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Published in Arizona, USA

26th of May 2017

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Selling Addiction

Joseph Warren, Editor


It’s what we do, and because of it, we don’t have a chance for survival. We sell addiction to those who feel pain, prescribing marijuana and opioids. We sell addiction to the weak of spirit, to the tired, the lame, the forgotten, the oblivious, the unclean, the unsaved, the obese, the neurotic, the destitute, the black man, the white woman, the young child, the spiritually void, the man who cannot walk upright, to the woman with cramps, to the old woman who is nearing death as we all are, and someone is making a lot of God damn money from it.

And so are those who have assigned themselves to mitigate addiction through medical intervention. Those who “rehabilitate” the addict. Those who arrest, prosecute, judge, defend, sentence, incarcerate, evaluate, counsel, formally discharge and likely accept back some short time later given the better than 80% recidivism. Statistically, 95% go back to drugs after release. Many go back to crime.

Heroin, pot, crack, speed, cocaine, Prozac, Zoloft, Lamictal, Seroquel, Zyprexa, Symbyax, Celexa, Lexapro, bourbon, vodka, (just two little glasses of) wine, codeine, ketamine, methadone, you name it.

We sell addiction both in the most forthright way and under-the-table, depending on the drug and how clever the user and vendor may be, or if they wear a suit or a Doctor’s Smock. Wrack and ruin is always the end for the user, the father, the mother, the child: all of us.

100 years ago addicts died. End of story. Period. Gone from our lives one way or another and just a sad bitter memory and a lesson to those who remained, “Your Great Uncle Ed – we don’t like to talk about it, you know, because it was just so unlike our family – died from a heroin overdose. He started smoking opium overseas and when he returned he started using heroin. When he died my father said it was a great relief for everyone.”

Not any more. Today we hard sell you on the idea of addiction, mostly for the sake of our GDP, and leave you to wander through America’s Magical Mystery Tour of hospital intake, rehabilitation centers, courthouses, jails, alleyways, whorehouses or street corners, psychologists’ offices, court-mandated counseling rooms, back-alley pushers and, maybe eventually, for the good of the rest of us, morgues.

Every year in America more than 42,000 people kill themselves directly getting it over with as quickly as possible, while thousands-upon-thousands choose a slow and costly death through some form of addiction that was sold to them by someone at sometime, somewhere for some reason.

And, you know why: Money, profit, “bottom line” and to thus perpetuate the machinery that keeps many hundreds of thousands (millions, in fact) employed in industries and professions fabricated to give career addiction people a reason for waking up in the morning and a sense of fulfillment by relegating others to a lesser position, compared to them. Sartre made this pretty clear decades ago.

Read, Being and Nothingness.

I am responsible for everything…except for my very responsibility. - Sartre

We are not born thinking “I need to get high.” We decide it after talking to someone who says what we need to hear, what we decide thereafter is right, by television shows, by films, by family, by friends, by medical doctors and psychologists, by pushers, by Big Pharma. We come to addiction by a thousand different roads – some masked and subtle, some overt and beguiling - and someone is making a lot of God damn money from it.

Who are they? You know.

Who ultimately carries the financial burden? You know.

Here’s a billboard that appeared on our main thoroughfare some short time ago. It says everything there is to say about our affinity for drugs.

Ketamine came to my attention years ago as a horse tranquilizer: It’ll knock a thousand-pound pissed-off stallion off his hooves for whatever reason the injecter may deem appropriate. Subsequently I understood that it had become a recreational drug for some at raves and events. Subsequently, again, I’ve learned that it is being used to treat Depression…given the faces of the smiling family embracing whomever the Ketamine drug user is in this image, it must be effective.

It isn’t. Ketamine, like any other drugs designed to address the nausea of life, the existential despair of being, is a useless attempt to bring the façade of meaningfulness to a life otherwise devoid of significance.

A caution from a Ketamine abuse source: The biggest concern (are the) so-called psychotic effects of ketamine, which include lethargy, euphoria, illusions, hallucinations, delirium, a sense of separation from the body, and bright dreams intimidating or sexual in nature.

As painful to those who remain it may be, let them go if suicide is their desire: We are at more than seven billion in this world of (to some extent, the) crippled, lame, fat, lazy, retarded, and stupid who are being spoon-fed life to sustain the machinery of commerce. If they want out – and many of us can understand that from time-to-time - let them go.

But, if the urge to embrace life remains, teach them to think, to act, to exercise, to read books, to become involved, to turn off the television, to dump Facebook, to become something more than a marker in this vastness of humanity and to do – something, anything, anywhere, anytime, now, today, next week, but, ultimately, live by learning and doing, whatever it may be. In some way, by some accounting, they will make the world a better place, at the very least by not being who they are right now.

One of my favorite writers of the Beat period was Jack Kerouac. His writing style, although it is not widely known I think, blossomed to a large extent on the inventiveness of William Saroyan whom he admired greatly for poetic technique and flow – the flow of his words and thoughts and sense of reality and the way he embraced America unlike no other writer when we were sunk in the depths of financial ruin in the 1930s and faced insurrection and complete collapse. Really, Saroyan’s poetry in the guise of prose.

A close friend to Kerouac was William S. Burroughs who occasionally dug Kerouac out of one of his many difficult moments, while Burroughs slithered simmering and spitting in his own pit of blackness.

Burroughs wrote much that, like many others, I’ve read. Naked Lunch, Junkie and a host of other “depraved” Beat what-passes-for Literature, today. But Kerouac was a true writer. A master of the genre. Read, Desolation Angels.

Still, nobody summed up the subject of this brief article better than Burroughs:

“Whether you sniff it smoke it eat it or shove it up your ass the result is the same: addiction.” 

– William S. Burroughs

Erdogan Directs Attack on US Citizens

Joseph Warren, Editor


In a first the President of Turkey, Recep Tyyip Erdogan, from the comfort of his limousine, save for a few moments exposed while surrounded by bodyguards, directed an attack by Turkish Security Forces along with counter-demonstrators on the streets of Washington DC against US citizens. Certainly an interesting historic development at a time when Erdogan is under fire in his own country by those seeking to overthrow his authoritarian regime.

An attempt to oust Erdogan late last year resulted in the arrest and conviction, and probably summary execution, of several of those involved. At present, other trials are ongoing and are being met with demonstrated approval by Erdogan supporters. For an in-depth look at the events that day in Washington, read the Daily Caller’s report here.

Yet, when I think of Turkey I don’t think of Erdogan (or try not to, anyway). Rather, I think of Orhan Pamuk’s very memorable and enlightening, Istanbul; Memories and the City. Pamuk’s prose reveals an epic history of an empire fallen and society resurrected through a tumult of political upheaval and cultural Westernization.

Walking with Pamuk through the book he leads you to the past and present of Istanbul, the remnant Ottoman, along the Bosphorus, through the lascivious and sacred quarters of the city, and makes you a guest in his house when he was a child and through his formidable years. You will come away feeling as though you understand Istanbul at its most interesting times. It’s a delight to read. It’s an immersion, and at times such as these, it helps...

“The first thing I learned at school was that some people are idiots; the second thing I learned was that some are even worse. ” -Orhan Pamuk

The Future of Europe Project

Bruce Janigian


I participated recently in a “Future of Europe” project for the European Academy of Sciences and Arts and thought some reflection might be suitable for readers of this journal, especially because their focus extends globally.

An appropriate starting point is where humankind appears to be heading at a furious pace through the interventions of science and technologies which are about to overwhelm traditional human identities, including cultures and religions, with all the turmoil this entails. The starting point is much broader than Europe, and we must grasp it before we can address the particularities we seek to address.  Ultimately, the question becomes one of how Europe might adapt to retain some key qualities through the coming upheavals.

Humans will be changing into life forms closer to what might be viewed today as science fiction characters.  Bioengineering is starting with treating major diseases, but will soon be adapting all the major benefits other species enjoy ahead of humans, before advancing further. This will include increased sensory perception, brain function, and physical strength and agility, and longevity to include relative immortality. Who will gain these characteristics and benefits and who will be left behind?  These are questions that transcend regional or national interests.

I used to opine to graduate students and business executives that Islam has replaced Communism as the faith of the downtrodden and excluded. Just as Communism sought to share wealth and end exclusion, the tenets of Islam are similar.  When I was counsel for the US Agency for International Development in the 1980s, we anticipated the coming North-South wars and the invasion of Europe from North Africa.  We sought to delay it as long as possible.  With the collapse of the Soviet Union, the catastrophic decision made in the West was failing to seize the historic opportunity to shift Cold War military spending in favor of massive assistance to the developing world to create jobs through inward investment.  I recommended assistance to Russia to make it a partner with the West in this historic endeavor.  Instead, the West reduced foreign assistance budgets and actually increased intelligence and military spending. In my opinion, it also reverted to the old Great Game of shunning accommodation with Russia in favor of resource exploitation in the newly independent states.  I have written a factually based novel on the subject: Persona Non Grata: End of the Great Game by Avery Mann, my pen name.

So the immediate questions that face the planet deal with inclusion and exclusion.  If we seek maximum inclusion, it comes at the price of job creation and education and providing incentives that can only come at a considerable cost to the West.  Is there any option? In my opinion, failure to increase foreign assistance has resulted in the neglected recipients arriving in the center of Europe. The excluded will seek to destroy or make excessively costly technological or medical progress that bypasses them.  Thus, exclusion comes at the price now felt in Germany, Sweden and elsewhere, and leads to a rethinking of the social welfare net and cultural liberality that has sustained the modern European ethic following the Second World War.

Does Europe feel a greater cultural threat from Islamic migrants or from a closer relationship with Christian Russia, which shares many of the same concerns?  Does focusing spending on military resistance to a non-threatening Russia make more sense than stabilizing North Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia? This is another aspect of my book.  Looking to the larger historical context, does the division of the Church and the traditional East-West division make sense in a world challenged by a North-South dynamic and Western moral relativism squared off against a violently rigorous interpretation of Islamic fundamentalism?

The world is changing quickly and Europe must adapt. The recent election of Emmanuel Macron may have saved Europe’s ability to deal intelligently with its future. I would like to see it anticipate what is coming and choose suitable partners to help it face what lies ahead. Blindly reacting to instability it has itself engendered by intelligence and military adventurism in the developing world would be continuing to react with a flimsy bandage instead of facing up to a costly, but perhaps culturally life-saving, prescription.

Mr. Janigian is a Writer, Lawyer, Professor, Reader, and International Business Leader. You may learn more about him by visiting http://Janigian.com.

Reading Marquez and Saroyan

Joseph Warren, Editor


Earlier this month my copy of Saroyan’s The Gay and Melancholy Flux (on the recommendation of a writer-friend, Bruce Janigian, read, Persona Non Grata: End of the Great Game) arrived post from the United Kingdom. I was able to read through about the first two-thirds of it before becoming miserably mired in the profundity of Saroyan’s many commentaries on humanity then (circa 1930s), as now. I see it all around us everyday; I see the reflections of Saroyan’s words in our society as we lope along unforgiving and lost in the madness of what has become a parody of itself in a world stampeded by souls unable to inhale and yet always hoping for a continued life among the living.

“…you can’t be born again until you die, and you are afraid to die, you are afraid to live…to look and talk and speak and move…who are you anyway?” (From the story, The Drunkard.)

It made me think of the solemnity of Marquez in Love in the Time of Cholera, a book I had read twice before, but hadn’t in a number of years, so I withdrew it from the shelf and took a Saroyan break. I have it in Spanish as well and have stumbled through a third of the book laboring over definitions and trying to grasp the complexity and depth of the word Marquez chose for that one word and why he chose it, but I admit defeat. It must be what it’s like for the partially literate to try to read a “Literary” novel, in English, in our country: like a stuttering of the mind and frustrating as hell.

So, for the third time I read again, during my Saroyan-inspired hegira to escape the certain nausea associated with mortality, Edith Grossman’s translation of Marquez’s epic work on love, death, life, failure, success and the significance of none. (Why do I mention the translator Grossman? There are many translators of Marquez’s work: none evoke the essence of what I believe Marquez intended, to the level of Grossman: she is a great writer unto herself. Comparing all other translators to her is to compare the act of telling to that of describing with images, song, and poetry.)

The concluding pages of Marquez’s book happen on the Magdalena River at a time in Columbia’s history when the country remained plagued by cholera and the aftermath of revolution in a mired confluence of unblending cultures and conflicted society. Yet above it all Love persevered.

Although wonderfully described – beautifully told – I felt a yearning to better understand the river from the point of its original telling during the earliest passages of the book through to its conclusion. I found what I wanted in a collection of early photographs that, from my perspective, capture the Magdalena as it must have been to Marquez’s Florentino Ariza from his youth.

So rather than immersing yourself in “…things you cannot change…” as the addicts admonish, read Marquez’s Love in the Time of Cholera (El Amor en los Tiempos de Cólera, if you’re a better man than I) and keep the images below for reference while reading the various passages taking place on the River Magdalena. Then, find a copy of The Gay and Melancholy Flux by Saroyan and come to understand that none of what is happening today is important in the least, and that is why we have changed the format of this journal.

Images of the Magdalena and associated with the river:

The town of Honda and the rapids on approach

Perico Station: Terminus of the route

A wayside wood fueling station for the riverboats

A Magdalena wharf-side image

Our “Old Index” page (Home Page) is here if you’re thinking about changing the things you can’t.

Residual Quantum Field Effect

Joseph Warren

(with GL Hill)

For some of you, what you are about to read and consider could be life changing giving you a much different perspective on Life and Afterlife. For others, perhaps not. Ironically, we believe that the truth - the historic foundation of religions - lies herein. I know: That’s a pretty grand statement, but read on.

Most often people require some form of commitment to validate the legitimacy of a way of thinking: To suffer somehow, or give of one’s self to a cause, to pay tithing, and plainly here that’s not the case. All that’s required is that you consider, to the best of your experience, what you’ll read below. If it’s valid from your perspective – if you can understand what we’re saying and see its application to you – that’s wonderful. If not, that’s fine too.

People don’t read and think as much as they once did. We’ve become too accustomed to being told what is true, what is real, by our religious leaders, by our governments, by those around us who “know better” and who coincidentally subscribe to a specific way of thinking for the benefit of some organization or entity, government or private, and by television. We have no organization or television series to promote.

We believe that the Residual Quantum Field hypothesis belongs to everyone because through it we may better appreciate that we are all born from the same quantum fabric and share that common basis with all of humanity.

Through this thinking we may experience less existential angst, regret, sense of failure, hate, controversy; and through it we may live a more peaceful life, less fearful of death and what may have been for you, the unknown, or simply nothingness. Read article...

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Your submissions ought to be thought-provoking, controversial, unique or reflective of an Independent view and may touch on any subject. No judgment regarding the article’s political slant will be made.


J Warren, Publisher and Editor; GL Hill, Publisher and Contributing Writer; J Shepherd, Contributing Writer; R de la Luna, Contributing Writer; Sister Justine, SJ, Contributing Writer. Warren-Hill Productions. WarrenHillProductions@gmail.com