Lost in Meditation: The Top 3 Reasons Your Meditation Practice Is Going Nowhere

1. New Age spirituality has very limited basis in true spirituality. Meditate, meditate, and meditate! New Age spirituality is primarily about the various ways and uses for meditation. The word meditate has become so over used, and taken on so many different interpretations. To put it frankly, mediation has become a cure all! Don’t get me wrong meditation has a lot of excellent health benefits when utilized as a relaxation too, and has remarkable results for a number of diseases and conditions. However, a true deeply spiritual mediation is often hard for the average person to come by.

In today’s modern society, taking time to mediate, even briefly is often a stolen moment. Also, all forms of guided meditation or group meditation practice seem to be preferable over a solitary practice. This is pure irony in and of itself because meditation at its core is the practice of stilling the mind. Just try and imagine what ancient spiritual leaders would think of this type of meditation practice! How can true connection be realized while actively listening and adhering to the voice of another?

Historically, American spirituality was not supposed to exist. Early European settlers were exposed to spirituality in both Native American and African cultures, and it was not something Europeans easily understood. More or less early Europeans felt powerless against true spirituality. As long as spirituality was so deeply ingrained in these other cultures that the early settlers experienced, the settlers would remain powerless. And for the early settlers to be powerless was to leave the new lands and the New World unconquered. However, as the world has evolved and become tumultuous more and more people of all cultures find themselves seeking a higher power and deeper purpose. A lot of this seeking is mimicked, but that is not to say that there is not spirituality in all human beings. Nevertheless particularly in modern American culture spirituality and metaphysical gifts have been long regarded as nonsense. These thought patterns stem from the times when the early settlers cut themselves off and silenced the knowledge of spirituality of being passed down.

2. The average spiritual teacher has limited experience in the depths of psychic development. Over time spirituality has become a business, plain and simple. There are more psychic development teachers out there than one could even think about connecting with in one lifetime. This is not necessarily a bad thing. Highly recognized spiritual teachers of the day often speak about it being more light workers on the planet than ever before due to the need raise the vibration of the Earth. What the average spiritual teacher or psychic development coach won’t tell is their own personal limit in spirituality. Everyone has been blessed with unique gifts and talents, and some are more natural inclined with metaphysical gifts. But because spirituality commands big dollars for coaching and psychic readings and the like, this has created more room for those who are less than authentic to enter the market offering false services. This is part of the reason why spirituality and spiritual gifts are met with so many skeptics. Needless to say, that the main reason is that world culture as a whole has denounced metaphysical gifts as true and natural.

3. Connection to your higher self can only be achieved if you are open to the concept of a higher consciousness. The very basis of meditation is being open to connect your higher self. Connecting to your higher self can be beneficial for various reasons. However, one has to be aware of one’s higher self to increase the likely hood of connection and experiencing the benefit. In the confines of religion, it is not uncommon for the good church folks to say “God spoke to me.” Traditionally, spirituality and religion have long since been mistaken as one for other. But also, the introduction of religion has more or less cancelled out spirituality for the believers. When this removal of spirituality took place and was replaced with religion, people have often inserted God in the place of intuition or the “higher self.” This act in itself can limit how deeply you will be able to meditate and how much growth will be able to occur in your spiritual development.

Becoming lost in meditation is more common than you think. The thing to remember is that mediation is what you make it as an individual. But it all starts with still your mind and being open to connection. As spiritual beings, there is nothing that you need to do other than provide a quiet place to practice stillness. The more you practice the deeper you will go. The best advice anyone can give you in regard to meditation is to let go of judgement, trust yourself, and allow connection to present itself with the offering of whatever benefit is waiting for you.

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So Your Business Has a Legal Problem – 8 Useful Tips on What to Expect From Your Lawyer

As a business owner, you are usually run off your feet with the challenges of operating your business. The last thing you need to worry about is a legal problem. Many business people put off dealing with a legal problem because they don’t know where to turn, don’t have the time, or most often, are afraid of how much it will cost and how much time it will take.

Legal issues come in many forms:

· A customer failed to pay an account despite many promises. · You just received a letter from a government agency. · You just found out that your former manager has set up a competing business and has stolen your best customer and one of your key employees. · You have just been sued for $100,000. · Someone told you that one of your standard form contracts won’t stand up in court and you are worried about it. · You have a dispute with your landlord. · You have a problem with a US or European customer. · Your business has been defamed on the internet. · You just found that your warehouse manager has been sexually harassing a female employee. · An employee is damaging your business but threatens to sue if you fire him. You are not sure how to handle it. · You are involved with a Workplace Safety Insurance claim.

These examples are just the tip of the iceberg of the kinds of legal issues business people run into frequently.

Tip #1 – Seek out legal help at the first sign of a problem

Suppose a competitor has been passing off its business under your name and it’s costing you customers and sales but it’s hard to estimate the amount. Unless you act promptly, it may be too late to seek an injunction from the Court. If you think you have a claim against another party under a contract, a limitation period begins to run from the time the contract is breached and usually expires two years later. It’s not a good idea to leave the claim to the last minute.

If you have an issue with an employee who is working unacceptably, it’s important to develop a legal strategy as early as possible. The longer you wait, the more it may cost your business.

The short point here is that it is important to seek advice as soon you detect a problem and before anything has been done to make it worse. Crisis management is always more expensive and time-consuming than early response.

Tip #2 – Have a team of lawyers to call on when you need them.

Every business should have a team of on-call lawyers. This is less expensive or complicated than it sounds. All you need are the telephone numbers and email addresses of trusted corporate, employment law and litigation lawyers. Depending on the nature of your business, you may also need an intellectual property lawyer, who deals with trademarks, patents and copyright. You may even need a tax lawyer because not all tax issues can be solved by an accountant.

If the amount of your legal dispute is very small, such as a claim or complaint by a customer for $1,000 or less, it will be uneconomic to hire a lawyer. Fortunately, there are other helpful resources. The BBB has a dispute resolution process which permits BBB businesses and their customers to resolve disputes by arbitration or mediation. You don’t need a lawyer and the only cost is a small administration fee. More information about this process is available on the BBB website.

If your case is in the Small Claims Court ($10,000 or less), you might need a paralegal who specializes in these kinds of cases. Paralegals are now regulated by the Law Society but they are not lawyers and they are not a substitute for an experienced lawyer.

Tip #3 – Learn what to expect when a dispute arises.

As a business person, you have learned that success is often the result of building relationships. The relationships you build with your lawyers can be just as important to your business success as the ones you have with your customers, suppliers, banker and insurance broker. A relationship with your lawyer built on mutual trust and respect will save you many sleepless nights over the years and probably make or save you a lot of money.

There are several ways to find good lawyers for your business:

  • Ask business associates or relatives if they have someone to recommend. If you get a recommendation, find out more about the firm and the lawyer by using some of the research methods below. · The internet is a very useful resource for finding a lawyer but you have to be careful. Any lawyer can list with various online legal directories. Anyone can have a flashy website. You have to move past the flash to find the substance.
  • When looking for a lawyer on the internet, look for someone who has experience in the field you require. The first name on a Google search may not be the best choice. Some lawyers have written extensively about the law. This is a useful indicator of expertise and standing in the legal community.
  • Some lawyers list cases they have been involved in on their websites. Broad litigation experience in complex business matters over many years is a good indicator of competence.
  • The Law Society of Upper Canada (Ontario, Canada) has a lawyers’ referral service. The service provides a name but you have to check the details out yourself. · The Law Society certifies specialists in several areas of practice. Certification as a specialist signals that the lawyer has achieved a higher standard of experience in his/her area but certification isn’t mandatory. Many competent lawyers have long experience in a field without applying for certification. You have to decide if this is important to you.
  • · If your problem is outside Ontario, find a local lawyer first. Many firms have networks with lawyers globally and are able to refer to lawyers in the USA or other countries. Refers between colleagues are often more effective.

When you call, don’t expect the lawyer to solve your business problem over the telephone. The first discussion is for the lawyer to identify whether s/he can represent you and for you to assess whether the lawyer appears to have the skills to deal with your problem. If you have a legal problem the lawyer believes his/her firm can resolve, an office meeting will be arranged.

In business matters, lawyers customarily charge a consultation fee for the first office meeting. At the meeting, the lawyer will give preliminary or urgent advice and develop a go-forward strategy. The lawyer may be able to give a partial fee estimate and will ask for a retainer to cover some of the work. No lawyer can guarantee the outcome. At this early stage, there are usually a lot of unknown matters. While the lawyer may be able to give you a partial fee estimate in a litigation matter, it’s impossible to say with accuracy how much it will cost. It depends on too many unknown factors.

It will be then up to you to decide whether or not to hire the lawyer to represent you further. The decision you make will depend on your sense of confidence in the lawyer. Has the lawyer listened to you? Have your questions been answered? Does the lawyer appear to understand your problem? Has the lawyer presented the risks and downsides of your case? Every case has risks and costs. Beware of a lawyer who tells you only what you want to hear without assessing the strengths of the opposing party’s case.

Some lawyers will accept a monthly or annual retainer which entitles the client to telephone advice a few times a month. More complicated issues require separate engagements.

Tip #4 – The least expensive lawyer is unlikely to be the best person to handle your legal problem

Consider this scenario: you are looking for a lawyer for a complicated lawsuit. You call Mr. Jones, who answers on the first ring. You tell your story, which has many facts the opposite party disputes. Mr. Jones says, “You have a great case. I’m sure you’re going to win.” When you ask how much it will cost, Mr. Jones says “Don’t worry, you won’t have to pay me anything unless you win. Just come on down to my office and we’ll get started.”

Beware of any lawyer who tells you this. While Ontario lawyers are permitted to charge their fees based on contingency, i.e. a percentage of the result, this type of fee arrangement is only rarely applicable in business cases. It never occurs when facts are in dispute, recovery is uncertain or if the amount is small.

When you retain a lawyer, you need a trustworthy advisor, who will point out the weaknesses of your case as well as the strengths. A litigation lawyer who is waiting by the phone for your call and tells you exactly what you are hoping to hear may be too hungry or too inexperienced to manage your case. He may be in over his head and will bail out as soon as your case takes a negative turn. By then, your legal situation may have worsened. It will be more expensive and perhaps impossible to repair it.

Even worthwhile cases require careful analysis and risk assessment. An experienced litigation lawyer will typically do his by for fees on an hourly basis plus GST and any out-of-pocket expenses necessary for your case.

Good litigation lawyers are often in court, at mediation or other litigation procedures, at meetings or discovery. However, good litigation lawyers always call or respond by email within 24 hours. In case of urgency or vacation, the lawyer will arrange for someone in the office to contact you.

Tip #5 – Prevention is better and much less expensive than litigation.

Legal problems are like computer crashes — they are bound to occur, it’s just a matter of time. Unlike computer crashes, some lawsuits can be avoided. Often, businesses owners deal with legal matters only when a crisis arises. They look for the least expensive lawyer to draft their leases, contracts, corporate and employment agreements without regard to skill, competence and experience.

Sometimes, business owners avoid legal steps like failing to make a shareholder agreement, failing to file a trademark application or failing to prepare a non-competition and non-solicitation agreement with a key employee. When served with a lawsuit, they ignore or tear the papers up in anger. These business owners will be caught short when the inevitable occurs. While litigation or arbitration may still occur when there are written agreements in place, you will be in a far more secure position if you have taken precautionary steps before the dispute occurs. If you respond to correspondence and legal papers promptly, you will be better protected than if you ignore them.

Competent legal advice is available for matters such as corporate organization, leases, the wording contracts and other documents you use in your business, partnership and shareholder agreements, your relationships with your employees, your company’s trade names, logos and website, your regulatory compliance, your risk management and litigation prevention techniques. It’s all important to arrange legal affairs to ensure that your personal liability is limited in the case of a claim against your business.

Ensure that the legal issues affecting your business are in good order. This is likely to save you a lot of money and grief in the future. You might even consider having a legal audit or a “business legal checkup”. We plan to write about this topic in a future article in this newsletter. Preventative legal advice may be expensive but it is just as important as fire insurance.

Tip #6 — Don’t assume that ‘going to court’ means ‘going to trial’

If you haven’t been involved in litigation before, you may not appreciate that more than 90% of cases settle before trial. While a trial (or even an appeal) is not always avoidable, lawyers use techniques to try to resolve cases at earlier stages. Business people are looking for certainty and to limit expense and exposure.

It’s never a bad idea to negotiate a settlement with the opposing party but the timing and approach will depend on the case. It is best to negotiate from a position of strength. This may mean holding off negotiations until enough facts and documents have been disclosed to favour your position.

Mediation is another technique lawyers use to achieve settlement before trial. Mediation involves a neutral mediator, who is usually an experienced lawyer, acceptable to all parties. The parties and the lawyers prepare briefs to explain their positions to the mediator. On the mediation date, after an opening session, the parties retire to separate rooms. The mediator will “shuttle” between the parties until an agreement is worked out or an impasse is declared. This process produces a high rate of settlement even in very complicated cases.

Tip #7 – Understand the risks of the litigation process: Why do lawyers emphasize settlement?

Even if you have an airtight case, your lawyer will still recommend settlement. Lawyers assess risk every day. Even the most airtight case could have problems at trial. The judge may prefer the evidence of the opposing party over yours. The other party’s expert witness may be more persuasive than yours. These are just two of many possibilities. A trial is always a last resort.

Another good reason to settle is that even if you win at trial, the case may not be over because

  • The legal costs awarded by the court to a successful party are only a partial recovery of the legal costs payable to your lawyer. · If you lose at trial or if the opposing party does better in court than their settlement offer, you will have to pay a portion of their legal costs. · There may be an appeal which could delay payment for two years or longer.
  • Until a final judgment is granted, a defendant is rarely prevented from dealing with his property – unless the property is the subject of the lawsuit (or some other exceptional situations).
  • The judgment may be unenforceable. The opposing party may be insolvent or go bankrupt. You might not collect anything. · The defendant may conceal his assets or transfer them to family members to make the debt difficult to collect. A separate lawsuit may be necessary to find the defendant’s assets or to declare the fraudulent transfer void.
  • The defendant may have assets outside Ontario. A lawyer in the jurisdiction where defendant’s assets are located may have to be retained to collect the judgment.

A settlement involves a resolution both parties can live with. If the case involves the payment of money, there won’t be a settlement unless payment is made.

Even with these concerns, some cases can’t be settled. The positions of the parties may be so far apart that a trial is necessary. As the case progresses, you and your lawyer will have to revise and update your strategy and estimate the legal cost and risk of each stage of the case. Keep in mind that the opposing party is dealing with similar risk assessment and cost issues as you are.

Tip #8 — Be a good client.

From a lawyer’s perspective, a good client is a business person who does the following:

  • Presents all the facts of the case fairly without exaggeration or deception. Tell your lawyer everything; not just the facts that help you. The rest of the story always comes out and usually with adverse consequences. · Considers the lawyer as a trusted advisor and advocate.
  • Has a well-organized set of relevant documents.
  • Provides other documents and information promptly when requested.
  • Accepts that every case has weaknesses and works with the lawyer to develop a strategy to minimize the weaknesses.
  • Recognizes that the lawyer cannot guarantee the outcome but can only provide effective advocacy to produce the best result, often as a result of negotiation or mediation.
  • If an examination for discovery or trial is required, takes the time to prepare to testify.
  • Asks for clarification on all matters that are unclear.
  • Understands that in litigation matters, it is impossible to predict the fees accurately but that the lawyer will gladly provide estimates of imminent steps in the case.
  • Pays retainers when asked and settles interim accounts promptly when rendered.
  • Considers the lawyer’s recommendations carefully and provides reasonable instructions.

One of our firm’s clients is a technology business which started as a family operation and has grown to the point that its brand is now accepted and recognized globally. Our client’s president knows hows to get the most out of his professional advisors. He is always respectful, trusting of professionalism, intelligence, experience and competence. He is prompt in responding to requests for information, appreciative of good advice and excellent service. He works hard but he usually has a happy and cheerful attitude.

Our client expects is professional advisors to have the same enthusiasm for their work as he does for the operations of his business. And another small matter: our client pays every professional account within 48 hours of receipt. He believes that if he had to challenge his lawyer or accountant’s bill, the professional relationship is not a healthy as it should be. Our client expects fair treatment, excellent service, sound advice, creative strategy, experienced advocacy and determined, no-nonsense negotiations. And he gets all of them in spades! A lot of business people who are dissatisfied with their professional advisors could learn a lot from him.

These tips offer no assurance that your legal matter will turn out exactly as you expect. However, by following our suggestions, the resolution of your business dispute is likely to be a less expensive, less time-consuming and less stressful experience and possibly more successful. Keeping your business legal affairs in good order permits you more time to focus on making your business flourish.

The Translator – A Mediator in Economy

Translation agencies and the global marketplace – nowadays, it’s not possible to imagine one without the other. Translators support globally acting companies in their negotiations and translate the multilingual correspondence with partners from other countries. Due to advancing globalization, communication with foreign trading partners becomes increasingly difficult. Even though English is widespread in today’s business world, your business partners will feel a lot more comfortable if you provide them with the possibility to express themselves in their native language – plus, this way, you make sure that no important information is lost due to limited language skills.

Therefore, if you consult a translator or interpreter for your contract negotiations, they will guarantee a smooth discussion without any language barriers. But besides the language barrier, there are also the different cultural practices and ideas that might pose a problem regarding efficient communication. To avoid these pitfalls, the translator for a certain language also needs to be familiar with the country’s habits and peculiarities. That is why a translator should always translate into his or her native language and be a resident of the country – because a language changes over time, and the translator has to be up-to-date at all times.

A professional translation agency has a large stock of translators for today’s most common languages, like English, French, Spanish and Portuguese, but also employs translators for more exotic languages that are gaining importance on the global market, such as Japanese, Chinese and Indian. Arabic languages also become more and more important.

Translators who work for agencies mainly focus on the translation of written documents for various companies. They translate, for example, certificates, contracts, product lists and catalogs.

Of course, there are also literary translators who translate novels and fiction – but that is a different job description altogether.

European Golf Tour – The Jakarta Indonesia Open Golf 2009

February 2009 Chiangmai:

Going into the final hole with a commanding two-stroke lead, you would think nothing could go wrong for leader Thongchai Jaidee of Thailand, or for that matter if it was any of the professionals that we are so used to watching these days, especially if the last was a less-than-imaginative, lengthy 612-yard Par-5 with the grass on the green thick enough to leave traces of the ball, and certainly not giving much hope for anything more than a birdie, if not always a regular par at best.

Already at the penultimate Par-4 17, Jaidee switched to safe-play mode by teeing off with an iron obviously hoping to just par the last two holes and the title would be his. The commentators of the TV channel certainly thought so even as the then very self-assured Jaidee was shown walking on the fairway to the ball for his third shot landing on the last green, smiling at the camera and waving to whoever was watching at home.

If you recall, Rocco Mediate of the US was more or less doing the same at the US Open 2008 going into the last hole where he unusually missed the putt and thereby having to enter a play-off with Tiger Woods to whom he found the trophy eventually slipped off his grip.

As it happened on this New Kuta Golf & Ocean View Golf Course of Bali for the Jakarta Indonesia Open, what would have been a simple pitching shot to the hole for Jaidee, it went too long and nearly found the wall of the club house. The putt back to the hole for the 4th.; about 12-15 feet again went too long for comfort, 5 feet off the hole. Was Jaidee, who would have become the Asian player with the most wins ever on European Tour if he bagged this, nervous when found himself under the spotlight?

The story of this article is to highlight the need to maintain the level of concentration however assured it might seem of what’s on the scoreboard, at least till the last putt. It may seem self-concluding when the fast-approaching-40 Jaidee could well had been nervous after not winning big for the last few years. We leave you to come to your own conclusion based on your own golfing experience and judgement on what ought and ought not happen.

Jaidee, for all the confusion that must have surrounded him after finding his approach shot having gone unusually too long and then immediately repeated it on the putt to the hole for a safe par for the last hole must count himself lucky at this crucial moment of play having had to face a young if not extremely talented opponent in Alexander Noren of Denmark. Noren had just made an eagle followed by a birdie in the last two holes making him the only player that could have any chance of taking the title from Jaidee. It could have become another classic finish of the last US Open if Noren had not missed the birdie putt and Jaidee did not make the 5-foot putt for a par. But was it nervousness alone that caused the uncalled for ‘excitement for the spectators’, anxiety for Jaidee?

Lawful Intercept in VoIP Network

Introduction

Lawful Intercept (LI) is a requirement placed upon service providers to provide legally sanctioned official access to private communications. In the existing Public Telephone Network, Lawful Intercept is performed by applying a physical ‘tap’ on the telephone line of the target in response to a warrant from a Law Enforcement Agency (LEA). However, Voice over IP (VoIP) has enabled the mobility of the end-user, so it is no longer possible to guarantee the interception of calls based on tapping a physical line.

Whilst the detailed requirements for LI may differ from one jurisdiction to another, the general requirements are the same. The LI system must provide transparent interception of specified traffic only and the subject must not be aware of the interception. The service provided to other users must not be affected during interception.

Architecture Overview

Although the detail of LI may vary from country to country we can describe the general requirements and also explain much of the common terminology used. The primary purpose of the service provider network is to enable private communications between individuals; any LI functionality built into the network must not affect the normal service to those individuals. The interfaces between the PTN and the Law Enforcement Monitoring Facility (LEMF) are standardised within a particular territory.

LI deals with two ‘products’, these are:

  • Contents of Communications (CC): exactly what it sounds like, the voice, video or message contents.
  • Intercept Related Information (IRI): information about the source and destination of the call etc.

European requirements are often based on the ETSI standards. In North America CALEA (Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act) requires operators to provide LI capabilities. The network architecture and handover specifications are based on the PacketCable(TM) surveillance model, however the architectures are very similar.

Basic Elements of LI in a Public Telecom Network

There are three primary elements required within the public network to achieve Lawful Intercept, these are:

  • An Internal Intercept Function (IIF) located in the network nodes.
  • A Mediation Function (MF) between the PTN and LEMF.
  • An Administration Function (ADMF) to manage orders for interception in the PTN.

Internal Intercept Function (IIF) These functions are located within the network nodes and are responsible for generating the Intercept Related Information (IRI) and Contents of Communications (CC).

Mediation Function (MF) This function clearly delineates the PTN from the LEMF. It communicates with the IIFs using Internal Network Interfaces (INIs) which can be proprietary. The MF communicates to one or more LEMFs through locally standardized interfaces: the Handover Interfaces (HI2 and HI3).

Administration Function (ADMF) This function handles the serving of interception orders and communicates with the IIFs and MF though an Internal Network Interface.

Implementing LI within an VoIP Network

One of the primary problems faced when managing VoIP calls is the separation of the signalling and media streams. It is quite possible that the two streams may take completely different paths through the network. In addition, even when they do pass through the same device, it may not be aware of the relationship between the streams. Some devices within the network are however specifically designed to understand and manage the separate signalling and media streams – session border controllers. Typically located at the borders of the network, they receive Intercept Related Information from the signalling stream and Contents of Communication directly from the media stream.

Conclusion

It has become clear that VoIP services will be expected to provide Lawful Intercept capabilities to the same level experienced in the PSTN. The FCC in North America has mandated that both emergency calls and Lawful Intercept must be available. Whilst not all countries mandate this capability, any network operator building a publicly available voice or multimedia over IP service today will need to plan a network which is flexible enough to implement these regulatory services in the future.

Terminology

ADMF Administration Function

CALEA Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act

CC Contents of Communication

ETSI European Telecommunications Standards Institute

HI Handover Interface

IIF Internal Intercept Function

INI Internal Networks Interface

IRI Intercept Related Information

LEA Law Enforcement Agency

LEMF Law Enforcement Monitoring Facility

LI Lawful Interception

MF Mediation Function

PSTN Public Switched Telephone Network

PTN Public Telecom Network

VoIP Voice over IP

References

ETSI TS 101 332 v1.1.1 (2001-08) Telecommunications security; Lawful Interception (LI) Requirements of Law Enforcement Agencies ETSI TR 101 943 V1.1.1 (2001-07) Telecommunications security; Lawful Interception (LI); Concepts of Interception in a Generic Network Architecture

ETSI TS 101 671 V2.8.1 (2003-11) Telecommunications security; Lawful Interception (LI); Handover interface for the lawful interception of telecommunications traffic

PKT-SP-ESP1.5-I01-050128; PacketCable(TM) 1.5 Specifications; Electronic Surveillance

Napoleon Bonaparte’s Life in European History

Napoleon Bonaparte, born 15 August 1769 in Ajaccio, Corsica, died on 5 May 1821 on the island of Saint Helena, was First Consul, then Emperor of the French. He was a conqueror of Europe. A general of the French Revolution of 24 years, he accumulated spectacular victories in Italy during the campaign in Egypt, then took power by coup d’état in November 1799.

He headed the French from the end of 1799 and was the first consul from November 1799 to May 1804 and then Emperor of the French under the name Napoleon I from May 1804 to April 1814. He reorganized and reformed the state and society. He was also President of the Italian Republic from 1802 to 1805, then king of Italy, from March 1805 to April 1814, as well as the mediator of the Swiss Confederation from 1803 to 1813 and protector of the Confederation of the Rhine from 1806 to 1813. He conquered and ruled most of continental Europe and placed several members of his family on the thrones of several European kingdoms.

Napoleon tried to put an end to the series of wars undertaken by European monarchies against France beginning in 1792. He led the men of the Great Army. Despite many initial victories with various coalitions assembled and financed by Great Britain (now the United Kingdom in 1801), the imperial era ended in 1815 with the defeat of Waterloo.

Napolean played a major role in the history of Europe having been a great general and later in life a monarch. No doubt his existence had played a great role in the evolution of France and it’s capital Paris. Many monuments in Paris showcase his accomplishments and highlight his life and history.

Employee Free Choice Act, Part V – Socialism At The American Workplace

In our previous article on the Employee Free Choice Act (EFCA), we discussed the loss of the secret ballot for employees who are asked to decide whether they wish to be represented by a union.  As if that provision was not bad enough, another harmful provision contained in the EFCA will introduce government-mandated collective bargaining agreements between the employer and the union that has been selected by a majority of the employer’s employees who have signed union authorization cards. In other words, let’s welcome European-style socialism to the American workplace.
 
Under the EFCA, once a union organizer has persuaded a bare majority of employees to sign union authorization cards, the employer will be required to recognize that the union is the representative of its employees for the purposes of negotiating a collective bargaining agreement. Once the union has demanded recognition by the employer and the employer is then required to recognize the union, the EFCA requires that bargaining between the company and the union commence in 10 days.
 
Typically, in collective bargaining negotiations, the union will make an initial set of demands that the company will reject usually because the costs to the employer will be excessive. In addition, the union will insist on restrictive work rules so that many critical decisions made in the workplace will be based solely on seniority. The union will want a grievance procedure so that the union can challenge any decision made by the employer that the union or its supporters do not like. That grievance procedure typically results in arbitration if a grievance cannot be settled.

 
In many instances when there is bargaining with a union for an initial collective bargaining agreement, the negotiations could be lengthy. It may take several negotiating sessions before the union makes more realistic proposals. 
 
However, under the EFCA, the parties have only 90 days to reach an agreement. If there is no agreement after 90 days, the union may request that the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service (FMCS), a U.S. Government agency, become involved in the negotiations. At that point a Federal mediator, a bureaucrat will sit with the parties to attempt to facilitate an agreement.  If there is no agreement within 30 days, then the matter than goes before an arbitration panel of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service. 
 
It is important to recognize at this point that although the EFCA refers to this event as arbitration, in reality it is not arbitration in the classic sense of that term.  Many contracts contain arbitration provisions. If there is a dispute between the parties about the meaning of the agreement or its application to a particular set of facts, then an arbitrator will interpret the contract between the parties to resolve the dispute.
 
However, under the EFCA, the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service is given the responsibility of dictating the terms of a collective bargaining agreement controlling the terms and conditions of employment in the private sector – socialism.
 
Not only does this process make socialism a part of the American workplace, but also the resulting agreement could be very disadvantageous to the employer. For example, if the union represents competitors or similar companies in the same industry, the union will argue that the employer should pay the identical wage rate and benefit package paid by these other companies.  That claim may make sense to the union, but those wage and benefit packages may make a particular employer unprofitable or be so expensive that it puts the employer at a competitive disadvantage. 
 
However, to a Federal bureaucrat, such a contention made by a union may make perfect sense. Currently under Federal contracting requirements, such as the Service Contract Act, the Federal government will adopt the union wage rate in a particular industry or community as the controlling wage rate even though the vast majority of the employers in the geographic area or industry are non-union. Undoubtedly, this same perverse logic will be applied if the socialist provisions of the EFCA become law.

                                                                                                  
At the present time, there is considerable discussion, by supporters and opponents of the EFCA.  However, at the present time, it appears unlikely that Congress will take up the issue in the very near future.  We will continue to provide updates on this very important issue.

Balder’s Rune Sig Blot and How To use It To Attract the Energy of Rejuvination Out of Quantum Ocean

Every rune is a key to a Universal Creative Energy. Rune SIG (SOWULO) is the key to the energy of Light and rejuvination.

Quantum Physics tells us that all the Norse gods/goddesses and all the Runes exist in an infinite ocean of energy called the Quantum Ocean.

How-To contact and attract the energies of Balder and Rune SIG out of this Quantum Ocean is the purpose of this artilce.

Balder is the son of Odin and Frigga.

Balder is known as the God of Light, Joy, Beauty and Innocence.

Balder was resurrected after the Battle of Ragnarok. So he is also the God of Rejuvination and Reserection.

Many historians say Balder was the best of the Gods. Balders wife is Nanna.

Balder’s son is Forsetti God of Justice.

Balder’s home is Breidablik —“Broad Splendor.”

When Balder dreamt of his uncoming death. His mother Frigga tried to prevent his death by getting an oath from every creature, object and force in Nature, not to hurt him.

She got an oath from all but the malicious trickster LOKI who was jealous of Balder’s beauty.

During one of the games, in which Balder stood in the middle of the circle of gods/goddesses they threw harmless arrows, knives and darts at him.

Loki made a poisoned dart from the only plant that Frigga did not get an oath from, the mistletoe.

Loki hid behind blind Hodar who wanted to join in the fun. Loki gave Hodar the poisoned dart and directed his aim at Balder. When the poisoned dart thrown by Hodar struck Balder, he fell dead.

Odin sent Hermod to Hel to try and get Balder released. Only if all the gods/goddesses wept for him was Hella’s answer. Loki refused and Balder stayed in Hel.Loki was punished.

Balder was resurrected after the Battle of Ragnarok.

Therefore the energies attached to Balder and his Rune SIG are the energies of light and rejuvenation.

Since we are energy beings, we all need to be rejuvenated (recharged) daily. Idun gives the apples to the gods/goddesses of the North for just this same reason.

We were meant to live to at least 144 years. But we have lost our spirituality and our contact with the gods/goddesses of our ancestors. We have lost our Light.

The daily destruction of our cells far outumbers the construction of new health cells. We grow old quickly. With Balder’s rejuvinating light and energy we can reverse that process.

Following is the instructions for your Rune Asatru Balder Blot.
You will notice that I repeat a great deal. Repetition is heaven’s first law.

This Balder Blot was designed for the individual Asatrurer who wishes to practice alone. To work at home. Those not interested in joining an Asatru group.

The Astrau groups who practice Balder blots in the woods are usually loaded down with out dated tools. Tools that were meant for Balder blots 1000 years ago.

Gandrs, swords, Thors hammers, Brisingeamen bracelets, bowls, evergreen sprigs, and mead.

We are not Vikings living in the wilds, raiding etc. We are 21st century folk of Northern European Ancestry.

We need to use 21st century tools. Our minds and Quantum
Physics and the updated rune rituals.

Before you do a Balder blot do you ask yourself the question?

Why am I trying to invoke Balder?

You must have a reason for doing it. Why do you want Balder in your life?

Everyone wants to stay young and vital. To do this you need to attract the rejuvenating energies of Balder and his Rune SIG out of the Quantum Ocean and into your life.

Gods do not do things for people. You cannot have Balder make you younger. But you can invoke his rejuvinating energies and make yourself younger.

What will the REJUVENATING ENERGIES OF BALDER do for you?

The SIG RUNE (runic energy) will attract Balder’s energy out of the Quantum Ocean and into your life.

The SIG RUNE (runic energy) will enter every cell of your body and aura. You will radiate with LIGHT.

KEEP YOUR BALDER BLOT SIMPLE!

Sit comfortably in your favorite chair. Breathe deeply and relax.

You will use the LAWS OF RUNIC MENTAL RADIONICS to reach into the Quantum Ocean where the energies of Balder and the energies of RUNE SIG exist.

Look at the SIG RUNE (large one at bottom of page. Print it out on cardboard).Meditate on it.

RUNIC MENTAL RADIONICS

Remember in all radionics you need three working principles.

POWER
TREATMENT (SYMBOL)
TARGET

Your mind is the power source.

The SIG RUNE is the treatment

You are the target

Step 1

Intone mentally:

“I am now manifesting the energies of the Rune SIG (rejuvination) out of the Quantum Ocean and into the Rune SIG I hold in my hands.”

You are charging the cardboard SIG Rune.

Mental visualizations always help.

You can picture Balder in the Quantum Ocean holding a SIG Rune. See him sending the runic energies (rejuvenation) of his SIG Rune into your SIG rune. Picture waves of vibrations flowing towards you.

Intone 3 times.

STEP 2.

While holding the charged SIG Rune in your hands intone:

“I am now inhaling the runic energies of rejuvenation and light from my SIG Rune into my aura.”

Your aura is an egg shaped oval surrounding your body. It is your energy shield.

What ever energies, thoughts and beliefs you hold in your aura will act like a magnet and attract LIKE into your life. Law of Attraction.

Again 3 times.

Your aura is now full of Rune SIG energy.

STEP 3.

Intone:

“I am now inhaling the rejuvenation and light energies of Rune SIG into my aura and into every cell in my body.”

Every cell in your body now vibrates with rejuvenation energy from Balder.

3 times

Sit quietly for several minutes. In your visualization thank Balder. Get up and go about your business.

SIMPLE:

NO TOOLS
NO RITUALS
NO DOGMA

JUST:

You (you are an energy being)
Rune SIG (A Universal Creative Energy)
Balder (A God of energy)

All is energy!

The key to blots is to attract the runic energy of the gods/goddesses out of the quantum ocean and into your aura and your life.

What energies you carry in your aura attract people, places and events into your life and create your life.

Balder’s Rune SIG in your aura will attract rejuvenation and light into your life. You will feel younger and look younger. You will be younger.

Turkey and Israel – Old Friends or New Enemies?

Turkey joined NATO in 1951, at the same time as Greece. Turkey had supported the allies in the latter stages of World War 2, and the threat of an expanding Soviet Russia on its borders encouraged participation in the NATO alliance.

It is less well known that Turkey has been an associate member of the EU since 1963 and joined the Council of Europe in 1949. The most famous statutory body of this institution is the European Court of Human Rights. As Turkey is a member of the Council of Europe, then it accepts the authority of the European Court of Human Rights. This has been a mixed blessing for Turkey as there are have been several adverse rulings against it in the European Court of Human Rights by dispossessed Greek Cypriots who lost land after the partition of Cyprus in 1974.

Turkey is currently ruled by the Justice and Development Party (AKP). The president is Abdullah Gull and the Prime Minister Recep Erdogan. There is ongoing tension between the government and the military concerning the perceived attack on the secular constitution by the AKP. In 2008, there was an attempt to close down the AKP, which was narrowly defeated in the Constitutional Court. One much publicised example of this dispute is the overturning of the headscarf ban, championed by President Gull, whose wife regularly appears in public wearing a headscarf.

Relations between Turkey and Israel were soured by the Israeli raid on Syria in 2007. Several Israeli jets used Turkish airspace en-route to a bomb attack on an alleged nuclear processing plant in Syria. It appears that the Israeli raid was approved by the Turkish military, but the matter was allegedly not brought to the attention of President Gull, who subsequently condemned the attack.

The severe downturn in relations between the two countries started during the 4 week Gaza War, during the winter of 2009/9. The avowed aim of the war was to remove Hamas from the Gaza strip and curtail the rocket fire into Israel. Unfortunately, there were many civilian deaths and injuries. The Turkish Prime Minister, Recep Erdogan was a vocal critic of the war and used language reminiscent of Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi and Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Several sporting events with Israel were cancelled, and Israeli flags were burnt.

The most damage to Turkish Israeli relations occurred in June 2010, in response to Israel boarding a Turkish ship, Mavi Marmara. The ship was owned by a Turkish charity and was apparently taking aid, including food and medical supplies to Gaza.

The importance of this downturn in relations has been clearly seen at the Lisbon summit of NATO in November 2010. Efforts to agree on a missile shield, which included interceptors in Poland and Romania, together with radar in Turkey, were placed in jeopardy. This was due to the naming of Iran as a possible rogue state, and therefore a potential NATO enemy. The angry Turkish reaction focussed on the fact that the NATO shield could be construed as providing protection for Israel from Iranian attack in any future middle east conflict. The removal of any reference to Iran eventually secured the agreement and participation of Turkey in the missile shield agreement.

It has been very clear for some 20 years that Turkey stands at the crossroads of the Christian West and the Islamic East. Although the population of Turkey is almost entirely Moslem, the constitution enshrines secular principles, based on the reforms of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk in the aftermath of the first World War.
It is now generally portrayed in western media circles that Turkey is drifting towards a more radical Muslim state, in harmony with several notorious regimes in the middle east.

However, any commentary on contemporary Turkish politics must bear in mind several considerations –

1. The long standing tension between successive governments and the military had been a source of instability and economic disruption. The current AKP government has been largely successful in making the government accountable to the electorate, and the military accountable to the government. It is now unlikely that there will be any further military coups. The military is avowedly secular and loyal to the legacy of Ataturk, and this highlights the divide between religion and secularism.

2. Turkey first made an application to join the EU in 1987. Since that date there have been several enlargements to the EU. Some of Turkey’s neighbours are members, including Greece, and more recently, Bulgaria and Romania. It is clear that there is significant political opposition in other EU member states to Turkey’s accession. Several existing member states have claimed that they would insist on a referendum prior to allowing Turkey to join the EU, while others ruminate over the impact of a Muslim population of some 72 million enjoying free movement throughout the EU. By any standards, Turkey has been treated badly and with scarcely concealed discrimination by other EU member states. Public opinion in Turkey has lost enthusiasm for EU membership and Turkey will naturally continue to look east as well as west from both a political and economic perspective.

3. The accession of Cyprus in 2004 has created further problems for Turkey. The island has been effectively partitioned into a Turkish speaking north sector and a Greek speaking south sector since 1974. However, the EU ignored this important fact, and the island of Cyprus is now an EU member state. This is a most anomalous situation, as the recognised government of Cyprus is the Greek Cypriot administration of south Cyprus. The Turkish Cypriots, who live in the north, remain without representation. Negotiations aimed at resolving differences and unifying the island have been attempted on many occasions, and are currently ongoing. However, the problems appear intractable. In addition, as the Greek Cypriot administration has international recognition as the legitimate government of the island, they believe that they are in a strong position to demand concessions from Turkish Cypriot negotiators.

For these reasons, the politics of Turkey have taken an increased interest in middle east affairs, and its well publicised relations with Iran are an example of this. Turkey is of the view that it has been snubbed by several EU member states, and is therefore looking elsewhere for new friends.

The rift between Turkey and Israel is of especial concern. Turkey has traditionally played the role of mediator in disputes between Israel and several of its neighbours. In addition, there has been economic and military co-operation between the countries. This has all come to an end and an old friend has become a new enemy.

There are many western commentators who think that these arguments between Israel and Turkey are superficial and that Turkey’s membership of NATO means that it has a commitment to Israel. Recent events have disproved this cosy assumption.

Since the collapse of communism in Russia and the dismantling of the Soviet Union, it is generally agreed that the world has become a safer place. The ability and willingness of Turkey to intervene and mediate in disputes between Israel and its neighbours has played a major role in mitigating conflicts in the Middle East. Without this calming influence, an escalation in the scale and scope of Middle East conflagrations is inevitable.

A Review on “The American Age, US Foreign Policy at Home and Abroad”

This book mainly covers three presidents of the United States in the 20th Century; starting with Roosevelt and ending with Wilson. What has happened during the first two decades of the century is narrated and presidents’ policies and international conflicts are discussed. There are some elements which are common among US presidents that we will go through it later.

Theodore Roosevelt was the most important and most acceptable president of the century. Roosevelt was from an aristocratic family and loved killing especially Indians. His justification was to remove inferior race and people, and he extremely believed that use of force by civilized people will improve human character; the idea that seems emerging again in US policies by George Bush. He meant war with less industrialized nations mainly to maintain order in different region even if they were far from the US. He was growing in the age of post- 1875 depression. He was very concerned about reactionaries abroad and was looking for order in Asian and Latin America. As one may understand, he was a racist and believed in the whites’ mission to civilize and rule over other people. To maintain order, he used to accept all option even war. We can say that he also practiced the savage wars of order. He was the president who declared and determined US foreign policy for the century that was “US wants no more land”, now, US seeks market abroad. His reputation is for his creative idea of “dollar diplomacy”. The point that is very interesting is that to justify US economic desire for dominance, he used to think and say that US goods and values make people of the world happy.

Roosevelt came to power when presidential power has increased over the congress abilities. He strongly insisted that only president can conduct foreign policy; thus this change in foreign policy and presidential power was fit for Roosevelt. In sending troops to Santo Domingo, TR easily ignored congress. This theme and notion is increasing again in the US foreign policy when President Bush thinks that he can send more troops to Iraq even if Congress do not cooperate US administration. Beyond the order that can define US foreign policy in this century, opportunity is another theme that can not be forgotten, especially economic opportunity, US was searching for places to invest and trade. Very much like today’s US president TR did not hesitate to use military force to achieve the goals and guarantee opportunity. Lafeber thinks that we can name 20th century the “imperial presidency” that I think even 21st century started with this imperialism but it will not continue as Bush has made so many mistakes that US political system will not bear anymore.

He did a great deal to the United States by constructing the Panama Canal. His main obstacle to do so was to break the treaty in which Britain had the chance of partnership in canal projects. Due to some conflicts in Africa and elsewhere, US-British relation enhanced greatly; US sided with British against Boers and British sided with US against Canada on Alaska. To begin the construction he was willing to have Panamanians revolted in 1903 against Colombia; a fight that US made greatly use of it with securing Panamanians independence.

Monroe Doctrine was another concern of him. There were two threats for Monroe Doctrine; first, Germany and its militarily and second; Revolutions in Caribbean. There was always a threat by Europeans to Roosevelt policies. To stop threats of revolution in Caribbean, he went to Central America. “Policing” was the term used by TR to keep order and to civilize people. It is necessary to add that this policing has repeated in the US foreign policy several times. TR gradually fell behind the Monroe Doctrine on Latin America for five reasons; Monroe doctrine supported Latin America revolutions, Monroe believed in nonintervention in Latin America, Monroe sees US economic traditional and at home, Monroe Doctrine sees no use of military power esp. in Latin America and Monroe urged abstention.

Among the policies TR perused, Asia had a significant status. To reach the peak of world power, US should address cheapest labor and greatest market of China. So US should build transportation to carry its goods to Asia. In foreign policy, TR supported Japan and suppressed Russia trying to control Korea and colonize Manchuria. In 1905 fight erupted between Japan and Russia; America tried to mediate the relation and helped them sign a peace treaty in September 1905. As a result of the treaty both Japan and Russia promised to respect China’s territorial integrity. At the same year, some Chinese boycott American goods as a result of American immigration laws; lots of uproars and economic challenges happened. Japan was the next US challenge after China; Japan closed off Korea to US interests and began to move to Manchuria itself. TR in order to manifest US power to especially Japan sent a fleet around the world. Finally, Roosevelt won the Nobel Peace Prize for ending Russo-Japanese war.

William Howard Taft came to presidency from 19019 to 1913. He was not an absolute follower of Roosevelt; thus a catastrophe happened in China and US interests. Lack of energy and personal character of being cool were the real causes of Taft’s failure. He favored traditional policies in foreign policy; created Department of Labor, antitrust movements against big corporations and created income tax. Taft clung to open door in Asia, order in Latin America and dollar diplomacy claiming that enough money secures. He used to reject TR’s military forces using the growing capital resources in Asia and Latin America. Dollar diplomacy creates orderly societies by developing the unindustrialized nations and make profit of American investments. Taft’s successor, Woodrow Wilson, pulled out America out of consortium- Taft urged- in 1913.

During 1906, a debate on US need to go and find a market of Latin America emerged. It deals with an idea that America’s North and South are serving each other; south provides raw materials and north has the manufacturers. Fear that Cubans were acquiring revolutionary habits was assumed to be a point of concern for US administration. Dollar diplomacy failed in the north as well as the Far East. Generally we can say that US tries to apply its power outward in Asia and Canada with a focus to have open door policy in Africa. US arbitration movement could not prevent the outrage of stop WWI or prevent great powers like US from using force to put down revolutions. Most US presidents in early 20th century- McKinley, Roosevelt, Taft and Wilson- desired order in Latin America, Africa and Asia and even Europe; revolutions began to spread around the world. US was going to replace Great Britain as the super power in the 20th century.

Wilson coming to power faced blasts of revolutions in different places of the world. His major policies include internationalism and moralism dedicated to democracy what is practiced and stated by US for implementing any policies in Middle East. Wilson was trained as a lawyer, turned to academic career and was the president of Princeton University. He was a stern Calvinist and belonged to Progressives. Wilson believed in the role government should play in business. Presidential power had increased after 1898 war; he implied some reforms in congress in 1913-16. He liked to decide before congress paying little attention to congress and public opinion. Democracy is an issue Wilson deals with enormously, he believes that people can not be given democracy, he doubt Filipinos were fit for self-government; American goods and ideas prepare them for democracy. This idea is not rare in the American mindset; Americans assume themselves as the source of democracy for other nations. An agreement in Wilson administration was made to make partnership with Britain and Germany to drive back Russia.

WWI ruined all Wilson’s dreams about America. US should control Japan in order to have both open door and freedom of action in China; not only by war but through financial agreements and cooperation. Like other US president especially George Bush, Wilson to prevent revolutions and achieve economic expansion used military interventions. In 1910- 1911, some riots in Mexico to overthrow Diaz- a dictator- with the help of Mederno happened. US intervened and planned a democratic election in order to prevent other revolutions in Latin America. Huerta in Mexico holds election with the help of British and won it and certainly it did not please Wilson. Overthrowing Huerta government and cutting foreign interests grow as the important aim of Wilson. Finally, Firing broke and Huerta removed and Carranza assumed the power. Interestingly, Wilson tried to remove Carranza as well. Nothing was gained by Wilson as he finally after harsh struggles was forced to come to terms with Carranza and tried to stabilize and democratize Mexican revolutions

WWI was a turning point in the history of the United State. US planned to pay little attention to Balkan events and there was a consensus that US should be neutral in this fight. US stayed officially neutral but Wilson advisors were supporting British in reality. Several attacks were made by Germans against US forces in the region but US did it best not to interfere and enter the war. US agreed on giving credits to Europe and gave it first to the Allies. The only thing US could do was to play the role of a mediator so that it can keep the balance of power in Europe. War discourse was spreading.

Wilson endeavored to conduct a very moderate foreign policy; to balance his policies, Wilson protested against British for interception of US mails. Meanwhile, Europeans fearing the US economic growth after WWI signed a treaty in which they agreed upon higher tariffs and controlling markets to fight US competition. Wilson being president for the second term attempted to end the war but it failed. Wilson felt that US is about to enter war; he went to congress to talk about postwar objectives and peace and announce US entrance in the conflict. War resolution was proved in congress on April 6, 1917. Finally US entered WWI.

This was the story of the United States in the beginning of its most important century. What is common among these three presidents and US administration as a whole is a desire to be the savior and superman for the world while benefiting its own political and economic interests. All believe in taking democracy to unindustrialized nations whether by the means of war as there is a belief that these inferior nations lack the capacity of gaining democracy. Policing is another common heritage of US foreign policy. US seeks economic power in the 20th century but now what is most important to Americans beyond the economic issues is the political and cultural hegemony which is sometimes interpreted as imperialism and now the victims are Middle Eastern nations and Muslims.