Shifting Focus

The New York Times and the San Diego Union Tribune recently ran articles describing political operatives who have been abusing our privacy by harvesting our voting history, WiFi use habits, whether we voted, and then shaming us with that information. That’s not a surveillance state. It’s a #CreepState.

While voting records are public information, our right to peace and quiet outweighs politicians’ desire for office. Politicians do not have the right to ram text spam - which is a really a collect call - down our throats. Why do they get away with it? Because instead of pushing back, we let them. By not standing up to politicians - who work for us, not the other way around - we’re enabling the growing creep state.

The blessing side of this coin is that we can stop information abuse coming from fake friends who don’t give us the time of day until they want our money or our vote. And that includes corporations that think we have to do things their way.

How do you say no? Instead of upgrading your iPhone, you can reject the technology arms race. Consider the craftsmanship of fountain pens, film cameras, and slide rules.

Do you really need text and data plans? The New York Times paper edition, weather from NOAA Weather Radio on a 1973 police scanner, and cash work fine. And they’re better for the eyes than a glowing screen.

Walking to the store to buy the paper is good exercise and starts the day right. Buying the paper at the store instead of subscribing supports a local business, and keeps your name out of the hands of data brokers who help build the creep state.

Writing on paper with a fountain pen is much better for your fingers and neck than swiping on a phone or keyboarding. The fountain pens’ nibs sing as you write, and paper books never need a battery charge. No one ever got text neck or eye strain writing with a fountain pen, reading a paper book, or using a slide rule.

My first car phone, a Motorola Pulsar I, 1980.

My first car phone, a Motorola Pulsar I, 1980.

For me, forty years of constant availability and distraction was enough.

Merci, et bonne journée.

Why I make pictures

A local newspaper article this week reported there are many hate groups in Ohio.

Contrary to what the media would have us believe, our world is full of love.

Paris is just one example.

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Love and joy are all around us at home, too.

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This is why I always wear my camera.

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All we have to do is open our hearts and our minds.

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“Laughter is the sun that drives the winter from the human face” - Victor Hugo

“Laughter is the sun that drives the winter from the human face” - Victor Hugo

Making pictures preserves these moments of joy and love, and is my way of sharing what’s right in our world.

Thanks for reading, and for joining me in celebrating the good.

“You can't fix anything by condemning it. That only adds to the destructive energy that's already permeating the atmosphere.” - Dr. Wayne Dyer

Magic light

A roadside sign touting old gas pumps intrigued me as Lucky and I made our way West in 2015. Getting off the Interstate revealed the restaurant was part of a truck stop. But two old Shell pumps outside #Shoemaker's restaurant doors kept me going.

Inside, a treasure trove of light awaited. The light was even more magical on that overcast Saturday. Because it’s all about light. 

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Remember: Don’t judge a book - or a photo op - by its cover. And always carry your camera.

Photo © 2015 Bob Soltys All Rights Reserved