Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Zombies in my Dreams

For a week now, I have not had a single good night’s sleep. The reason being is that I have been having Zombie Dreams. I know this sounds absolutely ridiculous and quite childish, but I hate Zombies with a passion. I fall asleep my normal way, and my dreams become the usual array of random images which eventually turns into a story. I always meet a group of new people in my dreams, and there is always one of them that I mistrust. Then an outbreak of Zombies comes to our attention, and we are forced to run for our lives. For some reason, I always find secret passages and hiding places, but despite my efforts disaster strikes. It turns out the fishy person is really a Zombie in disguise that not only opens the passages to other Zombies but also starts chewing on members of the group I’ve been saving. (Lame! What a jerk!) With the outbreak of Zombies, the world goes to shambles. The bright sunny scene is now covered in darkness. Cities turn to ruins and are filled with garbage. Fields of grass turn into nuclear waste sites. Happy Homes turn into buffet lines for the flesh eating. It’s disturbing to say the least. Worst of it is that my mind does not seem to have a filter. Bloody and decrepit corpses line the streets. Smashed toys add to the garbage infested landscape, and dogs chew the fresh bodies because they are starving to death and any meat will suffice. One time with much struggle, I finally started the engine of an empty car only to be cornered in a school yard where Zombie children envelop the vehicle. The chilling sound of their nails scratching the car still creeps me out. I cried as I accelerated over their bodies, but at least the cries of those in the car are quieted. Another time right before the outbreak, I was driving when all of a sudden a child on a bike rides in front of my car and I can hear him say, “This will make you stop.” I felt the car jump as it went over his body, and I heard the crunch of bones under the weight. I rush out of the car in a panic just be overtaken by the Zombie child and his brother. I wasn’t bitten and luckily escaped. Through the whole series of dreams, we never find a place of refuge. Armies lead by the mistrusted ones always find us, but we are always one step ahead. While running, you can see those who still don’t believe in Zombies and mock those run. They are later overtaken and join the troops of the dead. There are those who cage themselves and never leave. I told them that if they stay in the city, the Zombies will eventually get them. Then there are those who are sick of running and either just get eaten or cage themselves as well. Lastly, there are those of us who keep running, always getting further away but closer to who knows what. Yeah pretty messed up I know. I love scary movies, but I haven’t seen one in over 3, 4 months. If you think this is “I Am Legend,” the only similarity is that there are zombies, but I’m pretty sure Will Smith didn’t have to run over children or see the Zombies eat his friends and family. I’m really blogging to get these nightmares out of my head. I bet their symbolic; if they repeat, they usually are. The four groups of people seem like the four groups of the parable of the sower but who knows.
Please comment! If you know anything to help or see any symbolism, please let me know! I’d really appreciate it.

Friday, May 16, 2008

McCain on Foreign Policy

In a speech on foreign policy in Los Angeles, McCain proposed one of the most radical ideas in history. He proposed to remove Russia from the Group of Industrial Nations and draw a line between China as well. He then wants to add India and Brazil. This will create a "cold war" like embargo but in an economic stance. This will add tension on the world market. Yet, does McCain realize that the difference between now and the original cold war is that Russia is now one of the largest producers of oil and China is growing 3 times faster than the United States? The stress this move would cause is insurmountable. The tension would leave the United States even more unstable economically. Perhaps WWIII won't be fought with guns and tanks but rather it would be fought with embargos, taxes, and forcing countries into economic depressions while stable ally countries will refuse to help for fear that they too will be drawn into a depression. Traditional economic policy is a death sentence. How can the United States possibly survive with an ever growing global economy? The government needs to include Russia and China to help stabilize the world's economy or more importantly ours. Or perhaps, everyone would rather see food stamps instead of dollar bills and third world streets instead of golden roads. What can we do? Vote!

Oh and read the next post about my general political ideas :D

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Jarom Chung- On Politics

Warning!!! This is highly politically charged!! Don’t let my small sense of politics influence your thoughts. Also, we are friends regardless if you agree :D.

For some time now, I’ve known which candidate I support, but due to the “anti” sentiment in Utah I’ve never openly endorsed a candidate neither have I commented upon which party lines I fall. Well, I’ve decided to stir things up and endorse Hillary Clinton as the best candidate for president.Why I’m a Democrat: My views on most controversial topics is the same; it is that each person should research the pros and cons of each side and decide independently on which side they fall. Everyone should have a definitive opinion that has been research and sought after. Without research, an undecided opinion is better than faking one or even going with what everyone else thinks- that is the worse you can do! I am a Democrat based on principles especially regarding economics (this ultimately made me decide that I was a Democrat). I researched the two parties a few years ago and decided that there were more pros to the Democratic Party than the Republican in my opinion. In particular, I believe that the government involvement in economics is crucial to the US economy especially in an ever-growing world market.

Why I’m a Moderate Democrat in practice but am liberal minded: I’m not a liberal Democrat nor am I a conservative Democrat. I am liberal minded in that I try not to immediately judge a certain group. I believe in a non-agitated, free exchange of ideas and that everyone has a voice/perspective that should be expressed. I enjoy talking to people of a different religious tradition, different racial or cultural background, or controversial life styles. My thoughts on McCain: I like how he is nonpartisan in his politics. He is more of a moderate Republican that doesn’t care about party lines but believes in the best for the country. However, I do not side with McCain on his lack of knowledge/plan for the country’s economy. To me, he seems like a continuation of Bush policy which really has created more problems. The government really needs to do more regarding prices of gas and food, searching for an alternative fuel that is not ethanol, world economy with the dollar lowering in price, outsourcing jobs, and the recession in general. “If it’s not broke, don’t fix it.” Well, it’s broke let’s fix it by changing it.

Thoughts on Obama: First off, he is a great candidate and if the nomination (which he probably will be) I will support him full-heartedly. But I need to express my thoughts on something… One thing that bugs me is that all “young” people support Obama without really knowing much about him. All they really know is the phrase “Change” which sounds hopeful but really is quite ambiguous. They just know that he is young and black- isn’t that cool? He’s a “breath of fresh air that really represents the younger population.” Unless they are true liberals, I don’t know why they support him. Do they know that he strongly supports abortion even in the third trimester when the baby is practically born? Don’t the people who say “if you’re in America, you should speak English” know that he strongly opposes English as the official national language? Don’t they know he has an alternative plan to universal health care? All the “young” voters see is that he young, hip and can connect with them on a more “down to earth basis.” All I see is a lack of experience. They hear “change” and know that it sounds good so it must be good. This “ambiguous” change simply represents their ambiguous, conscious stream of reality. They must be too drunk to actually research about the issues. Oh wait, even LDS people throw themselves over Obama… what does it say about them?

Thoughts on Hillary: I really like her platform all around. There are some points with which I disagree with. But overall, I like her as a candidate. She basically has the same platform as Obama aside from universal health care.

Who would be the best candidate: Well, I want a Democrat in White House primarily for economic policy. I don’t think Obama can do it. If he is the Democratic nomination, I will support him full heartedly. I believe he will do well in uniting the country and in healing the country after the Bush administration. I don’t believe he will do much as far as policy, but he will be a good president to follow. The president after him will also do much for the country. However, his inexperienced scares me a little. He can do it, but Hillary has more of a foot in the door. She has a lot of “baggage” from Bill, but she also has many ties that Obama does not even compare. Her policy would be more in effect than Obama’s would (granted they are basically about the same platform more or less). I believe that Hillary would do better matched up with McCain than Obama would. She is more experienced as I said. Also she is more electable. Bush won the nomination based on two big swing areas in the last two elections: the mid-west (OH, KY, WV, PN) and Florida. Especially in the first area, no president has ever been elected without that area. Hillary won in all those states. She appeals to the Red Democrats/the Reagan Democrats/ the blue collar whites. That is why she has done well in those states. Obama comes across as elitist and well… is black. In a poll, 22% of West Virginians said that they wouldn’t vote for Obama based on race. That is 22% that admit it!! That means it’s more like 44% of the population! That is a lot. He cannot appeal to that class which is needed to win. When Bill won his election, he also won OH, KY, WV, PN. I just don’t see how Obama could win those votes. Also there is a poll that shows Hillary as more electable over McCain; when asked who would they vote for between Obama and McCain it was a tougher battle. Lastly Florida should be seated- it is a swing state and between the two states that were not counted- there was a record amount of voters (2.3 Million!). They need to be heard- disenfranchisement is denial of human rights. You can change rules; you can’t change the constitution!

Solutions?: who knows… I believe that Hillary would be the most electable. An Obama Clinton ticket doesn’t make sense and goes against everything that Obama stands for. However, a Clinton Obama ticket does make sense. Hillary’s platform is better, and she has more ties. Then after Clinton’s terms, Obama could run with his experience and his good standing with the public. This makes the most sense. However, it won’t happen. Someone told me about a governor in KS that’s a woman and how she has the same strengths as Clinton but she is not Clinton. It could work… I just hope Obama can get Clinton’s supporters…. So Leave your thoughts… I’m totally nonaggressive when talking politics (I like to talk/discuss about them but never argue). So if you have any new thoughts let me know… and if you’re not registered, I can help you with that :D.

Friday, May 9, 2008

The Lottery Curse

Money doesn’t bring happiness. For every gospel principle/commandment there is a temporal blessing as well as a spiritual blessing. Recently, I’ve been thinking about the principle of not gambling/to save your money. Gambling can be fun and often lucrative. So what’s the blessing from not gambling? Well, one obvious result is that you are not addicted to gambling. However, not everyone becomes addicted to gambling, yet we are still counseled against it. This morning on CNN I was listening about the “Lottery Curse.” A woman, who recently won the Georgia lottery for a sum of $11 million, was shot and killed this morning by her ex-boyfriend. Another winner of $17 million in 2003 was convicted of drunk-driving and drug usage. She was in an accident and killed the passenger. She is now serving a sentence in jail. Also a man, who won $315 million, was robbed numerous times for 100 of thousands of dollars and later his granddaughter OD with severe consequences. Perhaps, the temporal blessing is that money changes people- if it does not change us, it will change the ones around us.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

How to become a social recluse... (It's isn't as hard as it seems :D)

There are many moments in my life when I wonder how people become whom they are at any given moment. A classic example of this is my relentless need to find out how a hobo becomes a hobo. Interesting question right? Recently, I have wondered the same thing about the infamous... "SOCIAL RECULSE!" There are many titles of a social recluse including but not limited to “work-aholic,” “social outcast,” “nutty professor,” “the OCD,” "religious fanatic," “person lacking social skills and/or social decorum,” and the oh so famous “loser.” *Disclaimer—(The “social recluse” can choose their own seclusion or it can be environmentally induced.) Here are a few suggestions that I have found to be quite effective to achieve this mighty goal which seems unattainable but through my profound guidance, you too can become join the brotherhood of a social recluse! *Disclaimer—(the brotherhood does exist in theory but not practice. All members are too secluded to actually come to the weekly meetings.)
1)Create a lofty goal- and become obsessed with it:

For the work-aholic, it is succeeding in work, making money, or even providing for a family. For the loser, it’s computer games or Nintendo. For the case of my good friend, it is getting into medical school. Then create a network of sub-goals to achieve your goal.

2)Become obsessed about the obsession of your over obsessed goal:

This is a very important step. The obsession will take so much time that all other things seem meaningless. A good way of gauging the obsession level is if one of your sub-goals takes precedence over all necessary bodily functions: sleeping, eating, or even going to the bathroom. If you find yourself saying “I have 20 minutes before my next class, I could get something to eat or get ahead in my homework. I’ll get ahead in my homework,” then you are well on your way to becoming the Ultimate Social Recluse.

3)One obsession leads to another:

In the recent case of my good friend, his desire of Medical School has driven him to a greater love of learning. His new obsessions include but are not limited to watching CNN in his spare time and listening to the NPR commentary on the radio. These new obsessions have replaced his previous love of the Food Network Channel and Indie Music. Getting rid of all interesting qualities of your personality is a good way to isolate yourself from reality.

4)Obsession is exhibited in all facets of life:

When one has a “worthy” obsession, he/she cannot stop talking about it. CNN and NPR create incessant chatter of current events and have improved vocabulary tremendously. These obsessions have also created a barrier to relate to other human beings.

5)With so many obsessions, who has time for anything else:

In any spare time you may have, replace it with one of your sub-obsessions or things like work or church. Consequently, it will create a lack of time. Since you are already goal driven, you will always get everything done. You will now sacrifice all time to your goals. This includes your Friday nights and Saturday evenings being transformed to studying text books and writing papers.

6)No matter how much you want to turn back just say to yourself “It’s worth it”:

There will be times when you want to go back to the world of the living. Just know that you have already rationalized your goal numerous times and that it is always “worth it.”

Well my friends, I hope this will help you on your way to utter seclusion. Follow these 6 steps and you have the Jarom Chung guarantee that you too will become a “SOCIAL RECLUSE.”