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Mindconnection eNL, 2006-12-03

Past issues

In this issue:

  1. Product Highlights
  2. Brainpower tip
  3. Time tip
  4. Finance tip
  1. Security tip
  2. Health tip/Fitness tip
  3. Miscellany
  4. Thought for the day
 

1. Product Highlights

Body Ball
The body ball helps you develop your core and stabilizer muscles.
You can use the body ball by itself or in combination with dumbbells to promote:
  • Balance and coordination
  • Power in the body's core
  • Improved strength in the stabilizer muscles
  • Back pain relief
A person of average height would use the blue body ball (click on the image for more info). The white ball is for shorter people and the red one is for very tall people.

One of the problems with most people's training programs is they work muscles in isolation and never develop useful strength. The body ball is one way to solve this problem.

http://www.mindconnection.com/category/NTR-EQUIPMENT.html

2. Brainpower tip

Something I have noticed as of late is how the "security" updates from Microsoft are beginning to resemble the malware trotted out by Symantec and other companies that prey on unfounded fears to sell people programs that behave just like a virus.

For example, I installed IE 7. This caused Outlook to hang during mid-use, and basically made it very hard for me to work. I uninstalled IE 7 but the malware effect lingers because of how IE 7 damages Outlook. But reinstalling Outlook is a horrendous task that takes several hours by the time you set up all of your various accounts and signatures and get the default settings corrected. Even then, there is no guarantee this huge effort will restore the expected functionality.

So until my next Windows re-install is required, I'm probably going to stick with this impaired system.

Life is full of such challenges. Not only are we faced with malfunctioning software, but we stand in lines at stores, get hung up in traffic, have to fill out senseless govt forms (is there any other kind of govt form?), slam the front door on Mormons and Jehovah's Witnesses who come knocking early on Saturday mornings, smell someone else's farts while we're stuck in line, endure airport procedures that are designed to annoy rather than secure, and so on. Life is full annoyances and frustrations, most of which would be prevented by some common courtesy and consideration.

We will never live in a perfect world. Acknowledging that fact is imperative to preserving brain power. When you are angry and frustrated, several things happen. First, your body chemistry goes into a stress mode that works against mental and physical health. Second, the higher our stress levels, the more our brains put their primitive structures in control.

It's one thing to say, "Stay calm" and quite another to do it. But you can find all kinds of self-help resources to advise you on this. It also helps to laugh at the lunacy around you.

If you feel overwhelmed, stressed out, trapped, and upset--stop. Get off that emotional treadmill. One way to do it is to make a short list of the things that most annoy or frustrate you. Don't make a long list--that will only depress you and it won't help you focus on what really matters.

Now, do something to cure or cope with each of those. You may find there's nothing you can do to solve the problem. But the mere action of fighting back is empowering and stress-reducing.

Suppose you had three things that bug the bejesus out of you. Let's do an example exercise, here. I've written this in second person, but you should write your own list in first person.

Item 1

Your babysitter is always late. Every time you go out, you start the outing feeling rushed. Here are some potential outcomes to at least working on this.

  • You talk to the babysitter, who promises to do better. Nothing changes.
  • You accept the fact that the babysitter is always late, and decide not to let this upset you.
  • You find out why the babysitter is always late, and provide a solution.
  • You give the babysitter an earlier start time, expecting the same 15-minutes late arrival.
  • You simply plan for  your outings to start 15 minutes later.
  • You think of your children as worth being a little late, and think of your babysitter as making it possible for you to go out at all.

Item 2

Your boss treats you like a slave.

  • You ask your boss to lunch, explain how you feel and ask how the two of you may work together to improve the situation.
  • You find a different job.
  • You become more assertive at work, letting your boss know that you can do only so much before quality suffers. Ask your boss to decide which tasks won't get done and which need to be done first.
  • Think of your boss as a retard and every instance of his/her slave-driving as further proof your boss is an incompetent manager. Revel in your own superiority, because you can do your job right. (Be careful with this--it's a negative attitude that can backfire).
  • Look for another job. If your boss is truly a whacko, why are you working for a company that doesn't fix that problem?

Item 3

Your spouse has habit X that drives you buggy and you are starting to despise this person.

  • Remember, nobody is perfect.
  • Think of three things you really like about your spouse. Now, is this annoyance really such a big deal after all?
  • Ask yourself why this habit drives you buggy. Are you being reasonable? Don't try to justify your position. Instead, try to see if your being bugged by this says more about you than about your spouse.
  • You ask your spouse to name three things you can do better. As you work on these things, you create an implied contract that your spouse will also work on some things. But don't hold your spouse to implied agreements--this never works. Your efforts to do better should cause all boats to rise. Asking your spouse to be the only one to improve isn't fair.
  • At a time when nobody is upset, ask your spouse if you can talk about something that you are having a hard time dealing with even though it may seem petty. Remember, a long list is an attack. Naming a single item is a reasonable request for help. Choose your battles carefully, or you will lose all of them.
  • Consider the fact that many annoying habits or inconsiderate actions are passive-aggressive means of exerting control. Ask yourself why your spouse may feel a need to exert more control. Are you inattentive? How much can you remember about the problems, concerns, wishes, and desires your spouse talked about yesterday--in other words, do you listen?
  • Think about your spouse's need to feel special and how you have or have not addressed it lately. This isn't about guilt--it's about meeting an unmet need. Little things say a lot, so consider what little things you can do to communicate love and respect.

3. Time Tip

4. Finance tip

In our previous edition, I mentioned the federal sales tax that Americans pay. If you ask your CONgressman about this tax, he or she will probably deny it exists.

In that case, your CONgressman either a pathological liar (quite likely) and/or ignorant in basic economics.

If your CONgressman denies the existence of this tax, you need to educate your CONgressman on how your money is being vaporized or educate others to vote this person out of office two years hence.

Some words about words:

You have guessed from my spelling of CONgressman that I don't appreciate the hatchet job our mispresentatives do on us. Your guess would be correct. I also don't believe in misapplying names. That's why, for example, I refer to Daylight Wasting Time instead of Daylight "Savings" Time. Calling something by a name that is politically correct but factually wrong disables us intellectually. As long as CONgress continues to grossly misprepresent the average American wage earner and con us out of our hard-earned money, I'll call them CONgress and refer to them as our misrepresentatives. If they ever deign to to the job they are grossly overpaid to do, I'll consider a change.

What is the national sales tax?

It is a huge component in the cost of every good and service you pay. It is the largest single tax that most people pay. Considering how large some of your other taxes are, this is saying a lot!

How did CONgress manage to saddle us with this tax?

This is where an understanding of economics comes in. Here are some basic economic facts:

  1. Nothing is free.
  2. Money has to come from somewhere.
  3. Businesses must cover their expenses to survive.
  4. When government spends more than it takes in, it borrows.
  5. There is a law of supply and demand. Basically, as demand goes up in relation to supply, prices go up.

Remember those facts, as your CONgressman makes a concerted effort not to. Now, how do these facts translate into a national sales tax?

  1. CONgress spends X dollars. Even though most spending is now "off budget" and the budget itself is enormous, CONgress spends more than it has budgeted. How much is this? Well, the US federal government is the single largest purchase of goods and services in the world.
     
  2. CONgress spends more than it takes in. Far, far more. The loathed federal income tax, onerous as it is, raises only enough money to pay the interest on the national debt. The myriad of other taxes, levies, and fees do help offset the spending, but only a small portion.
     
  3. To pay its bills, does two things. One of them is borrowing. And the government borrows a lot of money. In fact, this single largest purchaser of goods and services in the world is also the single largest creditor in the world.
     
  4. This enormous amount of borrowing has an effect that economists call "crowding out." In short, the laws of supply and demand kick in, greatly magnifying the cost of capital businesses need.
     
  5. Businesses pay for this huge extra cost the only way they can--by raising the prices to their customers. Thus, CONgress' flagrant abuse of its spending authority turns into a national sales tax.
     
  6. The other way CONgress pays its bills is by reducing the value of the dollar such that it pays back in dollars of less value. On the books, a dollar is a dollar. But in the inflationary real world, the dollar of 1950 is worth a 12.5 cents (look it up, if you doubt that). Inflation is caused by one--and only one--thing: the number of dollars in circulation. This is basic math. The more dollars there are in the money supply, the less each one of them is worth. Each time the Fraudural Reserve creates money out of thin air, you are left with less buying power in each dollar you have. This, also, is a sales tax--you pay it every time you spend one of those diminished dollars.

Why us?

Why does your CONgressman engage in this destructive behavior? Very simple. It's all about elections. Pork barrel spending is what gets incumbents re-elected, and the promise of pork-barrel spending is what gets them elected in the first place.

  • Nobody campaigns successfully by saying, "I'm sorry, but I am just not going to p--s money away in your direction even if that means you won't raise funds for my campaign or vote for me."
  • Every CONgressman gets elected by picking your pocket. This is why the federal government is 185 times larger than it was 100 years ago. Are people's homes 185 times larger? Are their families 185 times larger? So why is the federal government so much larger?
  • Until people stop seeing their CONgressman as a means to get money spent on them or their special interests, this situation will continue.
  • We would all benefit by telling our CONgressman that every dollar spent by CONgress beyond a certain amount is a dollar mis-spent. That amount is less than 1/100th of the actual spending presently engaged in.

If someone broke into your home and stole 77.5% of its contents, would you call that a crime? I'm going to guess yes. Therefore, it follows that members of CONgress are committing a criminal act by stealing 77.5% of your money through inflation. The national sales tax is another form of theft. There is no reason we have to put up with this.

What to do

I have noticed that whether the Democrats or Republicans are in power, nothing substantial gets done. Both parties are still authorizing the existence of the American Taliban (a federal agency whose employees routinely engage in illegal scams for personal benefit while abusing their power to terrorize families and busineses), both are still spending their way into office, and both are still increasing our taxes and regulations so that our nation suffers from a huge brain drain and other problems. This tells me that voting for either of these parties is like voting for the Crips or the Blood to move into your neighborhood. That's a false choice.

During the "elections," we tend to vote against a particular candidate rather than for him or her. But this results in a "no change" situation. We are still being robbed. This is why I recommend voting Libertarian. You may object to many of that party's platforms, but just consider it a counterweight to the statist insanity we have been increasingly saddled with over the past few decades.

But I'm writing this right after an "election." Isn't that bad timing? No. People enter an "election" time with their minds already made up. Any "discussion" is merely a collective monologue. The only time anyone will even think about these things is the stretch between "elections."

So take the next 20 months or so to think about the rampant theft of your money, via the national sales tax. Every time you buy something, remind yourself that 85 cents out of every dollar you spend is due to CONgressional spending--mostly wasteful--of your money. Only 15 cents out of every purchase is actually for the product or service you are buying. The rest is tax.

If CONgress showed even modest restraint, how much of that 85 cents could be returned to the economy to provide jobs and a better standard of living? How many Americans could afford healthcare, if their buying power were not sapped by the national sales tax?

The next time your CONgressman sends you some newsletter bragging about some project or another s/he "fought for," write back that you don't see this as a victory. You want CONgress to spend less. Far less. You want your national sales tax cut in half, and eventually eliminated.

5. Security tip

6. Health tip/Fitness tips

7. Miscellany

  1. 23% of all photocopier faults worldwide are caused by people sitting on them and photocopying their butts.
     
  2. For some amazing photos of our little patch of the universe, see http://www.icstars.com.
     
  3. See: Special Offers (expired link now removed). It has some great offers that are worth following up on.
     

  4. We don't run ads in our newsletter. We do get inquiries from advertisers, all the time. To keep this eNL coming, go to www.mindconnection.com and do your shopping from there (as appropriate).
     

  5. Please forward this eNL to others.

 

8. Thought for the Day

If today is a direct result of yesterday's actions, what will tomorrow look like?

 

Wishing you the best,

Mark Lamendola
Mindconnection.com

 

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