Arcsaber 11

Mathias BOE
Yonex Duora 10

Carsten MOGENSEN
Yonex Duora 10

Mohammad AHSAN
Yonex Nanoray 900

Victor AXELSEN
Yonex Arcsaber 11

CHOU Tien Chen
Yonex Duora 10

Tommy SUGIARTO
Yonex Voltric 80 E-tune

KIDAMBI Srikanth
Yonex Voltric Z –Force II

Ratchanok INTANON
Yonex Voltric 70 E-tune

PUSARLA V. Sindhu
Yonex Voltric Z –Force II

Greysia POLII
Yonex Nanoray 900

Nitya Krishinda MAHESWARI
Yonex Nanoray GianZ

Chris ADCOCK
Yonex Voltric Z –Force II

Gabrielle ADCOCK
Yonex Voltric Z –Force II

Peter GADE
Yonex Voltric 80 E-tune

Tanongsak SAENSOMBOONSUK
Yonex Voltric 80 E-tune

Hans-Kristian VITTINGHUS
Carlton Kinesis X900 LTD

Rajiv OUSEPH
Yonex Nanoray 9000 – maybe 900 actually

WONG Wing Ki Vincent
Yonex Voltric 70 E-tune

Iskandar ZULKARNAIN
Victor Jetspeed 10

Porntip BURANAPRASERTSUK
Li-ning n90II

Kirsty GILMOUR
Yonex Voltric I-Force

Line KJAERSFELDT
FZ Forza Kevlar CNT-Power 10000s

Karin SCHNAASE
Yonex Nanoray 800

Misaki MATSUTOMO
Wilson CX 9000 J (FIERCE)

JUNG Kyung Eun
Victor Zet Speed S 10

Selena PIEK
Babolat Satellite Power

Gabriela STOEVA
Babolat Essential (blue)

Heather OLVER
Babolat Satellite Power Metrix Flex 6.5

Kim ASTRUP
Yonex Arcsaber 11

Marcus ELLIS
Yonex Voltric Z Force II

Chris LANGRIDGE
Carlton Vapour Trail Tour DSiL

Michael FUCHS
Yonex Voltric 80 E-tune

KO Sung Hyun
Victor Brave Sword 12

Natalia Koch ROHDE
Victor Wave Power 6600

Liu Ying GOH
Victor HX800

CHAU Hoi Wah
Victor Jetspeed 10

Bodin ISARA
Yonex Voltric Z Force

PEI Jing Lai
Victor Jetspeed 10

LEE Chun Hei Reginald
Victor TK 900

KIM Ha Na
Victor Hypermano X 800

Looking upon you with loving kindness

When I am among any of the wonderful people on this planet, I am hoping that they can see in me someone that is exuding loving kindness. I am noticing many things as I look around, and truly that people have so much to offer us is one of those things I see.

Most people are focused on what they are doing with the people they are with, if any.  Occasionally, they notice me.  When they do I hope they see loving kindness.  No matter what they may think about me and my expression, that is what I feel.

If they are being silly, I feel that.  If they are being serious, I feel that.  If they are quiet and in their own world, I feel that.  If they are angry, I feel that.  If they are prejudiced, I feel that. If they are smiling and laughing, I feel that.  If they are happy, I feel that.  If they are confused, I feel that. If they are working, I feel that.  If they are sad, I feel that.  If they are vulnerable, I feel that.  If they are strong, I feel that.

I know the potential each and everyone has to make a wonderful contribution to our world.  That is what makes me feel this loving kindness.  Do good.

Snoqualmie Falls flowing powerfully like we should with loving kindness
May our loving kindness continue to flow like this.

Try to help clean things up

We live in a beautiful world on a beautiful planet with beautiful creatures of all kinds, human and otherwise.  We have many challenges in front of us to make our ecosphere the best it can be.  Let’s do what we can to make it better in a holistic sense.  We all will be the happier.

Butterfly on the Western Slope of Colorado taking a breather on Mount Sopris conifer.
Butterfly on the Western Slope of Colorado taking a breather on Mount Sopris conifer.