Most people find a disconnect between my resume and my lifestyle. The meaning of life is best found and enjoyed by being a minimalist and mentalist rather than materialist and emotionalist. I have been rewarded with more free time and greater happiness by living within my means. As I expressed, those who do not live within their means are invariably mean people who beget meaningless lives as their cancerous theft fulfills its self-destructive trajectory. Meaningless people have less means, for they have in the past lived off the means from their future.
Living beyond one's means applies to not only finances but intelligence, emotions and personalities. By one, I mean one's self, family, community or nation. Americans have for decades lived beyond their means by virtue of the habitual politicians fueling re-elections with deficit-funded budgets. We have had larger families than we could or can afford. Many parents will suffer as they watch their children have horrible lifechoices because the parents unknowingly were living beyond their means when they beget the child. An alcoholic hangover will pass within a few hours for the evening of pleasure while the parental hangover will last a lifetime for that evening of pleasure.
This has an important point: Those who have lived personally within their means have been taken along for a ride toward a cliff. To be a meaningful person, that is, full of means--is not merely personal responsibility but public advocacy of living within one's means. Because we live in a zero-sum world, another person's problems become our problems through more public taxation or more price taxation (inflation). As I mentioned to you, I don't fear a modest lifestyle centered around beans but do fear those who cannot live within their means, that is, the exploding crime lottery. A necessary part of being a meaningful person is resisting and preventing others from living beyond their means. It is not only right but a self-surviving duty.
As a person who likes to understand words, I like my "means" philosophy. To live within one's means involves two other ethical issues that initially appear coincidental but are not (like the calculus of math and the calculus on teeth). To live within one's means requires questioning one's life (Socrates) so that one's actions are both the means and ends rather than one's actions being the means to an end. To live in the present while fertilizing the future is better than living as a cancer that destroys the future. When I spent about $2500 and 100 hours to give my widow neighbor a garden in place of a muddy clay slope, I did it because it was the right thing to do and I could do it. There was no hidden agenda though several benefits came to mind as I was doing it. The action was complete and fulfilling in and of itself. Each time I visit my neighbor, her garden is a source of pleasure and joy. The math of happiness is simple: In ten years of 365 visits, it will have cost me about sixty cents for each visit of emotional serenity. (I think you are a natural in doing the right thing without the interlocking, multi-threaded didactic reasoning upon which I based my actions.)
The second related ethical issue to means is "the golden means between the extremes." If you think about it, to have one's actions be both the means and the ends is to be neither obssessed with the ends independent of the means or vice versa. Likewise, to not observe the golden mean is to under-indulge or over-indulge in living within one's means.
Sadly, because as a species, as a nation and as individuals, we have lived beyond our various means, we are experiencing an endgame that is an existential meltdown. As our problems increase in number and size, our problem-solving institutions (government, family, education, etc.) are failing as problem solving institutions to produce solutions or solvers. When one understands, first and foremost, that problems are time-cancers and solvers are time-creators, one can do the calculus to see that the hourglass of human existence is running out of time.
I live the serenity prayer more fully than most people. I have adopted a lifestyle that is simple so as to enjoy each day more than the previous. My garden and home are a hospice to enjoy life in the few years left to enjoy life. I am a good concluder. The year 1982 was my pivotal year:
As I said in the beginning, there is a disconnect between my resume and my lifestyle.
Until recently, I have traveled a lot with the focus being on global warming. The elephant in the room that is magnfying all human problems is global warming. The habitual politicians should not be focusing on a healthcare plan for citizens but a healthcare plan for Mother Nature. For years, I thought I would outlive the effects of global warming, a hope vaporized in March 2007 when I realized that we had passed the tipping point: If humanity did not burn another molecule of fossil fuel, the earth will continue to warm up as an accelerating rate. Mother Nature has become its own source of increasing CO2 release.
We have not passed the recovery point which is the point of no return. Only a crash global program akin to the WWII Marshall Victory Plan and the WWII Manhatten Project offers any hope. Toward this program and hope, you can marry your personal and professional well-being with another visit to Chatwell.
It was a pleasure to meet you for more than a few passing moments. You did a great job. I am honored and tickled. In appreciation are the accompanying items: summary resume and pickled watermelon. The resume may answer better your question as to what kind of jobs I have had. I changed my career focus every few years to appreciate my one life better. I've been very lucky.
I noticed that you noticed things that struck you as odd or out of place. One observation might have been my simple, inexpensive solution to the problem of heating one's home in the winter. For less than twenty-five dollars, I lowered my monthly heating costs by $100 to $200 dollars. Our gas bill has become the minimum of $50. How did I do this so cheaply in a way that your viewers could repeat? Tapping better brains.
As you may know, physics has two main fields: relativity (Einstein) and quantum mechanics (Planck), each of which is summarized in simple equations: E=MCC and E=hf . The "h" is Planck's constant. I applied the principle that was the basis of Planck receiving the Nobel prize in physics to a part of my house. My simple application of Planck's research is akin to how in my garden my old CDroms are better bird scarers than aluminum pie pans. I have a history of simple solutions to expensive problems. I have been called DIBs at different time by different people: Desert Island Bob, you'd want me on a deserted island.
While your televised garden story had merit in encouraging people to grow some of their food and to find solace in being in nature, the proposed energy saving story has greater merit. Imagine the benefit to your viewers if they could easily and cheaply save hundreds of dollars in energy costs that would reduce energy demands so as to lower costs for other forms of energy. More importantly, imagine the benefit of reducing "CO2 sinning" for each dollar of fossil fuels not burned to heat homes.
As you may recall, I referenced a 1982 essay in which I noted that the real immediate impact of rising atmospheric CO2 on humanity would be destruction of the foodchain by drought and deluge. Think Gaston. Think the recent Taiwan rainfall of 100 inches in one day. Think Louisville of 6" in one hour. Early this morning, 090824, almost 3" in one hour (I was up at 1:30 working when the rain started).
In just the last five years I have traveled 100,000 over North America personally talking about climate changes with people from the Polar Bear Capital on Hudson Bay to Mayan ruins in Mexico. I have databased over 2,000 articles dealing with climate change. Everything I have done intellectually since the late 1970's I have computerized for easy access by proprietory programs of my design.
You may find a disconnect between my resume/claims and public achievements. The reason is simple: I don't like politicians, bureaucrats, liars and thieves which are the norm in government, academia and business. I prefer simple serenity over discordant pursuits. I laff and engender laughter more each day than most people.
My real achievements are not only outside the pubic domain but are obscured by deadend alleys I have constructed to be left alone, e.g., I don't answer my phone unless I know you, I don't give out my email address (only two people have it despite 30 years of computer ownership), and I don't answer door knocks (I disconnected the doorbell.). Research will show that I am a crackpot and scofflaw who should not be taken seriously and who is not worth the cost and effort to litigate. As Janice Joplin said, "Freedom is just another word for nothing else to lose."
I learned a long time ago that the vast majority of people will not do what needs to be done for reasons of being lazy, illogical, funny mentalists, evilutionists and doodoo digesters. The latter are those who fabricate their views and values of the world from their gut reactions. If one does not have the integrity of intellect and intelligence to re-inspect me then one will, ipso facto, not respect me. It is not my loss.
This cheap heat story has national merit worthy of a segment on an evening national news. Furthermore, I am sure a particular national chain of service provider would want to do a commercial tie-in because they could more easily produce the final product with their existing equipment than can the DIY approach. This a win-win situation for all involved: squeezed homeowners, squeezed tv's and concerned citizens.
As you know, I am home most of the time. Call. Come by. In two minutes, I can show and explain the simple solution. If you have questions, I can give you that glass of wine. I live cheap not from necessity but by choice and curiosity.
With warmest regard and respect,
P.S. 513-0727 is my cell which I often ignore and don't recharge. If there is no answer, please leave a "not interested" answer or phone number on my generic answering machine at 233-7541. If I have not heard from you within a week, I will approach another tv station since the simple, inexpensive "green" heating system has great merit and potential benefit.
P.S. You are lucky to not only have a charming daughter who seems to have a good head on her shoulders but are lucky in being able to spend time with her sharing aspects of your worthwhile career. Overall, I think you are one of the public time-shapers who seeks to educate us to live rather than entertain us to death. I agree with your Woodstock analysis. While I never had children, when I had a business I would always have a youth employment section to repay those who "mentored" me in my youth out of my white trash, welfare origins. I have tried to spend half my time helping myself and helping others. Helping others achieve or live within their means eliminates their unsolved problems growing to where they become our problems through crime, taxes or inflation. It is important to remember that help that does not help the helpless to help themselves is not help. Likewise, when politicians make good policy, the polity in the polis will be polite without police.