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Author Fake Interview – Book Review

[…]mental perspective of an eight year old, more or less? “That’s it. It includes most of the Ayn Rand crowd, primitive Libertarians, Tea Party folks, and lots of Trump supporters.” Can’t you be a bit more specific. Help me out! “Only three women, evangelicals, are treated in State Change. We also treat 15 Congress members, several Supreme Court Justices – the ones that still live and work in the 19th century – a few Presidential Candidates, and some plutocrats – including the Brothers Koch.” Do you treat Trump? “He’s number 30 in the book, but we chose to not treat him.” And why not? “There’s nothing there to treat!” Andrade chuckled. “He’s so simple-minded we thought it would be a waste of effort – and our special chocolate.” Chocolate? “Just read the book.” Who is ‘we’? “It’s me and five close friends. We call ourselves the harmless team. We selected the 29 and treated them all earlier this year and in late 2015.” You treated them all – with chocolate? I asked. He looked at me annoyingly, again. “One of them is a phenomenal organic chemist. Just read the book. It’s free, on line, easy to read.” Why is it […]

Chapter 6: Patient Priorities

[…]Senate Majority Leader.”   “Yes, but he seems to be failing at it,” Jay said. “He lost to Rand Paul on the Patriot Act provisions.”   “He screwed up the timing,” Bill added. “He was confident that by letting it go to the wire, Paul would play ball. He didn’t; McConnell took a beating.”   “He seems to have a ready supply of, and taste for, Manhattans,” Jay said. “It’s his favorite drink.”   “Take two after every defeat?” Bill asked. “Perhaps with a little something added?”   “Why not?” Jay said. “It would certainly do him some good.”   “It’s an interesting power struggle – the old and young senators from Kentucky duking it out,” I said. “Both are strong climate deniers, but Paul tries to be somewhat rational, consistent, and principled.”   “Yes, Libertarians think they are principled. But many of those principles are based on out of date assumptions. The Kochs, Paul Ryan, Rand Paul – they all need treatment,” Jay added. “Let’s put them on the list and do the needed homework.”   “That’s already ten,” Bill said.   “Today’s NY Times is loaded with stories relevant to harmless,” Jay offered.   “Go on.”   “The […]

Chapter 8: Presidential Candidates

[…]homework on and planning for the treatment of leading GOP presidential candidates long before Rand Paul and Jeb! Bush dropped out of the race – and before the strong rise of Donald Trump. As Bush and Paul are young and likely to continue to pursue their presidential ambitions, they are of continued relevance to harmless and are worthy of treatment – as now is Donald Trump.     Homework: Jeb! Bush for President     Jeb likes exclamation marks – or his campaign managers liked them. JEB is composed of his initials John Ellis Bush. He was Governor of Florida for two terms – 1999-2007. He is the second son of former President George H. W. Bush and former First Lady Barbara Bush. He grew up with two younger brothers, Neil and Marvin, one younger sister, Dorothy, and an older brother, ex-President George W, seven years older.   He attended the elite Phillips Academy high school in Andover. He taught English as a second language and assisted in the building of a school in Ibarrilla, a village near Guanajuato, Mexico, when he was 17, via Andover’s summer program. He met Columba Garnica Gallo, his future wife, while working in Ibarilla. […]

Chapter 9: Congress

[…]– Senate Majority Leader.     “Yes, but he’s failing at it,” Jay said. “He lost to Rand Paul on the Patriot Act provisions.”   “He screwed up the timing,” Bill added. “He was confident that by letting it go to the wire, Paul would play ball. He didn’t; McConnell took a beating.”   “McConnell’s convinced that the now two term Obama will be replaced by a Republican, saying, in response to the recent Paris climate agreement: ‘Obama should remember that the agreement is subject to being shredded in 13 months’.”   “And McConnell should recall that Romney lost – and so will Rubio, or Cruz, or whoever.”   “The McConnell – Paul fight is an interesting power struggle – the old and young senators from Kentucky duking it out,” I said. “Both are strong climate deniers, but Paul at least tries to be semi-rational, consistent, and principled.”   “Paul’s covered as one of our Presidential aspirants – even though he just dropped out of that race.”   “To focus on his Senate reelection,” Jay said.   “And another presidential aspirant, Senator Cruz, is now on McConnell’s case – calling him a liar on the Senate floor,” Bill added.   […]

Chapter 11: Delivery and Treatment

[…]I’ll try to treat several other relevant Kentucky folks on the same trip.”   “Do include Rand Paul.”   “Of course.”   “I’ll try to get to Scalia’s gig at the U of Santa Clara. He’s to visit a constitutional law class and to speak to students, staff, and faculty in the university’s Recital Hall. I’ll be in Fremont checking in on my Mom – she should be celebrating her 95th birthday at nearly the same time,” I said.   “Wow. Those are good genes,” Bill said.   “I hope so. Hopefully I’ve inherited some of her longevity. This project has taken much longer than I’d envisioned. And the next one is even harder.”   “We won’t ask,” Jay smiled.   “If Santa Clara doesn’t work, then I’ll arrange my DC visit to synch with one of Scalia’s DC gigs – perhaps the Georgetown Law lecture.”   “I’ll be up around Minneapolis for harmless soon, so if needed I could arrange to get to his Minnesota Law School Stein lecture.”   “Maybe do several,” Jay smiled. “He’ll need at least several treatments.”   “What about security?” Bill asked.   “Fortunately for us, the Times had a short piece on Justice […]

Chapter 12: Outcomes and Tomorrow

[…]pointed to a clipping on her desk, the recent USA Today piece by Carroll on The rise and fall of Rand Paul’s Candidacy, noting Time calls him ‘the most interesting man in politics’. I think so, too, I told her.”   “I continued on to Guthrie’s office, which was a simple affair. I engaged the staffer in a brief discussion about coal and Kentucky’s future. He had an older brother who was a miner and was actually pleased to be laid off. I told him about Obama’s new initiative to help fund local actions to develop cleaner energy. He then said his brother was taking a course to become a solar system installer. He gladly took a chocolate for himself and his brother as well as the two larger ones for Mr. and Mrs. Guthrie.”     Montana           – Joe, Bill         Kochs + Tester, Daines, Zinke   “I focused on the Congress folks. Joe handled Bill and David Koch and the Oxbridge school,” Bill reported.   “After sending written invitations to Tester, Daines, and Zinke, I visited their local offices in Helena; Daines and Tester also have a Bozeman office, so I stopped there on my way to Helena. I […]

Chapter 7: Supreme Court Justices

[…]truly at odds with another.   In his The Audacity of Hope Obama credited former Illinois Senator Paul Simon:                         Paul’s … sense of empathy .. is at the heart of my moral code, and it is how I understand the Golden Rule—not simply as a call to sympathy or charity, but as something more demanding, a call to stand in somebody else’s shoes and see through their eyes.   Obama continues:   Empathy … calls us all to task, the conservative and the liberal, the powerful and the powerless, the oppressed and the oppressor. We are all shaken out of our complacency. We are all forced beyond our limited vision. No one is exempt from the call to find common ground. …  we seem to be suffering from an empathy deficit. We wouldn’t tolerate schools that don’t teach, that are chronically underfunded and understaffed and underinspired, if we thought that the children in them were like our children. It’s hard to imagine the CEO of a company giving himself a multimillion-dollar bonus while cutting health-care coverage for his workers if he thought they were in some sense his equals. And it’s safe to assume that those in power […]

Chapter 10: Plutocrats – and Others

[…]740 Park Avenue. There’s a good segment in the 740 Park film about Atlas Shrugged, Ayn Rand, and Paul Ryan’s simplistic infatuation with her beliefs. It also covered other ultra-rich plutocrats, including Stephen Schwarzman of Wall Street bailout and gargantuan bonuses fame. Michael Gross, author of 740 Park, says ‘Stephen Schwarzman is the poster child of capitalistic greed.’ There are some 30 units at 740 Park Avenue occupied by the ultra-rich. 15 Central Ave is another really rich folks’ address. Gross has written books on each address.     “It sounds like harmless should just treat the entire building,” Jay said. “I’ll look into it. With all the Legionnaire’s disease issues in New York City, one more building wouldn’t raise too much suspicion.”   “I’ll bet this one has incredible security and maintenance,” I said.   “Did you see the piece on Schwarzman in Sunday’s NY Times? Last year he made nearly $700 Million! That’s pushing a cool billion,” Bill enthused. “His firm, Blackstone, apparently only pays 4.3 percent in Federal taxes, due to the ‘carried-interest gains’ loophole.”   “Interesting,” I said. “And in the film 740 Park it shows him lobbying Congress to keep that loophole intact.”   “The […]

Chapter 5: Testing

[…]video – a 5 minute ‘tour’ of their factory and process. We talked about a chocolate ‘brand ’ – a fictitious name, brand, and web site to minimize – and to satisfy – curiosity as to the source of the chocolates. Some ideas: ChocolateTransformation ChocolateChange DarkPleasures ChocolateConspiracy OlympusChocolate ForeverChocolates ChocolateVisions Delphi or OracleChocolate ChocolateMysteries AnandasChocolates (for anandamide) We continued to be partial to Ananda’s Chocolates because it had a message, was sufficiently mysterious, and was not connectable or traceable.  is a yoga meditation site. A quick search turned up .nl and .de sites for anandachocolate but nothing for anandaschocolates. We quickly reserved the .com version and proceeded to put up a limited in process site. We set up the websites  and  , both registered and paid up for 10 years. I didn’t ask Jake to do them because we want to be sure he’s in no way connected or identified with the real harmless project. As far as delivery to patients, we could just have the chocolates with us, place them on the table or counter, and offer them to the current patient. We did have concerns. What if they take the box home – and give […]

Chapter 3: Harmless – The Team

[…]town for our discussions.   “That makes me recall,” Jay said, “that Jennifer Burns, an Ayn Rand biographer, said Rand’s books are ‘…part of the underground curriculum of American adolescence’.”   “Let’s consider some of the other anti-environment voices that need our attention.” “Pope Francis’ encyclical related to climate and environment helps with our ‘set’ and ‘setting’ needs, especially for our top Catholic patients.”   “Yes, like Rubio and Ryan,” Jay said. “In fact, about 30 percent of members of Congress are Catholics – and many of the GOP 2016 Presidential aspirants – Bush, Rubio, and Cruz.”   “No. Cruz is now a hard core evangelist,” I corrected.   “Thirty percent – that’s much higher than I thought,” Lucien said. “And half the Supreme Court, too! I’ll set up a spreadsheet on all of them all so we can keep track of activities, preferences, opportunities.”   “Did you notice all the Catholic-oriented countries that have legalized same sex marriage? Interesting.”   “Tipping points do evolve,” Bill said. “I don’t think anyone would have predicted national same sex marriage just five years ago.”   “We might include the USA,” I said. “With a majority of Supreme Court justices and 30% of […]

Chapter 1: Concerns and Beginnings

[…]democracy. The ‘right’ tilts to individualism, independence, rules, ultra-capitalism, and Ayn Rand. Education used to be about learning to think for ourselves – learning fact from fiction, reality from fantasy, right from wrong – learning to become functioning, responsible participants in a representative democracy. ‘Education’ today is often far more about acquiring skills for specific jobs. Generally we begin as infants and children with an authority figure (parents) telling us what is good or bad, right or wrong. That’s comforting, for a while. Then, particularly as we enter puberty, we begin to question that authority – we begin to consider our own identity and self. In good colleges we get exposed to philosophy and history and courses and discussions related to intellectual and personal development. For many hard-wiring is difficult to undo – to rewire. Those often find it convenient and comfortable to stay with the hard-wiring they know. Others, perhaps those not so far over on the Believe Spectrum, do change their wiring – and many begin to think for themselves . And that can be uncomfortable. We have special words for the rare times and situations when a very deep, solid belief is drastically changed or reversed: Revelation, […]

Chapter 2: From Eleusis to Revelation

[…]pack a day guy?” I said. “He apparently smells and exudes smoke, according to his replacement, Paul Ryan.” “Well, Boehner is largely out of the picture now – and so is Kevin McCarthy – originally Boehner’s heir apparent!” “Before Kevin verbally blew off his own toes,” Jay smiled. “Republicans – the party of chaos.” “I don’t think getting Paul Ryan – or any of them – to smoke pot is the way to go. We need something stronger, more empathetic, more effective. Some entheogen – an empathy-inducing psychedelic might help – yes, an empathogen,” Peter suggested. Jay: “Easy to say and very hard to do. Except for marijuana in a very few states, they’re all illegal. And Tea Party Republicans won’t agree to magic incense at their swearing in!” “It has to be clandestine,” I said. “Clandestine and all at once.” “What are you smoking?” asked Lucien. “Nothing, yet. I’m a pharmacologic near-virgin, remember?” “The Eleusinian ceremonies were voluntary, weren’t they?” Lucien continued. “Sort of – they were ‘expected’ of all good citizens. That probably means not quite voluntary. The historical record is not very complete.” “In Island – Aldous Huxley’s last novel – he describes an initiation ceremony for […]

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