Tapas y España

Mi esposa y yo hicimos un tour por Portugal y España a partir del 9 mayo al 2 junio. Muchas de las iglesias, palacios, museos y castillos que visitamos nos impresionó y nos ha ilustrado de la larga y variada historia de estos dos países. Lo que fue un placer fue transformándose en una lección de historia, y fue una experiencia de la vida.

Las muchas ciudades que transitamos en España: Andalucía, Sevilla, Jerez de la Frontera, Marbella, Ronda, Granada, Córdoba, Madrid, Bilbao, San Sebastián y Barcelona. En todos estos municipios, visitamos palacios, catedrales, iglesias, teatros romanos/teatros. También disfrutamos de la muchos bares de tapas en muchos de los pueblos y ciudades que hemos visitado.

Antes de continuar con el bar de tapas experiencia tengo que decir algo sobre España. Para ponerlo simplemente, España es un país hermoso, los españoles son un amante de la diversión y gente amable. En cada ciudad nos recibieron con amistad. Hemos tratado de aprender el idioma, pero el pueblo de España se reunió con nosotros más de la mitad de salvar la barrera del idioma al hablar inglés, que era mejor que mi español.

El estilo de vida en España es a un ritmo más lento, y en 14:00 cada día el Español toma una siesta de dos horas. Hemos adoptado un ritmo más lento con rapidez, y se consume vino en cada almuerzo y cena, Vino Tinto o Vino Blanco. Las comidas son muy diferentes de las horas que se comen en Spokane. El desayuno es a las 9:00 de la mañana, el almuerzo se consume en 14:00 que es el más grande comida del día y la cena consistió de tapas o platos pequeños a las 9:00 o 22:00

En Estados Unidos han oído hablar de bares de tapas, tapas pero en España es una obsesión. Bocadillos de jamón ibérico de los bares de tapas cada taberna. Tapas incluye elementos tales como: Sardinas, almejas, ostras, anchoas y muchos más platos pequeños. Jamón Ibérico es algo que se debe hacer cuando estás en España, no tenemos nada parecido en los EE.UU.

Cuando estuvimos en Barcelona nuestro hotel estaba en la Rambla. Esta sección de la ciudad es de pared a pared de turista con como muchos proveedores. La Rambla es una gran zona peatonal con dos pequeños automóviles de calle un desbordamiento en los bordes entre los edificios y la zona peatonal. El paseo de la Rambla es bloqueada llena de turistas lo que es muy difícil caminar rápidamente. Sin embargo, disfrutamos el río humano de la Rambla.

A los 2 días en Barcelona, me decidí a visitar un par de tiendas y tabernas tapas en la calle de dos cuadras de la Rambla. He visitado un bar de tapas llamado Disapore Bar. Se trata de un muy agradable el riego de orificio y sitio de tapas. Después de mi segunda visita manager Alessandro Troisi, y me hice amigos. Sin embargo, mientras se observa Alessandro y los clientes que iban y venían me di cuenta que estaba en un bar de barrio. Alessandro sabía todos los que vinieron, y saludó a cada uno, como un viejo amigo, incluido yo. Disapore Bar los aplausos de las Ramblas. A todo el que entra es un amigo, un extraño. Ya que me encanta disfrutar de un buen martini, Alessandro me presentó a vodka que tenía en la bolsa conocido como Beluga. Sí este vodka es fabricado por la familia que vende caviar Beluga. Si estás en vodka Beluga vodka es un debemos intentarlo.

Recomiendo visitar la Península Ibérica es una aventura llena de diversión con conocimientos históricos y la gente más amable del mundo le dará la bienvenida. A la conclusión de gira en España, si alguien encuentra él o ella de Barcelona y en la La Rambla le recomiendo una visita a Disapore Bar en la calle Pintor Fortuny 15 en Barcelona, España sólo unas pocas cuadras de la Rambla.
Nos hizo disfrutar.

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Tapas and Spain

My wife and I toured Portugal and Spain from May 9th through June 2nd. The many churches, palaces, museums, and castles we visited wowed us and enlightened us of the long and varied history of these two countries. What was a vacation morphed into a history lesson, and was an experience of a lifetime.

The many cities we toured in Spain: Andalucía, Seville, Jerez de la Frontera, Marbella, Ronda, Granada, Cordoba, Madrid, Bilbo, San Sebastian, and Barcelona. In all these municipalities we visited palaces, cathedrals, churches, Roman arenas/theaters. We also enjoyed the many tapas bars in many of the towns and cities we visited.

Before I continue with the tapas bar experience I need to say something about Spain. To put it plainly, Spain is a beautiful country, the Spaniards are a fun loving and friendly people. In every city we were greeted with friendship. We tried to learn the language but the people of Spain met us more than half-way by bridging the language barrier by speaking English that was better than my Spanish.

The life-style in Spain is at a slower pace, and at 2:00 pm every day the Spaniard’s takes a two-hour siesta. We adopted the slower pace quickly, and consumed wine with every lunch and dinner, Vino Tinto or Vino Blanco. The eating hours are quite different than the hours we eat back in Spokane. Breakfast is at 9:00 am, lunch usually is consumed at 2:00 pm which is the largest meal of the day, and dinner consisted of tapas or small plates at 9:00 or 10:00 pm.

We in America have heard of tapas bars, but in Spain tapas is an obsession. Sandwiches of Iberian ham line the bars of each tapas tavern. Tapas included such items as: Sardines, clams, oysters, anchovies and many more small dishes. Iberian ham is a must try when you’re in Spain, we have nothing like it in the U.S.

When we were in Barcelona our hotel was on the La Rambla. This section of the city is wall-to-wall tourist with as many vendors. The La Rambla is a very large pedestrian way with two small automobile street on the edges squeezed in between the buildings and the pedestrian area. The walkway of the La Rambla is jammed full of tourist making it very difficult to walk quickly. However, we enjoyed the human river of the La Rambla.

On the 2nd day in Barcelona, I decided to visit a few stores and tapas taverns on side street two-blocks off the La Rambla. I visited a tapas bar named Disapore Bar. It is a very friendly watering-hole and tapas place. After my second visit manager Alessandro Troisi and I became friends. However, while observing Alessandro and the customers who came and went I realized I was in a neighborhood bar. Alessandro knew everyone who came in, and greeted each one as a longtime friend, including me. Disapore Bar is the Cheers of the La Rambla. Everyone who enters is a friend even a stranger. Since I enjoy a good martini, Alessandro introduced me to vodka he had in his stock known as Beluga. Yes this vodka is manufactured by the family that sells Beluga Caviar. If you’re into vodka Beluga vodka is a must try.

I recommend touring the Iberian Peninsula is a fun filled adventure complete with historic insights and the friendliest people in the world will greet you. To conclude while touring Spain if anyone finds him or herself in Barcelona and at the La Rambla I highly recommend a visit to Disapore Bar at Carrer Pintor Fortuny 15 in Barcelona, Spain just a few blocks off the La Rambla.
Enjoy we did.

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Bloomsday 12K Road Race 2013

I ran my first Bloomsday Road Race on May 5, 2013. A little history of the event; Bloomsday is held in Spokane, Washington on the first Sunday in May. This year’s event is the thirty-seventh-year of the running event. And Bloomsday is the largest non-marathon race in the country. The event this year saw fifty-one thousand people paid the entrance fee. The number of people whom crossed the finish line approximately forty-seven-thousand. The organizers of the Bloomsday Road Race have enlisted an army of seven-thousand volunteer’s. Without these faithful volunteers Bloomsday could not happen.

This year was a more somber event because the bombing at the Boston Marathon. Therefore, the security was very tight, with police, FBI, Homeland Security, and bomb sniffing dogs doing their best to keep the event safe. The event coordinators wanted to show their solidarity with Boston. So they provided silicon bracelets embossed with the message Bloomsday stands with Boston. Every participant I saw was wearing the bracelet.

Since this was my first time participating in Bloomsday, my impression of the event was a carnival atmosphere. Along the course many different groups sang songs of joy and happiness. Many of the racer’s wore costumes such as; a group of college aged women all wearing tut-tuts, or a group of young men wearing t-shirts printed with their clubs name T with an image of a bird. I also saw many women whom had colored their hair with bright neon colors. I didn’t see a frown on any face even when I was ascending the dreaded doomsday hill. This is the last hill of the Bloomsday course, and it’s a monster of a hill, and every Bloomie knows its do or die. After each entrant overcomes this hill the balance of the course is flat and only two and a half miles to the finish line.

If you haven’t participated in an event with fifty-one thousand people, you can’t image the enormity of the problem with just starting the event. Below in words of the organizer’s how they conquered that problem.
Delayed Start Times
Seventh Year of Our Wave Starting Procedure
The start line is on Riverside Avenue between Lincoln & Post Streets (approximately 801 W. Riverside, Spokane, WA 99201). To facilitate use of computer chip timing, all Bloomsday color groups will use Riverside again this year. Please check the back of your runner number or follow the signs to the marshaling area for your color group on Riverside. You may access Riverside from either the north or the south, but please enter from the BACK of your group. (If you wish, you may join a color group that starts later than your color. This is the best way for family and friends to stay together if they’ve been given different color assignments.)
You should arrive 30 minutes prior to the estimated starting time listed for your color group to ensure entrance to your starting area. Groups will be allowed to start as the roadway clears, so please follow instructions on race morning. As each color group moves forward toward the start line, groups will be divided into waves with approximately 5,000 in each wave. The orange, blue and lilac groups will each be broken into smaller groups to accomplish this.
Do not start before your color group is directed to start or you won’t be timed. We anticipate approximately 1 hour, 20 minutes before the final group (red) will start. But remember, with computer chip timing, your Bloomsday time will be calculated from when you cross the start until you cross the finish. No need to rush to get started! Copied from Bloomsday web-site Bloomsday.org.

Every participant receives his or her time it took to complete the course of seven-point-four- six miles. The first groups to start are the true competitor’s or athletes. Old men like me hope to just finish the race. I’ll never win a prize or have the best top time, but I finished the seven-point-four-six miles in two-hours-twenty-six-minutes and ten seconds.

Next year Bloomsday is going to be held on May 4, 2014. If you want to visit a great city and enjoy the company of thousands of new friends then plan to visit Spokane, Washington on May 4th, 2014.

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The Graphic Arts Industry and the Twenty-first Century

The industrial artist in the early twentieth-century used the pen or pencil to create logos, or an ad campaign designs. The industrial graphic artist for the last half twentieth-century used pencils, pens, and an exacto-knifes. They used exacto-knifes to cut a new product named Rubylith to make photographable designs. The artist created the required designs with Rubylith. Then the artist photographed the images, using the photos to burn; plates and, silk screens to print lithographs, decals, and roll labels.
A short history of Rubylith explained below.
*The invention of pressure sensitive plastic materials gave the artist an additional tool Rubylith. Rubylith is a brand of masking film, invented and trademarked by the Unlano Corporation. Rubylith consists of two films sandwiched together. The bottom layer is a clear polyester backing sheet. The top layer is a translucent, red colored, self-adhesive emulsion. It is designed to be both easy to cut with an exacto-knife and light safe for use with orthochromatic films.

*Rubylith is used in many areas of graphic design, typically to produce masks for various printing techniques. For example it is often used to mask off areas of a design when using a light source to produce printing plates for offset lithography or rotogravure. It is also frequently used during screen-printing.
*Information about Rubylith obtained from Wikipedia en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rubylith

In nineteen-seventy-eight I began my sales career, selling silk-screen printed decals. Rubylith was the used to create images on a clear film base to burn the image onto the silk-screen. There used to be a job description at screen-printing companies, titled a Stripper. The title of the occupation described the day-to-day duties of the employee. He or she would strip the Rubylith design onto a film, which created the silk-screen to print the decals.

In the years since my introduction into the printing industry new technologies adopted by art rooms made the masking system detailed above more efficient. In the early nineteen-nineties a new technology the computer, changed the industrial art room for ever.

When the printing artist realized the power of the computer, art rooms changed forever. Then the computer replaced the pen, pencil and the exacto-knife, employed by the artist for decades. In the past the art room could make or break a dead-line it was a bottle-neck, but the computer changed that image.
In the late nineteen-nineties and continuing into the twenty-first-century the digital created artwork replaced the mechanical created art. The art room of the past had many items such as: light-tables, cameras, and stripping areas to mention a few. Most print manufactures, sold their photographic equipment, and light-tables are faint memory. Stripping departments’ are extinct as is the occupation of the Stripper. The tools of the art room are now the computer and the printer. Therefore, art rooms became smaller. Now were staffed with fewer personnel. The best part the art teams became more efficient.

Then printing industry combined the computer, with the new large format digital printer. This union created a new industry, Web-to-print. Web-to-print paradigm allows the consumer and a company to design a desired printed product from their computer; then the design is sent to the printer via the internet, without speaking to a sales person. The process is seamless. Proofing, payment, and shipping directions are all communicated electronically. The best part the printer saves money, time, and scheduling errors, and the customer saves time, and money.

It is a brave new world. The computer now is being pared to the three-dimensional printer. However, that is another article for another time.

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Graphic designs and sticker printing in the twenty-first century

AKA web to print

How many of us have thought of an axiom, and we said, ‘that would make a great bumper sticker.’ Alternatively, the garage band desire to be known outside their neighborhood. The small business with a great product, or service that needs to market to a larger consumer base. The problem each of the above entrepreneurs share in common is their small marketing budgets.

The answer to the lack of marketing dollars is to find a way to advertise your message to the masses inexpensively.
I have learned of a new website that seems to fulfill the desire to advertise to a larger market. The website is www.stickermafia.com Stickermafia.com allows anyone to design and print bumper stickers of his or her favorite catchphrase like; ‘Rap Music Sounds like Sneakers in the Dryer’ or ‘Men Stop to Think but Forget to Start Again.’ In addition, the band looking to grow their following can design a sticker that will market their band. Moreover, the small business can effectively utilize their marketing dollars, with a well-designed sticker.

This website does not offer a plain Jane sticker, but each design can and will be as colorful only limited by the designer’s imagination. To illustrate the potential power of using stickers as advertising tool, the following stories demonstrates this more effectively.

The story is about a surfing clothing line known as “Hang Ten.” This company did not have any retail outlets, but did sell their clothing line in specialty clothing outlets. The company used broadcast and print media to advertise their brand, but also wanted to utilize stickers to complete their advertising blitz. The problem was how to get their kick butt logo design into the hands of their customers the surfers who purchased their surf clothing line.
They solved the dilemma by using the hangtag that each garment had attached to it. The tag on one side had the brand name or sizing, pricing, but on the reverse side there was printed a “Hang Ten” logo as a sticker. Now that the sticker was in the consumers hands these stickers where affixed to many different surfaces by the surfer. They adhered the logos to cars, lockers, notebooks, surfboards, and to the delight of the company, “Hang Ten” became the clothing of the surfing industry. The success of the sticker-branding program to the surf industry was so complete, the line of clothing known as “Hang Ten” went mainstream. The clothing line known as Hang Ten was picked-up by major clothing outlets of the day.

I offer another story of a company using stickers a marketing tool.
In the 1960’s through the early 1980’s STP success was largely contributed to the bumper sticker program. The sticker program was one of the segments of the circle of advertising beginning with media and billboards’ ads, store banners, and in store POP (Point of Purchase) displays.

The STP’s bumper stickers in those days was so ubiquitous, it help to create a critical mass of advertising, that when someone thought of a fuel treatment STP was the product name that came to mind.

Now that we have established the effectiveness of stickers’ ability to convey a desired message, what makes stickermafia.com so revolutionary? Cost, the above case histories’ each of the companies illustrated had one thing the garage bands, small business, or the kitchen bumper sticker designer, don’t have, money or not as much to fund a full blown marketing budget.

If you’re a band with a new genera of music, a small business that has a revolutionary product, or just man or woman with a great kick-ass bumper sticker designs. Stickermafia.com has now made it more affordable and easy to get your message out to your desired audiences.

Stickermafia.com notes, “Your custom stickers made with ruthless efficiency!”
Jason Bryant president of The Decal Factory provided all the details for this article. Stickermafia.com is the collaborative effort of sales department at The Decal Factory. The three members started stickermafia.com is Wesley Bryant, Dan Williams, and Jason Bryant.

Jason said stickermafia.com would be live as of March 1, 2013. If you would like to contact Jason his e-mail address is; the d...@stickermafia.com

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PRINT BROKERS:HOW CAN YOUR BUSINESS BENEFIT FROM THEM

Before we can start this discussion you must ask yourself: What do you sell? Why are you the best at it? Why should somebody choose your company? Invariably the answer to all of these questions is going to be (in one form or another) that you are an expert on your product. You are an expert on the way it gets to your customer’s hands and how it’s produced.
Since you are an expert in said field, why then would you want to become an expert on printed materials? Why not let experts in printing handle all of your printed materials? You are an expert in your field because you work with it and practice on being better each and every day. The same is true with a print broker we strive to be better and better each and every day. Why? The same reason you do to get our customer the best product for their needs.
This is an important point because if you work directly with a manufacture they are going to sell you what they manufacture. What they manufacture may or may not be what you need. For example: Let’s say you need a double faced decal, and you need 50,000 decals for a huge promotion you are doing. Since this is a promotion you need to keep your costs down since you are giving these decals away. So you need the most efficient processes to produce these to keep costs down. Now manufacture guy prints everything with semi-automatic presses and uses an opaque flex-twin material to keep the image from bleeding through to the other side. Okay, let’s examine this:
A. Manufacture uses opaque flex-twin material
a. It will satisfy your needs but is there a better way?

B. Manufacture uses semi-automatic presses
a. It will satisfy your needs but is there a better way?

Now let’s look at a broker’s way of thinking (in red)
A. Manufacture uses opaque flex-twin material
1. Opaque flex-twin is a great material however it is also a premium material and because I know my customer is giving these away we are going to print these on a clear poly (non-premium material) and use a block out white ink (non premium ink) to stop the image from bleeding through to the other side.

B. Manufacture uses semi-automatic presses
1. Semi-automatic presses are slow and great for shorter runs. However we are printing 50,000 decals and we need to gain some efficiency in the production of these decals so we are going to utilize “X” manufacture because their sweet spot is inline printing. Inline printing is much more efficient than semi-automatic presses; hence we will save the customer money.
The print broker has just saved the customer a lot of money because they sold their customer what they needed not what they produce. Since the print broker has no machines that need to be filled with work the print broker has no loyalty to one machine. Since there is no loyalty to one machine the customer gets sold the best product for their business and saved money.
Where The Decal Factory strives to be better than their competitor is the fact that we look at different manufacture’s sweet spots. In other words every manufacture has a product and/or process that they do exceptionally well. In fact, they do say product/service better than anybody else does. Since they are the best The Decal Factory uses this company for that one product/service and delivers it up to our customers on a silver platter. We know how to do this because we have been in business and perfecting our craft for 30 years. So when you partner with us it’s like you have an associate on your team with 30 years experience on finding the best way to get your printed materials sourced. Also because we only source from companies that have a defined sweet spot every product category that we sell is our sweet spot. We become your one stop shop for printed materials with a very competitive price, exemplary customer service, and high quality products.

Posted in Decals, Screen Printing | 10 Comments

Power to the People or to the Government

The following phrase should never be uttered in our nation, as a debate subject or under any other premise.
A Post-Constitutional America: Your Basic Rights Are at Greater Risk Than You Think
The author, ‘Mark Levin warns that we are living in a post-Constitutional America.’

The question we have to ask ourselves, do we as a people cherish the rights outlined in the first ten amendments of our constitution? If any of us believe that those rights are given by God, and not won from a government.
If any of us have forgotten he is the list our rights:

First Amendment

This amendment guarantees freedom of religion, speech, and the press, and protects the right of assembly.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

Second Amendment
This amendment protects the right to keep and bear arms.
A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

Third Amendment
This amendment guards against the forced quartering of troops. (In the years before the American Revolution, British officials forced the colonists to quarter—to house and feed—British troops.)
No soldier shall, in time of peace, be quartered in any house, without the consent of the owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

Fourth Amendment
This amendment protects against unreasonable searches and seizures.
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Fifth Amendment
This amendment guarantees a trial by jury and “due process of law,” and guards against double jeopardy (being charged twice for the same offense) and self-incrimination.
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

Sixth Amendment
This amendment outlines the rights of the accused, including the right to have a “speedy and public” trial, the right to be informed of the charges made against him, the right to call witnesses in his defense, and the right to have an attorney in his defense.
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.

Seventh Amendment
This amendment lays out the rules of common law.
In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise reexamined in any court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

Eighth Amendment
This amendment protects against “cruel and unusual punishments.”
Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

Ninth Amendment
This amendment ensures that the individual rights that are not enumerated in the Constitution are secure—that is, that these rights should not be automatically infringed upon because they are omitted from the Constitution.
The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Tenth Amendment
This amendment limits the power of federal government by reserving for the states all powers that are not explicitly granted to the federal government by the Constitution, nor denied to the states. This amendment counterbalances Article VI, which invests the federal government with ultimate legislative authority.
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

The federal government is currently trying to erase or breach these rights. Well meaning people tell us these compromises of our rights are to protect the public welfare, for security reasons.

However, the villain that can snuff out liberties glare is within all of us. When we as a people believe it is ok to bargain with the darkness of oppression, then we are doomed.

The darkness is gathering and this blackness is the federal government or any leader who negotiates with oppression for the common good. Even our first president George Washington knew even a well-meaning good leader cannot be trusted with absolute power.

I adjure each denizen of this great country to consider and ponder the ten amendments listed above. Are we willing to allow the federal government to be our master and deny us our God given rights?

The following video discusses the above.

http://www.pjtv.com/?cmd=mpg&mpid=105&load=6735

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The Debt

The search for truth was the desire of the seeker. The quest began with a question. Because the seeker is a human man, the question easily formed.

What common denominator links all of creation, of both man and beast?

To answer this query the seeker thought, “I need to define the difference of the beast of the field, and man.”

Therefore, the seeker surmised, “The beginning is where I shall start…”

Then a thought stopped the seeker’s surmising. Oh not just a thought, but at that very moment dawn broke, and the darkness of night replaced by the suns glory. As the seeker witnessed this daily celestial event with awe, he realized the answer to his first inquisition.

The seeker spoke the answer into the empty room. “A man can appreciate a sunrise.” He paused to collect his thoughts. Then the resolution form in his mind. In fact, the seeker’s excitement caused him to spat out the obvious, “A beast cannot describe, the beauty and splendor of a simple dawn!”

Man was different from the other beast that roamed the earth; man was self-aware the beast of the field were not.

Now the more difficult question loomed before the seeker. “What similarities did man and the beast of the field share?”
The seeker studied and listed the parallels: Two eyes, legs, teeth, hair, or fur, a nose. Moreover, what he knew of biology, a heart, lungs, the list seemed endless.

The seeker examined beast in a zoo and the same beast in its natural environment. The seeker saw the caged lion did not have the look of a predator in its eye. Nevertheless, the lions he saw filmed on the Serengeti Plains had the look of a hunter.

The seeker said again, with excitement, “To be free is the desire of a man and beast. Free to be what they each were born to do.”

The seeker knew that the beast of the field were free. However, man formed into communities, which soon formed into town, cities, kingdoms, empires, and nations. Then each group elected a leader, to protect the common good. Then darkness fell as each leader subjugated his fellow citizens.

This reality almost caused the seeker to halt his investigation. The seeker spoke as tears tracked down his cheeks. “All beasts were born free. However, men, women were born into slavery.”

The seeker struggled forward as he scanned the historical accounts. Darkness of oppressive societies filled his vision even to the horizon. He penned what his research found in the following account.

Thousands of years of oppressive darkness ruled the earth. Kingdom after kingdom, one despot replace by a crueler ruler, each tyrant dominated his own citizens.

Then seeker learned what evil existed under heaven. These dictators made slaves of men and women of the vanquished foes of the despot. The seeker discovered evil piled onto more evil. The dominated subjects of these kingdoms enslaved people who were different. The subjugated endured the bitterness of their existence by enslaving those of different skin color, religious, and political beliefs.

The seeker in his search realized the enslavement of the many by the few. Not only did these rulers subjugate the body, but also they destroyed the spirit of men.

The seeker found this evil continued year after year, then decades became centuries. As the centuries piled one upon another, the domination of the many by the few, continued as the epochs became thousands of years. Freedom was all but a forgotten idea.

Then the seeker saw a light of hope, the narrative of his research continues.

Then the seeker saw a spark that lite a candle. This small flickering light pierced the darkness, and the oppressive night fled. This small flame of a candle gave hope to the hopeless. The seeker witnessed how this small insignificant quivering flame set the spirit of men, and women free. Free to choose, free to dream, free to hope, and to live by the rule of law, instead of the rule of the one.

This shinning flame the seeker learned its name, and its place among the epochs of time. The candle that assaulted the darkness of oppression called liberty. The time 508 B.C., the place in Greece the flame is the Athenian Democracy.

The seeker witnessed as the flame of liberty warmed, and illuminated the world. The small flickering flame of liberty grew into a blaze. Liberty’s warmth freed the human mind to imagine. The fervor of liberties flame was the freedom for each individual to choose: new ideas, the beauty of art, the poet, and the idea of possibilities.

The light of liberty illuminated the universal realities waiting for the freed mind to discover. The freed mind found the universal tools of math, science, and philosophy. These tools allowed man to explain and to understanding how the world worked.

The seeker saw liberties light did not vanquish all of the darkness. This light did not and could not conquer the blackness of oppression in the hearts of men. The flame of liberty even though glowed brightly, which appeared unquenchable, was not an eternal flame. This liberty was fragile, and the flame we must guard the flame. Liberty death comes from within, as freedom negotiates with the darkness.

Then the seeker saw as this flame of hope again extinguished by the oppressive darkness. Once again, the world was dark. The enslavement of men and women seemed even more oppressive.

The seekers tears again stained his face. However, now he searches with a hope again to find that light of liberty. The catalogue of his findings continues.

The seekers research found Caesars, emperors, kings, popes, and religious orders oppressed the people. Then again the years gave way to, decades became, centuries into millennia.

Suddenly, the hope that drove the seeker, burst into joy. As the seeker found a hope after more than two thousand years of unbroken oppressive darkness, the seeker witnessed a spark.

With tears of joy blurring his vision, the seeker continued his chronicle.

The spark again lite the flame of liberty the flint was a simple declaration of independence from the rule of the few. The Declaration of Independence of 1776 declared that a government governs at the consent of the governed. Furthermore, the rights of liberty are inalienable.

The seeker saw, as the flame of liberty became a bonfire of hope. The new flame had a name, The United States of America. This blaze of liberty became a fervor, which burned in the heart of every denizen of this new land.

The seeker witnessed as the light of liberty became a beacon welcoming all those who desire freedom to come. Even to this very hour, The Statue of Liberty is the iconic image of the beacon welcoming all who dare to be free.

However, the seeker’s analysis came to one conclusion. Liberty is not free or self-sustaining. The ever-present darkness desires to extinguish the flame of freedom.

The seeker is your fellow citizen, and we enjoy liberty’s warmth together. However, the seeker tenders a warning to his fellow residents; the darkness of oppression is now crouching at our door. Fear not, the darkness of oppression of a Hitler, or some Asian despot will not, and cannot extinguish the flame of liberty.

The foe of liberty the seeker presages of is more insidious, than a mere outside adversary.

The villain that can snuff out liberties glare is within all of us. When we as a people believe it is ok to bargain with the darkness of oppression, then we are doomed.

We whom enjoy, and live in liberties protective glare; our debt is to protect the flame of liberty. We also owe a debt to the ancient Athenian’s of Greece because it is the headwaters of our freedom. Our obligation to our founding fathers is not to change the terms of our liberty on its head for selfish reasons or for security concerns.

Every man, woman, and child’s debt is to protect this fragile flame of liberty. Our debt paid in full when we leave for our descendants the legacy of liberty.

It is as simple as this; if we are not all free then none of us is free.

Author: Douglas Bryant

Posted in Freedom, Hope, Liberty, Rule of Law, The Declaration of Independence | Leave a comment