Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Himalayan Odyssey...

(http://nepaltraveller.com/home/blog/15)
Photo by Alonzo Lyons in Rukum, Nepal

The Last Seduction of Buddha?

Your worst enemy cannot harm you
As much as your own thoughts, unguarded.
But once mastered,
No one can help you as much.
-Siddhartha Gautam (also known as Buddha, The Dhammapada)
The Last Seduction of Buddha (http://realitysandwich.com/321855/the-last-seduction-of-buddha-jungle-rumble/)
Photo by Alonzo Lyons at foot of Sandia Mountains, Albuquerque, NM, USA

Planet Low Standards...?

'Fast and Furious 8 Is the Biggest Global Movie Opening, Ever (http://www.thedrive.com/news/9346/f8-of-the-furious-breaks-global-box-office-records)

Have you ever heard of Operation Mockingbird?

The United States Senate investigative committee led by Idaho Senator Frank Church and officially titled “Select Committee to Study Governmental Operations with Respect to Intelligence Activities” uncovered disturbing evidence concerning Operation Mockingbird and delivered the following conclusion:

"The CIA currently maintains a network of several hundred foreign individuals around the world who provide intelligence for the CIA and at times attempt to influence opinion through the use of covert propaganda. These individuals provide the CIA with direct access to a large number of newspapers and periodicals, scores of press services and news agencies, radio and television stations, commercial book publishers, and other foreign media outlets…. In examining the CIA’s past and present use of the U.S. media, the Committee finds two reasons for concern. The first is the potential, inherent in covert media operations, for manipulating or incidentally misleading the American public. The second is the damage to the credibility and independence of a free press which may be caused by covert relationships with the U.S. journalists and media organizations.”

This assessment is more than forty years old. Imagine the dangerous advancements in stealth and deception since that time.

Even more alarming are President Truman's damning words about the anti-democratic syndicate that he helped set up-- 

I think [the creation of the CIA] was a mistake. And if I'd known what was going to happen, I never would have done it. 
Why, they've got an organization over there in Virginia now that is practically the equal of the Pentagon in many ways. And I think I've told you, one Pentagon is one too many.
Now, as nearly as I can make out, those fellows in the CIA don't just report on wars and the like, they go out and make their own, and there's nobody to keep track of what they're up to. They spend billions of dollars on stirring up trouble...They've become ... it's become a government all of its own and all secret. They don't have to account to anybody.
That's a very dangerous thing in a democratic society, and it's got to be put a stop to. The people have got a right to know what those birds are up to. 
...you can't do any housecleaning because everything that goes on is a damn secret... Secrecy and a free, democratic government don't mix.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Viva la RevoluciĆ³n y Revolucionar la Vida

Maybe crybullies are punch drunk from swilling too much corporate media Kool-Aid? 
The sock-puppet groupspeak of the Hive Mind is becoming more and more unhinged. 





Saturday, May 6, 2017

Nexit?

Exploiting poverty to extract wealth (and social status through Virtue Signaling, e.g., ‘look at me Fakebook friends – here in Nepal for 'Disaster Recovery')?


Nepal is failing through indefinite aid and not in spite of it. This Himalayan nation needs freedom from crocodilian ruling cronies, cancerous bureaucrats and an interfering aid cadre. They are abetting each other and are the biggest beneficiaries of the ‘aid’ they promote and that oozes into and through their offices, hands and pockets with but a trickle if anything left remaining for the people for whom it was targeted. The general population is suffering for lack of opportunity with chronic poverty and a host of other ills and lethal side-effects of dysfunction, corruption and malfeasance.

"The rich have markets, the poor have [cannibalistic, dysfunctional] bureaucrats [abetted by self-serving, deadbeat donor darlings]" -W. Easterly, Researcher of Development Economics, NYU, author of The Tyranny of Experts

Time for a Nexit from the crony ruling class and deadbeat donor darlings? The crony socialism of Nepal’s aid paradigm in collusion with the ruling class gangsters has failed on a massive scale causing enduring harm. Hasn’t six-plus decades of indefinite aid brought enough devastation to the people and culture of Nepal (even more than war, even more than natural disasters)?

Aid entrepreneurs, especially ones without language and culture skills, please consider ceasing and desisting. “Let my people go!” cries Dr. Dambisa Moyo, author of Dead Aid, about indefinite aid in her home country of Zambia.


Can the ghastly destruction of a people, culture and country abetted by indefinite 'aid' intervention by foreign donor darlings continue much longer without total collapse after decades of misguided 'aid' and centuries of ruling class domination (i.e., caste apartheid) that the 'aid' abets?

"Do not go abroad to slay dragons that you don't understand" -John Quincy Adams, 6th US President

“Aid undermines what poor people need most: effective government.” -Angus Deaton, Nobel Prizewinner in Economic Sciences, 2015

“The problem of poverty is not a shortage of experts. It’s a shortage of rights...the most important factor in lifting people out of poverty is allowing free markets and entrepreneurship to flourish...when there's an environment of universal rights for poor people, for citizens of a society, then that does indeed make technical solutions happen." -William Easterly, Ph.D., New York University Professor of Economics, author of The Tyranny of Experts

#Nepal #Nexit #GlobalDev #CronySocialism #DeadbeatDonorDarlings #deadaid #boondoggle #aidcorrupts

Friday, May 5, 2017

"The incompetence is mind numbing..."

“The incompetence is mind numbing...The UN/INGO people I encountered were frequently out of touch…anachronistic in their thinking at best and arrogant and incompetent at worst.There is NO accountability in the UN system or international humanitarian system.
[The local people] wanted to help themselves...they are experiencing UN/INGO fatigue...”
-Chelsea Clinton, excerpted from a letter to her parents, Bill and Hillary Clinton, reporting on the state of humanitarian intervention and foreign aid in Haiti after the earthquake of 2010.

Nepal is not different and perhaps even worse off after six decades of indefinite aid that has devastated the people of Nepal, devastated the economy and the country more than any war or natural disaster.
Since the quakes of 2015 the ruling cronies and aid agents have only consolidated power -- meanwhile the real people of Nepal endure chronic poverty and endless suffering.
The people and culture are dying. Dozens of Nepalis return from perilous migrant work abroad every month in body bags for lack of opportunity in Nepal, lack of opportunity and jobs that begins with corruption in the ruling gang aided and abetted by an indefinite aid paradigm.
The ruling class cronies and aid agents are the biggest beneficiaries of 'aid'. Most aid agents have little to no language skills and scant cultural understanding. Still, they typically enjoy a lifestyle in the top echelon of the society they traveled overseas to change.

"The rich have markets, the poor have [cannibalistic] bureaucrats [abetted by deadbeat donor darlings]" -W. Easterly, Researcher of Development Economics, New York University

“Aid undermines what poor people need most: effective government." -Angus Deaton, Nobel Prizewinner in Economic Sciences 2015

"Let my people go!" -Dambisa Moyo, Ph.D., Economist and Author of Dead Aid: Why Aid Is Not Working and How There Is a Better Way

"The best road to progress is freedom's road." -John F. Kennedy, 35th President of the United States of America

#Nepal #Haiti #GlobalDev #DeadAid #deadbeat #donordarlings #NepalQuakes #AidCorrupts #SaveNepal




Heavens to Murgatroyd!

From Reuters news-wire: Obama Administration Sales to Saudi Arabia Top $115 Billion

Arming Saudi Arabia(gasp) – a monarchy cum totalitarian dictatorship with one of the worst records on Human Rights (e.g., severe oppression of women, cruel harassment and lethal punishment of homosexual people, persecution of beliefs and practices outside the ultraconservative cohort in command, silencing journalists, smothering personal expression and so on). Currently, they are bombing one of the poorest countries in the Gulf, Yemen, a defenseless nation-- and bombing Yemen with weaponry supplied by Obush et al.
...remember when fifteen of nineteen 9/11 hijackers were citizens of Saudi Arabia (and how 9/11 illogically led to devastating wars in Afghanistan and Iraq)? 

Was President Obama just impersonating a Nobel Peace Prize Winner while arming Saudi Arabia(see above Reuters link) and many others?

From a Guardian article by Codepink founding member Medea Benjamin (https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/jan/09/america-dropped-26171-bombs-2016-obama-legacy?CMP=share_btn_tw):

-In 2016, US special operators could be found in 70% of the world’s nations, 138 countries — a staggering jump of 130% since the days of the Bush administration.

-Obama authorized over 10 times more drone strikes than George W Bush, and automatically painted all males of military age in these regions as combatants, making them fair game for remote controlled killing.

-Given that drones account for only a small portion of the munitions dropped in the past eight years, the numbers of civilians killed by Obama’s bombs could be in the thousands. But we can’t know for sure as the administration, and the mainstream media, has been virtually silent about the civilian toll of the administration’s failed interventions.

#Obamawar #militaryindustrialpsychosis #militaryindustrialdeathcult #cronymilitarism

President Obama kissing Saudi king's ring.

President Bush and Saudi King holding hands in a flower meadow.



Saturday, April 29, 2017

Neo-Puritans are Neo-Fascists?

SJWs are the Neo-Puritans?  Anti-fascists are the Neo-Fascists? Counter Culture the New Libertarians?





The New Counter Culture?

Libertarianism Conservatism is the New Counter Culture...?




Saturday, April 22, 2017

Adventure is calling from the Himalaya including Nepal's Top 6 Peaks--can you summit one, too?


The following is my piece about climbing Island Peak (Imja Tse) in Adventure Travel magazine. Originally published 11 November 2013.
Island Peak is a sky-scraping Himalayan peak that rises over 6000m (over 20,000ft), a benchmark height, and the peak is a relatively easy Himalayan climb. Adventure is calling from Nepal. Will you summit a Himalayan peak, too?
---

Roped together on a sliver of ice, the crevasses on either side of the team could swallow a herd of yaks. On the eastern horizon a shard of light is signaling dawn, but we still wear headlamps, causing eerie shadows to flicker in the caverns beneath the peaks surrounding us. There’s no turning back on this adventure that has surpassed all expectations.

According to the Nepal Tourism Board, 326 of the country’s peaks are open for mountaineering. But apprentice climbers and enthusiastic adventurers not prepared for the highest peaks have options too. The Nepal Mountaineering Association (NMA) designates 33 mountains as Trekking Peaks. With summits ranging in height between 5,700m to 6,600m, these peaks are relatively low for the Himalaya and still higher than most mountains on the planet.

Confusingly, the name Trekking Peaks in no way implies that they are for casual trekkers. Some have had only a few ascents and are true mountaineering feats requiring sufficient experience, skill and technical kit. The ‘trekking’ part of the name is because they are near trekking routes and therefore easy to access. However, while some of these mountains can be summited in a just a few days from Nepal’s popular trekking destinations, others are off the beaten path and take up to two weeks. Still, Trekking Peaks entail less climbing than expeditions to higher peaks, fewer logistics and they are much more affordable. The climbing usually involves some technical skills (most guiding companies give basic training) and some technical equipment (at least crampons and ice axes). Rules stipulate that a seasoned guide certified by the NMA must accompany all climbers on Trekking Peaks. I’ve come to climb Island Peak which, at 6,189m, is the most popular of all of these mountains.

With frosty abysses meters away and a stream of climbers traversing through them, I wonder if Mother Nature is ever tempted to take a sacrificial offering to appease the mountain gods above. One by one we hop over a slit where the glacier opens up, a half-meter fissure of gloom resembling a grim smile from below. We make our way up to a massive snowfield at 5,800m, just below a 60-degree ice headwall the length of a football pitch. I think back to the decision to make this climb, which came over a cup of chiyaa (sweet milk tea spiced with cardamom) a world away at Endra Rai’s cozy office in Thamel, globetrotter ghetto of Kathmandu.

Endra is one of the most affable people in Nepal, quite a feat in a land of legendary hospitality. His friendliness and easy humor belie an enormous physical strength, skill and knowledge from years of experience. He is the first person of his ethnicity, the unique Rai people, an indigenous clan in Nepal prominent in the Gurkha regiments, to have climbed Everest. Endra is an expedition planner in Nepal, and he is even better known for his rafting exploits.

Endra and I have known each other for a few years and often go out for a traditional Rai-Limbu drink called tongba, named after the large wooden vessel it comes in and traditionally drunk through a bamboo straw. Our favorite establishment specializes in tongba and cheap fare of finger chips, momo (dumplings) and pakoda (battered and deep-fried vegetables). The place gets packed elbow to elbow in the cold season, when tongba consumption reaches its zenith. During these evenings the conversation often drifts to our dream of researching the Tongba Trail, a journey we’ve invented in eastern Nepal, land of Rais and Limbus, who created the incomparable beverage and maintain distinctive traditions and spiritual practices. This time, however, Endra had a different question for me.

“Lyons-jee, why don’t you climb Island Peak with us?”

I signed on straight away. At 43 I’m neither growing younger nor likely to be in better shape. Endra would take care of the red tape, allowing me to do the rest.

Summiting the number one peak in Nepal is especially tantalizing as it puts climbers over 6,000m – a benchmark height greater than the tallest mountains in Europe, Africa, Australia and Antarctica, four of the seven continents. You can also do it on the same trip as an expedition to Everest Base Camp. In 2012, Island Peak (also called Imja Tse) received 6,010 climbers out of a total of 12,759 for all of the Trekking Peaks that year. It’s an appetizer for anyone on their way to attempt Everest, or a side dish for trekkers in the alpine nirvana of the Khumbu. 

Most people tackling Island Peak fly into the mountain airport at Lukla. An ardent trekker, I preferred to hike in, so made the day-long scenic drive from Kathmandu to Jiri to begin walking. This route traces the steps of expeditions that long ago passed through the same emerald lowlands en route to the Khumbu, contouring fertile landscape before reaching the barren highlands filled with snowy masterpieces beloved by climbers.

I was fortunate to meet a like-minded Canadian, Gordon, who was also travelling at a fast and furious pace. He had camped solo around the rural Rolwaling area, a gem rarely visited by trekkers, and was in great shape. We made it to Namche in four days rather than the usual week to 10 days, walking dawn to dusk, and the rapid timetable agreed with my Bohemian budget.

Namche Bazaar, gateway village to the Khumbu, is in a magnificent natural arena surrounded by peaks to the south, east and west. I set off to the majestic Imja River valley, east of the Everest Base Camp route. The view is staggering. Island Peak stands alone among a sea of peaks. You can see Lhotse and Makalu, the world’s fourth and fifth highest mountains, plus the jaw-dropping massif of Baruntse and perhaps the most elegant of all Expedition Peaks, Ama Dablam (6,856m). Nicknamed the Matterhorn of the Himalaya, Ama Dablam translates to ‘mother’s jewel box’. The western aspect of the mountain resembles a mother with outstretched arms and a hanging glacier is her dablam, a pendant commonly worn by Sherpa women. But she can be a life taker. In 2010 a helicopter crashed on a rescue mission on the north face killing both pilots, and an avalanche in 2006 took six climbers. Island Peak can also demand the price of a life, but does so rarely. “Island Peak is challenging but acclimatization is easier and rescue, if needed, is straightforward given the landscape and elevation,” says Endra.

I join the climbing team in Chukung (4,734m), an otherworldly trekking outpost in the windswept highlands with perhaps the most magnificent mountain scenery on the planet. The impossibly close views of the face of Nuptse-Lhotse steal the show. The crew includes two local Sherpa guides based there for the season, along with cooks and logistics personnel. Sherpa, known as the Tigers of the Snow for their aptitude at high elevations, are the local guardians of the Himalaya. They have become the most trusted climbing partners in mountains that they consider divine. Most Sherpa guides are born and raised in the highlands of the Khumbu, and are therefore naturally acclimatized and fit for strenuous activities in the lofty region. Our lead guide, 26-year-old Tsering, is literally in his backyard. “I’ve climbed Island Peak 40 times.

Twenty-three-year-old Tashi, who hails from Thame, hometown of climbing legend Tenzing Norgay Sherpa, and a Swiss couple complete the team. They have been in Chukung for three days, taking a mini-mountaineering school.


The next day we set off for Island Peak base camp. Before we leave I’m given a short introduction to the jumar, a climbing device used with a fixed rope and rent a pair of climbing boots and warmer gloves at a local shop. Endra’s team supplies us with ice axes, crampons, harnesses and helmets. My own warm clothing includes the new Sherpa brand that I’m honored to wear in the Sherpa homeland of the Khumbu. I’m as ready as I’ll ever be. From Chukhung it is a pleasant 2.5-hour hike to base camp which, at 5,100m, lies along the lateral moraine of Imja Tsho, a glacial lake. We eat a meal of noodles with a packet of cookies for dessert and are advised to take an early rest in personal tents. We’ll be leaving at 1am for the summit.

Sleep never comes easy at altitude, and after a few hours of restless slumber, loud Eastern European voices break the silence. They’re up at midnight, noisily preparing for an ascent. We are soon to follow and begin the long haul in a single-file line of headlamps, many more dotting the mountainside.


We all carry our own packs with water, snacks and warm clothing and keep a steady pace. Our smaller group passes larger groups moving at the pace of their slowest member. Just before 4am we reach the snowline, don our crampons, helmets and harnesses and rope into each other. I change to the warmer gloves at this point. Before long the skyline glows as the light of daybreak hits the tallest peaks. But I’m soon distracted by giant crevasses that we make an ‘S’ turn through. Endra had told me how the route changes seasonally due to shifting snow and ice and changing climate.
The altitude finally catches up with me at a 60-degree headwall of ice. I’m paying for the quicker-than usual journey to Island Peak from the lowlands. I can’t gulp in enough oxygen no matter how rapidly I breathe, and it slows me down dramatically.


At the top of the grind, using a fixed line and jumar, we meet a wind-whipped ridge with ant-like procession of climbers going up and down it. This perilous edge gives me a thrill that I haven’t experienced in years of outdoor activities. Perhaps less dangerous than it looks, hard ice at 6,100m with precipitous drops makes the safety line seem a bit rickety. We follow the short fixed-line up and reach the small knob of a summit battered by gusts and jammed with fellow climbers who don’t seem inclined to share the space (and there isn’t much to give).

The sunrise has drenched the sky in color and painted the mountains rosy. We savor the panorama, including Lhotse, the third highest peak in the world (which hides Everest from view), Makalu and Cho Oyu, the fifth and sixth highest peaks, and even Shishapangma far away in Tibet, which at 8,046m is the world’s 14th highest peak. After taking a few photos and enjoying the feeling of accomplishment for a few minutes, we head back down the ridge.

We meet groups still on the way up at the fixed lines of the headwall and have to use a different set of lines to abseil to the glaciated plateau. Retracing our steps, the brighter light of day gives a startling view of the crevasses that we had skirted on the way up, pre-dawn. After removing our technical gear, we meet people who have given up on a summit attempt and are descending the rugged trail with us.

After nearly nine hours of slogging we’re back at base camp and enjoy a short break before continuing to Chukung. The evening celebrations include a hot meal and a glass of locally brewed moonshine called roxy, followed by a well-deserved, early sleep.


The next day we all say goodbye. The Swiss couple head to Lukla for a flight out, the Sherpa and crew stay put for a return to Island Peak with incoming climbers, and I’m off to Everest Base Camp.
Would I ever do another peak? The group’s mixed feelings were summed up by Shanti Giri, a Nepali actor and producer who summited Island Peak in the spring of 2013 as a potential stepping stone to Everest, when she said, “Right now, I don’t want to decide about climbing again. I will have to think about it!”

Trekking Peaks give you a genuine taste of mountaineering highs and hardships in the world’s topmost stage. They serve as a straightforward Himalayan introduction for bigger things, or as an adventurous addition for travelers wanting to spice up trekking in Nepal. An attempt on a Trekking Peak, towering above the lush scenery and timeless culture of the Himalaya, can be a lifetime highlight.

Want to do this, too? Here’s how you can…
get there
There are not many direct flights from abroad to Kathmandu, but various airlines make the journey with just one change. From Kathmandu most people fly to Lukla to begin the trek. If you have time, or don’t fancy the hair-raising landing in Lukla, walking from the road head at Jiri (a day’s drive from Kathmandu) is excellent alternative. It will take a minimum of five days.
the expedition
A trip to climb Island Peak will typically take a minimum of two weeks (not including international travel), depending on route choice and how many side trips you make. Accommodation is a combination of lodges on the walk in and camping at base camp. Acclimatization is key for a safe trip.
Island Peak is a tough climb, graded alpine PD+. Climbing it requires the use of crampons and an ice axe, and a jumar and abseil device. Some companies require that you have previous experience using these; others provide training. Either way you should be fit, have previous experience with trekking at altitude (experience of walking on crampons will be beneficial), and be acclimatized.
when to go
The best time to climb Island Peak is post monsoon, so from late September to November, when the weather is clearest and most reliable. Pre-monsoon, from March to May, offers another window of comparatively good weather.
what to take
Most trekking companies will provide tents and technical gear such as ice axes, crampons, harnesses and helmets. I hired anything extra I needed, like climbing boots and warmer gloves, locally. Check what a guiding company provides before you leave.
Bring clothes that are easy to put on and take off. Hiking Nepal’s steep terrain can cause a swift build-up of body heat, especially carrying a loaded pack on a sun-drenched hill. In high altitude areas, the temperature will drop rapidly when the sun has set or is behind clouds or mountains, and more so if your clothes are wet and cold from sweat. It is important to be able remove or add items to adjust quickly to the conditions. You can pick up a lot of trekking clothing and gear in the Thamel area of Kathmandu. Be sure to check its quality, especially the seams. Some vendors even have leftover top-quality gear from expeditions.
Bring sun cream and sunglasses that absorb UV light – at high altitude the sun’s rays can be especially harsh. Walking poles can help ease the load and impact on the knees. Also pack a headlamp and flashlight (for Kathmandu’s regular scheduled blackouts as well as while camping); earplugs (and spare pairs as they are easily lost) and a duffel bag if you plan to hire a porter (brightly colored makes it easier to recognize). A supply of duct tape can serve as a temporary fix for various situations. Wind it around a flashlight handle or water bottle to store it until needed.
There are more and more places along popular routes to re-charge gadgets so bring an adapter – a worldwide adaptor capable of connecting to multiple socket types is best, as socket types vary.
Nepal’s trails are steep and every addition to your load counts! Review your gear list and pare down items beforehand.
food and drink
Traditional dishes include daal-bhat tarakari, a heaping plate of rice with lentil soup and curried vegetables; shyakpa stew, a bowl of handmade noodles with potatoes and other seasonal vegetables which is a Sherpa favourite; and tsampa, buckwheat or barley flour mixed with hot water or butter tea. And potatoes in many variations. Typical drinks include chiyaa, a sweet milk tea, and solja, which is salt-butter tea and an acquired taste. Fermented spirits include chyang (not distilled) and roxy (distilled).
Himalayan outfitter
You can arrange an adventure through the Himalayan travel specialists www.neohorizontravels.com (affiliated with the author or ask him directly for information and to recommend a talented peak-climbing Himalayan outfitter -- his email address is lonlyons@gmail.com).

6 Top Tips For Trekking in Nepal
1  Scan a copy of your passport and itinerary into your email account and make hard copies of your passport, itinerary and important documents and leave them with friends or family back home. Keep a set for yourself too.
2  Let credit card companies know that you will be in Nepal and bring their customer service phone numbers.
3  Trekking at altitude will be cold, particularly at night. A water bottle filled with hot water and wrapped in clothing is a good source of heat to keep in your sleeping bag.
4  Bring several handkerchiefs or bandannas. A bandanna can be useful as a makeshift facemask in windy, dusty areas and during vehicle travel, and to dry cups, plates and hands.
5  Most trekkers carry reading and writing materials, and hotels along the popular routes often have paperbacks to sell or trade. A pack of cards or miniature versions of board games can be a good way to pass time and get to know fellow trekkers.
6  Do not trek alone. Attacks are rare, but when they do happen it is usually against lone trekkers. If you are single, check online for partners (try www.nepaltripadvisor.com ) or please contact the author directly at lonlyons@gmail.com -- he can suggest Himalayan specialists and talented outfitters for a top Himalayan adventure including Island Peak (Imja Tse) and the following peaks, too, and beyond:

5 More Trekking Peaks in Nepal
Already did Island Peak, or fancy a different one? Here are five more Trekking Peaks to choose from, ranging from not-too-tricky to technical
1 Mera Peak, 6,476m
With nearly 3,000 climbers in 2012, Mera Peak is Nepal’s second most popular Trekking Peak and one of the tallest. The remote route to its base camp, northeast of Lukla, traverses astonishing territory rarely visited by tourists. From the top, you’ll have an exhilarating panorama of lots of Nepal’s major peaks, including four nearby 8,000ers – Everest, Lhotse, Makalu and Cho Oyu – and one in the distance, Kangchenjunga. Most agencies ascend Mera Central rather than the true summit of Mera North. The climb involves ice axe and crampons and a fixed rope and jumar for the last 30m or so. The recommended acclimatization period is 12 days from Lukla. Other routes on Mera are more demanding and require extensive mountaineering skills.
2 Lobuche east, 6,119m
Lobuche (also spelt Lobuje) East is one of the most exciting and technical Trekking Peaks in the Everest region and, like Island Peak, can be climbed as a side trip from the Everest Base Camp route. The mountain is about 14km southwest of Everest and towers above the Khumbu Glacier and the settlement of Lobuche. It consists of two peaks – Lobuche East and a false summit called Lobuche Far East. Lobuche East, the Trekking Peak, is usually gained by the south ridge and saw 1,200 climbers in 2012. Lobuche West is an Expedition Peak connected by a ridge that is nearly two kilometers long.
3 Pharchamo, 6,187m
This impressive summit is a coveted peak in the remote Rolwaling region of Nepal. The route to the mountain is tough, passing through isolated territory that sees few travelers other than those seeking an exhilarating back trail into the Khumbu, and negotiating the Tashi Labsta pass, one of the most challenging passes in the Himalaya. Pharchamo is often combined with the nearby peak Ramdung (5,925m) and both are more challenging than most other Trekking Peaks.
4 Chulu East, 6,584 m
In the Annapurna region of Nepal, Chula East is one of the highest Trekking Peaks. It’s often combined with a nearby summit known as Chulu Far East at 6,060m (they share the same base camp) and these peaks, and Pisang Peak, can be done in just a few days from the iconic Annapurna Circuit Trek. From the top, enjoy views of the Annapurna Massif, Gangapurna, Dhaulagiri, Manaslu and more. The Annapurna Circuit has a well-deserved reputation for its fascinating cultural and scenic highlights along the way.
5 Naya Kanga, 5,844m
Also known as Ganja La Chuli, Naya Kanga is in Langtang National Park, famous for its natural landscape and mountain scenery yet much nearer Kathmandu than other trekking regions, allowing relatively easy access to its peaks. From Kyanjin Gompa, the uppermost settlement on the Langtang Valley Trek, the route ascends through yak pastures and timberland to high camp. The climb is straightforward, with steep sections that require ropes. Many people combine Naya Kanga with nearby Yala (5,732m), another Trekking Peak. Also try traversing the thrilling Ganja La high pass (5,106m) out of the Langtang Valley and into the serene Helambu region for a trek through picturesque villages of the Yolmo people and their unique Buddhist culture.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Now I've Seen Almost Everything

Enrollment now open for Political Science and International Development studies... Seeking future politicos, throttlebottoms (i.e., bureaucrats) and aid entrepreneurs.

Photo by Alonzo Lyons
Photo by Alonzo Lyons
#AidCorrupts #DeadAid #donordarlings #throttlebottoms #DeadbeatDonors #cronysocialism #AidEntrepreneurs #globaldev #aid #boondoggle

Spicy Endorphins?

Yeti-sized packet of even more chilies for already overly spicy curry in a pouch (gasp...hack, hack). Sichuan cuisine can literally kill...? 


#spicy #endorphins #galldangit #overlyspicy #China #Sichuan #Szechuan #wowowowowowowow

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

'The Art of the [Tomahawk Missile]?'

"The Art of the [Tomahawk Missile]?... How is this an America first decision to engage in a civil war between two enemies of the United States?" -Michael Savage



#Syria #WarCrimes #imperialism #boondoggle #MilitaryIndustrialPsychosisComplex #CronyMilitarism

Monday, April 10, 2017

Quis custodiet ipsos custodies--but who guards the guardians?

Remember when the US used highly toxic Depleted Uranium in Syria in 2015 while on Obama's watch? http://foreignpolicy.com/2017/02/14/the-united-states-used-depleted-uranium-in-syria/

And when the US used banned White Phosphorus in Iraq while under the purview of John Bolton and others? Bolton was then the Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Affairs. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A35979-2004Nov9_2.html

Meanwhile, four decades after war ended in Vietnam, 'Agent Orange is still ravaging the Vietnamese'--at least 3 million have been directly affected and at least 150,000 children were born with severe birth defects. Is anyone from that era held accountable for this toxic chemical and its lucrative manufacture and carefree use, among them reviled Monsanto? http://www.mcclatchydc.com/news/nation-world/world/article24751351.html

Will the transgressors ever pay for these and endless other war crimes that have distorted the whole world, that have crushed human rights along with humans, crushed lives and crushed societies--crushed humanity itself? These transgressions have touched the hearts of virtually everyone on earth in one way or another. They have crushed the heart of the human race and human liberty and severely warped the trajectory of human development, negatively altering the twisting course of civilization on earth. We all pay. We all can speak up against these war crimes and war criminals. Namely against the ignorance underlying it all. 


When all else fails--skitter away in the middle of an interview?

British parliamentarian gets lit up by interviewer--hands microphone off and slinks away without so much as a whimper or goodbye. 


Friday, April 7, 2017

Results are in...?





Incurable Military Industrial Psychosis Complex?

"You want war? I can recommend an enlistment station in your neighborhood.” -M. Savage
#MilitaryIndustrialPsychosisComplex #neochickenhawks #spitvipers #MilitaryIndustrialDeathCult




Saturday, March 11, 2017

The Shadow Knows...?

Unbelievably, this isn't receiving more coverage by the (compromised?) Corporate Media...

Vault 7: CIA Hacking Tools Revealed (https://t.co/h5wzfrReyy)

#Vault7 #ShadowGov #NeoStasi #Gestapo

Please see the following for more about his disturbing subject:
http://alolyo.blogspot.in/2016/07/neo-stasi.html



Nightblindness on the Antipodes and Counting Friends on One Finger

Outside of family, it has nearly reached a point where trustworthy friends can be counted on one finger —at least in the present surroundings. 
Reckon it's high time to return to the lovely, lovely hills of Idahome…

#nightblindness #wherewereyou #antipodes #longridehome


Photo of foothills above Les Bois by Alonzo Lyons

Photo at abandoned ashrom in Uttarkhanda Province, India by Alonzo Lyons


Sunday, February 12, 2017

Military Industrial Death Cult?

The following is my recent article on MediumDOTcom, Is the Tolerant Left too tolerant...? (https://medium.com/@ALyons/is-the-tolerant-left-too-tolerant-e614929747bf)
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Is the Tolerant Left too tolerant…?

Muslims in Muslim majority nations were bombed every day for the last 8-plus years and The Resistance was mute —because the Nobel warmonger was their Nobel warmonger?!

Obush’s Wars — Military Industrial Psychosis of a Military Industrial Death Cult? Photo by Alonzo Lyons

Otherwise, explain the thunderous silence as The Drone President detonated three [bombs] per hour, twenty-four hours a day for 365 days of 2016 — on Muslims in Muslim majority lands (and on borrowed money)? And those are just 2016’s audacious numbers…similar to 2015, 2014–2013–2012–2011–2010–2009 and 2008 whereupon Obama’s cadaver-of-work melds with the previous NeoChickenhawk-in-Chief and his warlock’s brew of lethal foreign ‘adventures’.
Of what benefit have Obush’s foreign wars earned us — any benefits whatsoever?
Meanwhile, regressive liberals remained curiously restrained (and deadly silent) as Obamawars razed distant countries on borrowed money (the unpaid debt for each US taxpayer approaches $160,000 or about $60,000 per citizen). What was gained in return for running up the debt in our names…any benefits at all?
From 1776 to 2008 the USA accumulated only half of the debt liability it now faces. In other words, 232 years of government credit was doubled in 8 years of misspending including Nobel warmongering — obviously, far-flung excursions have vital costs — any benefits to them? What have we gained by going so lavishly in debt?).
Meanwhile, cry-bullies are emerging from an eight-year incubation. Their selective, partisan outrage and crony hypocrisy if not acute Military Industrial Hypocrisy is disguising a more aggressive mental ailment, Military Industrial Psychosis.

Obama’s cadaver-of-work melds with the previous NeoChickenhawk-in-Chief and his warlock’s brew of lethal ‘nation building’. Photo by Alonzo Lyons

Where have you been whimpering Senator Schumer and hacked-off Senator Pelosi? (For one, we know you gave Ol’ Slick Willy, Dixiecrat-in-Chief, a gob-smacking standing ovation for an immigration platform that was arguably stronger than DJT’s. Seeing this is believing this:

Bill Clinton 1995 State of the Union — Immigration Laws — STANDING OVATION (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y7AXizmhgi0&feature=youtu.be)
Other than hypocritical belches along the way, Crony Militarists/Crony Socialists/Crony Faux-Capitalists/Neo Chicken Hawks let the cancerous war machine roil in alien lands, racking up an untold body count along with an unfathomable debt burden and all without serious resistance. These mother [huggers] (and grandmother huggers) not only accepted Obama’s expansion of Bush’s wars , they quietly allowed him to increase Bush’s spying on citizens and targeting of journalists.
Evidently, illegal data gathering on you and me, on everyone, all of the time isn’t nearly fascist enough for the self-styled ‘anti-fascists’ with apparently nothing to really protest until Trump. Although, if they try taking Trump at his word, he just might walk us back from the ‘Deep State’ abyss that the visionary Church Committee warned about in 1975.)
Here is an excerpt from the recent, temporary Executive Order: “the United States should not admit those who engage in acts of bigotry or hatred (including “honor” killings, other forms of violence against women, or the persecution of those who practice religions different from their own) or those who would oppress Americans of any race, gender, or sexual orientation.”

Cry-bullies emerge from an eight-year incubation? (Graffiti by Banksy)

Have agitators taken the time to read the Executive Order that somehow ignited their inflammable Hive Mind?
Instead, the regressive left utterly ignores anything but their version of the story, and unfortunately, that includes the Military Industrial Audacity of their Droner-in-Arms Obama who actually admits he’s, “Really good at killing people.” Oh yes, he did (gasp)!
Any doubt now why frothing cry-bullies cover their shameful faces while misbehaving, even violently (gasp again), while perhaps the Greater of Two Evils droned right on by without notice? It’s a Himalayan mountain they’ll have to summit before re-gaining a glimpse of the moral high-ground. Maybe that is why they are infuriated — their collective id/ego/superego is over-reacting to having prostituted itself to a Military Industrial Death Cult including quietly picking up its audaciously hopeless tab. Have they been outed as ‘useful fools and silly enthusiasts’ capable of Military Industrial Ignorance?
Nothing to see there’ was their Obamantra and they angrily demand you believe it, too, while concealing faces in the throes of sophomoric fits.


‘Useful fools and silly enthusiasts’ capable of Military Industrial Ignorance? (More Graffiti by Banksy)

Meanwhile, more zombie-brains are assembling. An angry Hive Mind on a virulent push for ‘open borders’ for all including refugees from the very Obamawars they vetted with silent consent — refugees from countries where the Nobel Tomb-Maker shed blood for eight years — raining down casualties and death by remote consoles with triggers pulled in faraway safe spaces, i.e., ‘drone assassinations’ of Muslims in Muslim majority lands on borrowed money. Whiskey-Tango-Foxtrot?!
Does it all seem precarious to anyone — bringing in refugees from the very countries we’ve been bombing, ripping apart peoples’ lands, homes, lives and guts. Doesn’t that seem the slightest bit problematic at all? Perhaps not when the ill-formed logic of it does not breach an impenetrable echo-chamber of the collective Hive Mind’s ‘safe space’.

Social Justice Hypocrisy — impenetrable groupthink of the Hive Mind and the Obamawars they vetted with the consent of silence? Photo by Alonzo Lyons

Well, can the group-think Hive Mind at least consider why nearby countries are not keen on accepting these same refugees — do the leaders of these neighboring countries know something that the Hive Mind’s groupthink doesn’t? At least, wouldn’t migration to nearby countries with similar climate, lifestyles, foods, beverages, customs and cultures be less disruptive and more supportive? Perhaps protected zones of safety would be most supportive, effective and even economical than displacing people to foreign lands especially distant, totally foreign lands with totally different ways of life.
Social Justice Hypocrites are dying to bring religion into the mix, decrying that a ban on travel from terror-linked countries, countries split wide open by conflict, is a ‘Muslim Ban’ (despite little to no outcry by these self-same hypocrites while the Kaiser of Really-Good-At-Killing-People bombed Muslims every day for eight years — deathly macro-aggressions committed on your borrowed money and perhaps your borrowed karma, too).
If Social Justice Hypocrites open the dance floor to the tune of religion baiting — then, by that reckoning how do they dance around the fact that the world’s largest Muslim-majority nations are not keen to take in majority Muslim refugees from regions of strife (e.g., virtually all of the Gulf States demur as do northern Africa states and beyond including Indonesia, Pakistan and so on)?

Military Industrial Hypocrites will do anything but look in the mirror? (More Graffiti *ostensibly* by Banksy)

Obviously, the case of refugees is acutely sympathetic and protective zones may be the most supportive, least disruptive option available for all involved, including the refugees paying the dear humanitarian ‘costs’ of life and limb, and sponsors paying financial costs and all of us paying the grim costs of endless wars and the endless aftershocks in shattered lives.
Instead, sore losers in the US will do anything but look in the mirror and are intent on bizarre hysteria like comparing Trump to Hitler — yes, Evil Adolph, leader of a socialist (not democratic) party and aggressive expansionist (not a wall-builder).
Has the so-called Tolerant Left become too tolerant…of itself — letting itself get away with bloody m*rd*r for years, bombing Muslims in Muslim lands…“Not all the treasures of the world, so far as I believe, could have induced me to support an offensive war, for I think it murder.” -Thomas Paine, Firebrand of the American Revolutionary War.

Deathly macro-aggressions committed on borrowed money and perhaps borrowed karma, too (Kali Yuga reigns?)! Photo by Alonzo Lyons

Can these liberals pause for a moment of clarity (and perhaps atonement) and consider that what people hoped for with President Obama in 2008 (this essay’s author included), i.e., Hope and Change, might be precisely what some people on the so-called other side are now craving and a reason that an anti-establishment agent of change has been chosen (by 30 of 50 states). They are filled with Hope and Change–similar in kind brought by the man who just exited the premises with many of his shining promises past-due.
Clearly, the election was a mandate for less foreign intervention, less lethal ‘nation building’ among other issues of hopefully less statism and more personal freedoms. If Trump doesn’t prove capable of delivering, then let the protests and civil disobedience begin within the parameters of the democratic republic. As for now, agitators are being duplicitous and premature. It is time the democratic process be given a chance, otherwise, the very fascism they claim to be resisting is staring them down in the mirror. In fact, their violence might even generate what they fear the most — authority stepping in to quell their destructive hysteria.

Remember when Ruling Cronies stole the [uranium cake] from the cookie jar — where was #resist then? Selective Outrage of Crony Socialism? Photo by Alonzo Lyons

Perhaps these agitators might even consider that they are being punk’d by their own minders and leaders. The C-Span video is state’s evidence of ‘Bubba’ Clinton getting a standing ovation by the likes of Senator Schumer on immigration policies for which DJT is now being skewered and roasted over anti-fascist bonfires.
Still not convinced? Well then here are a few more instances (of many) of self-serving hypocrisy by the cronies and zealous partisans who dug us (and the Middle East) into a deep grave while The Resistance remained AWOL.
2. And where was the outcry when Joe Biden’s son Hunter Biden found a lucrative position with a Ukrainian energy Big Corp board a mere year after the Navy kicked him out in 2014 for cocaine use. Any wonder how a VP’s son was entitled to a position with a sky-high salary within a year of a glaring personal scandal? Biden’s Son Hunter Discharged From Navy Reserve After Failing Cocaine Test (https://www.wsj.com/articles/bidens-son-hunter-discharged-from-navy-reserve-after-failing-cocaine-test-1413499657 …)
3. Where was the The Resistance when Hillary proclaimed We came, we saw, he DIED (chuckle) after spearheading a military assault that saw relatively liberal Qaddafi murdered and Libya subsequently devolved to chaos and fallen to ruins as a failed state — deathly suffering to millions since he was exterminated. Hillary on Qaddafi: we came, we saw, he died (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mlz3-OzcExI)

4. And no one cried in outRAGE when Madeline Albright (Bill Clinton’s Secretary of State) told Leslie Stahl, when asked point blank about the price of 500,000 dead Iraqi children, more children than died in Hiroshima, that it was ‘worth it’. Madeleine Albright says 500,000 dead Iraqi Children was “worth it” wins Medal of Freedom (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=omnskeu-puE)

Finally, as a paz-ifist, it is very hard to stomach the following, heart-crushing excerpts from The Guardian, 9 Jan 2017, “What a bloody end to Obama’s reign” by Medea Benjamin, yet necessary to consider, not the least because of the consent of silence that allowed it to happen (emphases in bold are supplied by me):
-While candidate Obama came to office pledging to end George W Bush’s wars, he leaves office having been at war longer than any president in US history. He is also the only president to serve two complete terms with the nation at war.
-President Obama did reduce the number of US soldiers fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq, but he dramatically expanded the air wars and the use of special operations forces around the globe. In 2016, US special operators could be found in 70% of the world’s nations, 138 countries — a staggering jump of 130% since the days of the Bush administration.
-every day last year, the US military blasted combatants or civilians overseas with 72 bombs; that’s three bombs every hour, 24 hours a day…rained down on people in seven majority-Muslim countries.
-Obama authorized over 10 times more drone strikes than George W Bush, and automatically painted all males of military age in these regions as combatants, making them fair game for remote controlled killing.
-The twisted legal architecture…to justify its interventions, especially extrajudicial drone killings with no geographic restrictions, will now be transferred into the erratic hands of Donald Trump.
-What does the administration have to show for eight years of fighting on so many fronts? Terrorism has spread, no wars have been “won” and the Middle East is consumed by more chaos and divisions.
-untold numbers of foreign lives have been snuffed out. We have no idea how many civilians have been killed in the massive bombings in Iraq and Syria, where the US military is often pursuing Isis in the middle of urban neighborhoods.
-Given that drones account for only a small portion of the munitions dropped in the past eight years, the numbers of civilians killed by Obama’s bombs could be in the thousands. But we can’t know for sure as the administration, and the mainstream media, has been virtually silent about the civilian toll of the administration’s failed interventions.

Has the Tolerant Left been too tolerant — of itself? Photo by Alonzo Lyons
Cheers for your kind consideration of this essay. Please find me on Twitter, too--Twitter Handle: @AlonzoLyons