Need for cash...
FYI, I have a few needs for cash.
1) I am basically broke, having spent much more than I could have concievably afforded to have spent on campaign contributions, event tickets, gas, and meals out while politicking...
2) I have to send some money to Indonesia, to keep my former staff going and meaningfully engaged, until I can get back there and hopefully get going again on the rubber project or similar conservation/agroforestry & peace projects
3) I have to get back to Indonesia. I need to renew a passport, get a visa, and do some face-to-face lobbying with politicians and civil service types in D.C. before I go to be most effective.
4) I have been trading tech support, various kinds of friendship and love, wild stories and advice for beers and sandwiches. If I can be the person buying sandwiches and beers for a while, I'll be slightly more effective. And I might get support of one kind or another for some of those sandwiches. I am inclined to believe its a two way street. And it makes jobs for the sandwich vendors of Bemidjistan. While they have jobs and customers, they remain docile. If the sandwich vending fails, they are already armed with their prep cook tools to make serious trouble for us Brahmins (of Bemidji and/or Boston). Its true, while they serve us sandwiches, they plot class warfare in their foodie boutiques. We have to give them more and better business. And empower them to prepare better and healthier crumbs for the utterly dispossessed.
I beseech you, mysterious cash flow controllers, turn on the taps, and I'll be grateful. I have done more with less, I'll do better with more. And I know where to start spraying the cash-spewing firehoses, if you are so inclined to really combat the dangerous carbon-emitting and soul-destroying flares of both Northern Minnesota and Southeast Asia.
And in the words of Paul Wellstone, "We all do better, when we all do better".
My part of doing better, when I am doing better with more, will be to be kinder, and more forgiving. And generate more useful, more usable maps of the world and the human condition, while preserving just enough privacy, while reserving the right to scandalize the prudish and publicly denude and embarrass the guilty and deserving.
I'll embrace the most soulful forms of legalized corruption for the sake of "professionalism" that is to say the comfort levels of those who regularly trade bread for freedom. Mostly, because my shabbiness and woodsy appearance makes you all nervous, but I am ten times more dangerous clean shaven, in a suit. If I have to, I'll do the powerpoint jockey derby for a few days. Its slightly more dignified if you just pony up with the uang, Tuan.
I'd rather eat mangoes on the beach and tell odd jokes in still-imperfect Malay, work on Burmese and Arabic, smuggle jungle rubber and study fungi, insects or plants than slurp down scotches and sort breathable air from cigarette smoke in the last healthy alveoli that remain in that cavity next to the pump called the heart that is mistakenly thought of as the seat of emotions in the West.
It's all in the liver. Too much power point, too many pitches, destroys the liver and wastes valuable time, which they are not making as much of as they used to.
My liver can still feel the difference between sham democracy and the real thing. I have seen the real thing begin to emerge in the East, just as it sunsets here in the West. There is a new democracy on the way.
So what if they seem to prefer spiritual clarity to muddled commercialism. Surely we can learn to get along, and do business with out exporting our cultural norms under threat of force and interference? Or do we just regret seeing there are others who don't trade away their freedom for more and more fattening bread, bread that becomes HostessTM cupcakes and twinkies? We've been pitched the theocratic idea that our clearly worded founding documents can be traded for ancient texts that have always been interpreted arbitrarily and caused more wars amongst Christians than between Christendom and the East... so what if people choose to encode their ancient texts in their emerging new states and substates in places like Aceh, Pashtunistan, Surat Thani or Basra, or the next Iran, if they choose to remake Iran? As long as they keep it in their "House of Peace" and off the streets of Montevideo, Minnesota we should be hapy with that compromise, even, or perhaps especially if they become disinterested in buying our warfighting tools and technologies.
Again, if there is money for action, I've got insight for better actions than what we've seen by many players, and better game to be had than the Great Game. But what do I know?