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The Asumen Pre-emptive Initiative

Posted by C. Stan Asumen, Jr on August 5, 2015 at 11:20 PM Comments comments (2)

Controlling the Southern Border


War is . . . nothing but the continuation of state policy with other means. The political object is the goal, war is the means of reaching it, and the means can never be considered in isolation from their purposes.

~~Carl von Clausewitz


Momentous wars ~> good, bad, indifferent, or otherwise ~> since time immemorial have been started with the flimsiest of pretexts and were always justified ultimately by the outcome. History always belongs to those who are able to chronicle, sustain, and perpetuate the narrative.

In the most urgent case of the United States going to war with Mexico, we don’t need an abacus to count the almost innumerable ways. Mexicans come to this country deliberately evading laws governing cross-border travel. They make a virtue of flaunting the fact that they are in the United States resultant to their flouting our extant immigration laws.

They stay in this country taking every opportunity to show their disrespect of traditional values inherent to the American national identity. There is no need for any counting at all. Besides, what warm red blooded American would, with clear conscience, dare forget The Alamo?

It is very much common knowledge that the national Mexican mindset is addicted to assign blame to the United States for what Mexico has ignored for generations, namely, her failure to provide the infrastructure that would foster the flourishing of a prosperous democratic society. The Mexicans have for so long perpetrated the lie on themselves they have embraced it as nationalism’s gospel, canonized in the self-serving axiomatic lament: ~>

“Pobre México. Tan lejos de Dios, tan circa de los Estados Unidos," which translates into English, "Poor Mexico. As distant from God, as she is close to the United States."

~~ Richard R. Fagen, (Foreign Affairs, July 1977)

For all practical purposes, they do not subscribe to Shakespeare’s counter admonition, namely,

Men at some time are masters of their fates:

The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars,

But in ourselves, that we are underlings.

~~William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar

Any and all neighbors who are wont to blame you for their own misfortune need to be taught a lesson on neighborly decorum. Otherwise, they gloat over their perceived power over you and make it their mission to perpetuate the situation ad nauseam. Worse, you become a conspirator to fostering their own demise. It is therefore incumbent on America to put an end to all of Mexico’s, especially the Mexican government’s shenanigans.

But make no mistake about it ~> as long as the Blame America First (BAF) crowd as exemplified by the Obama Regime cohorts roam the corridors of power, America does not have the ghost of a chance to prevail over adversity of any kind. By their very nature, BAF-steers are notorious prime apologists and scapegoat enablers for America’s egregious enemies. As one cognoscente aptly and succinctly observed:

Obama made a conscious decision to, in effect, dissolve the southern border, and, quite reasonably enough, the "unaccompanied minors" of Latin America opted to take him at his word. ~~Mark Steyn Challenges of Diversity

When the summer season simmers into a full-throttle sizzle, we can expect, like in recent summers past, the influx of unaccompanied undocumented underage immigrants to emerge from the underbrush of obscurity, like cockroaches in a greasy Manhattan kitchen table, into the limelight of national attention. Some recent reports of American Border Helicopter Patrol being fired on from the Mexican side of the border were mere samples of the tumult and turmoil the Democrats are scheming, to maintain the reliable flow of a perennial supply of low-information voters.

Consider it the Democratic Party’s strategic approach to perpetuate the damning down of both the milieu and fabric of the American body politic. The institutionalization of political myopia vouchsafes the Democrats’ claims on the Oval Office for what they envision to be an extended period to linger.

Does Mexico believe that the massive influxes will serve to render U.S. immigration law meaningless, and thereby completely shred an already porous border?

~~Victor Davis Hanson (10-Jul-2014), The Moral Crisis on Our Southern Border

It matters little what Mexico believes. It matters much more what Mexico does, had been doing in the recent past and will continue to perpetuate in the foreseeable future unless forced to stop by a United States government committed to foster, protect, and defend our national sovereignty.

The Responsibility to Protect", the idea that sovereign states have a responsibility to protect their own citizens from avoidable catastrophe – from mass murder and rape, from starvation – but that when they are unwilling or unable to do so, that responsibility must be borne by the broader community of states.



The action required by R2P [Responsibility to Protect] is overwhelmingly, preventive: building state capacity, remedying grievances and ensuring the rule of law. But if prevention fails, R2P requires whatever measures — economic, political, diplomatic, legal, security, or in the last resort military — become necessary to stop mass atrocity crimes occurring.


We must be able to show that some wrong has been committed by one nation [i.e., Mexico] for which war is the proper redress by another [i.e., the United States]. Unprovoked aggression, such as an invasion, fits clearly within the criteria of a Just Cause. Few would deny a nation the right to defend itself against unprovoked attack. 


Is Mexico a friend? Deliberately encouraging about a million of its own citizens each year to break the law and try to enter the U.S. illegally and facilitating the transit across its territory of thousands of Central Americans to swarm and overwhelm the U.S. border seem hardly amicable acts. In truth, Mexico invades a country with far greater numbers and with far more finesse than does Putin’s Russia


I have this capital idea to effectively control the Southern Border once and for all. This is as foolproof as it is compassionate. It is an outside the box, thinking on your feet approach to border control. See the link to the map for reference  As a preventive measure, we have to implement forthwith “The Pre-emptive Asumen Initiative,” a.k.a. the Asumen Compassionate Immigration Compromise.

Since Mexico has abundantly proved that she is anyone but a neighbor who can be trusted, we have to control her southern border for her. Boycotting Mexico would not do them or us any good. Make war with Mexico and teach them a lesson. That can only be done by invading, conquering, occupying and annexing Mexico.

If we were willing and able to do this with Iraq, half a globe away, we should be able to do it with Mexico which is only on the other side of a porous fence. To fix this problem the U.S.-Mexican border should be relocated to south of Oaxaca where it borders with Chiapas and Tabasco (see map for details).  From Oaxaca to the north should all be U.S. territory. Anybody who does not want to join the U.S. should be sent off to south of this new border.


The new border being much shorter than the current one, it should be much easier to guard. And everybody shall live happily ever after.  We can therefore exuberantly celebrate with the sages of yore ~>


Yet Reason frowns on War's unequal Game,

Where wasted Nations raise a single Name,

And mortgag'd States their Grandsires Wreaths regret

From Age to Age in everlasting Debt;

Wreaths which at last the dear-bought Right convey

To rust on Medals, or on Stones decay.

~Samuel Johnson, Vanity of Human Wishes


I am positive it will be denounced by the Blame America First horde, starting with leading personages of the Obama Regime and the rest of the United Nations types crowd.   But to paraphrase the late Sen. Barry Goldwater,

Extremism in the defense of sovereignty [liberty] is no vice.

And moderation in the pursuit of security [justice] is no virtue.




Blissful Serendipity

Posted by C. Stan Asumen, Jr on July 22, 2015 at 11:45 AM Comments comments (3)



And if the Wine you drink, the Lip you press

End in what All begins and ends in--Yes;

Think then you are To-day what Yesterday

You were--To-morrow You shall not be less.

~~Omar Khayyam, The Rubaiyat

“I’d rather be lucky than good,” is a mantra I got so fond of throwing about with gusto and much bravado, I really have not had the chance nor the inklings to serenely ruminate, let alone elucidate on the wherefores of the line. I owe it to myself to delve into it at length, if nothing else but for my own edification.

For starters, this is the short and long of it in a nutshell, spelled out in exquisitely naked splendor: During the first twenty years of my life I was extremely lucky it allowed me to be good. In the next fifty-one years thereafter, I had persevered to be good yet it did not do me much good. Which is another way of saying I really don’t have much to show for it.

As I had nostalgically and proudly emphasized earlier elsewhere, and every chance I get whensoever {see, e.g., p. 93} that:

“I was blessed with loving and caring parents who inculcated into my consciousness an appreciation of the notion of the good, the beautiful and the true, along with the value of hard work and the mental habit to examine the merits of any proposition that needed to be acted upon or taken as gospel.

This was seriously important because my parents got married when they were in grammar school. Father was nineteen just on the verge of being promoted to seventh grade. Mother was sixteen, still in the sixth grade. Both of them were scions of farming and fishing families. Their moral and spiritual moorings essentially consisted of the goodness of their hearts and the desire to do what was right, tempered by the rigors of the elements associated with farming and fishing life.

We were so lucky growing up that even when we were being punished, our parents made sure we knew the cause for the punishment and were aware of the dire consequences should the transgression ever be repeated.

The method to the madness I narrated earlier elsewhere {op.cit. p. 105} and bears repeating at length for clarity:

“. . . There were codes of conduct and rules of behavior, mostly unspoken, definitely unwritten. We just learned to tell right from wrong by observing how our parents and older siblings conducted themselves.

“Both of my parents were stringent disciplinarians. Mother mainly dispensed verbal admonitions. Father sometimes meted out physical punishments. One of the most common forms was lashing with the leather belt or a rattan switch or a flexible twig freshly picked specifically for the occasion. Another [sack hanging] was being put inside a stinky copra sack such that you were barely able to stand on tip toe at the sack bottom because of stitching constraints around your neck at the open end of the sack, and the sack suspended to the rafters until the subject mostly fell asleep from exhaustion.

“Any infraction which resulted in a physical punishment was what I dubbed a ‘capital offense.’ The physical punishment was preceded by a thorough conceptual discussion of the infraction to make sure that the subject understood and admitted the punishment was well deserved and commensurate with the crime. As a child I sometimes preferred capital punishment to the verbal kind. The former had a rather prompt closure to the incident. The latter could continue for ages without any prospect of closure, until it was eventually forgotten or superseded by something else considered to be more serious.”

It may sound more facetious than forthright, but it was no exaggeration to claim that it did take an inordinate amount of luck to pull through in one piece under the circumstances. Since we never have the chance to choose who our parents might be, it was indeed sheer good luck that we were blessed with the parentage we got. It afforded us the chance to be good. Having been good, I endeavored to even do better: ~>


I sent my Soul through the Invisible,

Some letter of that After-life to spell:

And by and by my Soul return'd to me,

And answer'd "I Myself am Heav'n and Hell:"

~~Omar Khayyam, The Rubaiyat

I soon learned to my utter consternation, that more often than not, there were far more chances that were wasted than there were nurtured to fruition. This is precisely what I mean when I volunteer that being good did not do me any good. To rule out any ambiguity, let the record show that I am speaking of bonding with another human being, specifically, the feminine kind. In the manner of Elizabeth Barrett Browning, “let me count the ways,” as I can glean from my bank of selective memories.

The matter of my three-day first marriage has been documented elsewhere ad nauseam {inter alia, op.cit. p. 35} and does not warrant a repetition. Beyond the tragic comedy of untoward form and timing that was my first marriage, there were the matters of anonymity under the rubric ~>

To all the girls who cared for me

Who filled my nights with ecstasy

They live within my heart

I'll always be a part

Of all the girls I've loved before

~~Julio Iglesias, To All The Girls I've Loved Before

I chronicled my discombobulation on this subject about thirty-five years ago when I wrote, the seventh of thirty-nine stanzas:


Not all the roads we take lead us to Rome,

Nor all the sins we dared commit bring doom;

Will all the blossoms we may yet behold

Be sweeter made by picking them in gloom?

~~Ace Lilacs, In Retrospect

While the piece has been adequately annotated, both in print and on the cited venue online, under the rubric of serendipity, two instances I need to ferret out from the cobwebs of my mind, more for my own edification, especially because both episodes remain as lucid in my reverie as if they have never been relegated into oblivion in the sequestered and forbidden vaults of yesterday.

There were a few common components involved. One was that both principals were secretaries to people who were instrumental in keeping the harmonious equilibrium of my daily chores. Another was that they were both excellent swimmers and could outswim me easily any day when I was not on top form.

Also, both wore contact lenses and took the contacts off when they were swimming. Ergo, I was never sure when they swam too far from shore whether they just could not see how far they had gone. For that matter, I was never sure how and where I stood with them except on those rare moments when the question really did not matter. Unfortunately, such were too few and far between.

Try as I might, I find it hard to piece together the circumstances which lead to that windy Saturday afternoon which found me watching the sunset from the beach on Lake Biwa. In my company were two graduate students from Indonesia, the ever charming Aiko, a divorced secretary to the Foreign Students Advisor. She had another female unknown to me in tow. The casual chit chat led to a dare on who could remove the flag from the safety buoy some seventy or so yards away.

Being from the Philippines, a country which takes pride to count more than 7100 islands in her realm, I was determined not to be outswam by the Indonesians who were both about north of six years my senior. It was a matter of national pride. Four of us raced for the prize. The unknown female opted out for not wearing any swim gear.

Some ten yards short of the buoy I got the old familiar thigh cramps which usually beset me when I swam without any warm-up exercises. Ergo, I was the last to reach the buoy and needed to rest some before heading back to shore. Three-quarters into the shoreward leg, the cramps came back forcing me to resort to survival mode until I touched ground. I politely declined when one of the Indonesians offered to help get me on dry land.

I was too much of a wreck on the beach to be embarrassed at my dismal spectacle. More than a week later, to my pleasant surprise, Aiko informed me of her plan to reconvene the group and asked if she could count me in. I assented and surprised to find that when the time came only she and I could make it. Thus commenced our summer escapades of roller coaster rides and swimming in seclusion as a fortnightly rendezvous.

In life nothing is for sure, there is no guarantee

My life was spent perfecting what is now a ‘life degree’

I am so blessed that you simply must agree

I have it all. You see, luck just seems to follow me!!

~~ Michael Sage, Luck Follows Me

The roller coaster was a significant feature to our affair. I have never been on a roller coaster ride with anybody else. What made it pleasurable was that each time there was a sudden fall or abrupt descent, Aiko would cling to my neck like there was no tomorrow and I enjoyed it immensely.

Alas the summer break ended and so did my Aiko escapades. I consciously avoided having the interface blossom with emotional content. The fact that she worked in an office which looked after my wellbeing as a foreign student prevented me from giving vent to whatever amorous prurient designs I had with her. Discretion had a peculiar claim on shunting what might have been thrilling realities into nearly poignant memories. Whenever discretion gets the better of valor it robs adventure from the votaries of honor.

I hold it true, whate'er befall;

I feel it, when I sorrow most;

'Tis better to have loved and lost

Than never to have loved at all.

~~Alfred Lord Tennyson, In Memoriam

As the cliché goes, no use crying over spelt milk. And yet, if one is not extra super vigilant as it never has been my wont, the chances that were wasted tend to proliferate themselves enough to enchain, if not altogether suffocate the soul. So it came to pass that less than two full summers later, I found myself entangled with yet another secretary under far different insinuating causal chain of events and dismal collateral casual outcomes.

Helen was the taciturn secretary to Prof. Kohler, the Swiss Dean of Students at the Haus der Bebegnung, a.k.a. International Students’ House. Partly because she did not speak much Japanese, I found her introspective reserved demeanor to be charmingly attractive. Moreover, she was under the protective custody of Mrs. Kohler who treated her like she was one of their children. She kept her room within the Kohler Family Quarters of the house. Ergo, she had the “forbidden fruit” component to her allure.

One early evening late in May when the world was bathe in moonlit splendor, I bumped into Helen by the elevator door and I accosted her thus: “I was just going to knock on your door to ask you if you are free to keep me company on a stroll to nowhere in the moonlight.”

Without missing a beat, she replied, “It sounds like a good idea. Give me a minute to grab my shawl, just in case the breeze grows colder.”

This was my first ever attempt at a conversation with her. It was a definite feat of hubristic exuberance on my part. It turned out to be a crowning glory for serendipity. I did not even dream I would be half as lucky.

Hand in hand, we took a leisurely stroll to the compounds of HeiAn Shrine some twenty minutes away. Before reaching the main gate, Helen broke a strap of her open-toe sandals. Half-heartedly, I offered to attempt to fix it and have her sit on the base of a low-lying curved pine tree ubiquitous in the Shrine compound.

She leaned onto the inclined segment of the pine tree trunk. With the moon beam filtering through the pine thistles onto her countenance she presented the perfect picture of enchantment. I did not dare resist the temptation to gather her in my arms and kissed her with the anxious ambiguity of the rough winds of May. Her response was as convincingly determined as my advances were tentative.

When we broke for air, she asked, “Why did you do that.”

I retorted, “It seemed it was a good idea at the time. I’m just glad you did not slap me or something.”

“You surprised me but I liked it. Can we do it again,” she rejoined.

So we repeated the exercise. I did not count how many times more. I did not even bother to count them in hind sight. Nothing seemed to matter at that point except the realization that we had opened a joint chapter to a torrid summer of romance.

The Kohlers did not make any pretense at attempting to hide their obvious displeasure that my affair with Helen went far beyond dalliance. I was treated like I just committed the grossest breach of trust conceivable in all of Creation, worse than having pawned the family heirlooms.

The romantic summer culminated with a week spent at a seaside village by the shores of Japan Sea, some ninety-minute train ride away. We set up tent on the beach late Monday night in torrential rain. The next morning was the proverbial sunny sky after the storm. Helen swam like a fish. By noontime she got sunburnt so bad a religious observer would conclude it was the condign biblical punishment for having too much fun.

We rented room and board from one of the villagers for the rest of the week. Our host voluntarily prepared herbal concoction to help nurse her sunburnt skin which was completely on the mend before we left the village.

The following week I was told Helen suffered severe ear infection and should not be seen by anybody, per doctor’s orders. I learned later that Helen was the only child of a family friend to the Kohlers. She was in Japan under their familial custody. When her mother learned of our affair, the mother went into histrionics to the effect that her daughter would not be wed to an oriental under any circumstances.

Helen was whisked away back to Switzerland without giving us a chance to say goodbye. Pleading redundancy, I have to say it anyway. The episode had left an indelible dent in the fabric of my soul neither time nor divine intervention could conceivably mend.  I moved out of the Student House at the end of the semester.


Yet Ah, that Spring should vanish with the Rose!

That Youth's sweet-scented manuscript should close!

The Nightingale that in the branches sang,

Ah, whence, and whither flown again, who knows!

~~Omar Khayyam, The Rubaiyat


The Goldberg Canons of Conservatism

Posted by C. Stan Asumen, Jr on June 19, 2015 at 4:45 PM Comments comments (1)

Reproduced without permission from todsy's Goldberg File which came into my inbox:


“Six Canons of Conservatism.” (I’ve edited them down, but you can follow this link to read them in their entirety.)


1. Belief in a transcendent order, or body of natural law, which rules society as well as conscience. . . . True politics is the art of apprehending and applying the Justice which ought to prevail in a community of souls.


2. Affection for the proliferating variety and mystery of human existence, as opposed to the narrowing uniformity, egalitarianism, and utilitarian aims of most radical systems; conservatives resist what Robert Graves calls “Logicalism” in society.


3. Conviction that civilized society requires orders and classes, as against the notion of a “classless society.” With reason, conservatives have been called “the party of order.” If natural distinctions are effaced among men, oligarchs fill the vacuum.


4. Persuasion that freedom and property are closely linked: separate property from private possession, and Leviathan becomes master of all. Economic levelling, they maintain, is not economic progress.


5. Faith in prescription and distrust of “sophisters, calculators, and economists” who would reconstruct society upon abstract designs. Custom, convention, and old prescription are checks both upon man’s anarchic impulse and upon the innovator’s lust for power.


6. Recognition that change may not be salutary reform: hasty innovation may be a devouring conflagration, rather than a torch of progress. Society must alter, for prudent change is the means of social preservation; but a statesman must take Providence into his calculations, and a statesman’s chief virtue, according to Plato and Burke, is prudence.


I agree with all of these in the context of the Anglo-American tradition. But that’s hardly pithy. One of the problems with the term “conservative” is that unlike, say, “socialist” or even “progressive,” it can mean wildly different things in different cultures. Samuel Huntington made this point in his brilliant 1957 essay “Conservatism as an Ideology.” A conservative in America wants to conserve radically different things than a conservative in Saudi Arabia, Russia, or France does. Even British conservatives -- our closest ideological cousins -- want to preserve the monarchy, an institution we fought a revolution to get rid of. In the Soviet Union, the “conservatives” were the ones who wanted to preserve and defend the Bolshevik Revolution.

Three Sonnets Linger

Posted by C. Stan Asumen, Jr on June 13, 2015 at 2:15 PM Comments comments (0)

(CVII) ~> Ruthless Reprise*

(Three Sonnets Linger)


Since beings must exist in time and space

Nothing we do might show to alter time

We are best served to willingly embrace

All which we muster make to prim our prime

From gross ridiculous to pure sublime:

Best brave more life into your shifty years

Than grieve upon years gone on life’s arrears!!!


Time, well known as one vast continuum

Unaltered by its myriad shifting sands

Unfettered, nor caring of decorum

All-giving yet frugal of stern demands

Nor heedful of the whims the heart commands:

Nor waste, nor save for future to redeem

Serves verdict for each trespass to condemn!!


The eves and flows most bards make us believe

To occur in the fleeting Tide of Time

Are sparks of reverie poets receive

As gratis gifts dreamed from the Muse’s chime

To weave the fabric of cadence with rhyme:

Soar free on wings of imagination

Push envelopes of the soul’s creation.


We sojourn through paths with junctions replete

Each path we take demands discard the rest

Never shall that selfsame juncture repeat

Should picked path prove to be, or not the best:

Events are ordained irreversible

Despite beliefs all things are possible.


Famed Ruins that Spenser** waxed loquacious on

Were not by wrath of ruthless time begot

But by natural deterioration

Inherent to the elemental knot

Losing strength, turning to amorphous rot:

Devoid of any witting intentions

Sans charity, sans malicious passions.


How then Khayyam would attributes impute

In none but twins of hundred-one quatrains***

First as bird with wings, next as host confute

Conflicting views that mortify the brains

Ere lost in cadence of furtive refrains:

Hence feign acquit by licensed poetry

Mere mortals’ trespass on posterity!!


© Constancio S. Asumen, Jr, all rights reserved via

*With the headline blurb, “2SuzettePortesSanJose 4TimeUntold” the first seven lines got drafted as a casual rejoinder to a poem and photo entitled “Time Untold” posted on the Facebook page of Suzette Portes San Jose. I worked it up to a full sonnet to foster its own copyright protection. Four more stanzas were since added to the opus, effectively losing its stature/status as a sonnet but may pass as a multiple sonnets.

**Cf., The Ruins of Time at

***Cf., The Rubaiyat (VII, XXII) at


Smoke Rings in My Mind

Posted by C. Stan Asumen, Jr on June 3, 2015 at 10:35 PM Comments comments (3)

Smoke Rings in My Mind

Just like a flame

Love burned brightly, then became

An empty smoke ring that has

Gone with the Wind

~~ Ella Fitzgerald, Gone With The Wind


I started tobacco smoking circa the late spring to early summer of 1966, before I turned twenty-two. How it got started should be a classic case study on the pitfalls and subtle vulnerabilities of the idle soul to all sorts of mischief and misbegotten misadventures.

Having just migrated from a quasi-custodial cocoon of the Foreign Students’ College in Chiba University to a bootstrap Ronin lifeboat in Kyoto University in my second quest for a baccalaureate degree, there was not a single soul in school I could call a friend. My typical day would end with me not having spoken to anybody whosoever.

I used to get back to my dormitory room from school half an hour before the cafeteria served dinner. I would spend the thirty minutes trying to empty out my mind by making cascading clouds of smoke rings with my feet on my desk. My pack of cigarettes was then kept in the desk front drawer.

After one week the cigarettes transferred to my shirt breast pocket. After two weeks I was burning one pack a day. After six months I made it to five packs a day. One year later I discovered the economics of the hobby rather unsustainable. I took up pipe smoking based mainly on economic calculus.

One pack of cigarettes then cost ¥70. At five packs daily burn, my diurnal cigarette expenditures booked at ¥350. I could buy a decent lunch at the Kyoto University cafeteria for ¥250. A can of Momoyama pipe tobacco, costing ¥350 afforded me one week of smoking pleasure. My first pipe which lasted almost one year, I bought for ¥300. I was burning an average of nine oz/week, supplemented with a daily two- to three-cigar ration.

I quit clean on February 1, 1993 not because I wanted to but courtesy of a massive stroke which left me out of commission for thirty days. In fourteen of those the right half of my body was completely paralyzed. I plan to get back to the pipe and cigar just as soon as I can figure out how to hide it from my wife. Alternatively, maybe I shall develop the powers of persuasion to prevent her from pre-emptively dismissing the idea. I’m terrified at the prospect of going to my grave with the ignominious branding of a quitter.

My father, after whom I have been named, has been my only lifetime hero. I never knew him to be a quitter except when he quit tobacco and alcohol to conform to religious norms of the Seventh Day Adventist Church. I am not about to vilify his memory by earning the quitter moniker for myself.

I answer to the short name “Stan,” short for “Constancio.” Other than for it being more than a mouthful to most people, I sometimes demure from using Constancio because of its exalted stately pedigree. It was the name of the father of Constantine the Great, the first Christian Roman emperor after whom Constantinople (now Istanbul) was named. I very much doubt that my grandparents were cognizant of this history when they had my father baptized. Lore had it that my father was first named Demetrio. It was later changed as a countermeasure to his being a sickly child.

But wherefore, at this particular juncture, dwell on these tedious trivialities? My excuse would simply be that each time I’m brought face to face with my own mortality everything seems to assume exaggerated proportions. It propels me to cling on to the most inchoate banalities which seem to make all the difference between life and death. Or as I noted midway in my “Epicurean Laments of Aging Old,”


Brandy and cigars, marks of indulgence

Ne plus ultra, in Hedonist heaven;

Coveted by consorts of decadence,

Mocked by hypocrites at their mirrors preen

Indulgent of their trespasses unseen:

All bets are off on mere appearances

Je ne sais quoi acquits disturbances.


This all reckons back to the incidental factoid, that I am a veritable walking time bomb as I am writing this piece. With my abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) measuring 7.6 cm. in one dimension, I can explode anytime without any warning and there is nothing much I can do about it. Nor is there anything I want to do about it. I definitely don’t want to go to any Emergency Room to be sedated to escape the pain.

As a token of respect and deference for my mother’s pain when she gave birth to me, I don’t want to avoid the pain of checking out of this mortal coil. I probably pass out anyway but at least I would know what shall have hit me. I don’t harbor an iota of a doubt that my indulgence with all forms of nicotine and brandy, with occasional champagne and gin Martini, and perennial dinner Chianti had brought me my legacy of AAA. Given the chance at a Mulligan, I would certainly embrace the same choices, albeit start at them most definitely earlier than I had done the first time around.

My strongest grudge at getting old has been my not finding a viable option to navigate through old age without being compelled to do away with my favorite brand of Napoleon Brandy. I ungrudgingly abandoned the aroma of Manila Coronas and Latakia blend Balkan Sobranie courtesy of my massive stroke on 1-Feb-1993. But to walk away into the sunset without the bouquet of Napoleon Brandy warmly trickling down and pleasantly tickling the esophagus is tantamount to going gentle into that good night without a fight, if not altogether adding insult to injury outright.

I enjoyed drinking through 47 of 71 years or 66.5% of my life time. As I documented in chapter 4 on pp. 72 ~ 73 of my last book, before starting high school, I established my bona fides as a successful practitioner of the craft of harvesting coconut sap (tuba in the Bisaya vernacular) for alcoholic beverage. I did not consider myself a drinking person then, although I imbibed the mandatory gulp to test the taste of my harvest. It was the standard quality assurance practice for the craft.

I was smoking for 27 of 71 years or 38.2% of my life time. Pound for pound, I hazard to guess, my cumulative tobacco intake far exceeded the combined consumption of my two oldest siblings. They started their habit in or before their high school days. I embarked on mine in my second tour as a college student.

I did not only enjoy smoking. I was a smoker with an attitude and was never apologetic for it. Being a pipe smoker became integral to my ego identity. Pipe smoking itself assumed a rationale uniquely all its own. I ventured into mixing my own blends of pipe tobacco. The hobby became an expensive indulgence in a hurry. I started collecting my favorite pipes. I spent my weekends cleaning and flavor-tempering my pipe collection.

As a student, I picked my elective courses in Kyoto University based on which professor allowed smoking in the classroom. This accounted for many a few elective courses cross-matriculated at the Science Department rather than the Engineering Department.

As an Assistant Professor at MSU Marawi, I was the only faculty member who officially allowed smoking in my classroom. First day of class, my first announcement was “smokers at the window side of the room, and a zero-tolerance for solicitation of cigarettes or lights for the duration of a class session.” Violators were excused forthwith.

As a consumer, I was abrasively arrogant about my right to smoke. On one occasion I was waiting at a Japanese restaurant for my dinner date, smoking away like a wood-burning locomotive. A pair of female customers in their early- to mid- twenties walked in and after settling down at the adjacent table requested me to refrain from smoking because it bothered them.

Summoning up all the cool and collected charms I could muster, I serenely informed the pair that the perfume they were wearing did not exactly titillate my whimsy. I would gladly forfeit the use of my pipe for the evening if they would go and shower off the perfume they were wearing. They opted to walk out of the establishment without dinner.

Regardless of how the eventual trajectory of the aneurysm might leverage the onset of my final demise, let the record show that whatever its genesis might have been, I zealously treasured every moment of indulgence which might have fostered its existence, and jealously resented every event which deprived me thereof. The point is, I lived life to the fullest vent on getting the most of what circumstances allowed, without being miserable about it.

My attitude could be reckoned back to the admonition of the drinking Persian sage of antiquity in the below quatrains:


Some for the Glories of This World; and some

Sigh for the Prophet's Paradise to come;

Ah, take the Cash, and let the Credit go,

Nor heed the rumble of a distant Drum!


Yet Ah, that Spring should vanish with the Rose!

That Youth's sweet-scented manuscript should close!

The Nightingale that in the branches sang,

Ah, whence, and whither flown again, who knows!


Or to bring the metaphor, closer to earth, to the matter at hand, and coeval with the narrated events:

Oh! why do they seem to picture a dream above

Then why do they fade my phantom parade of love?

Where do they end, the smoke rings I send on high?

Where are they hurled

When they've kissed the world goodbye!

~~ Mills BrothersSmoke Rings


Chapter 5 ~> No Longer A Church-Going Christian

Posted by C. Stan Asumen, Jr on June 14, 2014 at 5:15 PM Comments comments (0)


There was the Door to which I found no Key;

There was the Veil through which I might not see:

Some little talk awhile of Me and Thee

There was—and then no more of Thee and Me.

Omar Khayyam, The Rubaiyat

In an earlier article I inadvertently volunteered the information that “I am no longer a church-going Christian.” Before some family and friends would inquire on what exactly did I mean by the ‘confession’, or maybe just for my own edification, I deem it necessary to elaborate on that state of affairs to the best that my selective memory can muster.

Suffice to say, memory is, of necessity invariably selective. As an organism with instincts for self-preservation, we only retain what serves to reinforce the prolongation if not perpetuation of existential well-being. No conspiracy theory here. It is just how the cookie crumbles. No grandiose designs or sophisticated schemes on how life is supposed to unfold. For which a bit of background is in order.

The Bucolic Beginnings

I grew up in a small farming/fishing village of fewer than a hundred households, of mostly relatives with the exception of two or three families. Close family ties were so pervasive one had to reach out to the adjacent town to get married. In terms of societal and civic activity, it would compare most appropriately with the fictional village of Anatevka in Fiddler on the Roof, but for three qualifications that need to be stressed. It was a catholic community; it was a farming village by the sea; and it definitely was not fictional.

These first two attributes were more important than one would ordinarily suspect. Firstly, my father converted a sizable tract of homestead virgin forest into a coconut plantation by spear-fishing at night and using the night’s catch to hire help during the day to work the farm. This required proximity to the sea to be remotely practicable. Having grown up ‘by the sea’ had a definite indelible influence on my psyche, so much so that I have not lived more than an hour’s trip to the sea my entire life. To a boy, the sea always presented the promise of infinite possibilities. By contrast, farm work invariably gave me the feeling of being hopelessly and helplessly grounded, with no prospect of liberation from the clutches of the soil and the vagaries of the weather.

Secondly, the catholic aspect of it was important in the sense that mother was a devout catholic and father was a nominal practitioner. As a pre-school boy I would go to town with mother and father and I would end up spending the Sunday afternoon with father at the town cockpit. (Then, cockfighting was one of the most popular pastimes in the old country, and father was one of the most acclaimed accomplished minder of fighting roosters in the town.) Mother would invariably spend the Sunday afternoon in church.

Nevertheless, I grew up a devout catholic since around third grade, circa the time when I went through catechism leading to my first communion, up through sophomore high school. Being devout meant as early as a third grader, I was one of two boys in town who could lead the novena, and frequently did so in public without embarrassment or reservation, notwithstanding that the chore was traditionally assigned to girls. The other boy was my brother, two years and eight months older than me. The point is, I took religion rather seriously starting quite early on. Going to church was a weekly ritual until my high school sophomore year.

The Burden of Conscience

Around that time, they stopped conducting the catholic mass in Latin. The veil of mysticism was lifted off the mass as a ritual. When I started to understand what was said and done in church, I began to gradually realize that my main reason for being in church was to get close to Evangeline, the prettiest damsel and most graceful dancer in campus, the girl I courted with the proverbial passion of first love. Somehow the realization made me extremely uncomfortable. Increasingly, the burden of inventing stories for the priest at confessional, so I could take the Sunday communion, became toilsome and intolerable. Sans provocation, my conscience started to kick in.

At the end of my sophomore year I was sent to represent my school at a national conference of students who were aspiring to pursue farming for a lifetime vocation. As a congratulatory gift, one of my maternal uncles, a practicing Seventh Day Adventist (SDA), gave me a bible. I spent a good chunk of my third year in high school reading that bible, which was one of the few books I had read cover to cover more than once. I may not be that much the wiser for the experience, but that was the first year of my not being a church-going Christian.

This was the first introspection phase of my religious meanderings. The days spent in the wilderness, so to speak. Or to borrow the brilliant formulation of Omar Khayyam,


I sent my Soul through the Invisible,

Some letter of that After-life to spell:

And by and by my Soul return'd to me,

And answer'd "I Myself am Heav'n and Hell:"

Having quit following her to church and miserably failing to learn the tango, or any dancing skills for that matter, I of course began to drift apart from Evangeline, the love of my life. But my love affair with the bible persisted through my final year of high school. It eventually led me back to church. During the first two and one-half years of college, I found myself a guest member of an SDA congregation right in the heart of Marawi, the largest Muslim city in the country.

The congregation consisted exactly of four resident families, with two to six members to a family, and four to five students from my newly opened university, as guest members. The fifth member of our group went to church rather irregularly. The four of us, more often than not, walked the five to six kilometers separating the campus from the city, both ways every Saturday regardless of the weather. There were times when we got an occasional break from the motor pool personnel and were able to hitch a ride, but they were too few and far between.

The congregation elder was a medical doctor and we held the worship services at the waiting room of his clinic. I was positive that he was not a pastor or an ordained minister because we never addressed him as such. Although I did not quite have a chance at a one-on-one dialogue with him, (I was only a taciturn college kid, he was the accomplished elder of the bunch) I held him in high regard and respect.

The congregation on the whole had a very congenial informal ambiance. The resident families took turns hosting us, the student guest members, for lunch each Saturday. I was content and comfortable with my new identity as an SDA congregant. I even managed to leverage my religious entitlement to have ROTC deferred for two semesters because a Saturday drill violated the SDA Sabbath protocol. Ditto with any special examinations, like the competency classification tests (which landed me into remedial English course) scheduled for a Saturday: we were allowed to take them some other time.

During this period, I however admitted to cringing with consternation and resentment every time I heard somebody remarked that I was a person who could be trusted because I went to church every week. That was, to my mind, the cliché case of putting the cart before the horse. To date I hold the deep seated conviction that I went to church on a regular basis because I was a decent person, mainly due to my upbringing. To formulate it any other way would be an affront to the honor and achievements of my parents, the most monumental of them I consider to be the success of their children.

I was blessed with loving and caring parents who inculcated into my consciousness an appreciation of the notion of the good, the beautiful and the true, along with the value of hard work and the mental habit to examine the merits of any proposition that needed to be acted upon or taken as gospel.

This was seriously important because my parents got married when they were in grammar school. Father was nineteen just on the verge of being promoted to seventh grade. Mother was sixteen, still in the sixth grade. Both of them were scions of farming and fishing families. Their moral and spiritual moorings essentially consisted of the goodness of their hearts and the desire to do what was right, tempered by the rigors of the elements associated with farming and fishing life.

It was against the backdrop of these introspections (my second over the last five years) that I was caught off guard by a sermon. The occasion was the Saturday following the second anniversary of Marilyn Monroe’s death. The congregation elder chose the life and death of the iconic celebrity as the subject of his sermon. His thesis was that no amount of glamour, glitter, wealth and fame could work to your benefit if you lived a life of sin. The thesis as such was fine. But in the process of expounding on it, he proceeded to berate her judgment and vilify her character and probe into every conceivable aspect of her memory and legacy to prove his point. In his passionate eloquence he managed to impute the most negative nuance to every facet of her life.

Somehow this violated every fabric of decency that was planted in my soul by my parents. It took every fiber of self-restraint for me not to walk out of the service right then and there. From my farm boy upbringing one just should not speak ill of the dead. I could not remember being taught the specific reason for the proscription, but I hastened to guess: that it was because the dead was inherently incapable of defending itself. Or if you subscribed to the wisdom of Shakespeare’s formulation that

“The evil that men do lives after them;

The good is oft interred with their bones;”

the evil deeds have ample chance to speak for themselves. Therefore it became incumbent upon common decency to highlight the good deeds, especially when they were buried with the carcass. Thus the practice of delivering a eulogy at a funeral has become a well established protocol of decency.

What I even found more outrageous was the fact that no other person seemed to have found the sermon objectionable. It might of course have been the case that everybody was just as taciturn and reserved as I was then. Be that as it may, that was the last time I attended a church service as a congregant. Since nobody asked me why I stopped going to church, I did not think I needed to come up with an explanation, till now.

I still go to church on special occasions to count my blessings, more than to worship God. I do it mainly as a celebrant than as a supplicant; more in the spirit which Alexander Pope alluded to in An Essay on Criticism:

In the bright Muse tho' thousand charms conspire,

Her voice is all these tuneful fools admire;

Who haunt Parnassus but to please their ear,

Not mend their minds; as some to church repair,

Not for the doctrine, but the music there.


I am more of a God-loving soul than a God-fearing soul. My God is more kind and compassionate than jealous and wrathful. I just had earlier arrived at the conclusion that to commune with my Maker is too personal and too important a matter to be outsourced or to be consigned to any mode of mediation whatever, for its proper and forthright fulfillment and unfettered accomplishment.



Flirting with Misadventures (Escapades of an Exotic Life)

Posted by C. Stan Asumen, Jr on September 8, 2011 at 9:50 AM Comments comments (1)

Teaser passages from

Flirting with Misadventures (Escapades of an Exotic Life)

pages 78 – 79 (middle of chapter 4)


As the outer rim of the sun deigned to caress with a kiss the majestic top of the purple headed mountains receding in the horizon behind, as if at a flip of a toggle switch, a foreboding calm enveloped the entire Creation, reminiscent of the Rhyme sang by the Ancient Mariner of Coleridgean fame. We had to deploy oar and paddle to reach our destination. No sooner had we dropped anchor, than materialized a rapidly thickening ominous dark clouds, threateningly pregnant with mischief, imbued with the purplish hue of dark molasses by the lingering relics of the setting sun, to engulf the seaward eastern hemisphere with the unbridled fatalism of the Omar Khayyam quatrain:



And that inverted Bowl they call the Sky,

Whereunder crawling coop'd we live and die,

Lift not your hands to It for help—for It

As impotently moves as you or I.


When the retiring Helios completed its surrender to the bowels of night, the sea which theretofore was as smooth as a cold vat of oil in a frigid Siberian kitchen began to stir with increasing hints of bubbles bursting out to the surface. It seemed the bowels of the sea were threatening to froth away to an impending boil. Forthwith, total darkness reigned supreme. The only remaining source of light came from the silver sheen ever fleetingly flashed by the persistently and boldly growing sneer of the awakening depths. The not too gentle breeze soon brought with it a wolfish howl heralding the gloom of oncoming doom.


{from the Author’s Foreword & introduction [reproduced in part on the back cover]}

The material represents a due diligence attempt to chronicle, via a series of seemingly random and incidental episodes narrated in the first-person, the evolutionary journey of my consciousness from the edge of the wilds of Mindanao* (Philippines) to the rough and tumble of the streets of Manhattan (New York City), with all the tedious yet not the least thrilling detours in-between. Random in the sense that I had to single out and focus on specific and discrete pivotal decision points which ushered in a definitely recognizable qualitative change in my perception of my unique attributes as an individual, on leaving such decision bifurcations.

. . .

In a broader context the three parts of the book represent three distinct non-sequential evolutionary phases of my consciousness. The Narratives represent the aspirational age of ambition, when the drive to transcend . . . reigned supreme. The Poetry I deem to represent the seemingly unquenchable deliberative age of simultaneous inspiration, enlightenment, and illusion. It was at this stage that you pushed the envelope of the imagination in quest for a reason to go on, to latch on to a sustainable justification for being.

The Essays represent the age of rational resignation, or better yet, resigned rationalization, when you give in to the impulsive reflex to explain away the developments which you know affect your physical and spiritual well-being but they unfold far beyond your sphere of influence. You are effectively out of the arena. Your mission is no longer to do or die but simply to reason why, as an inconsequential observer of, to paraphrase Robert F. Kennedy, both the “things that are” then ask why, and the “things that are not” then ask why not?


The cover art work submitted to the publisher (FwMC47 below):




About the Cover: Conceptually designed by the author, the cover is a collage photo-shopped by Louis Marek Tobar, based on a photograph of an original reproduction ( of the Satire of the Debauched Revelers, oil on wood painting by Jheronymusvan Aken (Hieronymus Bosch) [Musee du Louvre, Paris, (c.1490-1500)] and a photograph reproduction, furnished by the artist herself, of an original oil-on-canvass portrait of the author by Ziba Bastani (1971). It depicts the recognized transcendental nature whereby any consciousness is aware of itself, while being simultaneously oblivious of both the gravity and the dire implications, respecting its well-being, uniquely imposed by ambient circumstances.


Copyright © 2011 by Constancio Sulapas Asumen

First Edition – August 2011

Published by:


Suite 300 — 777 Fort Street

Victoria, BC, Canada V8W 1G9

For information on bulk orders contact:

[email protected] or fax 1-888-376-7026

Distributed to the trade by The Ingram Book Company.

A Contribution to An Inquiry into the Nature (and Understanding) of Knowledge

Posted by C. Stan Asumen, Jr on February 7, 2011 at 5:56 PM Comments comments (3)

A Contribution to An Inquiry into the Nature (and Understanding) of Knowledge

Preface to the Internet Edition

Every intellectual endeavor is a work-in-progress, to the extent that the intellect continues to function. This stems from the intricate feedback mechanism inherent to the organic circuitry of the mind. This truism applies with absolute certainty to this opus.

While I consider the piece in its first stage of completion, because of the scope of the subject, I intend to revisit it for occasional revisions. I therefore enjoin the more proactive segments of the reading public to volunteer some comments, good, bad, helpful, harmful, indifferent, or otherwise.

I have absolute faith in my doubts, and I believe in the inherent perfectibility of the imperfect. Every aspect of my feedback circuitry most definitely falls in that genre. It is an integral part of my farm boy upbringing to constantly endeavor to assimilate any feedback, to enhance my chances at survival.

It probably serves to emphasize that every part of the work is ?in progress,? including even this ?Preface.? That is to say, subject to modifications depending on the author?s whims and maybe incidental sparks of inspiration and/or additional materials that may come to my attention, and be deemed relevant.

It is in this spirit that I beg your indulgence and enjoin you to occasionally check for updated versions of the article.

Live long and prosper and enjoy the ride, for to paraphrase Omar Khayyam (c.1038-1123), and be internet adaptive,


The Clicking Keyboard writes; and, having writ,

Clicks on: nor all your Piety nor Wit

Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,

Nor all your Tears wash out a Word of it.

With a song in my heart: regards & carpe diem,

Constancio S. Asumen. Jr.

Table of Contents

Preface 1

Table of Contents 2

I. Prolegomenon: Preliminary Escapades 3

I.1 Personal Dimension 3

I.2 Professional and Political Conjectures 6

II. Fundamental Considerations 8

II.1 Elements of Knowledge 9

II.2 Three Types of Knowledge 10

II.2.1 Recursive or Operational Knowledge 12

II.2.2 Descriptive or Attributional Knowledge 12

II.2.3 Discursive or Propositional Knowledge 14

III. The Architecture of Inquiry 17

III.1 Philosophical Inquiry 18

III.2 Scientific Inquiry 20

IV. Practical Implications 22

IV.1 On Antrophogenic Global Warming 23

IV.2 On Darwinian Theory of Evolution 26

V. Concluding Observations 31

VI. Bibliography: Itemizing Primary Sources 33

VII. Suggested Keywords 40

I. Prolegomenon: Preliminary Escapades

?. . . as soon as we think that we correctly perceive something, we are spontaneously convinced that it is true. . . . if . . . it is impossible for us ever to have any reason for doubting what we are convinced of, then there are no further questions for us to ask: we have everything that we could reasonably want. . . .?

-- Rene Descartes, (as quoted by L. Newman)

I propose to start with the purely subjective observation that for anything that I consciously decide to do, there is an associated purpose and a concomitant motive which propel me to do it. If this sounds pompous and outlandish, being in the subjective realm, I can nevertheless claim it to be indisputably true.

I.1 Personal Dimension

For reasons I hope will very shortly become self-evident, by way of an introduction I deem it appropriate to reproduce in its entirety, grammar mistakes included, my email to Joan Swirsky which was composed and sent Tuesday, 2-Mar-2010 (9:26am EST, emphasis added):


I missed you. You are one of the unique rare souls generous enough to indulge my whimsy. I pray all is well with you, and I mean every aspect of your being.

My February was consumed in a medical sabbatical. I spent the first half being aware that something was not right with my body but could not quite figure out what. I landed in the ER on the 15th with a TIA (transient ischemic attack), a.k.a. mini-stroke. I got discharged on the 18th with Cobalt-Chromium stents on all four of my cardiac-arterial grafts. I?m back at my computer to recuperate. I submitted my latest article to Frank yesterday. Frank said it?s queued for tomorrow?s posting. I suspected something might be amiss when you did not reply to my earlier mail.

Today I embark on an ambitious project which I labeled ?Inquiry into the Nature (and Understanding) of Knowledge.? It is provoked by my umbrage at the Oval Office spearheading the marketing and funding of Global Warming initiatives despite the fraudulent nature of the knowledge behind the GW narrative.

This about covers everything. Here?s hoping I hear from you real soon.

Live long and prosper,


With a song in my heart: regards & carpe diem,

Constancio S. Asumen. Jr.

Being connected makes all the difference!

Admittedly, this may fall into what I elsewhere dubbed, albeit in a different context, ?The Fallacy of Exhibitionism.? I consider Joan to be my spiritual Rabbi and inspiration in the realm of authoring. She has been very generous and critically forthright with her opinions. How we got connected is a narrative that deserves, nay, demands to be told. It is instructive of the nature of communication in the age of the internet. It can be revealing of the internet?s pitfalls and immeasurable benefits.

The quasi-saga started on the night of Sunday, 25-Oct-2009. Coming home from work, I heard on the radio a replay of an interview with then candidate Obama pompously deploring the U.S. Constitution as a proscriptive constraint on governance rather than a prescriptive sanction for governance. This was rudely and inadvertently cut off when I parked on the driveway. I promptly proceeded to Google-search for the text string ?Obama, U.S. Constitution.?

The first item in the hits list returned by my search propelled me to send the following email:

Dear Ms. Swirsky,

I stumbled onto your column when I googled for the keywords ?Obama, US Constitution?.

You are exactly the kind of columnist/journalist/author we need more of in the U.S. I regret that I did not stumble onto your work sooner.

If you have some kind of a mailing list for your articles, kindly include my email address in it.

I thank you very much.

With a song in my heart: regards & carpe diem,

Constancio S. Asumen. Jr.

Being connected makes all the difference!

Since then the volume of our correspondence through four hours ago (9:52 am EST) tallied 36 in my inbox and 63 in the sent folder. In range of subject matter and wealth of substance, this is rivaled only by my correspondence with a graduate school colleague, through the Spring of 1973, who wrote me last on 1-Feb-2010. She is the only acquaintance from my college days who keeps me posted albeit on a less than regular basis.

Joan and I seemed to have been yapping away in barely three months (February ?10 being a hiatus) as if we have known each other forever. She has that uncanny effect of bringing out in me what she dubbed ?a wealth of memories screaming to be told.? What I find piquantly remarkable is the near-certainty that she would not recognize me from a hole in the wall if by a confluence of circumstances, we bumped into each other wherever people bump into each other these days.

{Any one of the following locations could be my favored venue for such a pleasant accident: the Intermission cocktail lounge at the New York Metropolitan Opera House, ditto the Carnegie Hall, the 18th Green grandstands at Augusta National during the Masters, or St. Andrews Old and Ancient during the British Open, ditto the Pebble Beach Golf and Country Club during the U.S. Open. I don?t have the vaguest idea what genre of venues Joan may happen into, and there is no point speculating about them. There is no such thing as speculative knowledge.}

Joan, having posted her facial likeness on her website, I most definitely have a slight advantage as far as such a scenario goes. I would not bet the mortgage on it, though. Years of trying to stay under the radar somehow rendered my facial recognition skills somewhat jaded.

Herein lies the relevance of this quasi-saga to the project at hand: should such a fortuitous event come to pass, the only things we may know about each other are those which are true of who each one of us is. What we may not know about each other is for the time being essentially unknowable. To know that you don?t know does not constitute any kind of knowledge, as it does not make you know what you don?t know. At best, it may only make you want to know what you don?t know.

I.2 Professional and Political Conjectures

As I write, I will never know the content of the conversation that might ensue from such an encounter. Yet I?m certain I would find it, to paraphrase Spock, one of my all time favorite movie characters, fascinating to eavesdrop on. For reasons I cannot explain, and I hope she would not take offense at, I confess that contemplating on the above scenario in part inspired me to embark upon this project.

Finally, it behooves to touch on the political angle to my motivation. For this I invoke Patrick J. Buchanan?s conclusions, quoting H.L. Mencken, to a recent column on ?Global Warming? and ?Theory of Evolution? with the following indictment of the powers that be, especially the purveyors of information:

"The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed -- and hence clamorous to be led to safety -- by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary."

Both Darwinian Theory and moderate-period global temperature fluctuations were topics covered by An Introduction to Historical Geology, a course I used to teach to college juniors. Professional decorum compels me to think that an inquiry into the nature of knowledge with due diligence may help, in however minor way, exterminate those hideous hobgoblins, from the national polity.

I am acutely aware that ideologues in the corridors of power, e.g., the Oval Office, both houses of Congress, the ?main stream media,? etc., have their designs to the contrary. Precisely for this same reason, it is essential that a wider and larger segment of the national polity be made aware that the paradigm these hoaxters are committed to perpetrate on the nation is abominable to a more enlightened populace. This article is my attempt at a modest contribution to such an urgently needed enlightenment.

II. Fundamental Considerations

Let me stipulate as a primary axiom that the ultimate purpose of human knowledge is the perpetuation of the human species. This is one of three equally fundamental axioms I adhere to as the basis of this inquiry. What you know does not count for much of anything if you end up being extinct, as did the dinosaurs of geologic antiquity.

It is necessary to postulate further, as a starting point, that the physics of the universe mandates that everything exists in space and time. Moreover, there are two intertwining and interacting realms of existence, namely the material and the conceptual. As a corollary, both space and time being themselves concepts, the material realm is necessarily subsumed by the conceptual realm. This is the main basis for ?mind over matter? to be axiomatic.

If idea is primary, how do you initiate an idea? Or the other side of the same question, how do you prevent ideas from being formed in your mind? How, when, and where did my knowledge of anything begin? I assert, contend and maintain that it began with my Will to know.

At the instant of conception, i.e., when the sperm unites with the ovum, the human soul is endowed by Divine Providence with the Will as the ?essence of the soul,? or the ?Divine spark of life.? This is another one of my three axioms.

To put it another way: It is beyond the need of a proof that I have a soul. I just know that I have one. Since I cannot locate in time or space when and where I started having a soul, the moment of conception is as good a beginning as any. Better yet, it is the only beginning I can conceivably point to with more than just a significant degree of certainty. I am absolutely sure of it.

The immediate necessary consequence to my second axiom is that any instance of indecision is the most grievous sin you can ever commit. A forfeiture of your Will, is a betrayal of your soul, and an affront to Divine Providence.

II.1 Elements of Knowledge

"To conceive of knowledge as a collection of information seems to rob the concept of all of its life... Knowledge resides in the user and not in the collection. It is how the user reacts to a collection of information that matters." ??--Churchman (1971, p. 10)

[as quoted by Dr. Yogesh Malhotra, BRINT Institute,]

Nothing exists in isolation. This is the third (not in order of importance but in order of reference) of the three axioms alluded to earlier. That is, existence, in and of itself presupposes a relationship. Knowledge may be construed as the state or condition of comprehension of this relationship, rather than just of the existent, by a process of knowing.

For any notion of knowledge to be valid and viable, the process of knowing requires at least three necessary elements: first, the existence of the one that knows, aka, the knower, the sentient observer or subject; second that which needs to be known, aka the object of knowledge needs to be addressable by the subject; third the attribute of translatability of the knowledge thus established has to be verifiable.

This architecture is congruent with what seems to be ubiquitous in the literature, such as that laid out by Jonathan Dolhenty as follows (emphasis omitted):

?There are three elements which enter into knowledge:

? (1) the knowing subject,

? (2) the known object, and

? (3) the mental act of knowing, which is called cognition.

. . .

?The object of knowledge is anything and everything that is, or becomes, or can be, known by man. The objects of man's knowledge are himself, conscious states of his self, and also realities other than himself. Every act of knowledge must be knowledge of something and refer to some object.?

I differ with Dolhenty in two significant ways. The entity of my object of knowledge is focused on the relationships concomitant to the existent?s existence rather than the existent itself. Second, the element of translatability as a condition to the establishment of knowledge is a requirement I claim to be my own contribution, although it arguably appears to somehow follow from expositions on ?justified true belief? (M. Steup) analysis of knowledge, more so than from Bertrand Russell?s (1926) definition of knowledge.

I further stipulate that when it comes to sentient being, I mean human beings. When it comes to thinking, and kindred activities, I am unapologetically anthropocentric. I cannot care less what the hen ?thinks? or ?feels? about it when I consume a soft boiled egg. My concern is primarily with human knowledge.

II.2 Three Types of Knowledge

For pedagogical purposes, I recognize and propose to deal with three basic species or types of knowledge , to wit: discursive or propositional, descriptive or attributional, and recursive or operational. This is not to claim that the list is exhaustive. It is merely to concede that the limits of my understanding recognize these three types to be relevant to the mission of prevailing over the processes and phenomena, encountered in both nature and society, that the mind needs to muster to control, and hence both beneficially and beneficiently, utilize its environment.

I acknowledge a somewhat radical departure from the classical formulation of Spinoza?s three kinds of knowledge, namely:

knowledge of the first kind is based on sense experience and imagination;

knowledge of the second kind is based on reason or understanding;

knowledge of the third kind, which "proceeds [directly] from an adequate idea of the formal essence of certain attributes of God to an adequate knowledge of the essence of things."

In my scheme of things, imagination does not formally belong in the realm of knowledge. While imagination may encourage and hasten the acquisition or augmentation of knowledge, it cannot be construed as an integral part of knowledge, per se. Likewise, his third kind of knowledge rather belongs in the rubric of Divine enlightenment or revelation, more in the genre of inspiration.

{Parenthetically, I deem it useful to emphasize in passing, that the fanatical acolytes of Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW) in politics and academia, notably including President Obama and his cohorts, and some friends of mine who I otherwise respect, are the classic victims of the trap laid out by Spinoza.

{Wittingly or unwittingly, they exploit the inherently ambiguous and overlapping boundary between knowledge and imagination to promote the sinister AGW agenda with the view of enhancing the benefits they may derive therefrom. For Obama and other politicians it is economic and political leverage to justify taxation. For the academic types it is the continued funding of research or teaching projects, in progress or being proposed.}

Let us examine each one of these types, with the view of enabling us to vary the approach of dealing with each type to better equip our endeavors with the tools to properly and adequately promote our ability to deploy it to serve the mission of knowledge as noted above, namely, the perpetuation of the human species.

II.2.1 Recursive or Operational Knowledge

Of the three species, the third, namely operational knowledge is the simplest kind to prove and establish. I therefore find it expedient to deal with it first. This is exemplified by ?how to do things,? kind of knowledge, where the proverbial ?the proof is in the pudding? mantra is particularly applicable.

The know-how used is valid if and only if the process yields the intended and expected results. As with every type of knowledge, the degree of difficulty of the proof is proportional to the degree of complexity of the object.

Thus, for instance, how to prepare a soft-boiled egg depends on what market grade of eggs you are using and who is the intended consumer of the dish. I prefer ?barely comfortably peelable? while Jack Lemmon?s Felix Unger prefers ?spoonable.? For a Rhode Island White Leghorn medium grade sized egg, Felix?s optimally requires three-and-a-quarter minutes in boiling water; mine is best done in four-and-a-half minutes.

On the other hand, how to package explosives for remote detonation would require a more intricate construction and commensurate attention to detail. Obviously, in comparison, building the superconducting super collider particle accelerator entails an almost immeasurable degree of complexity.

II.2.2 Descriptive or Attributional Knowledge

Any attempt or effort to codify the attributes of an existent such that it acquires enough coherence to be communicated to another subject or knower, falls in the rubric of establishing attributional knowledge. This type encompasses descriptions of places, people, events, phenomena and imminently knowable objects, etc. These include both tangible (matters, events and places) and intangible objects such as the narrative of a dream episode.

The declarative statement, ?my daughter is blonde and she has blue eyes? represents a good example of this type of knowledge. Made to a predominantly Scandinavian or Eastern European audience, it most probably may elicit a shrug of the shoulders or a ?big deal!? in response. But made to an Oriental or Asian audience, as happens to be my ethnicity, it might elicit a ?how did you manage to do that?? dismissive disbelief kind of response.

In either case, colors of the hair and the eyes being standard features of a person?s likeness traditionally employed for personal identification chores, the audience need not delve into the intricacies of light wave mechanics or the physics of refraction of light to confirm or deny the truth or falsity of the statement. The use of commonplace metrics would suffice to prove the verity of the statement.

The point being, that the ease or difficulty with which knowledge can be established primarily depends on the credulity or gullibility of the recipient public or audience, and the complexity of the knowledge being proved and probed into. Thus the statement ?the earth is round,? to be conclusively proved, needed the circumnavigation of the globe to take hold over the proclivities of the ?flat earth society.? By contrast, the statement ?the sky is blue? needs only the ability of the audience to look up and the vagaries of the weather to get confirmed, or otherwise nullified.

A dream episode is a more cumbersome phenomenon to deal with. That dreams do occur has been chronicled since biblical antiquity. By a dream episode I refer to the sequence of events, scenes and interactions that unfolds while the subject is in a state of sleep which can be recalled in a coherent gestalt after waking up. The subject is involved either as an active participant to the event scenario or as a passive outside spectator.

Regardless, the narrative of the episode falls under descriptive knowledge. This stems from the dictum of Descartes? that knowledge emanates from the thinking subjective self. Both the interpretation of the dream and the cause that triggers the episode falls in the rubric of propositional knowledge, as they involve looking into the intricacies of physical activities of the brain and the dynamics of mental functionalities.

II.2.3 Discursive or Propositional Knowledge

This is by far the most complex of the three types of knowledge. As already noted above, the realm of dreams, their analysis and interpretation, appropriately belongs to this type of knowledge. The realm of poetry, wherever and whenever it crosses the threshold of pure imagination, and becomes knowledge, most definitely falls in this category.

The case of poetry is uniquely instructive. It helps to be cognizant of the following meticulous and astute formulation by Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792-1822),

?A man, to be greatly good, must imagine intensely and comprehensively; . . . the pains and pleasure of his species must become his own. . . . Poetry enlarges the circumference of the imagination by replenishing it with thoughts of ever new delight, which have the power of attracting and assimilating to their own nature all other thoughts, . . . Poetry strengthens the faculty which is the organ of the moral nature of man, . . .?

At such juncture poetry crosses the threshold of pure imagination into the realm of knowledge, translatable and susceptible of being understood and embraced by another subject, with the requisite sublime faculties, other than the creator of the poetry in question.

By way of an Illustration, I propose to use a first-hand experience which pertains to what I dubbed the Schumann-Spinoza Sonnets. This nomenclature stems from the historical fact that the first four sonnets in the series were written during a period, circa Sep-1980, when for an extended while, I was engrossed on Spinoza?s Ethics, while the Complete Symphonies of Robert Schumann would be serially playing full blast in the background.

I was struggling with a particular passage in Spinoza?s Ethics when like a clap of thunder a passage of Schumann?s ?Spring? Symphony seemed to have completely submerged the universe. At that specific instant, I knew I completely understood what Spinoza meant and I had to take a break to capture the moment.

I proceeded to take my Saturday afternoon constitutional which consisted of a leisurely jog to the hilltop of nearby Fort Tryon Park, practically next door to my dwelling. To my complete surprise, a neighborhood art exhibition was in progress. A painting, labeled ?The Storm,? in one of the booths caught my attention and I ended up staring at it for well over an hour until the artist, Jacqui, accosted me to inquire if something was wrong.

I politely begged my apologies for my utter consternation and went home and minted all four sonnets on my portable Olivetti in one setting. I went back to the park the next day and handed a copy of the sonnets to Jacqui. I never know what she did with them. I have not seen nor heard from her since.

It really never mattered whether or not she had read them. In my excitement, I took a copy of the sonnets to work the following Monday and showed them to a colleague who politely expressed his appreciation. But it is important to me that I know how they were written, including the sequence of events that preceded it. The experience was quite exquisitely exhilarating. Although I get only occasional comments on them, the very existence of the sonnets has become part of my personal knowledge.

Obviously, propositional knowledge as a type, encompasses a plethora of all sorts of scientific endeavors, notably mathematics and the natural sciences. It is in this area that a vigorously rigorous feedback mechanism is essential to thoroughly utilize previously proved other branches of knowledge to further enhance a particular branch of knowledge under consideration.

Thus, mathematics is deployed to lend both elegance and rigor to formulations in physics, and vice versa. Biophysics had emerged into existence via a judicious and simultaneous eclectic deployment of mathematics, physics, biology, chemistry, computer science, and other kindred disciplines. Similarly, geology utilizes the basics of biology, chemistry, mathematics, and physics, etc.

III. The Architecture of Inquiry

The pursuit of truth through disquisition may arguably be traced back to the historical person of Socrates (469-399), BC. He is credited with the formulation that virtue is knowledge and knowledge is virtue, and that

?. . . truth needs to be pursued by modifying one's position through questioning and conflict with opposing ideas. . . .?

In short, he is the best known pioneer of intellectual inquiry. The dialectical method which was later developed into a framework of philosophical thought by the Hegelians from Hegel himself, to Karl Marx and the modern day materialists may be construed as the intellectual brainchild of Socrates.

The [Socratic] method includes the following components:

? interrogating a range of questions regarding a pivotal issue

? providing answers to these questions

? defending certain points of view

? the ideal method to achieve triumph is that if the opponent asserts something opposite to his own statement, then this is an evidence that the enquirer is correct

Christopher Phillips, writing in Socrates Caf? for the Society of Philosophical Inquiry, delineates the disquisitional methodology of Socratis as follows:

What distinguishes the Socratic method from mere nonsystematic inquiry is the sustained attempt to explore the ramifications of certain opinions and then offer compelling objections and alternatives. This scrupulous and exhaustive form of inquiry in many ways resembles the scientific method. But unlike Socratic inquiry, scientific inquiry would often lead us to believe that whatever is not measurable cannot be investigated. This "belief" fails to address such paramount human concerns as sorrow and joy and suffering and love.

A typical college syllabus on the subject of Inquiry is described by K. P. Mohanan to contain something like,

?. . . equipping students with the ability to:

? understand various modes of inquiry and apply them to a range of issues and ideas;

? examine ways in which knowledge is constructed;

? critically evaluate arguments and opinions;

? engage in academic writing and research; and

? effectively articulate and defend their views orally.?

III.1 Philosophical Inquiry

For pedagogical purposes I prefer to refer to the exquisite expositions by James F. Courtney, David T. Croasdell, and David B. Paradice, all of Texas A&M University ([email protected]&MU), on ?Inquiring Organizations.? They attempted and rather successfully managed to elegantly recast

?. . . the theories of knowledge of philosophers Leibniz, Locke, Kant, Hegel and Singer ?in the language and design of inquiring systems,? providing ?a description of how learning can be designed, and how the design can be justified.? Reflections on creating knowledge are shaped and interpreted in the context of designing inquiring systems.?

Having been brought up in the philosophical ambiance of the Yin and Yang that permeates Oriental culture, the theories of knowledge associated with Kant and Hegel readily resonates with my mental and emotional proclivities. For this reason I choose to further focus my attention on the heuristics associated with the philosophical systems of Kant and Hegel as shown in the table below (modified from [email protected]&MU):

Elements /Model Kant Hegel

Input Some empirical observation Some empirical observation

Given Space-time Framework Theories Theories

Process Construct models from theories Construct theses, antithesis

Interpret data, Choose best model Dialectic

Output Fact Nets


Validation Fit between data and model Objective Observer


As the authors of ?Inquiring Organizations? meticulously noted,

?The models of inquiry, being systems, have inputs, processes, and outputs. The output of an inquiring system is "true" knowledge, or at least knowledge that is believed not to be false. One of the most distinctive features of inquiring systems design is the inclusion of elaborate mechanisms for "guaranteeing" that only "valid" knowledge is produced. . . .?

It can hardly be overemphasized that the validated output of the inquiry is further utilized as a feedback input for further iterations of the inquiry process, with commensurate adjustments on the models or dialectical constructs, as deemed appropriate by the subject. It is this feedback mechanism which when properly nurtured to flourish, guarantees the subsequent growth, progress, and aggrandizement of knowledge.

This feedback loop neglected, would ensure the reign of lethargy and ignorance, which almost for certain leads on to decadence and societal dyslexia. For as Shakespeare once deliciously put it,

There is a tide in the affairs of men,

Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune;

Omitted, all the voyage of their life

Is bound in shallows and in miseries. . . .

III.2 Scientific Inquiry

?. . . No methods exist to guarantee truth. Nonetheless, science, as it has developed over the centuries, has improved its methods. As the philosopher of science Dudley Shapere (1984) puts it: we learn how to learn as we learn.?

-- Lindley Darden, Ph.D.

Protecting and upholding the integrity of the method has always been the hallmark of scientific inquiry. The historical record is replete with instances of scientists correcting their conclusions or re-examining their assumptions to accommodate experimental results or empirical observations.

Fidelity to the protocols of inquiry is a requisite aptitude for any investigator of scientific phenomena. Thus, Lord Kelvin could ill afford to suppress Ernst Rutherford?s discovery of radioactivity in order to maintain his assumptions on the sources of heat energy available to the earth in calculating its age.

He had to abandon the 20 to 400 million years range estimated age of the earth he obtained based on purely thermodynamic assumptions. These days the accepted age of the earth based on radioactive dating is in the neighborhood ?of 4.54 billion years with an uncertainty of less than 1 percent.?

Selective reporting of empirical observations and/or experimental results in order to support the initial assumptions has never been an accepted practice in scientific inquiry. Any such attempt would categorically undermine the inquiry process itself and render all associated results and observations unworthy of being taken seriously, let alone hasten to advance the initial hypotheses.

The preponderance of quantifiable variables involved in most fields of scientific inquiry renders the process easier to handle. This stems from the rigors that mathematical formalism can potentially be brought to bear on the undertaking. On the other hand, excessive quantification courts the danger of losing the context of the initial hypothesis. The investigator needs to be always vigilant to keep the balance. Otherwise the inquiry can succumb to the danger of missing the forest because of the trees.

The Cartesian methodology probably represents the intersection of philosophical and scientific inquiry. In the Discourse on the Method of Rightly Conducting the Reason (1637) Descartes demonstrated that much of his work was concerned with the provision of a secure foundation for the advancement of human knowledge through the natural sciences. He supposed that

?The progress and certainty of mathematical knowledge . . . provide an emulable model for a similarly productive philosophical method, characterized by four simple rules:

1. Accept as true only what is indubitable.

2. Divide every question into manageable parts.

3. Begin with the simplest issues and ascend to the more complex.

4. Review frequently enough to retain the whole argument at once.?

Anybody engaged in scientific inquiry can scarcely do wrong by adhering to these simple rules of engagement.

IV. Practical Implications

The recent discovery of shrimp-like creatures and jellyfish frolicking six hundred feet beneath a massive sheet of ice in the Antarctic engender momentous implications. At the very least, it should entail a rethinking of the assumptions brought to bear on the interpretation of fossil marine animal life respecting local and regional ambient temperatures.

On the other hand, enthusiasts and acolytes of AGW may take the opportunity to leverage the discovery and represent it as one more incontrovertible evidence that AGW is for real and here to stay. No one amongst the researchers who made the discovery expected to find organisms higher than microbes because of the frigid ambient conditions.

The AGW advocates would be bold enough to assert that precisely because of global warming that these organisms managed to be where they never were expected, given the prohibitive conditions respecting both sunlight and temperature. A largely uninformed public would take the mainstream media balderdash as gospel.

So like a political campaign, the matter is reduced to sensational journalism. Whoever is able to generate the most effective spin garners the leverage on public opinion, agents of influence, and policy formulations and implementation. What crystallizes as knowledge is a far cry from the product of Descartes? ?four simple rules of engagement? in scientific inquiry.

We are at a crossroads when political decorum disregards well established protocols of intellectual inquiry in order to pursue and forcibly implement political agenda as demanded by ideology of the Progressives genre. The will of the governed is completely and unabashedly ignored by the ruling elite so obsessively blinded by their determination to control and lord it over the political landscape.

IV.1 On Antrophogenic Global Warming

Prominent in the litany of woes for the AGW narrative is Edward Towne?s observation that

?. . . the ?Summary for Policymakers? is written first, by policymakers no less, and then the rest of the report is doctored and manipulated by a handful of "lead authors" to fit the summary?s agenda.?

His concluding admonition should be posted on every family dining room, and/or wherever human beings ordinarily congregate such as community centers, game arcades, beer parlors, places of worship, etc.:

?A lot of the responsibility for how this [AGW] is handled rests on you and me. If someone tells you that the world is going to end in 100 years time because of the gases that come out your mouth and backside, you should have the intellectual fortitude to critically question that claim, and not treat like heretics those who do.?

The concerted effort to imagine and fabricate information to retrofit into the template which buttressed the Policymakers? agenda was an egregious subversion of every principle and protocol of scientific inquiry. As I emphasized earlier elsewhere,

?It is a breach of protocol . . . that would have warranted sending the offenders to the stakes, if not for the fact that doing so would be a serious sacrilege to the noble memory of Giordano Bruno.?

Or, to invoke a less personal source, as The Washington Times pointedly editorialized more recently (emphasis added),

?The simplistic and increasingly discredited theory of carbon-based, man-caused global warming needs to be discarded, and the scientists who sought to squelch skeptics and artificially inflate their own reputations must be disciplined.?

The arguments I presented in that earlier work bear repeating with even stronger emphasis, as they have increased in relevance and urgency after the White House had persisted to be a part of the vanguard of the AGW crusade:

?Anthropogenic Global Warming, as postulated by the Kyoto Protocol is not even a scientific theory. It is only an unprovable hypothesis. The notion of "Greenhouse Effect" postulated in the context of the entire planet earth is, at best, an extrapolation of boundary value conditions, not otherwise warranted by experimental constraints.


?It is the process of experimentation that elevates an hypothesis into a theory, i.e., when replicable results supportive of the hypothesis are obtained, repeatedly. No such experimentation has been deployed in support of Anthropogenic Global Warming. A computer simulation is not an experiment. It is nothing but an exercise in modeling reality. Its validity depends largely on the set of assumptions that govern the set of process relationships stipulated in the model. It does not prove anything, by any stretch of the imagination.?

Another feature of the AGW movement which cannot be over-emphasized is its association with the paradigm of Command and Control Economics which reigns supreme in communist regimes. Once again, it behooves to recall somewhat extensively the nexus I indicated earlier elsewhere,

?The seminal beginning of the present-day AGW is traceable with unmistakable certainty to the Stockholm Declaration of 1972. Said document, reads, in part:


?Principle 5: The non-renewable resources of the earth must be employed in such a way as to guard against the danger of their future exhaustion and to ensure that benefits from such employment are shared by all mankind.


?Principle 14: Rational planning constitutes an essential tool for reconciling any conflict between the needs of development and the need to protect and improve the environment. ?


?In other words, a Command and Control Economy needs to be established to guarantee the equality of outcome for all peoples. The resources of the planet must be leveraged by a Global Government and deployed with precision to achieve that goal. What better tool to galvanize the support of the entire planet than a common danger with the tragic existential implications of Armageddon. Hence AGW as recently celebrated in Copenhagen came into being.?

The traditional notions of ?valid knowledge? as established by the philosophical systems of Kant and Hegel have been summarily abandoned by the intellectual brainthrust of AGW as represented by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Consequently, any self-respecting intellect should summarily dismiss any and all pronouncements coming out of that disgraced body.

Thus when the POTUS brazenly claimed in the 2010 State of the Union Address of an "overwhelming scientific evidence on climate change," he was counting on what he perceived as the ignorance of the American people which elevated him to the Oval Office. Or, to be more charitable, he was reciting meaningless talking points platitudes with the assurance that a rubber stamp Congress can push through every whimsical scheme he embraces.

On President Obama's radical plan for the environment, in his book (which deserves to be in the required reading list for middle schoolers) ?Red Hot Lies,? Christopher Horner warns that

?. . . global warming is the latest and greatest excuse for Obama's socialist agenda?which includes energy controls, economic interventions, and the explosion of the nanny state.

?When it comes to ?saving the planet? (read: controlling your life), liberal pundits and politicians will do anything to keep you under their Green thumb.?

The point is, there is money to be made by jumping onto the Global Warming bandwagon, provided you are on the taking side of the financial equation. Politicians and pundits of all shades and flavors conveniently embrace the Global Warming dogma not only as a matter of intellectual indolence, but more so as a matter of economic advantage.

Patrik Jonsson, staff writer of the Christian Science Monitor more explicitly noted,

?. . . Obama has set the scene for expanding the reach of climate-change imperatives ? and science ? into the lives of everyday Americans.

?He has made a ?green economy? a hallmark of the $787 billion stimulus package . . . He has prioritized the cap-and-trade bill and put into effect new auto mileage standards. And the Environmental Protection Agency has for the first time characterized carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, as a pollutant that it can control.?

Purveyors of political and economic policies who give a penny?s worth to the IPCC?s agenda, starting with Barack Hussein Obama himself should more properly be run out of town by sundown. We desperately need a new sheriff in town who is ready, willing, and able to preserve, protect, and defend the American way of life starting with the most cherished value of human knowledge.

IV.2 On Darwinian Theory of Evolution

The theory of evolution as propounded by Charles Darwin in ?The Origin of Species? (1859) should be more properly looked at as the hypothesis on evolution. Despite strong evidence of random mutation taking place in geologic history as inferred from the fossil records, no matter how ubiquitously voluminous, there has never been a documented instance that proved incontrovertibly, of new species emerging from an entirely different species just on the basis of environmentally leveraged random mutation.

The search for the so-called ?Missing Link? which was deemed to prove once and for all that the human species are all descended from the apes, has largely been abandoned. Not because the need for a ?link? to prove the ?theory? has been rendered moot, by a preponderance of supportive evidence but because of the putative inertia of failure.

No sooner than the announcement of the fossil found purported to be the ?missing link? was celebrated with great fanfare, that contrary evidence was unveiled to debunk it. The purveyors of information were so eager to present what they construe as evidence of the Darwinian Theory of Evolution that wittingly or unwittingly, they were willing to disregard the traditional rigors of scientific inquiry.

Darwin?s theory of evolution got assimilated into the realm of knowledge on the strength of journalism, not of scientific inquiry. This came about on the heels of the secularist tide that swept European thought in the 19th century. This intellectual ferment has been chronicled succinctly by Keith Thomson of the American Scientist, especially as pertains to Darwin and Malthus.

As The New York Times put it barely four years ago,

?. . . contemporary Europe is the closest thing to a godless civilization the world has ever known. Does this place it in the vanguard of world history? That is what many Europeans think, which is why they have been caught off guard by the challenge of radical Islam even in their own back yard. They find it hard to believe that people can still take God seriously . . .?

Consistent with Thomas Kuhn?s formulation of shifting paradigms that usher in scientific revolutions, peer reviewed scientific literature became weighted towards the adoption of Darwinian Theory as a legitimate challenge to the religious doctrine on the origins of life. Most crucial to this dominance is in the production of science textbooks in every level of the educational system.

In effect Darwinian Theory became a self-fulfilling prophecy (as obtains in theories on social prejudice) whose trajectory into dominance is analogous to Allen MacNeill?s, alleles:

?If the environmental change persisted, new alleles might arise, but they would begin with a ?norm of reaction? that would produce significantly larger mean beak sizes, along with a normal distribution with significantly larger beaks at the upper tail of the distribution.

?In other words, the existing alleles for such a trait would bias subsequent mutations in the ?direction? of larger beaks, simply because the pool of potential new alleles would already start out biased in that direction. Therefore, the mutations and developmental changes that were available from one generation to the next would be biased in the direction of whatever phenotypic trait resulted in the highest reproductive success.?

James Lennox suggested in summary that Darwinian Theory ?can be set out as a series of causal elements that, working together, will produce the needed transformations? (emphasis added):

1. Species are comprised of individuals that vary ever so slightly from each other with respect to their many traits.

2. Species have a tendency to increase in size over generations at an exponential rate.

3. This tendency, given limited resources, disease, predation, and so on, creates a constant condition of struggle for survival among the members of a species.

4. Some individuals will have variations that give them a slight advantage in this struggle, variations that allow more efficient or better access to resources, greater resistance to disease, greater success at avoiding predation, and so on.

5. These individuals will tend to survive better and leave more offspring.

6. Offspring tend to inherit the variations of their parents.

7. Therefore favorable variations will tend to be passed on more frequently than others, a tendency Darwin labeled ?Natural Selection?.

8. Over time, especially in a slowly changing environment, this process will cause the character of species to change.

9. Given a long enough period of time, the descendant populations of an ancestor species will differ enough to be classified as different species, a process capable of indefinite iteration. There are, in addition, forces that encourage divergence among descendant populations, and the elimination of intermediate varieties.

I included the list in its entirety to illuminate two significant points about the doctrine. First, items (8) and (9) provide the escape clause that renders any need for tangible proof of the theory as untenable, therefore unnecessary. The duration of human history is simply negligible compared to the span of geologic time. Furthermore, item (9) guarantees that the ?missing link? can stay undiscovered and would not in any way affect the validity of the theory. If it is supposed to be eliminated then it can forever remain ?missing.?

Secondly, items (2) and (3) confirm the well-documented Malthusian pedigree of Darwinism. As Darwin himself suggested in his autobiography (1876), Malthus was the spark of inspiration for his Theory on Natural Selection (emphasis added):

?. . . I happened to read for amusement Malthus on Population. . . . it at once struck me that under these circumstances favourable variations would tend to be preserved, and unfavourable ones to be destroyed. The results of this would be the formation of a new species. Here, then I had at last got a theory by which to work.?

Admittedly, being inspired by Malthus, in and of itself does not constitute intellectual imbecility. It behooves to emphasize, however, that what both Malthus and Darwin failed to recognize is the capacity of human beings for creative mentation. In the entire history of human civilization, human society is most notably characterized by its ability to expand and augment the realm of natural resources at its disposal.

Finally, it is important to emphasize that the strong tendency to cannibalize the private sector respecting wealth creation, as evinced by most of the policy formulations of Barack Hussein Obama is simply another mutation of this Malthusian-Darwinian cognitive dissonance. President Obama being a self-professed Christian, I concede him his professed faith. I only dare suggest in passing that judging by his policies alone, he appears to be most likely a Progressives Secularist unless there is such a thing as Christianity of the godless variety.

V. Concluding Observations

?All crises begin with the blurring of a paradigm and the consequent loosening of the rules for normal research. . . . a crisis may end with the emergence of a new candidate for paradigm and with the ensuing battle over its acceptance.? (Kuhn, 1962)

The battle over the acceptance of paradigms encapsulates the crisis of our time. On the one hand, there is the Repugnant Obama Paradigm with designs to fundamentally subvert the ideals which undergird the founding of the Republic. On the other hand, the Conservative Paradigm?s ?super? majority of the populace, some undoubtedly having voted for Barack Obama, remain faithful to the Founding Principles as enshrined in the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution, are determined to prevent any such transformation.

With the leviathan of the Federal government at its disposal, the battle is definitely stacked in favor of the transformationists . The jury is still out on who will eventually prevail. The underhanded way in which ObamaCare was passed through both houses of Congress does not bode well for the Republic.

This unfolding of events is consistent with my earlier observation that President Obama is the Zen Master of ?the nexus of political subterfuge so effectively employed by both Lenin and Stalin against their rivals to pull off the Bolshevik revolution.? That poll after poll indicates a sizeable majority of the populace are opposed to his socialistic agenda provides a glimmer of hope that there are still institutional safeguards that may be brought to bear in lending impetus to this opposition.

Numerous reports of legal challenges to the legitimacy of the recently passed Health Care bill are indeed encouraging. This glimmer of optimism has to be taken with more than just the proverbial grain of salt, however, especially that Obama is well schooled in the art of packing the courts, pioneered by his professed model for governance, Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

The electoral process remains to be our most potent weapon against the usurpers of power throughout the political landscape. Until that opportunity to throw out in the midterm elections the acolytes to the Obama Regime in Congress comes, judicial challenges remain a potent vehicle both for stalling the devastating effects of ObamaCare and for formulating a viable alternative to Obama?s designs to downsize, to oblivion, this last best hope of man on earth.

VI. Bibliography: Itemizing Primary Sources

Item numbers denote the sectionsequence (of appearance) of the sourcing item indicated within the section.


I.0 Prolegomenon

I.1 Personal Dimension

I.2 Professional and Political Conjectures

II.1 Elements of Knowledge

II.2 Three Types of Knowledge

II.2.1 Recursive or Operational Knowledge

II.2.2 Descriptive or Attributional Knowledge

II.2.3 Discursive or Propositional Knowledge,_Op.97_(Schumann,_Robert)

III. The Architecture of Inquiry

mailto:[email protected]?subject=I_have_a_qestion!

III.1 Philosophical Inquiry

III.2 Scientific Inquiry

IV.0 Practical Implications

IV.1 On Antrophogenic Global Warming

IV.2 On Darwinian Theory of Evolution

V.0 Concluding Observations

A Mosque on Ground Zero

Posted by C. Stan Asumen, Jr on July 30, 2010 at 1:20 PM Comments comments (1)

A mosque at ground zero or its immediate vicinity is like rubbing salt to the wounds and washing it off with sulfuric acid.


The problem mainly is that Islam has been at war with America (and the West), but we are not at war with them. Every time an attempt at mass murder manifested itself, foiled or successful, our so-called leaders, political and religious bend over backwards to proclaim that Islam is a religion of peace and we are not at war with Islam.


Well, wake up, people. The sooner we acknowledge, with extreme prejudice, our enemies the better able we are to prevail over them. You cannot fight a war you are hesitant to acknowledge. You cannot win a war you only begrudgingly fight, with utmost hesitation. As I pointed out earlier elsewhere,


“Are we then to wait around for another generation of enlightened intellectuals to decide whether or not it is a war worth fighting and another generation to actually fight this war? Or shall we deny that there is a war being fought! The events of 9/11 changed a lot of things. The principle of self-preservation was not one of them.



“When somebody comes to my house to cut my throat, my first order of business is to prevent it from happening. I’m not going to debate on the merits and causes and motives of the mission. I can take care of that after the mission has been successfully foiled. It is too late to prevent 9/11 from happening. It is imperative that we deter the perpetrators from making a habit of it.”


Burying our heads in the quagmire of political correctness in the name of religious tolerance, diversity and multiculturalism is a sorry excuse for the failure to exercise leadership. President Obama might have some excuse for doing his “apologize for America” international tour. Diplomacy is his convenient excuse, although a muddleheaded one. Rather, it’s incompetence masquerading for diplomacy.


On the local level, however, there simply is no acceptable excuse. We are down to fighting in the trenches. If we cannot defend our honor and pride on the local level, we simply run out of room to retreat and hide. Pre-emptive surrender is not an option for survival.

A Bouquet of Tea Leaves for Sarah Palin

Posted by C. Stan Asumen, Jr on July 28, 2010 at 8:24 PM Comments comments (0)

Not from the stars do I my judgment pluck;

And yet methinks I have astronomy,

But not to tell of good or evil luck,

Of plagues, of dearths, or seasons' quality;

Nor can I fortune to brief minutes tell,

Pointing to each his thunder, rain and wind,

Or say with princes if it shall go well,

By oft predict that I in heaven find:

Not from thine eyes my knowledge I derive,

Yet, constant stars, in them I read such art

As truth and beauty shall together thrive,

If from thyself to store thou wouldst convert;

Or else of thee this I prognosticate:

Thy end is truth's and beauty's doom and date.

--William Shakespeare, Sonnet XIV


Anybody familiar with this particular sonnet might venture to crucify me for altering two words therein. In my defense, I hasten to explain that having had neither the pleasure nor the privilege to look into her eyes, it would have been grossly presumptuous on my part to keep the “But from thine eyes . . . And, consant stars, . . .” original. That could justifiably have been construed as doing Gov. Palin wrong. Consequently, as the bard himself prescribed,


“. . . I rather choose/ To wrong the dead, to wrong myself and you,/

Than I will wrong such honourable [mom].”


Substituting “Yet” for “And” is simply taking liberty with poetic license in my modest attempt at maintaining what I recognize as contrapuntal resonance and symmetry to the couplet. Likewise, this also acquits my using “mom” for “men” in invoking the Mark Anthony funeral speech.


These subtle but tedious technicalities aside, I concede that prognostication is a thankless task and not in the short list of my favorite vices. Nonetheless, that I consider her a political force to reckon with in the national stage is a matter of public record:


“Not even the engaging charm of Sarah Palin who was far more conservative than MacCain has been for at least 16 years, and had a far stronger executive resume than Obama ever had, could resuscitate the faltering Republican campaign to save the day.”


Not only did she energize the Republican Conservative base in the ’08 campaign, despite losing, she established her bona fides as a lightning rod to drive both political operatives and their media cohorts absolutely ballistic. In Ann Coulter’s ever so deliciously seductive formulation,


“. . . they attacked her daughter, who actually is pregnant now, for being unmarried. When liberals start acting like they're opposed to pre-marital sex and mothers having careers, you know McCain's vice presidential choice has knocked them back on their heels.”


It is a priceless political asset to be able to drive your opponents to the edge of hyperbolic hysteria just by being yourself. Take away the oppositions’ capacity for a rational discourse and clarity of perception you assured yourself a strategic advantage.


Provided of course, you are equipped with a coherent vision for governance grounded on principles and reinforced with realistic programmatic details. To be viable for the 2012 presidential cycle Gov. Palin needs to sharpen her focus and make sure that she stays on message. She should articulate in the national stage with unmistakable clarity her vision for governance.


She would need a dependable platform that would enable her to enunciate her vision in a proactively consistent manner. She has already proved to be a dependable magnate for financial support:


“Within the first few hours after Palin's name was announced, McCain raised $4 million in campaign donations online, reaching $10 million within the next two days. Which shortlist vice presidential pick could have beaten that?”


Living out her philosophy rather than philosophizing on life is what Gov. Palin is all about. The main reason she gets the vitriol of the traditional career feminists is her putting their hypocrisy in sharp contrasting relief to her reality. She has proved to the world and to the feminists’ shame that there need not be any conflict between motherhood and a professional career, politics included. Furthermore, it definitely did not take a village to nurture her brood of five, more than twice above the national average fertility rate for this country.


I have not met her in person but less than fifty pages into “Going Rogue” made me feel like I shared most of her adventures of growing up. I succumb to that exhilarating feeling of having gallivanted away the anxious exuberance of my formative years in the edge of the wilds with her, notwithstanding that I was born in the evacuation camps of WWII Philippines, roughly half a globe away, more than two generations ago, and a civilization removed from her narratives.


She is a breath of fresh air in a political atmosphere traditionally choked with the putrescence of political posturing on just about any issue imaginable. She is the only political figure to have inspired me to design and produce my own yard poster for her ’08 campaign which proved to be a solitary yard adornment in a neighborhood demonstrably intimidated to speak out against the Obama/Biden ticket for fear of being branded a racist.


Gleanings from the pantry of history

A review of the list of losing vice presidential candidates that spans from King, Rufus of MA, 1804, 1808 (Federalist) through to Edwards, Johnny Reid “John” of NC 2004 (Democrat) reveals


“. . . only one losing VP nominee returned . . . to . . . win the presidency. . . .”

“Franklin Roosevelt was the unsuccessful Democratic vice-presidential candidate in 1920, won the governorship of New York eight years later, and used that as a springboard to the White House in 1932. FDR remains the only losing vice presidential candidate in history to eventually become president.”


There is however, one historical fact to Sarah Palin’s advantage: She was the one losing vice presidential candidate who was a sitting governor. The governorship has been known to be a historical springboard to the presidency. But there are two “what if” scenarios that should come to pass before the stars can align favorably to Sarah’s karma, and allow these prognostications to come to fruition.


First, Secretary Hillary Clinton must mount an unsuccessful challenge to Obama for the presidential nomination via a grueling primary election reminiscent of Edward Kennedy’s challenge to President Jimmy Carter. Second, Sarah Palin must prevail in a hotly contested issues-intensive primary battle against at least two other contenders for the GOP nomination.


The former would effectively air out the ideological dirty laundry of the Democrats. The latter would sort out the viable principles and strategies for effective governance for the Republicans and enable Sarah Palin’s grassroots support to flourish. She already has effectively established a winning record during the 2010 Republican Primary cycle:


“Sarah Palin endorsed three dark-horse candidates in Republican match-ups this year, and all three won their primaries yesterday: Nikki Haley in South Carolina, Sharron Angle in Nevada and Carly Fiorina in California. No wonder Sarah's being stalked by Joe McGinniss.”


A batting average of an even 1000, appears to be a compelling prelude to a second act on the national stage. The Boston Globe went even further as to anoint her “the tea party movement’s adopted standard bearer,” while it hastened to add:


“The polarizing but popular Palin drew wild applause from the crowd with her 22-minute speech, in which she said the government has been on a ‘spending spree’ and warned of future tax increases. . . .

“The fervently antitax tea party movement is a new force in American politics, and its future impact is still being debated. The movement’s angry ranks remain a puzzle to Massachusetts politicians.”


Describing Gov. Palin as “polarizing but popular” is an exercise in futility couched in irrelevance. It is a lame attempt at hiding the fact that there is very little if any in Sarah Palin that has a faint hint at, or semblance of ambiguity. She is such a straight shooter, so charmingly blunt, that there is no mistaking her meaning. She says what she means, and means what she says, nay, she lives by her words.


If by “polarizing” is meant forcing the voter to take sides on the issues, even if it means everybody is going to the other side, more power to her. A national polity with a clear perception of what the country wants is precisely what the country needs at this critical juncture, when the statist regime reigns supreme. A lukewarm electorate is a fertile ground for mediocrity. What we need is the passion of Omar Khayyam when he implored a few centuries ago,



Ah, Love! could you and I with Him conspire

To grasp this sorry Scheme of Things entire,

Would not we shatter it to bits--and then

Re-mould it nearer to the Heart's Desire!


Just to dampen the evident enthusiasm for Gov. Palin, especially as she relates to the Tea Party movement, The New York Times made certain it pointed out that:


“. . . Several Republican candidates did not attend the rally, including Charles Baker, who is hoping to win the party’s nomination for governor. And several people at the rally said that while they liked Ms. Palin, they were not sure they would vote for her if she ran for president in 2012.”


Both The Boston Globe and The New York Times are flagship mouthpieces for the Progressive Liberal establishment. It is therefore predictable that they attempt to minimize the significance of both Sarah Palin and the Tea Party movement. The Globe’s claim that the Tea Party is a new force in American politics simply betrays its ignorance if not deliberate distortion of history. The American Revolution was born out of a network of anti-tax grassroots movements. The slogan “taxation without representation is tyranny” did not historically endure from a rogue journalist’s sleight of hand.


As I emphasized earlier elsewhere,

“It is incumbent upon the enlightened citizens, as typified by the Tea Party movement to shore up the political ferment fomented by its opposition to ObamaCare into a formidable political force sufficient to withstand the Obama onslaught and reverse the tide of his statist tyrannical regime.”


How any presidential contender is able to galvanize the Tea Party movement and claim its leadership mantle is the most crucial factor for the political viability of that aspirant. This is certainly as true of Gov. Palin as of any other contender. It is already a common knowledge that there is resonance between her and the Tea Partiers.


Whether or not Gov. Palin chooses to run for President still remains to be seen. So far she had demurred from making such commitment. After a taste of the lucrative world of book writing, she may opt out of the rough and tumble of a national campaign. But should she decide to go for it, now is never too early to leverage that resonant relationship towards architecting a full-court press for 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue in 2012.


As for my simple self, I’d be content with hollering from the sidelines, with as large a bullhorn as I can get: "Run Sarah, Run!"



Asumen Creative Escapades {ACE}

This is a collection of poetry and other creative escapades completed or in the works: So far I have grouped them into three categories reflective of the emotional circumstances under which they came about, namely, The Schuman-Spinoza Sonnets, the Patriotic Sonnets, and the Awkward  & Toilsome Years.

Lasting Impact Limited Access Customized Services {LILACS}