Only 15 Days Left!

If you want what visible reality

can give, you’re an employee.

If you want the unseen world,

you’re not living your truth.

Both wishes are foolish,

but you’ll be forgiven for forgetting

that what you really want is

love’s confusing joy.

From Essential Rumi

by Coleman Barks

I’m working on staying upbeat, but we have only raised 2% of our goal and there are only 15 days left. Can you help? Here is the Indiegogo site. Just Connections. I want to give you a few reasons to join us.

1. Seven million Americans are stuck in poverty from part-time jobs. Corporate America is making mega millions off the backs of both the educated and uneducated poor by offering lousy low-paying part-time work keep their costs low and putting many into poverty. If you are still in a great full-time position you are in the minority. Part-time job poverty. Even worse is the following fact.

2.Many older Americans have lost all hope of retirement because of pensions dissappering and the stock market stealing all their former wealth, but the possiblity of getting a job if you are over 50 is horrible and over 62 almost impossible. Older Americans are unable to get work.

3. Young college graduates for the past several years have no hope of employment. Recent college graduates are unemployed.

We have no hope for a good life based on our current economic model. We need an alternative that is not based on greed but on the love of life, each other and sharing. It is possible, but we have to start now, we need to join together to make it happen. Our power is great, the possibility unique the opportunity timely, Please think about it.

Thanks for listening. Thanks for caring. Thanks for jumping in!

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Just the Facts, Ma’am, Just the Facts (Working on a simple clear picture.)

What are we crowdfunding for? Indiegogo Campaign

Phase I

Develop an online platform to deliver workshops, classes, and information. Producer members will have a website that will make it easy to deliver their content to their customers. This will be outsourced to New Media One for development. Cost for this is between 8 and 10 thousand dollars. Customer members will have a platform that will make it easy to get the content they want and need.

Phase II

Gather a collection of small businesses to be accessable on the same mega site. Develop this grand shopping place that consists of many small businesses joined together for one-stop shopping and located in the same space as the platform we develop in Phase I. Again outsourced to New Media One.Cost for this is between 7 and 9 thousand dollars.

Gather a huge and ongoing membership brought through the members who join initially and through spreading the word through Permaculture groups, Fair Trade sellers, Poets and Writers and other Artists, and many others who make up the 99% of people left out of the mega companies who dominate our current economy. We hope to begin this as part of our crowdfunding campaign and then launch a campaign to get our brand known and recognized. Cost for this between 2 and 5 thousand dollars.

Long-term…Create an internal crowdfunding, instruction and support system for start-up businesses that will become part of our site. We will fund this by taking a small amount from each sale and each class or workshop to set aside to develop new businesses.

An Indepth look at Social Venture I’m Embarking on Called: JustConnections.Community will occupy this space for the next month or so

If you have seen my campaign on Indiegogo:, you will know a little of what this blog will be about for the next month or so. I want a place for people to come to see progress, know more detail and decide if this venture is worth the time and money to become a member. Please visit the site and then give me feedback here or read more about what I’ve been developing for the past year or two.

The Indiegogo Site

Just Connections.Community: A summary of the Plan.

The problem:

Millions of talented people are sitting behind corporate owned desks and hating it. Money has become a means of enslaving workers in a spend/earn cycle that locks wonderfully creative people into endless soul killing working lives. Then we are forced into feeding these corporate leviathans with the money they have paid us, resulting in modern slavery where we serve the almighty dollar and those that have the lion’s share of it. Unemployment and underemployment are a global crisis. The solution to restore jobs and economies is small businesses joined together for the collective power of larger entities. This problem affects not only the creative young people who are beginning their lives with gifts that we need to take care of our lives and our world, but also older workers whose wisdom and experience go well with the enthusiasm of young worker. Instead both are unable to find full-time jobs or even  to even find work at all and are returned to poverty through the current tendency for those at the top of the economic system to gain at the expense of the majority on the bottom.

Our Vision:

Our approach is unique in that our plan is to establish a large global community to bring about the results we are working toward. The core of those who teach, those who start businesses and those who are their customers will be the community that we gather around this alternative economy. Each time one person joins, purchases, starts a business in the community, they take their spending, earning and contribution power away from the failing economic paradigm and contribute to a caring, healthy global economic culture. In this alternative community, support, creativity and contribution to all will, take precedence over individual gain and greed.

Long term goals:

Long term goals We will set aside a small amount from each activity and membership to JustConnections.Community to create our own internal crowdfunding in order to promote startup businesses of our community members. We call this aspect Play it Forward and expect many new social enterprises to result after we gather a large global community to help not only financially but with all kinds of support.

 

Customers & Beneficiaries:

There are three main customer segments we are addressing through training and facilitation of business development.

  1. Artists, Writers, and other Creatives.
  2. Those who want to start small retail or service businesses.
  3. Alternative food growers, producers, sellers and suppliers.
  4. Those who are seeking better products and businesses to buy from.

Customer needs:

Our customers do not want their working lives to be manipulated by greedy mega-businesses. They want independent lives that they contribute to with all of their gifts and skills and that result in happy and fulfilled lives for themselves, their families and their communities. We will help overcome the barriers of lack of information and lack of financial and group support. We will help develop ideas, teach skills and provide multiple support for those who want to succeed as part of a new way of financial living. Not everyone wants to be an entrepreneur, but many who do. face almost insurmountable barriers that we are addressing. Our other customer segment consists of those who no longer want to support greedy multinational corporations with their purchases.

Customer loyalty for us is the whole idea of belonging to something important and effective. Once a customer joins, we will take feedback and always respond, use our members as guides to contiually revise and create toward our goal of an alternative economy. We are not being unclear, we are flexible enough to take feedback and use it for reaching our goals together.

Influencers and decision makers:

We see ourselves in alignment with Permaculturists, Aquaponics gurus, inventors of sustainable energy and great meaningful education, just to name a few. It is a time in history for “all hands on deck!¨ There are already many creatives who see the problems and will help us envision the solutions. We plan to gather many of them into a functioning successful and entreprenuerial community.

The individual enabling of creative entreprenuers is a very necessary product for our time. One success will build on others and each part of the community will benefit exponentially. We will influence, encourage, teach and support each other.

Development Phases

In our first phase, we will develop Light Bulb University, a sharing, teaching platform where skills can be shared and members can learn and teach others. Our subjects will be oriented toward practical skills rather than abstract learning.

Phase Two: Will include a collective of different businesses who come together to bring customers to a comprehensive marketplace, a collection of individual businesses who are all members of JustConnections.community. It will be a kind of online shopping center, like a downtown in a large city, which will also be a community as well as a market place.
In Phase 3 we will develop ways to help new businesses get started in our community through our own internal crowdfunding, through shared wisdom and through the support of community members. We call this phase Playing it Forward.

HOW WILL WE MAKE IT HAPPEN

Our main development initially will be our website and its functionality. In addition
1.we will need to find a partner who is versed in video editing and development in order to make
our connections more intimate and real. This will also be true of some of the services and
workshops offered by members. Our educational platform will include video lectures and we will
also offer short video lectures for free to give to the world community and entice members to
join online presentations and workshops.
2.We also need a marketing expert to take what we are producing and bring it to a broader global
audience.
Administrative and Legal
We are starting out as a simple partnership, but will eventually develop a cooperative type legal
structure to reflect the model we are creating.
Team and Key Resources
We, the people!
As stated above, we will need a few key players.
1. Video expert.
2. Marketing guru.
3. We are outsourcing the web development.
4. We are looking for involved members to put together videos, classes, and businesses that will
be part of our ongoing social business.
The resources we need
Our main resources are our members. Physically they will be providing the expertise and the
input and we will be facilitating the sharing and development of whatever product or service
they are providing.
Team Value Proposition
Over many years, I have developed connections in many places. This is the foundation for the
team that I need to gather, but I’m also connected through many great innovative platforms
including Babele and Coursera. I have done Fair Trade businesses, created annual events and
struggled to find employment as an older woman.

Key partners
Our key partner is New Media One, an amazing web development and web hosting firm that has
a proven track record in developing innovative and effective web presences.

3600 Miles Later the Ice Goes Out on Tripp Pond

Loon couple early morning Tripp Pond . West Poland, Maine
Goose couple early morning Tripp Pond . West Poland, Maine out our front window.
Getting ourselves free took some hard decisions. Sometime it feels like if we only had some money everything would be easy. I think that is a common modern myth. We are making it with very little and the loving help of a Friendly Universe and friends and family.  We were told that because of a great exodus from California,  moving companies are basically scamers. We will wait to move our memories. 
We have been together for twelve years, but only married for one, the lesbian thing. The two of us seem to at least take turns melting down, but we still tend to take it out on each other and then feel worse. 
We said good-bye to our kids and grands at Astro Burger in Hollywood and wouldn’t you know, Jennifer Hudson was there being very nice to three old lady tourists who were pestering her during lunch. Here she is behind our grandboy, Sam and his mom. Sneaky way to take her picture.  
836
After one night in a really nasty motel, we arrived in Colorado and stayed with our best couple friends and then on to Denver and the welcoming home of sister Mary. A great dose of grands, sons mom and sisters then on to Michigan and another sister with warm hugs, great cookies and nostalgic photos, Finally a marathon ride into Maine arriving at our little lake house around two in the morning. 
Sister Jeanane here  filled our house with  furniture, dishes, pots and pans, a couch and blow up bed ready for us at 3 A.M. when we finally made it to West Poland, Maine.  She would give you the shirt off her back which she basically did for us. 
Dad is 91. Mom, at 89 is recovering well from a fall that broke her hip in February.She cooked lunch for us on Thursday. We drove up the driveway on Friday in a steady rain. Dad was out raking leaves in his rain jacket. Underneath it a coat and tie without which he does not leave the house. Linda at the town hall says he should be on the cover of GQ. 

The Upsetting Reality Of Modern Day Poverty.

kathleen kerridge

This is a post about a subject very close to home.  My home.  It is about politicians who wouldn’t know poverty if it chewed on their overpaid arses.

It’s about Jamie Oliver.

Now, to put this out there, I loved Jamie.  For years and years, I idolised the man.  He taught me to cook, when I could barely operate a Pot Noodle and we lived off Smash (dehydrated potatoes) and pasta (we even overcooked that).  I would watch all his shows and learn, slowly, from the TV.  In less than a year, I was able to cook a three course meal for 15 people.  Gourmet became easy and I was soon laughing my way through 3 meat roasts and cooked-from-scratch curries.  I owe my skill in the kitchen to Jamie.  I have a lot to thank him for.

Jamie Oliver was good to watch, when I had money.  Before I had…

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George McGovern Is Dying

Ode to An American Hero

George McGovern nears
death reminding me of
a time when we struggled

to overcome the corrupted
cops and military when
we were awakening to
life versus death many
of us heeding the call to
change the world i raise
my banner high in gratitude
for a human being of great
light ninety years with us
a great help, but we need
so much more right now
in the year of his leaving
good-bye George you have
earned your rest may you
be born again in many young
peace makers who see these
great evils for the death and sin
that they really are and believe
in life and love, adios.

Being STARS

Thought I’d treat you to this great Janis Ian song for a good laugh at ourselves. I’m working on writing a memoir for my next project and learning a lot about Ego vrs. Authentic Self. Listen to her first and then I’ll say more.

I’ve been spending a lot of time trying to figure out what makes us happy and why we are in general a culture in deep stress and unhappy. After meditating last night and then waking up and meditating again in the morning I realized that we are in general a culture that has substituted EGO for Authentic Self. Our world right now needs a lot less ego as well as everyone being their authentic eternal selves. I was taught by my ancestors that we come from the STARS. No need for ego with its pain causing greediness. Did you ever notice how those who sound the most egocentric are those who don’t feel anything wonderful about themselves.

In my generation and subculture, we were taught that it is wrong and evil to have ego, but in the process lost the joy in being our brilliant authentic selves. In that mindset, we are all brilliant stars and totally needed and wanted by the community. Come on, let’s be Stars, the kind that love life, laugh at ego’s antics and fully are who we were born to be. It’s not a mystery, it’s wisdom lying deep in our own bodies and souls. It’s just a matter of recognizing ourselves and walking and dancing down this road of life. That’s the end of my sermon and hopefully the end of my annoying pesky ego.

A Rumi:
from–The Way of Passion by Andrew Harvey
 
You were born of the rays of God’s majesty and have
gained the good fortune of your auspicious star, so how
long will you suffer at the hands of non-existent things?
Come, return to the root of the root of your own self.