Alyson Irvin

Nashville, TN, United States

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Alyson Irvin
Posted almost 3 years ago
Mark Pagel asks: Can we really afford to have all these different languages in this modern globalized world?
It is definitively a decision on the part of some. It is a conscious decision, being implemented consciously, deliberately. If its not a decision we (the worlds common people) approve of, we need to inform ourselves on the issues, and the players, and exercise democracy to block it. http://www.iie.com/publications/papers/paper.cfm?ResearchID=377 The problem is, that even the people pushing for economic globalization dont understand fully the implications of it. These are the same people, with the same economic theories that have led America to economic disaster. But look at a key argument in this speech FOR globalization. "If we dont move forward, we will fall over." (Bicycle theory) Years ago, I argued that that was ridiculous logic, and I do again today. If you are on a bicycle, yes, sometimes it is painful to fall over. But it isnt always in your best interests to press forward to avoid falling over. Particularly when you are heading full speed towards the edge of a cliff. An economic system that requires growth to stay viable in a closed system like the Earth, is a bicycle speeding towards a cliff edge. Its impossible to maintain growth indefinitely, and we are nearer to the edge of that cliff than most people want to know.
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Alyson Irvin
Posted almost 3 years ago
How can we cultivate courageous, non-violent dialogue between youth and power?
I think you need to look more frankly at the rioting in Egypt. It began much as the London riots did. Thuggish and violent, random and angry. The big difference is what another large power within the nation did ( the military.) In London, no one in power wanted to take advantage of the rioting to get the entrenched leaders out. In Egypt, there were elements in the military who were more than happy to use the situation to force Mubarak out. Not ot liberate the Egyptian people and give them real democracy, but to position themselves to take the kind of financial advantages of power that Mubarak had been. In Libya, there were elements outside Libya who were willing to use the disgruntled to force the entrenched powers out, even though it the movement clearly did not have majority support of the Libyan people. In Saudi Arabia, the outside powers helped the entrenched powers maintain control. If you look at each individual case, you will see unhappy people as a common denominator, and unhappy people willing to get violent. The biggest difference is not how many of the other members of the population share their ire, but whether any bigger powers find their violence useful and act to support it. I also think that pretending that the situation of the young today is comparable to the situation of the young in the west 30-40-50 years ago is a little blurry eyed. Their economic prospects are NOT the same. Globalization has forced everyone into the same labor pool essentially. And not only is it now a global labor pool, rather than a national one, its a larger labor pool by billions. And supply and demand sets price for labor as well as any other commodity. The youth today have to invest more for education than their predecessors did, for less return, and less job security, less benefits, less everything. To be "competitive" means doing more for less. I think we need to be realistic about that.
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Alyson Irvin
Posted almost 3 years ago
Without spending money, how can I make the biggest impact on my community with 15 minutes/day?
You can just keep an eye out for someone who needs a hand in your day to day life, and give it to them rather than have a set "way" you spend your 15 minutes a day. Being kind and helpful rubs off, and gets "paid forward." (Studies have backed this up, and also shown that bad habits get paid forward too) So, short of time and money, just look for opportunities to pay forward cooperation, kindness, and compassion every single chance you get. It will probably be the biggest bang you can get for 15 minutes a day in term of impacting your community since every act of kindness or helpfulness will multiply itself.
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Alyson Irvin
Posted almost 3 years ago
How young is too young for social networking?
When I was little, (which was before the age of social networking) kids got into things that were "too mature" for them. Someone would bring a stolen porn magazine and the whole group would look at it. Or someone would steal cigarettes and some would smoke them. Or someone would convince someone to show them their bits and pieces. And so on. The big difference is that once its on the internet, the childish game of "look at this" is there forever for them to be judged by, and of course that adults with bad intentions can also have access to the pictures while there were rarely adults in the bushes with the kids playing "doctor." I dont think that there is any real way to control kids being kids on the internet, or in the world, aside from your physical presence with them while they are on the internet and in the physical world. I think the bottom line is, that if you really want your children to be safe from harm you have to physically watch them while they are doing what they do. Its difficult when parents have to work, or want to do "their own thing" rather than physically engage with the child in the virtual or physical world, but honestly, thats your best bet for keeping them safe. You can let your child have a facebook page, but not let them have unlimited access to it. (ie, make it something you supervise them doing for a half hour or one hour a day, and which you make inoperable for them when you are not around, perhaps by taking the router or lap top with you when you are away.) You cant really parent well in absentia, is the bottom line. Its just an inconvenient truth.
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Alyson Irvin
Posted almost 3 years ago
How can we cultivate courageous, non-violent dialogue between youth and power?
It is too big to manage. And going bigger, (globalization) just serves to further alienate our leaders from the needs, the wants, and the will of the people. I wish I had the solution to the whole problem, but I dont. But I do know for certain that if we dont start by looking clearly at what is happening, and discussing what is really happening, we have no chance of coming up with a workable solution.
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Alyson Irvin
Posted almost 3 years ago
If you could teach the world 1 valuable thing you learned, what would it be and why?
Frans, I did not say we should suppress emotion. Nor would I recommend it. You are right, that can create problems. Emotional mastery isnt "suppression" as I see it. Its just not letting our emotions run the show entirely. The wisdom to know when it is okay to run with your emotions and when reason should prevail. Suppressed emotions often DO run the show, all the more because they are acting below the level of consciousness. So I would never call it mastery to suppress them. However, when you allow emotion free reign to dictate actions, as we do now for the most part, anyone who can manipulate us emotionally can also control our actions. Hitler knew this. Stalin knew this. Our leaders know this. Advertisers know this. Anyone who wants to control other people knows this. Most of us dont know this. Make the people fear? You can get them to attack. Tell them what the danger is? You can direct that attack. That is a real problem in a world where money controls the media. What I mean by emotional mastery is the ability to feel your feelings, not repress them, but then to apply your rational dispassionate mind to an examination of the situation. To look at the facts, to look for motive in those who are whipping up your emotions, so you can decide rationally if what you fear is a boogey man created by someone else to control you, or if it is real and requires real action. (Love can also be used to control, its not only fear, someone can make you love them by telling you what inspires love in you, and their actions may betray their real intent) We do not, (on the whole, individuals can and do), look beyond our emotional impulse. We get carried away in the rapids of emotion and act before we think, and often we dont even know we SHOULD think, that there is a need to get more facts, a need to examine motive, because the current of emotion is so powerful.
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Alyson Irvin
Posted almost 3 years ago
How can we cultivate courageous, non-violent dialogue between youth and power?
I think we also have to ask ourselves if "they" (the powerful) are deluded about what they are doing, or if we are. I dont think they are. I think they know very well what they are doing, and the sense that they are deluded comes from the way they label their actions to convince us to go along with them. "Humanitarian" wars, are rarely humanitarian, they are economic. Our leaders are not unaware or deluded that they have economic goals, and that their motives are economic. We are. Because they cannot sell a war to the people by saying, "we want you to pay with your tax dollars, and your lives, to help us overturn a government that is not playing ball with the economic powers that fund us, and secure access to the resources in that region to enrich them" and so they make up stories that they know will work with us. "We are liberating x people from horrible tyranny" or "this leader is endangering you, and we must stop them now for your sake." They arent deluded about what they are doing. They know precisely what they are doing. We are the ones who are deluded or half deluded about what they are doing. Because we accept at face value the labels they slap on their actions. Until we start looking past the labels, and until we start naming their actions ourselves, based on what is REALLY in the package they are handing us, we will be spinning our wheels. Democracy is another label we need to look beneath if we want to solve our problems, really solve them. Do we really have that? Is it democracy when the information people need to vote wisely is kept from them deliberately under the guise of "national security" and just flat out propaganda? In a nation when only candidates who have corporate funding stand a chance of being elected? We are spreading something CALLED democracy around the world, but what is it really when we look in the box?
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Alyson Irvin
Posted almost 3 years ago
When is a "riot" a good riot and when is it a bad riot?
A bad riot is one in which the rioters do not attain their goal. A good riot is one in which they do. Its as simple as that. A good riot would include those that led to the successful American and French revolutions, because the rioters were in a position to call them "good" after the dust settled. History is written by the victors. "Terrorism" "mindless violence" are what the losers do. "Freedom fighting" is what the winners do. In fact, they are doing exactly the same thing.
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Alyson Irvin
Posted almost 3 years ago
Genuine Smile, Fake Smile but what about one associated with Pain?
Well, smiling does more than say "Im happy." It also says "Im friendly and I like you." I dont know about you, but I tend to make my sad smiles only towards another person relating to me while I am sad. I dont sit around crying alone and smiling. So I think sad smiles are more a show of friendship and appreciation for those who are with us in our moment of sadness and grief, than they are about happiness.