We’re not making money, but we are contributing.

Photo by Gita Krishnamurti on Unsplash

The good thing about getting old is people don’t expect as much of us. But even when we’re not doing much, I believe we still have responsibilities to the people around us and the world that has given us so much.

The world is going on without us, but we still have valuable parts to play. We can be active in ways we don’t always recognize. These 11 practices can help seniors play our roles well, make us valuable contributors to society, and might make our own lives more rewarding.

1. Keep…


Photo by Dmitry Vechorko on Unsplash

Can we let go of our stories and

See the world as it is?

Like Dorothy in Oz

Living in someone else’s technicolor nightmare

We don’t have to kill the wicked witches.

All we have to do is wake up.

.

We may know we are wounded, disabled.

Protecting ourselves from injury

With splints, bandages, shields.

Not doing anything hard or

Risking anyone’s anger

Waiting for a miracle that never comes.

.

What if we unwrapped the bandages

Took off the splints? Maybe not all at once,

But one layer at a time.

Can we face the world as it…


Marketing overwork, isolation, and war

Photo by Denys Nevozhai on Unsplash

“Freedom is not free. It takes billions of dollars worth of media propaganda to manufacture the illusion of freedom.” Caitlin Johnstone

The United States’ national anthem calls the USA “the land of the free,” and many Americans love to think of it that way. If freedom means the right to carry guns, drive fast, and shoot off fireworks, the “free” label might be true. Other areas, such as work life, housing, healthy environments and the right to live in peace aren’t free at all. We have freedom for a few and misery for millions.

American freedom was always a lie…


No one should own the Earth. We need long-term leases on land

Photo by Charlie Deets on Unsplash

“Under capitalism, all land is seen as a warehouse of potential commodities to be sold to the highest bidder.” Robin Wall Kimmerer

Can a person own a piece of their mother? No? Then, how can we claim to own land? Land is Earth, the giver of all life. We didn’t create it; it created us.

Dictionary.com defines ownership as “The total body of rights to use and enjoy a property, to pass it on to someone else as an inheritance, or to convey it by sale.” They could have added the right to deny other people its use. …


So we’ll have to work for ourselves

Workers in Sierra Leone Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

From the time of the Pharaohs to today’s mega-corporations, the rich and powerful have abused those who work for them. It’s time to make them stop and to create work we want and need.

From slavery times until now, big employers have never wanted to pay. In the early 20th Century, World War 1 was a great boost to US industry as new factories opened to build ships, trucks and weapons. The war also made labor scarcer, as thousands of workers left their jobs to serve in the army. Because the war disrupted shipping, the flow of poor immigrant workers…


Don’t feed the trolls, they’re fighting a war

Image from Pixabay

I occasionally publish articles on Medium such as “The US and Israel: Partners in war crime,” and “Will Israel Kill My Friends?,” and they often get scornful pushback from Israel’s online defenders. Their comments are usually long and insulting, endlessly repeating Israeli government talking points.

I usually try to draw them out on their beliefs about the situation, but I have realized these threads are not like normal social media disagreements. The posters are cyber-soldiers. In their minds, they are fighting for Jewish survival in a hostile world.

The Israeli government recruits and trains these warriors, whom they call Hasbara


It’s called reciprocity, and it makes life better

(Photo by Filip Urban on Unsplash)

Gratitude is the rock star of emotions. Over 2,000 years ago, Marcus Tullius Cicero wrote, “Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues. It is the parent of all the others.” Being grateful reduces stress. It makes us happy and fun to be around. If our gratitude stops at giving thanks, though, it won’t last. We have to give back, to live in what Native American botanist Robin Wall Kimmerer calls reciprocity.

“Through reciprocity the gift is replenished,” says Kimmerer. When Europeans arrived in 17th Century America, they were astonished at the richness of the life they found here. They…


It’s sex without the patriarchy

Photo by Dim Hou on Unsplash

From the editors of Penthouse Magazine: “One of the most popular themes of letters we receive is wife watching. It seems there’s nothing quite like seeing your significant other in the throes of passion with another man, or in some cases men.” (Introduction to Penthouse Letters to the Editor, 18th Edition.)

My partner found this collection of amateur erotica in a laundromat, and a brief survey shows the other 30+ editions are similar. About 80% of the fantasies involve getting wives/girlfriends hooked up with other men and then watching or participating. Research by sexologist Justin Lehmiller Ph.D. found that 58%…


They don’t have our inner boss.

Photo by Eelco Böhtlingk on Unsplash

“I saw a chimpanzee gaze at a particularly beautiful sunset for a full 15 minutes, watching the changing colors, until it became so dark that he had to retire to the forest without stopping to pick a pawpaw for his evening meal.” — Adriaan Kortlandt, wildlife researcher in Congo

So how come this chimp, threatened by leopards, searching for food in an endless “struggle for survival,” can stop to appreciate nature’s beauty, and we don’t? Well, according to a great book I just finished, Pleasurable Kingdom by Jonathan Balcombe, that’s what animals do. They…


US and Israeli governments outsourcing censorship to Facebook and Zoom

Prof. Rabab Abdulhadi in Cuba Image: Mondoweiss.net with permission

Pushed by repressive governments, Big Tech and the Israel lobby are suppressing freedom of speech and academic freedom. As often happens, attacks on Palestinian rights are the sharp edge of the wedge undermining everyone’s rights. Palestinian academics and supporters are fighting this censorship and asking for your help.

The Israel-identified community, with its legal arms such as The Lawfare Project, political arms like the American Israeli Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC,) and dozens of others, have suppressed pro-Palestinian voices for years. …

David Spero Rn

Writer, fighter, lover, friend, listener. Based in San Francisco. Write about Health, Economics, Spirit, Psychology, Politics

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