Reply to CBC Decisions Article

This is a reply from Corinne Guilmain to my article Avoiding CBC Decisions. Corinne and I used to work together on the DSC in Motion student newspaper in fall 2009.

Hi, Richard,

I don’t reply very often to your newsletters, but I did have something to say about this newsletter.

Your article was interesting. However, you didn’t mention secret rulings. I call them “secret rulings” because the individual in question is not allowed to speak their mind or present anything on their own behalf. Anything having to do with a CBC will never be revealed to the individual in question. Decisions are made behind closed doors among people who are self-proclaimed judges. Records are sealed and decisions are made that can be very detrimental to the individual in question. These people make judgment calls as if they can stand in the shoes of the person in question.

It’s as if there is no such thing as a “person” and that the only way a “person” exists is because someone else defines their reality. Other people call the shots, make arrangements and worse of all make judgment calls that can be very destructive to the other person who has been denied their day in court and the right to face their accusers. I call it a “setup.” This is happening more and more everyday with the people “in the know.” It is happening on a grand scale that is unbelievable. The right of the individual is being supplanted and restructured. I believe this is part of homeland security. It’s as if those in authority believe they know all there is to know about what being a human is all about. They have structured every facet of being human. They have categorized relationships and the meaning of life. They have become “God.” Personhood or the right to exercise one’s consciousness has become a game, a power play, over that person in terms of corralling them into a state of being and experience. The individual experience has now been defined as a community experience. The means has now become more important than the ends because it is for the greater good. Women especially have no voice. They are defined by their fathers, husbands and a variety of theological definitions. Consciousness has come within the reigns of despotism. Big brother has arrived. And it’s not the government.

Corinne Guilmain

Death

Earthly accomplishments do not allow you to die in peace anymore than water keeps you from starving to death. Leaving behind a legacy is important to some, but must be balanced with living each moment for yourself, and not necessarily your spouse, friends, family, or children.

The story of the Wandering Jew says that a cobbler taunted Jesus, saying “go on, go on!,” to which Jesus replied, “you too shall go on,” which cursed him to eternal life until the Second Coming. Immortality on this earth would actually be quite depressing, because you would out-live everyone you know and love. The division between life and death gives life structure, continuity, and meaning.

The religion of atheism encourages hedonism, because it says that man is a useless passion — there is no imperative purpose to life, and death is eternal, complete, and final. Unfortunately, humans are naturally spiritual beings, and all encounter supernatural experiences in life which cannot be discounted as vagaries of perception, so atheism is ultimately appealing to only teenagers and twenty-somethings.

When we look at other animals — dogs, cats, spiders, tigers, alligators, blue whales, chimpanzees, pigeons, etc., we see animals who do care about preserving their lives, but do not have the soul or consciousness that humans possess. We are special, like no other species on earth, because we philosophize beyond our existence, create works of art and science to stand the test of time, and (hopefully) strive to improve ourselves.

Death is as natural as birth, and it should be self-evident that both should be understood, but neither should be obsessed over. It’s important to entrench yourself in a belief system that allows you to make short and long-range decisions about how to conduct your life, be it believing in salvation, damnation, neutrality, reincarnation, or nothingness after death, but it’s also important to recognize that a belief that’s true at 6am in your life may not be true at Noon or at sunset. What you believe at 60 years old will be far different from what you believe at 30, and at 90 years of age your outlook will be different than you can imagine now.

American culture tells you that you should spend 13 years in public school (K-12), and then at least 4 years in college, and then start a career in a specialty field and follow that path to the end. You are also told it’s very important to divorce yourself from your parents and your family, because they are holding you back and you should have the joy of having a car payment and rent payment every month. Individuality is very important, which is why you should eat junk food, never read anything, never get married or commit to anyone, drink your fluoridated and chlorinated water, believe in phony environmentalism, always be dumb, never find Jesus, be vain, get tattoos, and die of cancer at 55.

Okay, I’m exaggerating, but the point is while this path may be fine if it makes you happy or gives your life definition and purpose, it’s probably not fulfilling unless you want to die with regrets and squashed dreams. We have it good in the first world, and if you are stressed about being unemployed or overweight, a trip to Haiti, Nigeria, or Iraq might put your life in perspective. Personally, I prefer to stay in Florida where it’s safe.

In truth, a life of danger can be fulfilling, but sticking close to your family and avoiding the shackles of slavery gives you more potential. I live with my parents, so I don’t have to worry about paying a strange landlord rent or watching my back at night. I don’t have a job, not because I’m unsalable, but because I’m lazy and hard to work with. I take pictures because it’s more fun than painting, and I play piano for myself, though impressing others is nice.

When you lock yourself into a mode of thinking, you blind yourself from other possibilities of existence. It’s kind of like using a digital SLR camera with only one prime lens. You can do a lot with one lens, but experimenting with other focal lengths and apertures will broaden your understanding multi-dimensionally.

Looking back at 2010, 2009, or 2008, you can see that everything you did was necessary to get where you are now. This does not mean that you could not be in a better place if you made different decisions in the past — you most certainly could — but the linear nature of time means that dwelling on the past wastes the present and stifles the future. Instead of focusing on what could have been, focus on what can be now.

When my cousin Charles died at 27 of brain cancer in 2006, we saw that Memorial Sloan-Kettering was unable to save him with any amount of surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation. He died a tortuous, sickening, undignified death, but this prompted my Dad to research cancer and find that a molecule found in apple, cherry, and apricot seeds, wheat grass, raw spinach, and bitter almonds, consisting of 20 atoms carbon, 27 atoms hydrogen, 1 atom nitrogen, and 11 atoms oxygen prevents cancer if eaten in sufficient quantities daily. This really improved my life, since I don’t worry about cancer anymore, or staying out in the sun, using a cell phone, microwaving my food, or checking for lumps. I just take some wheat grass pills everyday and eat the seeds whenever I eat an apple.

If you have fears about death which can be overcome with action or knowledge, there’s no excuse to not pursue those, unless you want to die early. If you are a smoker, you can instantly prolong your life by quitting. If you eat red meat three meals a day, you can instantly prolong your life by replacing that with tofu, greens, and fish. If you live in a high-crime area, you can move to a low-crime area. If you have bad friends, you can abandon them and find good friends. If you are fat, you can lose weight by being hungry all the time. If you can’t sleep, you can drink a glass of warm milk or read a good book. If life is stressing you out, either change your attitude, change your life, or suffer.

I’ve heard of people regretting not having children late in life, but I’ve not heard of people regretting having children. I’ve heard of businessmen regretting spending too little time with their families, but I’ve not heard of businessmen regretting spending too little time at work. I’ve heard of women regretting having an abortion, but I’ve not heard of women regretting not having an abortion. I’ve heard people regretting committing suicide, but I’ve not heard people regretting not killing themselves. Love, kindness, and enjoying life now is the safer option, not because tomorrow may never come, but because today will never repeat.

Avoiding CBC Decisions

The primary goal of all institutions is to avoid case-by-case (CBC) decisions by setting up a bureaucracy to handle every decision not based on possibility (pro-actionary), but based on precedent (reactionary) OR by delegating or removing those decisions to an independent, definitive, un-coerced third party, which is not necessarily or even desirably neutral and fair.

This is why in the United States of America we have a jury system of common people to judge all courtroom proceedings and unanimously determine guilt. If even one of the twelve jurors has doubts, he can deny the State the right to incarcerate, fine, or otherwise punish the defender, be him a victim or a criminal. The jury is not a star panel — any citizen can be drafted at any time for jury duty and jury selection should be of the person’s peers, coworkers, or neighbors rather than strangers, because if his friends rule him not guilty when they know him to be guilty, one to twelve of them will have to fear him on the streets or in public if he is truly a criminal.

Similarly, the system of federal courts and a Supreme Court to prosecute federal law and strike down states’ laws if they violate the spirit of the Constitution is set up hierarchically so that a case can be removed to an independent, definitive, un-coerced third party in a pattern of escalation or de-escalation, unless it reaches the Supreme Court, in which case a CBC or non-CBC decision is made which cannot be appealed, confined, over-turned, or escalated to an international or world court. Similarly, the case can be “thrown out of court” if there is no crime committed, or if the case is not worthy of the court’s time, because all time and resources are finite and never infinite.

While avoiding CBC decisions may be ideal for institutions, it is not ideal on an individual scale because every person has certain gut feelings he or she is unable to articulate. For this reason, personal discrimination is a sacred right which must always be upheld, and you should not hold yourself to machine-like standards because you are not a machine.