FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Different Value Systems

by

Sally Caldwell became a friend, someone who helped me through a dark time with her kindness, humor, and advice on how to make sense of the indefensible. She instructed me to say over and over, “He has a completely different value system.”

Really, beneath the umbrella of injustice, regardless of the issue, it’s all about completely different value systems.

This week I’ve arranged categories of nail-biting distress along a spectrum. They are: The Cataclysmic, Of Great Concern, and My Personal Life, although each is personal. You understand the difference.

That first, The Cataclysmic, is where I’ve placed the latest National Climate Assessment. The report says it’s not too late to prevent the worst, however it seems we’re on the brink. And nearing nuclear war.

Under Of Great Concern is the use of chemical pesticides and other toxins. This may be advanced to Cataclysmic at any time. These substances not only pollute our world but also are linked to diseases like cancer and conditions like autism. (Google famous people with autism and you’ll see more Adam Lanzas than Temple Grandins.) Okay, this has been moved to Cataclysmic.

I’m fixated on those Nigerian schoolgirls who were abducted in mid-April with more kidnapped this week and having difficulty with the placement, I guess because ecocide supersedes everything else, but as I think about the agony of those parents, begging for help, the other family members, and the girls, I feel terrible saying that anything is more urgent. I have hope that they’ll be rescued, not sold into sex slavery or killed, because I have to reach for threads of optimism amid all the despair about this dying planet. Big oil and its profiteers don’t benefit from a healthy Earth, different value system, you know, but their greed is also their doom. And ours as we witness increased floods, droughts, severe storms, wildfires, and crop failures.

President Obama, a master of contradictions, said, “…this is not some distant problem of the future. This is a problem that is affecting Americans right now…”—words, verbal inconsistencies, given that the U.S. is the largest producer of natural gas in the world. Let’s see what happens after the November elections—with the Keystone Pipeline.

(The Nigerian schoolgirls are now in Catastrophic.)

Here’s one for that final classification, M Personal Life: Dr. Sally Caldwell died on January 31, 2014. I just learned of her death. In October of 2012, I read Sally’s book, Romantic Deception, after I was, yes, romantically deceived. I did a search and found her email address at Texas State University. When I wrote, I included my phone number and the first chapters of my unpublished book, The Year of Living Dan-gerously. She emailed, told me our phone conversation would be long, provided a few time options and her phone number.

During the following months, Sally and I had several phone conversations and many email exchanges. Since those who haven’t had the “experience” don’t GET it, I figured she’d been victimized, that this inspired her book. When I asked, she said, “I check the obits every six months to see if he’s dead.”

I talked with Sally about the creepiness you feel, to know you’ve been lured and groomed by a false lover. A friend had said, “Once you don’t care about him, you’ll move on.” I told my friend that there was no him. The person I cared about didn’t exist, never existed. This is the mind fuck that’s so damaging.

That’s when Sally told me to repeat, “He has a completely different value system.”

Today, after reading Sally’s obituary, I looked through old emails and found this exchange:

December 7, 2013:

Missy Beattie here. Hope you’ve had that transplant and that you’re fine. I’ve thought of you often, wondering if you’re well, if you’ve returned to teaching.

She responded the next day with:

We must catch up.  Transplant was successful —— double lung —— some complications —- 5.5 months in the hospital and another month recuperating in Houston.  But I am home as of last Wednesday —— moving slowly, but moving around nonetheless. As I said, we need to catch up.  Perhaps we can chat soon.

I answered: “Sally, I’m so happy for you, that you’re home and recovering. Sorry there were complications.”

Another, from her: “We must stay in touch, Missy. There will come a time when I will land in your part of the country or you land in mine.  It could be the record for the longest lunch in history.”

“There will come a time…” No, but I hold onto Sally’s wisdom. She was right about different value systems, but this defines more than romantic deceivers. It’s the distillate of deception, period, and unlocks the question, how do they sleep at night? with the answer: just fine. Because their value system is so cluttered with insatiable greed there’s no room for empathy.

Missy Beattie has written for National Public Radio and Nashville Life Magazine. She was an instructor of memoirs writing at Johns Hopkins’ Osher Lifelong Learning Institute in BaltimoreEmail: missybeat@gmail.com.

Missy Beattie has written for National Public Radio and Nashville Life Magazine. She was an instructor of memoirs writing at Johns Hopkins’ Osher Lifelong Learning Institute in BaltimoreEmail: missybeat@gmail.com

Weekend Edition
April 29, 2016
Friday - Sunday
Andrew Levine
What is the Democratic Party Good For? Absolutely Nothing
Roberto J. González – David Price
Anthropologists Marshalling History: the American Anthropological Association’s Vote on the Academic Boycott of Israeli Institutions
Robert Jacobs
Hanford, Not Fukushima, is the Big Radiological Threat to the West Coast
Ismael Hossein-Zadeh
US Presidential Election: Beyond Lesser Evilism
Dave Lindorff
The Push to Make Sanders the Green Party’s Candidate
Peter Linebaugh
Marymount, Haymarket, Marikana: a Brief Note Towards ‘Completing’ May Day
Ian Fairlie
Chernobyl’s Ongoing Toll: 40,000 More Cancer Deaths?
Pete Dolack
Verizon Sticks it to its Workers Because $45 Billion isn’t Enough
Moshe Adler
May Day: a Trade Agreement to Unite Third World and American Workers
Margaret Kimberley
Dishonoring Harriet Tubman
Deepak Tripathi
The United States, Britain and the European Union
Eva Golinger
My Country, My Love: a Conversation with Gerardo and Adriana of the Cuban Five
Richard Falk
If Obama Visits Hiroshima
Vijay Prashad
Political Violence in Honduras
Paul Krane
Where Gun Control Ought to Start: Disarming the Police
David Anderson
Al Jazeera America: Goodbye to All That Jazz
Rob Hager
Platform Perversity: More From the Campaign That Can’t Strategize
Pat Williams
FDR in Montana
Dave Marsh
Every Day I Read the Book (the Best Music Books of the Last Year)
David Rosen
Job Satisfaction Under Perpetual Stagnation
John Feffer
Big Oil isn’t Going Down Without a Fight
Murray Dobbin
The Canadian / Saudi Arms Deal: More Than Meets the Eye?
Gary Engler
The Devil Capitalism
Brian Cloughley
Is Washington Preparing for War Against Russia?
Manuel E. Yepe
The Big Lies and the Small Lies
Robert Fantina
Vice Presidents, Candidates and History
Mel Gurtov
Sanctions and Defiance in North Korea
Howard Lisnoff
Still the Litmus Test of Worth
Dean Baker
Big Business and the Overtime Rule: Irrational Complaints
Ulrich Heyden
Crimea as a Paradise for High-Class Tourism?
Ramzy Baroud
Did the Arabs Betray Palestine? – A Schism between the Ruling Classes and the Wider Society
Halyna Mokrushyna
The War on Ukrainian Scientists
Joseph Natoli
Who’s the Better Neoliberal?
Ron Jacobs
The Battle at Big Brown: Joe Allen’s The Package King
Wahid Azal
Class Struggle and Westoxication in Pahlavi Iran: a Review of the Iranian Series ‘Shahrzad’
David Crisp
After All These Years, Newspapers Still Needed
Graham Peebles
Hungry and Frightened: Famine in Ethiopia 2016
Robert Koehler
Opening the Closed Political Culture
Missy Comley Beattie
Waves of Nostalgia
Thomas Knapp
The Problem with Donald Trump’s Version of “America First”
Georgina Downs
Hillsborough and Beyond: Establishment Cover Ups, Lies & Corruption
Jeffrey St. Clair
Groove on the Tracks: the Magic Left Hand of Red Garland
Ben Debney
Kush Zombies: QELD’s Hat Tip to Old School Hip Hop
Charles R. Larson
Moby Dick on Steroids?
David Yearsley
Miles Davis: Ace of Baseness
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail