Friday, September 20, 2019

Brief #RandomtThoughts As weekend looms....


It was another busy week of engagements and projects--I had the pleasure to be in Laguna Beach earlier this week and captured this beautiful gem of life in Laguna Beach--The Sunset says it all!!!

I look forward to sharing some closing thoughts as I gear up for the 4th Quarter.

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

#RandomThoughts




It is the eve of 9/11 as I write some #RandomThoughts For the Week.   I captured the thoughts as I did above to think about our World especially as I see now John Bolton has been fired (or resigned) depending on the narratives.    

The two images I noted above to headline my #RandomThoughts was about caring and about making sure that as one simple member of the @ordinaryfaces, I continue to do what I can to give voice and to help to transform--the basic mission behind the Daily Outsider.   This is as I also finished off helping with curation on the eve of 9/11 as our team will go dark through Thursday in honor of 9/11 although our Twitter Feed will be active daily with updates along with the Broadcast POD.

As I close out these Brief #RandomThoughts, I wanted to salute the memory of the #BlueGirl in Iran who died of wounds she suffered after setting herself on Fire in protest at receiving a prison sentence for attending a football (Soccer) Match and also salute the Civic Activists who have received a combined 111 Years Prison Sentence:  



#WeShallOvercome.





Sunday, September 1, 2019

#RandomThoughts

The Laguna Niguel Skyline 
It is the eve of Labor Day as I write this.   I took a little time off commitments at the Daily Outsider to reflect and remember while being supportive of My Aunt's Move to her new community.    It has been a odyssey to reflect upon a fabulous life and as she begins a new chapter of an accomplished life of purpose that she has had so far.    Being a symbol of resilience, strength and courage in spite of all the odds has been an inspiration to me, My Sister (a symbol of strength, courage and stoic tenacity in her own right and very much a source of inspiration) , my cousins, our extended family and her vast circle of friends.   As I was reflecting upon such a magnificent life, I caught the image above from my Aunt's  residence late last night as I was taking a break before getting back to work.   

As I am back at my Office, I had a chance to call up a beautiful melody sung by a legend of Iranian Music and Art for almost 60 years--The great Googosh.   She began as a child prodigy, grew up to be one of the most versatile performers with memorable roles in Music and Film.  The revolution derailed her career and she was subject to intimidation and harassment constantly--I believe that she was under arrest on at least a couple of occasions before leaving Iran.     I released this to my Personal Twitter Feed Late Last night to remember:

Onward to September with all its' possibilities.... 


Monday, August 26, 2019

#RandomThoughts

I have been out & about over the past week with on-going initiatives.    While I've been on my prowl today, I decided to be supportive of the call to action by Second Harvest that I saw earlier over the weekend:


Dear Partners,


The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently released a proposed rule that would severely restrict eligibility for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). If implemented, this rule would result in three million individuals losing SNAP and 500,000 children losing access to free school meals.


We are asking you to join Second Harvest Food Bank in opposing this harmful rule by writing comments and sharing how it would increase hunger in your community.


Please find below, a template letter for you to use in contacting USDA. The letter can be sent through mail, email, or online link and must be received by September 23, 2019. All comments received by USDA must be read, cataloged and answered in the final rule. As people on the front lines of hunger in our community, we believe it is crucial for USDA to hear your voice.


For questions about the proposed rule, please contact Sarah Tolentino or Brana Vlasic at sarah@feedoc.org or brana@feedoc.org.


Thank you for your continued support in helping to make sure that we have all the resources we need to help feed the hungry in our community.


Sincerely,


Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County


As I was working away on commitments at the Daily Outsider, I noticed a call out from the NRDC which I had the pleasure to sign off on especially in light of the disaster on-going at the Amazon--what was so sad was seeing how the Brazilian President mocked the First Lady of France as the Amazon Burnt:

NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council)
Mike— For nearly a month, the Amazon rainforest — "the Earth's lungs" — has been on fire. This tragedy affects us all, and is yet another terrible reminder about climate change, how fragile the world's forests are, and how much work needs to be done.

Today is National Toilet Paper Day, a day to act to protect another of the Earth's critical carbon-storing forests — the boreal forests of northern Canada.

These majestic forests store huge amounts of our climate-busting carbon pollution. But the boreal is also being cut at a dizzying rate… much of it to make toilet paper. And right now, too many toilet paper brands use 100% virgin forest fiber that often comes from clear-cut ancient trees and old-growth forests — like the Canadian boreal.

But there's something that we can do to help stop the destruction of the old-growth boreal forest — We Wipe Right.

By pledging to switch from 100% virgin forest fiber toilet paper to 100% recycled, each wipe can help save trees and reduce greenhouse gas pollution and also let companies know you want them to switch to making products that don't flush our forests down the toilet.

Mike, take the pledge to Wipe Right and save our trees — and our climate — by switching to 100% recycled toilet paper. Help us reach our goal of 100,000 pledges, and find out which toilet paper brands are best for the environment.
Never underestimate the importance of toilet paper in our fight against climate change: Destroying forests to make toilet paper is a threat not just to our environment and our climate, but to hundreds of Indigenous communities, iconic boreal caribou, billions of songbirds, and other wildlife that call this ancient forest home.

Too many toilet paper brands use 100% virgin forest fiber that often comes from clear-cut ancient trees and old-growth forests — including Canada's boreal forest.

But, if every person in the U.S. replaced just one roll of toilet paper made from trees with a roll made with 100% recycled materials, we could save 1,083,000 carbon-storing trees.

So, what can we do to help stop the destruction of the old-growth boreal forest? We Wipe Right.

Take the pledge to Wipe Right and help us reach our goal of 100,000 pledges.

By taking the pledge, you'll be on your way to becoming a more conscious consumer of toilet paper and other paper goods. We'll even share more information and resources with you that will give you the rundown on what brands are the most sustainable.

So, in honor of National Toilet Paper Day, help us reach 100,000 pledges by taking the pledge to Wipe Right for our environment. Then find out which toilet paper brands are best for the planet.

Thanks, and happy National Toilet Paper Day!

Shelley Vinyard
Boreal Corporate Campaign Manager, NRDC


Such Random Thoughts won't be even possible without my reflecting upon Iran.    One the Iranian Legends, Googosh, produced this clip capturing how she (and all Iranians) were witness to the last 40 years--the lyrics are in Farsi but the images are striking and the music is absolutely stunning and beautiful as she collaborated with another Iranian Legend, Siavash Ghomeshi: 






I was so proud of this from my second cousin who served as a member of the Production Team for this Movie and the beautiful retrospective she wrote underscoring the profound challenges Iranians face right now and how I understand it has been shortlisted for the Oscars:  





 As I finish off these Random Thoughts, It is in the end about making a difference.    But what the Guardian's Simon Tisdall wrote in the aftermath of the G7 Truly gave me a moment of pause as he closed out his column today with this: "...It’s time to think again about who rules the world, and how – while there’s still a world left to rule...."  

A chilling thought indeed....

Monday, August 19, 2019

#RandomThoughts On the Dawn of a New Week....

It has been quite a weekend that for me began with joining the Cal State Guard Military History Command at the Merage Jewish Center as the Center once again was gracious enough to host the Jewish Medal of Honor Recipients.  I captured this image from the Garden which was extremely moving as I underscored:  #NeverAgain. 

My odyssey  continued as I was at the City of Laguna Niguel 30th Anniversary Carnival.   It was great to be witness to the vibrancy of the Community and the dedication of the City Staff.   It was a pleasure to create grids in support of Donate A Photo.

It has been a distressing week in many respects, though as an Afghan Wedding Party was attacked by the Islamic State and Iran continues to be suffering.    I am trying to understand the writings by a man by the name of Ahmad Al-Ghabanchi which I look forward to helping to feature in the Education Property as I view that Islam is yet to adjust to modernity.     I also had some research/discourse on Social Media on the President as epitomized by the following:



As a new week dawns, I decided to capture some thoughts while on my social media curation initiative which I thought was quite poignant as I look forward to the opportunity to be of continued support for Daily Outsider Projects and on-going initiatives--I remain optimistic ever more in spite of the challenges.

As I note to say Onward to the new week, I close out this weekly #RandomThoughts with the following: 





Remaining Hopeful...

Sunday, August 11, 2019

#RandomThoughts




It has been a challenging week on a multitude of fronts.    I took a little time to be at Mission Viejo Mall as I did a Good turn by recycling some old cell phones.   I caught the headline while on my walkabout.

While awaiting at the ecoATM machine, I saw this:




It has also been a week where I have seen the compassion and caring of healthcare professionals in action at Mission Hospital.    I caught this while at Mission Hospital earlier this week:



It is such that continues to sustain my sense of hope and optimism in spite of the profound challenges the country faces in the aftermath of Dayton and El Paso.   The Time Magazine Cover said it all:


The work at the Daily Outsider has also been on-going--and at times, challenging.       As I was reflecting upon the week that was, all I could possibly motivate myself to do is to remember what these admonitions are and what I must live up to: 





There lies the challenge....

Friday, August 2, 2019

#RandomThoughts As a New Month Dawns.....

It has been quite a month!!

I decided to create a Visual set of #RandomThoughts on my travel this week as I criss-crossed California.  I always knew our home state was great--but it was reinforced.




@CityofDavis, California 

Uncle Vito's:  Downtown @CityofDavis 

@UC Davis:  Visiting the Memorial Union & the Gorham Museum 

@the California State Capitol Park:  The USS California Bell 

@The California State Capitol:  Honoring Governor Johnson 

@ The California State Capitol Park:  Remembering the Firefighters Fallen in the Line of Duty Since 1850 


@ The California State Department of Education 

Traveling Thru California:  The Central Valley (The Breadbasket of the World) 

Friday, July 26, 2019

Out & About with Some M-End Thoughts.....

August is upon us.    It has been a challenging month working away on projects for the Daily Outsider and trying to be supportive of the transition to a new platform and the resulting strategy.  One of the many highlights for me was when the Daily Outsider was named by Google to the Google News Initiative.  One of the highlights was the launch of the Google Cloud Platform as I  look forward to being supportive of on-going development work.  

The Daily Outsider properties will be dark until the end of the Month as the planning continues to lay out the curation schedule and continue gearing up for the eventual transition.    The thought I ran across here is both applicable to our personal lives as well as The Daily Outsider in spite of the odds!!! 

I look forward to the on-going engagement next month--Onward to August with all its' possibilities!!


Friday, July 19, 2019

Out & About With Brief Thoughts.....


It has been quite a week--and a trying one at that in light of all that happened this week.   It was wonderful to be supportive of the Daily Outsider Team joining in the celebration of #MandelaDay2019 that is another reminder about service and giving back.   

As I was reflecting upon this very challenging week, I took comfort in this image from Laguna Beach as I continue to work away on initiatives in support of  The Daily Outsider and working to remain hopeful as I close out this brief thought with this image:


Grateful beyond Words.....


Friday, July 12, 2019

Out & About...and Remembering......

  I go to seek a Great Perhaps. François Rabelais
As I reflected upon this admonition (which is an implicit mission of the Daily Outsider), I decided to release this which is also going to be available on StoryCorp Soon--it was a great opportunity to sit back, reflect and be thankful beyond Words...

Please Enjoy!!!

Saturday, July 6, 2019

Out & About w/ #RandomThoughts......




As I have been trying to have some fun, I have also been thinking about our World as I look forward to an active engagement with initiatives for the Daily Outsider especially as the Daily Outsider has been chosen as part of the Google News Initiative as we begin a new chapter.    It was also quite a Day as Celebrations ensured throughout the US in honor of Independence Day--including what President Trump headlines in Washington.   I captured some while at Joint Forces Training Base Los Alamitos:




It was also quite a month in social advocacy and engagement--including my outreach with my local Congressman on Iran.   I wanted to share his response here for reference--It would be nice if there was more substance as I note Onward.....





 Dear Mike,

     Thank you for contacting me to express your concerns regarding escalating tensions between the United States and Iran. As your representative, I need to know what issues affect you in order to serve you best. I appreciate hearing from you and welcome the opportunity to respond.
     As you know, tensions between the United States and Iran continue to rise. As a Member of Congress, keeping our country safe is my most important responsibility, but we must have a healthy understanding of the nature of war and its impact on American lives. We must be vigilant and relentless as we confront those who threaten our nation’s security, while wisely using military force as a last resort after all other options have been exhausted. We owe our troops nothing less when their lives could be in harm’s way.
    The administration must consult Congress, as well as our NATO allies, on a new strategy to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon, protect Israel, and contain Iran’s aggression in the region. In the event that military force becomes necessary, the administration must seek new authority from the American people to wage war by way of Congressional authorization. Anything short of these measures is a reckless endangerment of American lives and national security.
     I am a proud cosponsor of H.R. 2354, the Prevention of Unconstitutional War with Iran Act, which would prohibit the use of funds to engage in military operations in Iran without Congressional authorization, with some exemptions such as in response to an imminent threat. H.R. 2354 has been referred to the House Foreign Affairs and Armed Services Committees for further consideration. Rest assured, as this or similar issues are considered in Congress, I will keep your views in mind. 
     Again, thank you for taking the time to contact me about this important issue. Your comments help me better represent the people of the 48th District. Please stay in touch, and if you need any further assistance, do not hesitate to contact me through my website rouda.house.gov or call my Washington, DC office at (202) 225-2415. If you would like to receive periodic updates, follow us on Facebook as well as Twitter.

     Sincerely,
     
     Harley Rouda
     Member of Congress










Thursday, June 27, 2019

#RandomThoughts: On @FreeNazanin, #Iran & Staying Hopeful



 


Yesterday was a day to remember all who were victims of Torture.    The depictions above honored who have been subject to torture.    I have had the honor to be supportive of the case of Nazanin Zargari-Ratcliff who has been held in Iran since 2016 and has been on a hunger strike.   Her husband, Richard, has also been on a hunger strike in front of the Iranian Embassy in London.   What I found so hillarious was a claim made by one of Hassan Rouhani's advisers equating Javad Zarif (subject to sanctions by the United States) to Nelson Mandela--I caught this by an Iranian Analyst and I just laughed:



One great development was an open letter signed by 14 leading opposition figures inside Iran that have called for Khameini to resign and for the Islamic Republic to Go.     4 of them were interviewed by Iran-E-Farda's Dr. Alireza Nourizadeh.    I have been assigned a project by the Daily Outsider Team to translate and provide guidance on both letters and the expressions of support over the ensuing days.

This has also been a very distressing week as the World was witness to another tragic death of a father and a daughter trying to cross the Rio Bravo.     This image broke my heart:



This is why this was so important to remember which MoveOn.Org sent out: 



 Some will say this is a "LIBERAL" thing--but this is an American as it comes because unless one is a Sioux or a Cheyenne or many of the other honored tribes of American Indians, we all came from somewhere.    

As it has been quite a challenging week, I decided to be a bit upbeat to closeout my weekly #RandomThoughts with these thoughts I captured:  









Remaining hopeful ever more....

Thursday, June 20, 2019

#RandomThoughts.....








It has been another busy week as I have continued commitments for the Daily Outsider while I also took some time to work on Community Projects.  It was great to be witness to Community Spirit in Action as Sr. Jorge Olamendi decided to donate his remaining stock of his Family Market as he had to shut it down here in Laguna Niguel to the St. Timothy's Food Pantry Parish.   I had the pleasure to join the effort in helping to be supportive of the pick up and delivery.

As I have been working away, I decided to Headline this edition of "Random Thoughts" with three things : 1) A sense of the true realities in Iran ((that I picked up and released as a contribution to Donate a Photo); 2) How we should value Mother Earth (Courtesy the Environmental Expert & Campaigner Kaveh Madani & 3) The cost of defending rising sea levels in US States over the next thirty years (Courtesy The Guardian).      I am also very excited to take on the project of transforming the Daily Outsider to the next level as the Daily Outsider has been chosen as part of the Google News Initiative--Exciting times!! 

I have also done what I can to be supportive of the campaign by Richard Radcliffe to be supportive of her Spouse that continues to be held hostage by Iran.   I made a point of citing the Prophet Mohammad as I tagged Javad Zarif and Hassan Rouhani--we have to do what is right although I realize they have no power and the only real power resides with Ayatollah Khamieni .   I have also been reading the letter by the 14 Activists and hope to have a transcription of the conversations the authors had with Iran-E-Farda soon for the Daily Outsider  

This morning, though, has seen some disturbing news as a US Drone was shot down by Iran.    I was working away as I saw the coverage and placed a call to Congressman Rouda (My Congressman) to ask that we avoid war if at all possible--it will be a god-send for the regime--and I underscored that this has nothing to do with the fascist subhuman in charge in Iran right now.     As I was working away, I also caught this from two of the great Iranian Performers which is a dream for us all--a time where there is NO war ever and a dream for freedom with lyrics by the great Yaghma Golorouee whom I first got know back in 2015 when he was arrested and Mehdi Fallahti of Voice of America remembered him:


I will do what I can to help realize this dream through the commitments to the Daily Outsider and on-going engagement efforts.


Onward....

 

:


Monday, June 17, 2019

#RandomThoughts As Monday Dawns...

It has been a busy weekend as I was also blessed to be reminded of all that I'm thankful for.    As I was working away, I caught a number of video clips about Iran.    I took comfort in this thought which is small comfort to those who are dealing with personal challenges.     Please enjoy the clips as I look forward to my continued  conversations with the World: