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About Atlas Shrugged – cliffsnotes.com

Posted: July 23, 2016 at 4:25 am

Introduction

Atlas Shrugged is Ayn Rand’s masterpiece and the culmination of her career as a novelist. With its publication in 1957, the author accomplished everything she wanted to in the realm of fiction; the rest of her career as a writer was devoted to nonfiction. Rand was already a famous, best-selling author by the time she published Atlas Shrugged. With the success of The Fountainhead a decade earlier and its subsequent production as a Hollywood film starring Gary Cooper in 1949, her stature as an author was established. Publishers knew that her fiction would sell, and consequently they bid for the right to publish her next book.

Atlas Shrugged, although enormously controversial, had no difficulty finding a publisher. On the contrary, Rand conducted an intellectual auction among competing publishers, finally deciding on Random House because its editorial staff had the best understanding of the book. Bennett Cerf was a famous editor there. When Rand explained that, at one level, Atlas Shrugged was to provide a moral defense of capitalism, the editorial staff responded, “But that would mean challenging 3,000 years of Judeo-Christian tradition.” Their depth of philosophical insight impressed Ayn Rand, and she decided that Random House was the company to publish her book.

Atlas Shrugged furthers the theme of individualism that Ayn Rand developed in The Fountainhead. In The Fountainhead, she shows by means of its hero, the innovative architect Howard Roark, that the independent mind is responsible for all human progress and prosperity. In Atlas Shrugged, she shows that without the independent mind, our society would collapse into primitive savagery. Atlas Shrugged is an impassioned defense of the freedom of man’s mind. But to understand the author’s sense of urgency, we must have an idea of the context in which the book was written. This includes both the post-World War II Cold War and the broader trends of modern intellectual culture.

The Cold War and Collectivism

Twentieth-century culture spawned the most oppressive dictatorships in human history. The Fascists in Italy, the National Socialists (Nazis) in Germany, and the Communists first in Russia and later in China and elsewhere seriously threatened individual freedom throughout the world. Ayn Rand lived through the heart of this terrifying historical period. In fact, when she started writing Atlas Shrugged in 1946, the West had just achieved victory over the Nazis. For years, the specter of national socialism had haunted the world, exterminating millions of innocent people, enslaving millions more, and threatening the freedom of the entire globe. The triumph of the free countries of the West over Naziism was achieved at an enormous cost in human life. However, it left the threat of communism unabated.

Ayn Rand was born in Russia in 1905 and witnessed firsthand the Bolshevik Revolution, the Communist conquest of Russia, and the political oppression that followed. Even after her escape from the Soviet Union and her safe arrival in the United States, she kept in close touch with family members who remained there. But when the murderous policies of Joseph Stalin swallowed the Soviet Union, she lost track of her family. From her own life experiences, Ayn Rand knew the brutal oppression of Communist tyranny.

During the last days of World War II and in the years immediately following, communism conquered large portions of the world. Soviet armies first rolled through the countries of Eastern Europe, setting up Russian “satellite” nations in East Germany, Poland, Hungary, Romania, and elsewhere. Communists then came to power in China and North Korea and launched an invasion of South Korea. Shortly thereafter, communism was also dominant in Cuba, on America’s doorstep. In the 1940s and 1950s, communism was an expanding military power, threatening to engulf the free world.

This time period was the height of the Cold War the ideological battle between the United States and the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union ruled its empire in Eastern Europe by means of terror, brutally suppressing an uprising by Hungarian freedom fighters in 1956. The Russians developed the atomic bomb and amassed huge armies in Eastern Europe, threatening the free nations of the West. Speaking at the United Nations, Soviet dictator Nikita Khrushchev vowed that communism would “bury” the West. Like the Nazis in the 1930s, communists stood for a collectivist political system: one in which an individual is morally obliged to sacrifice himself for the state. Intellectual freedom and individual rights, cherished in the United States and other Western countries, were in grave danger.

Foreign military power was not the only way in which communism threatened U.S. freedom. Collectivism was an increasingly popular political philosophy among American intellectuals and politicians. In the 1930s, both national socialism and communism had supporters among American thinkers, businessmen, politicians, and labor leaders. The full horror of Naziism was revealed during World War II, and support for national socialism dwindled in the United States as a result. But communism, in the form of Marxist political ideology, survived World War II in the United States. Many American professors, writers, journalists, and politicians continued to advocate Marxist principles. When Ayn Rand was writing Atlas Shrugged, many Americans strongly believed that the government should have the power to coercively redistribute income and to regulate private industry. The capitalist system of political and economic freedom was consistently attacked by socialists and welfare statists. The belief that an individual has a right to live his own life was replaced, to a significant extent, by the collectivist idea that individuals must work and live in service to other people. Individual rights and political freedom were threatened in American politics, education, and culture.

An Appeal for Freedom

Rand argues in Atlas Shrugged that the freedom of American society is responsible for its greatest achievements. For example, in the nineteenth century, inventors and entrepreneurs created an outpouring of innovations that raised the standard of living to unprecedented heights and changed forever the way people live. Rand, who thoroughly researched the history of capitalism, was well aware of the progress made during this period of economic freedom. Samuel Morse invented the telegraph a device later improved by Thomas Edison, who went on to invent the phonograph, the electric light, and the motion picture projector. John Roebling perfected the suspension bridge and, just before his death, designed his masterpiece, the Brooklyn Bridge. Henry Ford revolutionized the transportation industry by mass-producing automobiles, a revolution that the Wright Brothers carried to the next level with their invention of the airplane. Railroad builders like Cornelius Vanderbilt and James J. Hill established inexpensive modes of transportation and opened up the Pacific Northwest to economic development.

Likewise, Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone during this era, Cyrus McCormick the reaper, and Elias Howe the sewing machine. Charles Goodyear discovered the vulcanization process that made rubber useful, and George Eastman revolutionized photography with the invention of a new type of camera the Kodak. George Washington Carver, among myriad agricultural accomplishments, developed peanuts and sweet potatoes into leading crops. Architects like Louis Sullivan and William LeBaron Jenney created the skyscraper, and George Westinghouse, the inventor of train airbrakes, developed a power system able to transmit electricity over great distances. The penniless Scottish immigrant Andrew Carnegie built a vast company manufacturing steel, and John D. Rockefeller did the same in the oil industry.

These are a few examples from an exhaustive list of advances in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Ayn Rand argues that economic freedom liberated these great creative thinkers, permitting them to put into practice new ideas and methods. But what would happen if economic freedom were lost?

Atlas Shrugged provides Ayn Rand’s answer to this question. In the story, she projects the culmination of America’s twentieth-century socialist trend. The U.S. government portrayed in the story has significant control over the domestic economy. The rest of the world has been swallowed up by communist “Peoples’ States” and subsists in abject poverty. A limited degree of economic freedom still exists in America, but it is steadily declining, as is American prosperity. The successful are heavily taxed to support the poor, and the American poor are similarly levied to finance the even poorer people in foreign Peoples’ States. The government subsidizes inefficient businesses at the expense of the more efficient. With the state controlling large portions of the economy, the result is the rise of corrupt businessmen who seek profit by manipulating crooked politicians rather than by doing productive work. The government forces inventors to give up their patents so that all manufacturers may benefit equally from new products. Similarly, the government breaks up productive companies, compelling them to share the market with weaker (less efficient) competitors. In short, the fictionalized universe of Atlas Shrugged presents a future in which the U.S. trend toward socialism has been accelerated. Twentieth-century realities such as heavy taxation, massive social welfare programs, tight governmental regulation of industry, and antitrust action against successful companies are heightened in the universe of this story. The government annuls the rights of American citizens, and freedom is steadily eroded. The United States of the novel the last bastion of liberty on earth rapidly becomes a fascist/communist dictatorship.

The result, in Rand’s fictional universe, is a collapse of American prosperity. Great minds are shackled by government policies, and their innovations are either rejected or expropriated by the state. Thinkers lack the freedom necessary to create new products, to start their own companies, to compete openly, and to earn wealth. Under the increasing yoke of tyranny, the most independent minds in American society choose to defend their liberty in the most effective manner possible: They withdraw from society.

The Mind on Strike

Atlas Shrugged is a novel about a strike. Ayn Rand sets out to show the fate that befalls the world when the thinkers and creators go on strike. The author raises an intriguing question: What would happen if the scientists, medical researchers, inventors, industrialists, writers, artists, and so on withheld their minds and their achievements from the world?

In this novel, Rand argues that all human progress and prosperity depend on rational thinking. For example, human beings have cured such diseases as malaria, polio, dysentery, cholera, diphtheria, and tuberculosis. Man has learned to fly, erect cities and skyscrapers, grow an abundant food supply, and create computers. Humans have been to the moon and back and have invented the telephone, radio, television, and a thousand other life-promoting technologies. All of these achievements result from the human application of a rational mind to practical questions of survival. If the intellectuals responsible for such advances abandon the world, regression to the primitive conditions of the Dark Ages would result. But what would motivate intellectuals to such an extreme act as going on strike? We are used to hearing about strikes that protest conditions considered oppressive or intolerable by workers. The thinkers go on strike in Atlas Shrugged to protest the oppression of their intellect and creativity.

The thinkers in Atlas Shrugged strike on behalf of individual rights and political freedom. They strike against an enforced moral code of self-sacrifice the creed that human life must be devoted to serving the needs of others. Above all, the thinkers strike to prove that reason is the only means by which man can understand reality and make proper decisions; emotions should not guide human behavior. In short, the creative minds are on strike in support of a person’s right to think and live independently.

In the novel, the withdrawal of the great thinkers causes the collapse of the American economy and the end of dictatorship. The strike proves the role that the rational mind plays in the attainment of progress and prosperity. The emphasis on reason is the hallmark of Ayn Rand’s fiction. All of her novels, in one form or another, glorify the life-giving power of the human mind.

For example, in The Fountainhead, Ayn Rand emphasizes the independent nature of the mind’s functioning that rational individuals neither conform to society nor obey authority, but trust their own judgment. In her early novelette Anthem, Ayn Rand shows that under a collectivist dictatorship, the mind is stifled and society regresses to a condition of primitive ignorance. Anthem focuses on the mind’s need for political freedom. The focus of Atlas Shrugged is the role that the human mind plays in human existence. Atlas Shrugged shows that rational thinking is mankind’s survival instrument, just as the ability to fly is the survival tool for birds. In all of her major novels, Ayn Rand presents heroes and heroines who are brilliant thinkers opposed to either society’s pressure to conform or a dictatorial government’s commands to obey. The common denominator in all of her books is the life-and-death importance, for both the individual and society, of remaining true to the mind.

Objectivism in Action

In Atlas Shrugged, Ayn Rand presents, for the first time and in a dramatized form, her original philosophy of Objectivism. She exemplifies this philosophy in the lives of the heroes and in the action of the story. Objectivism holds that reason not faith or emotionalism is man’s sole means of gaining knowledge. Her theory states that an individual has a right to his or her own life and to the pursuit of his or her own happiness, which is counter to the view that man should sacrifice himself to God or society. Objectivism is individualistic, holding that the purpose of government is to protect the sovereign rights of an individual. This philosophy opposes the collectivist notion that society as a whole is superior to the individual, who must subordinate himself to its requirements. In the political/economic realm, Objectivism upholds full laissez-faire capitalism a system of free markets that legally prevent the government from restricting man’s productive activities as the only philosophical system that protects the freedom of man’s mind, the rights of the individual, and the prosperity of man’s life on earth.

Because of Ayn Rand’s uncompromising defense of the mind, of the individual, and of capitalism, Atlas Shrugged created great controversy on its publication in 1957. Denounced by critics and intellectuals, the book nevertheless reached a wide audience. The book has sold millions of copies and influenced the lives of countless readers. Since 1957, Ayn Rand’s philosophy of Objectivism has gradually taken hold in American society. Today, her books and ideas are becoming widely taught in high schools and universities.

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About Atlas Shrugged – cliffsnotes.com

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Home – Libertarian Party of Ohio

Posted: July 18, 2016 at 3:39 pm

COLUMBUSThe Libertarian Party of Ohios newly elected central committee elected new officers and a new state executive committee at its biennial reorganizational meeting on April 23.

Bob Frey was elected as chair of the state central committee, the partys governing body that chooses an executive committee to run the partys day-to-day operations. Bob Bridges was elected to begin a full term as executive committee chair, after having served for several months in that position as a replacement for a previous chair who resigned.

“I am excited to be elected Chair of the Central Committee, said Frey. We have a strong group of volunteers, who are dedicated no matter the obstacles the state puts in our way. I look forward to helping be a part of this team, who WILL get the presidential nominee on the ballot, and continue to fight for freedom and liberty.”

This terms central committee elections were conducted at special election meetings of LPO members in participating congressional districts, rather than by Libertarian voters in Ohios primary election, because the Libertarian Party is currently prohibited from participating in Ohio elections by Senate Bill 193, which was signed by failed presidential candidate Gov. John Kasich in 2013 after being passed with only Republican votes in the Ohio House and Senate.

Other newly elected central committee members are Vice Chair Don Kissick, Secretary David Macko, and Treasurer Ann Leech.

The executive committee includes Vice Chair Scott Pettigrew, Secretary Bob Coogan, Treasurer Linda Comstock, and members at large Christopher Gill, Ann Leech, and Harold Thomas. According to LPO bylaws, executive committee members at large must also be members of the central committee.

After the meeting, Bridges made the following appointments and re-appointments to his management team:

Tricia SpranklePolitical Director

Gregory PizarroFinance Director

Joe BowersoxDeputy Political Director

Kevin KnedlerDeputy Secretary

Aaron Keith HarrisParty Spokesman, K-12 Liaison

LPO Central Committee (two seats available for each US Congressionial district)

District 1 – Seat A Bob Frey

District 1 – Seat B Scott Pettigrew

District 2 – Seat A Rick Kanis

District 2 – Seat B Ann Leech

District 3 – Seat A Harold Thomas

District 3 – Seat B Bob Bridges

District 4 – Seat A

District 4 – Seat B

District 5 – Seat A Don Kissick

District 5 – Seat B Sarah Kissick

District 6 – Seat A Lowell Lufkin

District 6 – Seat B Aarica Burwell

District 7 – Seat A

District 7 – Seat B

District 8 – Seat A Bob Coogan

District 8 – Seat B

District 9 – Seat A

District 9 – Seat B

District 10 – Seat A Aaron Harris

District 10 – Seat B Dan Zink

District 11 – Seat A

District 11 – Seat B

District 12 – Seat A Linda Comstock

District 12 – Seat B Kevin Knedler

District 13 – Seat A

District 13 – Seat B

District 14 – Seat A Justin Gleason

District 14 – Seat B David Macko

District 15 – Seat A Christopher Gill

District 15 – Seat B Franklin DeMint

District 16 – Seat A

District 16 – Seat B

For more information:

Aaron Keith Harris

LPO Party Spokesman

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

937-825-0204

Follow this link for more information about the 2016 Independent Presidential Ticket

Recognizing that the time before the upcoming November General Election is becoming short, the Libertarian Party of Ohio is charting a new direction in the fight to give real choice to Ohio voters. With the deadline for the November election now being just four months away, the LPO will focus on gaining ballot access for the Libertarian Partys presidential ticket without a party label.

Since the passage of SB193, the infamous John Kasich Reelection Protection Act, and the success of efforts by Republican Party operatives to remove Libertarian Gubernatorial candidate Charlie Earl from the 2014 ballot, the LPOs focus has been two-pronged: pursuing various court remedies and beginning a long and expensive petitioning effort to restore the party as a whole to ballot access. That petitioning effort requires approximately 35,000 valid signatures, with SB193 also requiring certain geographic distribution requirements. In contrast, placing the national ticket on the ballot without party label requires only 5000 valid signatures.

While the partys national ticket will not be chosen until the Libertarian National Convention over Memorial Day weekend in Orlando, Florida, petitioning is beginning now with placeholder candidates. John Fockler, whose term as Chair of the LPOs Central Committee ended recently, explained, We couldnt wait until the ticket is chosen. Ohio law allows us to begin petitioning with a temporary ticket now, and substitute the names of the actual ticket afterwards. The placeholder candidates are Earl, for President, and Kentucky LP activist Ken Moellman as Vice-President. Having Charlies name on the ticket as our temporary candidate is a big help, Fockler said. Charlie is extremely well-known in pro-liberty circles throughout the state and gives this effort extra credibility with people outside the Libertarian Party.

This does not represent a surrender in the efforts to achieve full ballot access for the Libertarian Party of Ohio, said Bob Bridges, recently reelected as Chair of the LPOs Executive Committee. We are as determined as ever that the voters of Ohio will again have the full range of choices they deserve, and not be limited to only those that the two big government parties think they should have.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Dear fellow Libertarians,

As the presidential election season has begun to heat up, we have seen a greatly increased amount of traffic on LPO.org and on social media. Many new people are telling us they’re fed up with Republicans and Democrats and they’re asking how to become new members of the Libertarian Party of Ohio.

Here are my answers to the three most commonly asked questions:

1) Who is the 2016 Libertarian presidential candidate?

The Libertarian Party will nominate its candidates for president and vice president at our 2016 Libertarian Party National Presidential Nominating Conventionin Orlando over Memorial Day weekend.

Along with our 2012 nominee, Gov. Gary Johnson, and Ohios own LPO Central Committee Vice Chair Marc Allan Feldman, there are several other candidates. Visit this link for a current list of those who have announced their candidacy.

LPO Communications Director Aaron Keith Harris interviews Tom Zawistowski of the Portage County Tea Party.

Topics include the corruption of the Kasich administration, the 2016 Republican presidential candidates, and possible alliances among the Tea Party, constitutional conservatives, and Libertarians.

Listen here.

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Zeitgeist: Addendum, Debunked – Skeptic Project

Posted: at 3:33 pm

Peter Joseph (creator of Zeitgeist) believes that I’m mentally ill because I disagree with him. You can read all about it on his forums (linked from this forum post). You better not disagree with him, or you’ll be labeled insane next. Perhaps I’m crazy for pointing out his forum post?

Before we go anywhere, I want to talk about The Venus Project and before you read my analysis I would appreciate it if you read this part first.

First of all, as I described on my about page, I am a huge believer in technology. The first time I heard of The Venus Project was sometime prior to 2000, around 15 years ago, and from the beginning I was in love with the idea of putting technology in a position to help us rather than hold us back. And as I investigated this whole idea more, I found a lot of people confused the idea with communism, socialism, or whatever their latest hate was.

The Venus Project, in essence, is Technocracy, which you can learn about on Wikipedia and at the Technocratic Movement’s web site. The only difference between the two is how Jacque Fresco and Technocracy, Inc. thought production should be tracked. A concept so small and unimportant it’s a shame, to me anyway, that Jacque Fresco is no longer a member of Technocracy, Inc.

Whether you choose to support the Venus Project or Technocracy Inc. doesn’t matter, so long as you keep the conspiracy bullshit out of the current technocratic (or “resource based economy”) movement. It is hard enough to discuss technocracy and The Venus Project with people, we do not need to also talk about conspiracies. Whether you like it or not, conspiracy theories scare people away, period, and they won’t listen to anything you have to say.

If you are a member of the Zeitgeist Movement and want to spread the ideas of The Venus Project, please keep the conspiracy jargon to the minimum – in fact I’ve seen that Peter Joseph has already moved away from that, but many fans of the films are still obsessed with conspiracies.

How much money does Peter Joseph make from the sales of Zeitgeist? Find out

I am not going to discuss The Venus Project/Technocratic parts of the film, for two reasons.

Firstly, untried economic and political ideas are essentially opinions and anyone, from any side, can debunk anything else from any opposing side — so it’s a waste of time; you can find a million free marketers, libertarians, anarcho-capitalists, and so forth that will disprove technocracy with what they believe to be evidence — but when it comes to politics and economics, it’s really a severe waste of time to debunk anything.

Secondly, I myself am a Technocrat, and I believe in such ideas. I watched the Zeitgeist: Addendum movie when it was first released early morning (my time) on October 4th. At first I was torn, because while I agreed with promoting the interview and such with Jacque Fresco, I did not like the idea that the first 50 minutes of the movie were essentially propping up more lies. Regardless, I decided to say something about the other parts of the movie.

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Zeitgeist: Addendum, Debunked – Skeptic Project

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Nihilism Nihilism

Posted: at 3:32 pm

Why Nihilism, A Practical Definition

As research probes further into the complexities of the human mind, it becomes clear that the mind is far from being a composite thing which is an actor upon its world through thoughts; rather, thoughts compose the mind, in the form of connections and associations wired into the tissue of the brain, creating circuitry for future associations of like stimulus. The schematic of this intellectual machine builds separate routing for situations it is likely to encounter, based on grouped similarities in events or objects. In this view of our computing resources, it is foolish to allow pre-processing to intervene, as it creates vast amounts of wiring which serve extremely similar purposes, thus restricting the range of passive association (broad-mindedness) or active association (creativity) possible within the switching mechanism of the brain as a whole. As here we are devout materialists, the brain and mind are seen as equatable terms.

The positive effects of nihilism on the mind of a human being are many. Like the quieting of distraction and distortion within the mind brought about by meditative focus, nihilism pushes aside preconception and brings the mind to focus within the time of the present. Influences which could radically skew our perceptions emotions, nervousness, paranoia, or upset, to name a few fade into the background and the mind becomes more open to the task at hand without becoming spread across contemplations of potential actions occurring at different levels of scale regarding the current task. Many human errors originate in perceiving an event to be either more important than it is, or to be symbolically indicative of relevance on a greater scale than the localized context which it affects, usually because of a conditioned preference for the scale of eventiture existing before the symbolic event.

Nihilism as a philosophical doctrine must not be confused with a political doctrine such as anarchism; political doctrines (as religions are) remain fundamentally teleological in their natures and thus deal with conclusions derived from evidence, where nihilism as a deontological process functions at the level of the start of perception, causing less of a focus on abstracting a token ruleset defining the implications of events than a rigorous concentration on the significance of the events as they are immediately effecting the situation surrounding them. For example, a nihilistic fighter does not bother to assess whether his opponent is a better fighter or not that the perceiving agency, but fights to his best ability (something evolution would reward, as the best fighter does not win every fight, only most of them). As a result of this conditioning, nihilism separates the incidence of events/perceptions from causal understanding by removing expectations of causal origins and implications to ongoing eventiture.

Understanding nihilism requires one drop the pretense of nihilistic philosophy being an endpoint, and acceptance of it being a doorway. Nihilism self-reduces; the instant one proclaims There is no value! a value has been created. Nihilism strips away conditiong at the unconscious and anticipatory levels of structure in the mind, allowing for a greater range of possiblity and quicker action. Further, it creates a powerful tool to use against depression or anxiety, neurosis and social stigma. Since it is a concept necessarily in flux, as it provides a starting point for analysis in any situation but no preconditioned conclusions, it is post-deconstructive in that it both removes the unnecessary and creates new space for intellectual development at the same time.

Text quoted from S.R. Prozaks Nihilism at the American Nihilist Underground Society.

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Nihilism Nihilism

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MyNutriKids Healthy And Energizing Food And Supplements

Posted: July 16, 2016 at 11:10 pm

Eating healthy foods and exercising regularly is something many aspire to do, but the challenge for most people is getting the time and motivation to formulate a regular workout routine and stick to a healthy diet. Though the physical and mental benefits of following a healthy path are well known, many people are still struggling to start and maintain a healthy lifestyle that can lead to a longer life.

In most cases, the choice of eating unhealthy and not exercising is often the easy one evenwhen you are well aware the risk of lifestyle diseases. Illnesses like type 2 of diabetes, stroke, high blood pressure, some types of cancer and osteoporosis are some of the risks brought about due to ones failure to follow a healthy diet and maintain proper physical fitness. These diseases are not only expensive to maintain, but they are also life threatening.

Sometimes, even those who are devoted to a regular workout routine may experience energy drains. These are those days when you feel exhausted and find that you cannot motivate yourself to get up and do even one simple workout activity that you love.

While all-out energy drains are easy to recognize, the same cannot be said for low-energy drains. They are not easily recognizable as you do not experience signs of exhaustion like feeling very tired or muscle aches. In such situations, you will start experiencing the loss of will to carry on with your workout activities that you used to enjoy, and when you start your workout routine, you lose focus and find it hard to concentrate on simple tasks. In the end, you become frustrated and finally abandon the task.

But all is not lost, while your own energy is not enough to keep up with the demands of society such as work, school and staying fit, there are many energy supplements available that can provide you with energy. In a world that is always busy and gets more hectic by the day, natural supplements are a good source of extra energy to boost to your own energy. They can help you make it through the day feeling energetic and psyched.

There are many superfoods and natural energy supplements in the market today. Some are better for the body than others, but most of these supplements can help you increase your level of energy and alertness. Here are some you can try to try when you feel like your energy is drained:

Bee pollen is a highly nutritious natural energy supplement collected from the stamen part of flowering plants by honeybees and stored in honeycomb hives. People who consume bee pollen as part of their daily diet are known to generate more energy, physical stamina and vigor.

Its benefits are many including prevention of growth of cancer cells, making it to be termed as a super food. It contains over 40% of proteins, 22 amino acids, 21 minerals, 18 enzymes, fiber, carbohydrates and other minerals. It can be taken in liquid form, as powder mixed in food or drinks, chewable tablets or capsules.

Read more about where to buy bee pollen below where weve listed the best quality online stores.

Where To Buy Bee Pollen?

Mucuna pruriens or KIpikacchu or Cowhage is a creeping vine that is grows in the tropicsof India as well as the tropical regions of the Caribbean and Africa. This plant has been used for many years as traditional medicines and the seeds, both white and black, have therapeutic value.

It has a balancing and restorative effect on the nervous system. It can strengthen the weakened areas of the body as well as enhance ones the intellect. Its seeds have been found to contain nutritive tonic which energizes, nourishes and revitalizes the nervous system and the entire body.

Where To Buy Mucuna Pruriens?

Many people consider Chia seeds as the pinnacle super food. They are natural energy supplements that can give high sustainable energy in a tasty and inexpensive way. They contain high levels of fiber, about 20% proteins, which help in tissue and muscle regeneration. They are also rich in omega 5 and 6 oils as well as other beneficial nutrients.

People who include Chia seeds in their eating habits are reported to notice higher energy levels and regular health benefits right away. They also exhibit other health benefits like muscle generation, cardiovascular health and weight loss in the long run.

Where To Buy Chia Seeds?

Being one of the oldest plants, Ginkgo Biloba has been in use in herbal and natural medicine for thousands of years. Its widely recognized as a supplement to enhance both mental and memory alertness as well as many other health benefits

Todays busy and hectic lifestyle tends to take a toll on many people affecting their physical and mental functions which in most cases leads to memory and focus loss. In such cases, a dose of Gikgo Biloba can come in handy since it helps to increase blood circulation and oxygen levels in the brain, improving concentration and the brain power.

Where To Buy Ginkgo Biloba?

Ginseng is a herb that is used as a natural energy booster and for other medicinal benefits. Oriental and American are the main species of Ginseng. Both these species have been found to boost the immune system and improve vitality.

It contains active ingredients like ginsenocides, which helps to regulate mechanism of nerves and control hormone activity. This helps to influence insulin production, regulate blood pressure and increase metabolism. You can use Ginseng regularly to boost your energy levels, reduce mental fatigue and stress, and improve performance. Ginseng has no toxicity and is thus harmless with no known side effects.

Where To Buy Ginseng?

Pine pollen is a natural testosterone booster, produced by pine trees as a yellow dust during spring. The level of Testosterone in your body will affect your energy levels, sleeping habits and other health issues like libido.

Pine pollen supplements can give your body the extra energy you need to start your workout and can also help you endure energy demanding activities for long. Other health benefits include improved immune systems, hormonal balancing, among others. Take pine pollen with sweeteners before your work out as it doesnt have a good taste.

Where To Buy Pine Pollen?

Caffeine

Caffeine is arguably the most known and widely consumed stimulant in all corners of the world. Caffeine is a chemical found in products like tea, coffee, guarana, and cola. These products are used as energy boosters and help to improve ones mental alertness and brain functions.

Consider taking a beverage with caffeine before your work out to boost performance, lower perceived exertion as well as increase stamina and physical endurance. However, caffeine should be taken in moderation as its habit forming and high doses of caffeine can cause health problems. Its advisable to not take more than 300 mg per day.

Royal Jelly

Royal jelly is a nutritious natural supplement produced by worker bees when they combine honey and pollen in the hive. Produced for the queen and royal family, it is rich in vitamins including vitamin-B complex, amino acids, fatty acids, enzymes, carbohydrates, natural anti-bacterial, antibiotics, calories, and useful minerals.

Royal jelly is said to have rejuvenating powers that can revive your body and lift your mood. It is used as a supplement to restore strength, energy, improve concentration, and boost the immune system. It is also said to promote longevity, although this claim has not yet been fully substantiated.

Gotu Kola

Gotu Kola is one of the best brain tonic supplements used to improve brain performance. In fact some refer to Gotu Kola as food for the brain. It is considered as one of the most spiritual and rejuvenating herbs and is commonly used by people who do Yoga to improve meditation.

If you are experiencing energy drains and you are losing concentration in your work out or daily activity, Gotu Kola can help to improve your mental function. Include Gotu Kola in your daily diet and improve your concentration and memory loss. It is also recommended for people suffering from nervous disorders.

Spirulina

Spirulina is yet another natural energy booster. It is a single celled algae, cyanbacteri, that is made of essential amino acids and proteins. It is also a good source of antioxidants, omega 3, 6 and 9, vitamins B and over 100 nutrients, higher than any other plant.

It contains high levels of Chlorophyll which removes toxins from the blood stream and thus improves your immune system. Chlorophyll is also responsible for creating carbohydrates which will go a long way in boosting your energy. It is also recommended for vegetarians as it contains vitamins and amino acids found in animal products.

These natural supplements are only a means but not the end to a healthy leaving. The importance of a balanced diet and exercise cannot be overstated for a healthy and longer life. Natural healthy supplements can boost your energy when your own energy has failed you. A healthy mind in a healthy body will not only make you feel good but also improve your social life.

The importance of exercising is as important as a healthy diet. Even the most basic exercise activities help in burning of calories. Regular workouts and a healthy diet play a crucial role in achieving a healthy lifestyle. You may not lose weight even if you are on a diet if you dont exercise nor will you maintain a healthy weight with exercise alone without a balanced diet.

Your muscles will work best, build up and become stronger by implementing both aspects. Engaging in activities that raise your heart rate for an extended time will help in making your heart strong and healthier.

The human body works best when engaged in regular activities. Through exercise, you achieve physical fitness by improving muscular strength, cardio-respiratory, flexibility, and endurance. Those who engage in a routine workout activity are healthier and at a lower risk of some health problems like, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol, among others.

Physical activity helps in blood circulation making your cardiovascular system more efficient when oxygen nutrients are delivered to your body tissue.

People who exercise and eat healthy foods with low fats have flexible and strong bones than those who dont. When you have healthy bones, you reduce the risk of injuries and bone loss associated with aging.

A healthy and antioxidant rich diet and regular exercise is a natural safeguard against cancer. The power to live a longer and healthy life is in your hands. Engage in physical activities and extend the length of your life.

Proper exercise and a healthy diet offer a variety of mental benefits. Mild physical activities can help reduce stress just like some healthy eating habits do. When you engage in physical activities, a chemical in the brain known to make people happy is stimulated. Healthy lifestyle choices which include a healthy diet and regular exercise improve brain performance and reduce the risk of depression.

When you are unhealthy, your self-esteem if affected negatively as you may be worrying about your physical public appearance. This is the case when you are overweight. Being in good shape makes you feel better about yourself improving your self-esteem and reduces anxiety, stress or depression.

Physical activity can be a fun way of interacting with people and making new friends as you prevent excess weight gain by burning calories. You dont need to spend money for a gym membership to keep fit, start with simple activities like taking a walk or using the stairs.

Both eating healthy and physical activities are important in maintaining a healthy social life. When you maintain a healthy weight and improve your posture, you can face the world with more confident.

Start your journey to a healthy lifestyle path today. Eat healthy and start with a simple and fun physical activity. You can make a choice of healthy living, your age or race notwithstanding. Make notable adjustments in your current lifestyle by making small changes that are directed in healthy living. Go for the changes that are not only attainable and achievable, but also fun to encourage you to keep going.

Natural supplements that have minimal or no side effects can help you boost your energy when you feel like giving up. Consult with your physician before taking any supplement.

With all the above information, you cannot go wrong with natural energy supplements. In todays modern society, they have become a must have for people who are constantly on the go.

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Seven foods to eat if you have eczema – Chatelaine

Posted: July 14, 2016 at 4:19 pm

Quatre Saisons/ Getty Images

Now is typically the time when eczema sufferers start complaining about their painful, dry, cracked skin. Its when no amount of moisturizer alleviates the insatiable itch or the embarrassment of having less-than-perfect skin.

If youre an eczema sufferer, I can sympathize. Mine is a severe condition that Ive battled into adulthood. Interestingly, winter is my favourite time of the year sweaters, scarves, socks and pants help me cover up my cracked scaly skin, scabby blisters and blotchy hyper-pigmentation.

To say the least Im something of an expert when it comes to eczema you name it, Ive tried it. Topical steroids that thinned out my skin? Check. Tar soaps, oatmeal baths and natural detergents? Check, check and check. Nothings worked long-term. That is until one day a friend suggested I avoid foods high in histamine. It seemed obvious why hadnt I thought of that before? Foods high in histamine would naturally cause an allergic response and inflammation. So thus began the journey that eventually led me to The Eczema Diet. In the book, by nutritionist Karen Fischer, I discovered seven foods that help decrease inflammation, promote skin repair and are considered eczema-safe.

The top seven eczema-healthy foods are:

1. Banana: High in potassium, contains histamine-lowering nutrients, magnesium and vitamin C.

2. Beef or chicken broth: Provides skin-repairing amino acid glycine.

3. Potato: Rich in fibre, potassium, vitamin C and is alkalizing.

4. Green onions: Contain histamine-lowering, anti-inflammatory quercetin and rich source of vitamin K, important for healthy skin.

5. Buckwheat: Gluten-free and contains quercetin to lower histamine and has strong anti-inflammatory effect

6. Rice milk: Low allergy and low in chemicals and considered eczema safe

7. Mung bean sprouts:Strong alkalizing food

There are many more eczema-healthy foods (like fish, beans and loads of vegetables), but the only foolproof way to check if specific foods are causing your breakouts is by cutting out common culpritsfor 14 days then reintroducing them back into your diet one-by-one to see if they cause a reaction. Remember: sometimes it can take a few days for symptoms to appear. You can follow this guide by Dr. Natasha Turner, or get more info from The Eczema Diet.

I also found that taking an igG test proved very helpful. It helped steer me in the right direction so that I knew for sure which foods were causing me grievance. Turns out egg, milk, soy and yeast were among the list and having that kind of clarity was life-changing, not only for my physical well-being, but my emotional well-being as well.

To read more about preventing and treating eczema click here.

Do you suffer from eczema? Have diet and nutrition helped alleviate your symptoms? Share in the comments below.

Try these no-cook banana snack ideas

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North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) | Britannica.com

Posted: July 12, 2016 at 6:20 am

Alternative title: NATO

North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), military alliance established by the North Atlantic Treaty (also called the Washington Treaty) of April 4, 1949, which sought to create a counterweight to Soviet armies stationed in central and eastern Europe after World War II. Its original members were Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Joining the original signatories were Greece and Turkey (1952); West Germany (1955; from 1990 as Germany); Spain (1982); the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland (1999); Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia (2004); and Albania and Croatia (2009). France withdrew from the integrated military command of NATO in 1966 but remained a member of the organization; it resumed its position in NATOs military command in 2009.

The heart of NATO is expressed in Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty, in which the signatory members agree that

an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all; and consequently they agree that, if such an armed attack occurs, each of them, in exercise of the right of individual or collective self-defense recognized by Article 51 of the Charter of the United Nations, will assist the Party or Parties so attacked by taking forthwith, individually and in concert with the other Parties, such action as it deems necessary, including the use of armed force, to restore and maintain the security of the North Atlantic area.

NATO invoked Article 5 for the first time in 2001, after terrorist attacks organized by exiled Saudi Arabian millionaire Osama bin Laden destroyed the World Trade Center in New York City and part of the Pentagon outside Washington, D.C., killing some 3,000 people.

Article 6 defines the geographic scope of the treaty as covering an armed attack on the territory of any of the Parties in Europe or North America. Other articles commit the allies to strengthening their democratic institutions, to building their collective military capability, to consulting each other, and to remaining open to inviting other European states to join.

Barkley, Alben W.: North Atlantic Treaty signingEncyclopdia Britannica, Inc.After World War II in 1945, western Europe was economically exhausted and militarily weak (the western Allies had rapidly and drastically reduced their armies at the end of the war), and newly powerful communist parties had arisen in France and Italy. By contrast, the Soviet Union had emerged from the war with its armies dominating all the states of central and eastern Europe, and by 1948 communists under Moscows sponsorship had consolidated their control of the governments of those countries and suppressed all noncommunist political activity. What became known as the Iron Curtain, a term popularized by Winston Churchill, had descended over central and eastern Europe. Further, wartime cooperation between the western Allies and the Soviets had completely broken down. Each side was organizing its own sector of occupied Germany, so that two German states would emerge, a democratic one in the west and a communist one in the east.

In 1948 the United States launched the Marshall Plan, which infused massive amounts of economic aid to the countries of western and southern Europe on the condition that they cooperate with each other and engage in joint planning to hasten their mutual recovery. As for military recovery, under the Brussels Treaty of 1948, the United Kingdom, France, and the Low CountriesBelgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourgconcluded a collective-defense agreement called the Western European Union. It was soon recognized, however, that a more formidable alliance would be required to provide an adequate military counterweight to the Soviets.

By this time Britain, Canada, and the United States had already engaged in secret exploratory talks on security arrangements that would serve as an alternative to the United Nations (UN), which was becoming paralyzed by the rapidly emerging Cold War. In March 1948, following a virtual communist coup dtat in Czechoslovakia in February, the three governments began discussions on a multilateral collective-defense scheme that would enhance Western security and promote democratic values. These discussions were eventually joined by France, the Low Countries, and Norway and in April 1949 resulted in the North Atlantic Treaty.

Spurred by the North Korean invasion of South Korea in June 1950, the United States took steps to demonstrate that it would resist any Soviet military expansion or pressures in Europe. General Dwight D. Eisenhower, the leader of the Allied forces in western Europe in World War II, was named Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR) by the North Atlantic Council (NATOs governing body) in December 1950. He was followed as SACEUR by a succession of American generals.

The North Atlantic Council, which was established soon after the treaty came into effect, is composed of ministerial representatives of the member states, who meet at least twice a year. At other times the council, chaired by the NATO secretary-general, remains in permanent session at the ambassadorial level. Just as the position of SACEUR has always been held by an American, the secretary-generalship has always been held by a European.

NATOs military organization encompasses a complete system of commands for possible wartime use. The Military Committee, consisting of representatives of the military chiefs of staff of the member states, subsumes two strategic commands: Allied Command Operations (ACO) and Allied Command Transformation (ACT). ACO is headed by the SACEUR and located at Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) in Casteau, Belgium. ACT is headquartered in Norfolk, Virginia, U.S. During the alliances first 20 years, more than $3 billion worth of infrastructure for NATO forcesbases, airfields, pipelines, communications networks, depotswas jointly planned, financed, and built, with about one-third of the funding from the United States. NATO funding generally is not used for the procurement of military equipment, which is provided by the member statesthough the NATO Airborne Early Warning Force, a fleet of radar-bearing aircraft designed to protect against a surprise low-flying attack, was funded jointly.

A serious issue confronting NATO in the early and mid-1950s was the negotiation of West Germanys participation in the alliance. The prospect of a rearmed Germany was understandably greeted with widespread unease and hesitancy in western Europe, but the countrys strength had long been recognized as necessary to protect western Europe from a possible Soviet invasion. Accordingly, arrangements for West Germanys safe participation in the alliance were worked out as part of the Paris Agreements of October 1954, which ended the occupation of West German territory by the western Allies and provided for both the limitation of West German armaments and the countrys accession to the Brussels Treaty. In May 1955 West Germany joined NATO, which prompted the Soviet Union to form the Warsaw Pact alliance in central and eastern Europe the same year. The West Germans subsequently contributed many divisions and substantial air forces to the NATO alliance. By the time the Cold War ended, some 900,000 troopsnearly half of them from six countries (United States, United Kingdom, France, Belgium, Canada, and the Netherlands)were stationed in West Germany.

Frances relationship with NATO became strained after 1958, as President Charles de Gaulle increasingly criticized the organizations domination by the United States and the intrusion upon French sovereignty by NATOs many international staffs and activities. He argued that such integration subjected France to automatic war at the decision of foreigners. In July 1966 France formally withdrew from the military command structure of NATO and required NATO forces and headquarters to leave French soil; nevertheless, de Gaulle proclaimed continued French adherence to the North Atlantic Treaty in case of unprovoked aggression. After NATO moved its headquarters from Paris to Brussels, France maintained a liaison relationship with NATOs integrated military staffs, continued to sit in the council, and continued to maintain and deploy ground forces in West Germany, though it did so under new bilateral agreements with the West Germans rather than under NATO jurisdiction. In 2009 France rejoined the military command structure of NATO.

From its founding, NATOs primary purpose was to unify and strengthen the Western Allies military response to a possible invasion of western Europe by the Soviet Union and its Warsaw Pact allies. In the early 1950s NATO relied partly on the threat of massive nuclear retaliation from the United States to counter the Warsaw Pacts much larger ground forces. Beginning in 1957, this policy was supplemented by the deployment of American nuclear weapons in western European bases. NATO later adopted a flexible response strategy, which the United States interpreted to mean that a war in Europe did not have to escalate to an all-out nuclear exchange. Under this strategy, many Allied forces were equipped with American battlefield and theatre nuclear weapons under a dual-control (or dual-key) system, which allowed both the country hosting the weapons and the United States to veto their use. Britain retained control of its strategic nuclear arsenal but brought it within NATOs planning structures; Frances nuclear forces remained completely autonomous.

A conventional and nuclear stalemate between the two sides continued through the construction of the Berlin Wall in the early 1960s, dtente in the 1970s, and the resurgence of Cold War tensions in the 1980s after the Soviet Unions invasion of Afghanistan in 1979 and the election of U.S. President Ronald Reagan in 1980. After 1985, however, far-reaching economic and political reforms introduced by Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev fundamentally altered the status quo. In July 1989 Gorbachev announced that Moscow would no longer prop up communist governments in central and eastern Europe and thereby signaled his tacit acceptance of their replacement by freely elected (and noncommunist) administrations. Moscows abandonment of control over central and eastern Europe meant the dissipation of much of the military threat that the Warsaw Pact had formerly posed to western Europe, a fact that led some to question the need to retain NATO as a military organizationespecially after the Warsaw Pacts dissolution in 1991. The reunification of Germany in October 1990 and its retention of NATO membership created both a need and an opportunity for NATO to be transformed into a more political alliance devoted to maintaining international stability in Europe.

After the Cold War, NATO was reconceived as a cooperative-security organization whose mandate was to include two main objectives: to foster dialogue and cooperation with former adversaries in the Warsaw Pact and to manage conflicts in areas on the European periphery, such as the Balkans. In keeping with the first objective, NATO established the North Atlantic Cooperation Council (1991; later replaced by the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council) to provide a forum for the exchange of views on political and security issues, as well as the Partnership for Peace (PfP) program (1994) to enhance European security and stability through joint military training exercises with NATO and non-NATO states, including the former Soviet republics and allies. Special cooperative links were also set up with two PfP countries: Russia and Ukraine.

The second objective entailed NATOs first use of military force, when it entered the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1995 by staging air strikes against Bosnian Serb positions around the capital city of Sarajevo. The subsequent Dayton Accords, which were initialed by representatives of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Republic of Croatia, and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, committed each state to respecting the others sovereignty and to settling disputes peacefully; it also laid the groundwork for stationing NATO peacekeeping troops in the region. A 60,000-strong Implementation Force (IFOR) was initially deployed, though a smaller contingent remained in Bosnia under a different name, the Stabilization Force (SFOR). In March 1999 NATO launched massive air strikes against Serbia in an attempt to force the Yugoslav government of Slobodan Miloevi to accede to diplomatic provisions designed to protect the predominantly Muslim Albanian population in the province of Kosovo. Under the terms of a negotiated settlement to the fighting, NATO deployed a peacekeeping force called the Kosovo Force (KFOR).

The crisis over Kosovo and the ensuing war gave renewed impetus to efforts by the European Union (EU) to construct a new crisis-intervention force, which would make the EU less dependent on NATO and U.S. military resources for conflict management. These efforts prompted significant debates about whether enhancing the EUs defensive capabilities would strengthen or weaken NATO. Simultaneously there was much discussion of the future of NATO in the post-Cold War era. Some observers argued that the alliance should be dissolved, noting that it was created to confront an enemy that no longer existed; others called for a broad expansion of NATO membership to include Russia. Most suggested alternative roles, including peacekeeping. By the start of the second decade of the 21st century, it appeared likely that the EU would not develop capabilities competitive with those of NATO or even seek to do so; as a result, earlier worries associated with the spectre of rivalry between the two Brussels-based organizations dissipated.

North Atlantic Treaty Organization: flag-raising ceremony, 1999NATO photosDuring the presidency of Bill Clinton (19932001), the United States led an initiative to enlarge NATO membership gradually to include some of the former Soviet allies. In the concurrent debate over enlargement, supporters of the initiative argued that NATO membership was the best way to begin the long process of integrating these states into regional political and economic institutions such as the EU. Some also feared future Russian aggression and suggested that NATO membership would guarantee freedom and security for the newly democratic regimes. Opponents pointed to the enormous cost of modernizing the military forces of new members; they also argued that enlargement, which Russia would regard as a provocation, would hinder democracy in that country and enhance the influence of hard-liners. Despite these disagreements, the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland joined NATO in 1999; Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia were admitted in 2004; and Albania and Croatia acceded to the alliance in 2009.

Meanwhile, by the beginning of the 21st century, Russia and NATO had formed a strategic relationship. No longer considered NATOs chief enemy, Russia cemented a new cooperative bond with NATO in 2001 to address such common concerns as international terrorism, nuclear nonproliferation, and arms control. This bond was subsequently subject to fraying, however, in large part because of reasons associated with Russian domestic politics.

Events following the September 11 terrorist attacks in 2001 led to the forging of a new dynamic within the alliance, one that increasingly favoured the military engagement of members outside Europe, initially with a mission against Taliban forces in Afghanistan beginning in the summer of 2003 and subsequently with air operations against the regime of Muammar al-Qaddafi in Libya in early 2011. As a result of the increased tempo of military operations undertaken by the alliance, the long-standing issue of burden sharing was revived, with some officials warning that failure to share the costs of NATO operations more equitably would lead to unraveling of the alliance. Most observers regarded that scenario as unlikely, however.

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Microdosing: The Revolutionary Way of Using Psychedelics …

Posted: at 5:32 am

Microdosing of 10 to 20 micrograms (of LSD)allow me to increase my focus, open my heart, and achieve breakthrough results while remaining integrated within my routine. My wit, response time, and visual and mental acuity seem greater than normal on it.

Madeline, The Psychedelic Explorers Guide

On a beautiful morning in Amsterdam I grabbed my vial of LSD, diluted down with half high grade vodka and half distilled water, and told my friend to trust me and open his mouth. While semi-carefully measuring the droplets for his microdose, I told him to whirl it around in his mouth for a few minutes before swallowing the neuro-chemical concoction. I quickly followed suit.

We had one of the best walking conversation ofour lives.

I first became immenselycurious about the potential of microdosing psychedelics after reading this captivating storyabout James Fadiman and his research. After a few test-runs, I knew I stumbled upon something significant.

Today we arewitnessing the birth of a truly remarkable epoch. With the psychedelic renaissance well under way, consisting ofnew fascinating research, the coming out of thousands of individuals and the introduction of many, hitherto unknown, psychoactive plants steeped in their cultural context of healing and initiation, we are now facing some new and interesting questions.

I think one of the more fruitful directions we can take is towards is microdosing.

Microdosing is taking sub-perceptual doses (6-25 microgram LSD, 0.2-0.5 gram dried mushrooms, 50-75 microgram mescaline HCL) while keeping up with ones daily activities, engaging in extreme sports, appreciating nature or enhancing ones spiritual practice.

This manner of integrating psychedelics, also known as a psycholytic dose, doesnt inhibit ego-functioning in the same intense manner asthe heroic Terence McKennadose does. It is much easier integrated into non-psychedelic activities.

It is knownthat Albert Hofmann, the first synthesizer of LSD, continued this practice well into his old age while saying it would have gone on to be used as Ritalin if it hadnt been so harshly scheduled.

James Oroc, the author of the amazing book Tryptamine Palace: 5-MeO-DMT and the Sonoran Desert Toad, while writing about the secret affair between psychedelics and extreme sports, saysthat taking psychedelics at lower doses, the cognitive functioning, emotional balance, and physical stamina were actually found to be improved.

For some, this might not come as a surprise, since Hofmann already spoke in a now famous interview that Lysergic acid diethyl amide (LSD) is related in chemical structure to nicotinic acid diethylamide, known to be an effective analeptic. (central nervous stimulant.)

But theres more, as James Oroc eloquently put,

Virtually all athletes who learn to use LSD at psycholytic dosages believe that the use of these compounds improves both their stamina and their abilities. According to the combined reports of 40 years of use by the extreme sports underground, LSD can increase your re- flex time to lightning speed, improve your balance to the point of perfection, increase your concentration until you experience tunnel vision, and make you impervious to weakness or pain. LSDs effects in these regards amongst the extreme-sport community are in fact legendary, universal, and without dispute.

He goes so far to suggest that, to some in the extreme sports subculture, taking a microdose at any physical competition is considered cheating. And this is not just the case for sports.P.G. Stafford and B.H. Golightly write in LSD The Problem-Solving Psychedelicabout a student that wanted to learn german making huge strides under the influenceof an unknown amount of LSD.These are the words of the student:

It was a week before registration and it depressed me tremendously that I had not spent the summer learning German, as I had planned. I had intended to give myself a crash course so I could take second-year German, which I needed for my study in physics. I had heard of a woman who had learned enough Spanish in a few days, via LSD, to speak it fluently when she had to go to Mexico on business.

I had taken LSD before, and while I couldnt see how she did this, I decided it was worth a try. I hadnt even gotten around to picking up a textbook, but I did have a close friend who knew German well and who said he was willing to sit in while I took the drug and try to teach me the language.

Fortunately, I knew something about conjugation and declension, so I wasnt completely at sea. I wanted to get worked up and feel involved with the language, as it seemed that this must be at least part of the key to the problem, so I asked my friend to tell me about Schiller and Goethe, and why the verb came at the end. Almost immediately, after just a story or two, I knew I had been missing a lot in ignoring the Germans, and I really got excited. The thing that impressed me at first was the delicacy of the language (he was now giving me some simple words and phrases), and though I really messed it up, I was trying hard to imitate his pronunciation as I had never tried to mimic anything before.

For most people German may be guttural, but for me it was light and lacey. Before long, I was catching on even to the umlauts. Things were speeding up like mad, and there were floods of associations. My friend had only to give me a German word, and almost immediately I knew what it was through cognates. It turned out that it wasnt even necessary for him to ask me what it sounded like.

Memory, of course, is a matter of association, and boy, was I ever linking up to things! I had no difficulty recalling words he had given mein fact, I was eager to string them together. In a couple of hours after that I was reading even some simple German, and it all made sense.

The whole experience was an explosion of discoveries. Normally, when youve been working on something for a long time and finally discover a solution, you get excited, and you can see implications everywhere. Much more than if you heard someone else discovering the same-thing. Now this discovery thing, thats what was happening with mebut all the time.

The threshold of understanding was extremely low, so that with every new phrase I felt I was making major discoveries. When I was reading, it was as though I had discovered the Rosetta Stone and the world was waiting for my translation. Really wild!

In the 60s the creativity enhancing effects of psychedelics were already hailed as revolutionary, and these famous tripperswould certainly agree. One significant study investigated the effect of 100 micrograms of LSD on top of the field experts who had been struggling with a hard problem for months. Their solutions were reviewed by a panel of other experts in the same field. As Tim Doody reports;

LSD absolutely had helped them solve their complex, seemingly intractable problems. And the establishment agreed. The 26 men unleashed a slew of widely embraced innovations shortly after their LSD experiences, including a mathematical theorem for NOR gate circuits, a conceptual model of a photon, a linear electron accelerator beam-steering device, a new design for the vibratory microtome, a technical improvement of the magnetic tape recorder, blueprints for a private residency and an arts-and-crafts shopping plaza,
and a space probe experiment designed to measure solar properties.

Psychedelics can be described as non-specific amplifiers, and, as such, not just creativity can be enhanced, also the distressing states of mind. In smaller doses this is not as overwhelming and therefore, if used properly, can be quite beneficial.

Myron Stolaroff, while writing about the usefulness of psychedelics in the practice of buddhism, argues that low doses of psychedelics can be extremely beneficial to improve ones meditation practice.

The use of low doses often can be much more effective in dealing with our psychic garbage. Many do not care for low doses because they can stir up uncomfortable feelings, and they prefer to transcend them by pushing on into higher states, but it is precisely these uncomfortable feelings that must be resolved to achieve true freedom.

With low doses, by focusing directly on the feelings and staying with them without aversion and without grasping, they will in time dissipate. Resolving ones repressed feelings in this manner clears the inner being, permitting the True Self to manifest more steadily. Such a result provides greater energy, deeper peace, more perceptive awareness, greater clarity, keener intuition, and greater compassion. It permits the deepening of ones meditation practice. The surfacing of buried feelings that this procedure permits often can bring new understanding of ones personality dynamics.

The potential to improve cognitive functioning, body awareness and our spiritual evolution with a microdose of psychedelics are limitless. There are five categories by which we can describe the overall effects of microdosing LSD. I gathered these from the various first person reports Ive quoted so far and my own extensive experimentation.

To be able to experiment with these states of conscious in a safe and constructive manner, be sure to follow these guidelines.

To make this trivial world sublime, take half a gram of phanerothyme -Huxley

In a not so far away future it will be possible to unlock different experiences with a pill. A little piece of matter, folded and turned using organic chemistry into a unique organic key to insert your brain. A drug you can buy as easy as alcohol or tobacco, or weed. Perhaps it will thrive in a system where one has to take an exam, some basic tests, and will be rewarded a license of some kind.

Aldous Huxley envisionedin Island,his last, and according to himself, his most important book, that psychedelics could help us overcome addiction, anxiety and depression. That if we could change how we experience ourselves, our loved ones and the world at large, either through rituals or through neurochemical mediated ways, we could usher in a new paradigm of human flourishing.

While his vision has not come to fruition yet, it is still very much alive. With the practice of microdosing, we will be one step closer to learning how to cope with the vast depths of our own psyches.

Enjoy the magic, my friends.

Share your microdose experience here

Ive gotten so many questions, requests and microdose stories after writing this article that I have decided to write an e-book on this fascinating subject matter. If youd like to help, I am looking for:

All information received will be used anonymously. Please enter Microdosing as the subject. Thank you 🙂

As we repeatedly stress on HighExistence, psychedelics mustbe approached with reverence and caution. We believe that in a loving context, psychedelics are powerful medicines with tremendous potential, but there are a number of physical and psychological safety concerns that one should consider before journeying with psychedelics. Please, please do plenty of research, and do not take psychedelics if you have reason to believe that they will not jibe with your personality or particular mental baggage.The Essential Psychedelic Guideon Erowid is an exceptional free resource, and we recommend reading it,especiallythe section on Psychedelic Safety, before ever dabbling in these substances. Take care, and happy tripping. : )

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TZM – Mission Statement – The Zeitgeist Movement

Posted: at 5:29 am

As of June 2016, The Zeitgeist Movement has formed an official 501c3 non-profit, tax exempt entity to help administration. As has been suggested for years, this new aspect of TZM has been created to assist core administrative tasks and costs, allowing for greater project development. See Intro Video

The 8th Annual Global ‘Zeitgeist Day’ Symposium Promotes Sustainability, Global Unity, and a Post-Scarcity Society

The 2016 event, featuring prominent speakers and guests from around the world, will be held in Athens, Greece on Saturday, March 26th, 2016

Press Release

June 2015 “Zeitgeist founder, Peter Joseph, joins Jesse Ventura to discuss the concept of a resource-based economy. With all of Earths resources in decline, it is time to scientifically manage the ones we have left. In this brand new episode of Off the Grid, Peter Joseph talks about the benefits of moving away from a market economy toward one that is based on resource management.” Watch Now

The Zeitgeist Movement Education project is now live! The aim of the project is for every chapter of TZM to initially try to go into just one school or university to promote/discuss sustainable values and practices with the next generation.

To find out more and to get involved in the project please visit the website at http://www.tzmeducation.org

http://www.tzmeducation.org

Great activist tool. This 2 DVD set contains the talks from The Zeitgeist Movement’s flagship awareness event known as “Zeitgeist Day” (aka Zday). This DVD Set is from the 5th annual Main Event that was held in Los Angeles, CA on March 17th, 2013. 12 Lectures in 6 Hours. Go Here

The Zeitgeist Movement’s new Orientation Guide “The Zeitgeist Movement Defined” has been released.

Read Book

THANK YOU FOR THE GREAT 2014 EVENTS!

Uniting the world through the power of art, the Zeitgeist Media Festival is back for its fourth annual main event. Occurring at The Federal in North Hollywood, Saturday, October 4th, 2014 from 6pm-11pm, this not-for-profit activist arts festival features live music, comedy, short films, spoken word and more.

More Info/Press Kit

3rd Annual News Coverage

WATCH INTERVIEW

Peter Joseph exclusive interview with Abby Martin of “Breaking The Set” on Russia Today.

Economic Calculation in a Natural Law/Resource-Based Economy, Nov. 12th 2013

Watch Video

Thank you TZM Germany for a great event.

Published on Mar 14, 2013 “This week, Cenk Uygur sits down with Peter Joseph, founder of the Zeitgeist movement. The Zeitgeist movement’s goal is to create global sustainability by changing established social systems. Can people save the world by changing socially? Is the market economy responsible for corruption, and is it serving its original purpose? Does the market economy leave room for true freewill, and is it truly possible to shed ourselves of material goods?

Free TZM Global Show Archives: Free Archive

Huge Thanks to our dedicated Chapters Coordinators for this helpful contribution!

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Founded in 2008, The Zeitgeist Movement is a sustainability advocacy organization, which conducts community based activism and awareness actions through a network of global/regional chapters, project teams, annual events, media and charity work.

The movement’s principle focus includes the recognition that the majority of the social problems that plague the human species at this time are not the sole result of some institutional corruption, absolute scarcity, a political policy, a flaw of “human nature” or other commonly held assumptions of causality. Rather, the movement recognizes that issues such as poverty, corruption, pollution, homelessness, war, starvation and the like appear to be “symptoms” born out of an outdated social structure.

While intermediate reform steps and temporal community support are of interest to the movement, the defining goal is the installation of a new socioeconomic model based upon technically responsible resource management, allocation and design through what would be considered the scientific method of reasoning problems and finding optimized solutions.

This Natural Law/Resource-Based Economy” (NLRBE) is about taking a direct technical approach to social management as opposed to a monetary or even political one. It is about updating the workings of society to the most advanced and proven methods known, leaving behind the damaging consequences and limiting inhibitions which are generated by our current system of monetary exchange, profit, business and other structural and motivational issues.

The movement is loyal to a train of thought, not figures or institutions. The view held is that through the use of socially targeted research and tested understandings in science and technology, we are now able to logically arrive at societal applications that could be profoundly more effective in meeting the needs of the human population, increasing public health. There is little reason to assume war, poverty, most crime and many other monetarily-based scarcity effects common in our current model cannot be resolved over time. The range of the movement’s activism and awareness campaigns extend from short to long term, with methods based explicitly on non-violent methods of communication.

The Zeitgeist Movement has no allegiance to any country or traditional political platforms. It views the world as a single system and the human species as a single family and recognizes that all countries must disarm and learn to share resources and ideas if we expect to survive in the long run. Hence, the solutions arrived at and promoted are in the interest to help everyone on Earth, not a select group.

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TZM – Mission Statement – The Zeitgeist Movement

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North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) | Britannica.com

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Alternative title: NATO

North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), military alliance established by the North Atlantic Treaty (also called the Washington Treaty) of April 4, 1949, which sought to create a counterweight to Soviet armies stationed in central and eastern Europe after World War II. Its original members were Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Joining the original signatories were Greece and Turkey (1952); West Germany (1955; from 1990 as Germany); Spain (1982); the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland (1999); Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia (2004); and Albania and Croatia (2009). France withdrew from the integrated military command of NATO in 1966 but remained a member of the organization; it resumed its position in NATOs military command in 2009.

The heart of NATO is expressed in Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty, in which the signatory members agree that

an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all; and consequently they agree that, if such an armed attack occurs, each of them, in exercise of the right of individual or collective self-defense recognized by Article 51 of the Charter of the United Nations, will assist the Party or Parties so attacked by taking forthwith, individually and in concert with the other Parties, such action as it deems necessary, including the use of armed force, to restore and maintain the security of the North Atlantic area.

NATO invoked Article 5 for the first time in 2001, after terrorist attacks organized by exiled Saudi Arabian millionaire Osama bin Laden destroyed the World Trade Center in New York City and part of the Pentagon outside Washington, D.C., killing some 3,000 people.

Article 6 defines the geographic scope of the treaty as covering an armed attack on the territory of any of the Parties in Europe or North America. Other articles commit the allies to strengthening their democratic institutions, to building their collective military capability, to consulting each other, and to remaining open to inviting other European states to join.

Barkley, Alben W.: North Atlantic Treaty signingEncyclopdia Britannica, Inc.After World War II in 1945, western Europe was economically exhausted and militarily weak (the western Allies had rapidly and drastically reduced their armies at the end of the war), and newly powerful communist parties had arisen in France and Italy. By contrast, the Soviet Union had emerged from the war with its armies dominating all the states of central and eastern Europe, and by 1948 communists under Moscows sponsorship had consolidated their control of the governments of those countries and suppressed all noncommunist political activity. What became known as the Iron Curtain, a term popularized by Winston Churchill, had descended over central and eastern Europe. Further, wartime cooperation between the western Allies and the Soviets had completely broken down. Each side was organizing its own sector of occupied Germany, so that two German states would emerge, a democratic one in the west and a communist one in the east.

In 1948 the United States launched the Marshall Plan, which infused massive amounts of economic aid to the countries of western and southern Europe on the condition that they cooperate with each other and engage in joint planning to hasten their mutual recovery. As for military recovery, under the Brussels Treaty of 1948, the United Kingdom, France, and the Low CountriesBelgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourgconcluded a collective-defense agreement called the Western European Union. It was soon recognized, however, that a more formidable alliance would be required to provide an adequate military counterweight to the Soviets.

By this time Britain, Canada, and the United States had already engaged in secret exploratory talks on security arrangements that would serve as an alternative to the United Nations (UN), which was becoming paralyzed by the rapidly emerging Cold War. In March 1948, following a virtual communist coup dtat in Czechoslovakia in February, the three governments began discussions on a multilateral collective-defense scheme that would enhance Western security and promote democratic values. These discussions were eventually joined by France, the Low Countries, and Norway and in April 1949 resulted in the North Atlantic Treaty.

Spurred by the North Korean invasion of South Korea in June 1950, the United States took steps to demonstrate that it would resist any Soviet military expansion or pressures in Europe. General Dwight D. Eisenhower, the leader of the Allied forces in western Europe in World War II, was named Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR) by the North Atlantic Council (NATOs governing body) in December 1950. He was followed as SACEUR by a succession of American generals.

The North Atlantic Council, which was established soon after the treaty came into effect, is composed of ministerial representatives of the member states, who meet at least twice a year. At other times the council, chaired by the NATO secretary-general, remains in permanent session at the ambassadorial level. Just as the position of SACEUR has always been held by an American, the secretary-generalship has always been held by a European.

NATOs military organization encompasses a complete system of commands for possible wartime use. The Military Committee, consisting of representatives of the military chiefs of staff of the member states, subsumes two strategic commands: Allied Command Operations (ACO) and Allied Command Transformation (ACT). ACO is headed by the SACEUR and located at Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) in Casteau, Belgium. ACT is headquartered in Norfolk, Virginia, U.S. During the alliances first 20 years, more than $3 billion worth of infrastructure for NATO forcesbases, airfields, pipelines, communications networks, depotswas jointly planned, financed, and built, with about one-third of the funding from the United States. NATO funding generally is not used for the procurement of military equipment, which is provided by the member statesthough the NATO Airborne Early Warning Force, a fleet of radar-bearing aircraft designed to protect against a surprise low-flying attack, was funded jointly.

A serious issue confronting NATO in the early and mid-1950s was the negotiation of West Germanys participation in the alliance. The prospect of a rearmed Germany was understandably greeted with widespread unease and hesitancy in western Europe, but the countrys strength had long been recognized as necessary to protect western Europe from a possible Soviet invasion. Accordingly, arrangements for West Germanys safe participation in the alliance were worked out as part of the Paris Agreements of October 1954, which ended the occupation of West German territory by the western Allies and provided for both the limitation of West German armaments and the countrys accession to the Brussels Treaty. In May 1955 West Germany joined NATO, which prompted the Soviet Union to form the Warsaw Pact alliance in central and eastern Europe the same year. The West Germans subsequently contributed many divisions and substantial air forces to the NATO alliance. By the time the Cold War ended, some 900,000 troopsnearly half of them from six countries (United States, Unite
d Kingdom, France, Belgium, Canada, and the Netherlands)were stationed in West Germany.

Frances relationship with NATO became strained after 1958, as President Charles de Gaulle increasingly criticized the organizations domination by the United States and the intrusion upon French sovereignty by NATOs many international staffs and activities. He argued that such integration subjected France to automatic war at the decision of foreigners. In July 1966 France formally withdrew from the military command structure of NATO and required NATO forces and headquarters to leave French soil; nevertheless, de Gaulle proclaimed continued French adherence to the North Atlantic Treaty in case of unprovoked aggression. After NATO moved its headquarters from Paris to Brussels, France maintained a liaison relationship with NATOs integrated military staffs, continued to sit in the council, and continued to maintain and deploy ground forces in West Germany, though it did so under new bilateral agreements with the West Germans rather than under NATO jurisdiction. In 2009 France rejoined the military command structure of NATO.

From its founding, NATOs primary purpose was to unify and strengthen the Western Allies military response to a possible invasion of western Europe by the Soviet Union and its Warsaw Pact allies. In the early 1950s NATO relied partly on the threat of massive nuclear retaliation from the United States to counter the Warsaw Pacts much larger ground forces. Beginning in 1957, this policy was supplemented by the deployment of American nuclear weapons in western European bases. NATO later adopted a flexible response strategy, which the United States interpreted to mean that a war in Europe did not have to escalate to an all-out nuclear exchange. Under this strategy, many Allied forces were equipped with American battlefield and theatre nuclear weapons under a dual-control (or dual-key) system, which allowed both the country hosting the weapons and the United States to veto their use. Britain retained control of its strategic nuclear arsenal but brought it within NATOs planning structures; Frances nuclear forces remained completely autonomous.

A conventional and nuclear stalemate between the two sides continued through the construction of the Berlin Wall in the early 1960s, dtente in the 1970s, and the resurgence of Cold War tensions in the 1980s after the Soviet Unions invasion of Afghanistan in 1979 and the election of U.S. President Ronald Reagan in 1980. After 1985, however, far-reaching economic and political reforms introduced by Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev fundamentally altered the status quo. In July 1989 Gorbachev announced that Moscow would no longer prop up communist governments in central and eastern Europe and thereby signaled his tacit acceptance of their replacement by freely elected (and noncommunist) administrations. Moscows abandonment of control over central and eastern Europe meant the dissipation of much of the military threat that the Warsaw Pact had formerly posed to western Europe, a fact that led some to question the need to retain NATO as a military organizationespecially after the Warsaw Pacts dissolution in 1991. The reunification of Germany in October 1990 and its retention of NATO membership created both a need and an opportunity for NATO to be transformed into a more political alliance devoted to maintaining international stability in Europe.

After the Cold War, NATO was reconceived as a cooperative-security organization whose mandate was to include two main objectives: to foster dialogue and cooperation with former adversaries in the Warsaw Pact and to manage conflicts in areas on the European periphery, such as the Balkans. In keeping with the first objective, NATO established the North Atlantic Cooperation Council (1991; later replaced by the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council) to provide a forum for the exchange of views on political and security issues, as well as the Partnership for Peace (PfP) program (1994) to enhance European security and stability through joint military training exercises with NATO and non-NATO states, including the former Soviet republics and allies. Special cooperative links were also set up with two PfP countries: Russia and Ukraine.

The second objective entailed NATOs first use of military force, when it entered the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1995 by staging air strikes against Bosnian Serb positions around the capital city of Sarajevo. The subsequent Dayton Accords, which were initialed by representatives of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Republic of Croatia, and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, committed each state to respecting the others sovereignty and to settling disputes peacefully; it also laid the groundwork for stationing NATO peacekeeping troops in the region. A 60,000-strong Implementation Force (IFOR) was initially deployed, though a smaller contingent remained in Bosnia under a different name, the Stabilization Force (SFOR). In March 1999 NATO launched massive air strikes against Serbia in an attempt to force the Yugoslav government of Slobodan Miloevi to accede to diplomatic provisions designed to protect the predominantly Muslim Albanian population in the province of Kosovo. Under the terms of a negotiated settlement to the fighting, NATO deployed a peacekeeping force called the Kosovo Force (KFOR).

The crisis over Kosovo and the ensuing war gave renewed impetus to efforts by the European Union (EU) to construct a new crisis-intervention force, which would make the EU less dependent on NATO and U.S. military resources for conflict management. These efforts prompted significant debates about whether enhancing the EUs defensive capabilities would strengthen or weaken NATO. Simultaneously there was much discussion of the future of NATO in the post-Cold War era. Some observers argued that the alliance should be dissolved, noting that it was created to confront an enemy that no longer existed; others called for a broad expansion of NATO membership to include Russia. Most suggested alternative roles, including peacekeeping. By the start of the second decade of the 21st century, it appeared likely that the EU would not develop capabilities competitive with those of NATO or even seek to do so; as a result, earlier worries associated with the spectre of rivalry between the two Brussels-based organizations dissipated.

North Atlantic Treaty Organization: flag-raising ceremony, 1999NATO photosDuring the presidency of Bill Clinton (19932001), the United States led an initiative to enlarge NATO membership gradually to include some of the former Soviet allies. In the concurrent debate over enlargement, supporters of the initiative argued that NATO membership was the best way to begin the long process of integrating these states into regional political and economic institutions such as the EU. Some also feared future Russian aggression and suggested that NATO membership would guarantee freedom and security for the newly democratic regimes. Opponents pointed to the enormous cost of modernizing the military forces of new members; they also argued that enlargement, which Russia would regard as a provocation, would hinder democracy in that country and enhance the influence of hard-liners. Despite these disagreements, the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland joined NATO in 1999; Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia were admitted in 2004; and Albania and Croatia acceded to the alliance in 2009.

Meanwhile, by the beginning of the 21st century, Russia and NATO had formed a strategic relationship. No longer considered NATOs chief enemy, Russ
ia cemented a new cooperative bond with NATO in 2001 to address such common concerns as international terrorism, nuclear nonproliferation, and arms control. This bond was subsequently subject to fraying, however, in large part because of reasons associated with Russian domestic politics.

Events following the September 11 terrorist attacks in 2001 led to the forging of a new dynamic within the alliance, one that increasingly favoured the military engagement of members outside Europe, initially with a mission against Taliban forces in Afghanistan beginning in the summer of 2003 and subsequently with air operations against the regime of Muammar al-Qaddafi in Libya in early 2011. As a result of the increased tempo of military operations undertaken by the alliance, the long-standing issue of burden sharing was revived, with some officials warning that failure to share the costs of NATO operations more equitably would lead to unraveling of the alliance. Most observers regarded that scenario as unlikely, however.

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North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) | Britannica.com

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