Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Plan Of Development: making a plan and sticking to it

Plan Of Development: making a plan and sticking to it
Life really is easier when you have goals and make a plan to obtain 'em.

What happens too often is losing faith that your plan is not going to work so you toss your motivation and your goals.

Society drills into us a  "2 minute orientation" mentality of life. If we don't see some result in quickly then we give up, well maybe not literally two minutes ... but we sure think we are in control of what needs to happen and when. A good example, public education schedules ring bells to horde students from class to class.

There is mental, spiritual, and emotional enrichment in discovering how to think through ideas completely - independent of circumstances around you.

People who are successful have a plan and work that plan. They don't give up.

As your inner determination grows - from your faith in you regardless of the circumstances or opines of others - you will see a change in the circumstances of you life. And, this takes time - it's not an overnight event.

What they don't teach in school is how to grow your patience, how to grow your confidence in your self.  Believe me, when you have no confidence in yourself you are reducing the possibility for exponential growth in your life.

You must believe your self exactly the way you are.  That is step one. Sounds kinda basic but it's so true. When you consider the fact that most religions, I was raised a christian, say that heaven is not here on Earth but later on when you are "dead". Right there, in that belief system, you are tripping over the value that you are "not worthy" right now - today.

Think and Grow Rich, by N. Hill, says that the three most important characteristics of any person to reach success are:

#1 Autosuggestion
What are you always telling your self? If you don't know the answer, than you are unaware what you are speaking to yourself, which is, unfortunately, the state of many people today. Just too numb to stop and notice what is going on inside you. Anyways,  each of us is always having conversation(s) with ourselves either quietly or the words we speak to others. After all, everything we speak is a reflection of who we are and what we are.  So, what are you speaking and being? When is the last time you stopped to notice or even care?

#2 Faith
What level of faith do you have in your plan? In your life? Are your convictions swayed by the winds of TV news, your friends, your family, your church? Or, are you a rock that allows the current and tides of events and thoughts of others to flow around you?

#3 Desire
What kind of desires do you have? Are they short term or long term? Are they focused on the quality of your experience? Or, do your desires have to do with managing the quality of life for others?  Are your desires evolving your experience(s)? Are your desires making this planet a better place for all living creatures?

Getting Started....
A simple and easy method to get started with your Plan Of Development means getting serious about identifying what you are telling your self each day, comprehending the level of inner faith you have in you and by you, plus selecting desires you want to manifest.

Have fun with this; otherwise, it just becomes more mental gyrations of analyzing and criticizing you and or other people/events.

Creating is the key to a life of success and good times.

Steu

PS: here is some interesting research on the value of forgiving your self - leading a less stressful life - click here.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Research: Feeling lonely and unloved will kill you twice as fast as being fat will

research on aging
Loneliness and feeling unloved TWICE as likely to kill you as being fat

John Cacioppo, a professor of psychology who has spent 20 years studying the impact of loneliness, tracked the health of more than 2,000 men and women aged 50-plus for six years.

The loneliest men and women were almost twice as likely to die during that period than those who felt the most wanted and needed. Another study found loneliness to be twice as deadly as obesity.

Feeling cut off from others can push blood pressure up into the danger zone for heart attacks and strokes, weaken the immune system and raise the odds of depression, the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s annual conference heard.

It can also disrupt sleep, leaving people feeling lethargic the next day and more likely to rely on sleeping tablets.

Professor Cacioppo, of the University of Chicago, has shown that we don’t sleep less when we are lonely – we just wake up more.

It is thought that if we feel isolated were are extra-alert to threats and so wake up at the slightest noise.

His work also foun that it is not physical isolation in itself but the sense of isolation that is damaging.
In other words, it is possible to feel lonely despite being married or surrounded by people.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2560662/Loneliness-feeling-unloved-TWICE-likely-kill-fat-scientists-warn-against-elderly-retiring-sunnier-climes.html#ixzz2y3304BGU

Research: Is quantum computing on the horizon? Yes it is

quantum computing
Entering the 103rd dimension: Scientists reveal major quantum breakthrough that could lead to ultrafast computers and unbreakable encryption

Researchers have a made a major step forward in the development of quantum computers that can run at speeds far faster than current systems.

A Spanish team claims to have created a pair of particles with 103 dimensions.

The experiment smashes the previous record of 11 dimensions, and mean quantum computers are one step closer to becoming commonplace.

The discovery could represent a great advance toward the construction of quantum computers with much higher processing speeds than current ones, and toward a better encryption of information, the researchers say.

This new work will allow the processing of more than one thing at a time more effectively - and makes all processes much quicker.

The basics....

Modern day computers run on a model designed by Alan Turing in the 1930s.

They are digital and use bits to transfer information and perform tasks.

They use binary code and can only ever been in an active, or an inactive state - running at one or zero.

This means that a single bit is either on or off at any one time.

Qubits work differently and can be on, off, or in a mixed state in between.

As a result, qubits are able to be in multiple places at the same time

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2591919/Entering-103rd-dimension-Scientists-reveal-major-breakthrough-lead-ultrafast-computers-means-Schr-dingers-famous-cat-actually-alive-dead-101-states.html#ixzz2y31L3Th8 

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

The Preciousness of Each Moment

DR Butler
A lot has been going on in my karmic movie, or my personal life, whichever terms you prefer.  A lot of different words and ways of saying things designate the same basic thing in essence.  People even have arguments saying the same basic thing in different ways.  Thing is, most people would rather win the argument than know the truth.

What takes us out of the Truth of the Present Moment?  Words.  Thoughts.  Automatic reactions.  Expressing negative emotions.  Living in our own egotistical melodramas.

Let’s begin with words.  Words are immensely more powerful than many of us are aware of.  A certain word or phrase can make us react in some way that we know is not the Truth of us.  After our reaction, we might feel foolish that we reacted to someone’s words.  The Sanskrit term for the power of words is matrika Shakti.  My Guru said, “Do not let the matrika make you dance.”

A group of words leads to a thought.  Rather, the group of words with a coherent meaning is the thought.  A thought is nothing more than a certain group of words that we have given meaning to.
On one level, our thoughts are generally insignificant.  They are not nearly as interesting as we make them out to be.  Also, most of them are, at best, some variation of some aspect of truth, or something relatively true for now.  Most thoughts are just mental clutter.  The space that exists between any two thoughts, or any two words, is very blissful and freeing.  However, it is a great process to gain the simple ability to maintain the gaze between two thoughts.

Most people cannot even conceive of a silent, still space between thoughts, between words.  They might even consider such a space as boring.  Thoughts lead to activity and stimulation, which many people are unknowingly addicted to.  Many people are only comfortable with plenty of activity and stimulation.  This leads to egotistical melodramas, and we get lost in them and lose all touch with the Truth of the Present Moment.

Egotistical melodramas is one of the key terms in our Course of Training regarding Living in the Truth of the Present Moment.  In short time we begin to recognize egotistical melodramas for what they are; not merely in retrospect, but as we are in the midst of them.  We learn to catch them ‘red-handed.’

We must develop the capacity to see what limits us and keeps us in some degree of ignorance, for only after we are able to see what holds us down are we finally able to recognize the very best of ourselves.  Truly, most all people are much greater, in essence, than they conceive themselves to be.  They limit themselves to constrictive or contracting concepts.  This is why we must learn to go beyond all concepts, and open up to the willingness to see something new—the Truth of our own Being, the Truth of the Self.

Briefly, an egotistical melodrama requires words and thoughts (to describe the situation and what is going on—which we take to be ‘reality)’.  The egotistical melodrama usually requires other people—often includes conflict, or an expression of negative emotions, and they take place in ‘time.’  In the present moment, they don’t even exist.  They exists in thoughts, and thoughts require time.

The present moment is absolutely silent and absolutely still.

The present moment is the space between words or thoughts.  If we could rest in that state, we would live in absolute contentment.  Truly, contentment is the highest aspiration.  Once we are content, we have attained all we can attain while dwelling in this physical body.

Due to a rigid conditioning from the past, we cannot be content simply by deciding to be.  We can decide to remain content forevermore, and yet the next time someone says something we don’t like, we are caught up in an emotional reaction.  So a comprehensive and coherent ‘training’ is, if not required, at least highly recommended.  On our own, our head is spinning its tires to get free from snow, ice, sleet, sand, and mud of the mind.  We need something that helps us see what direction
we’re going in and what is the next step.

At least this was my own experience with my own Teachers.  Simply through being in subtle relationship with them, my state would expand to a much greater degree, leading to a greater transformation, than anything I could have possibly done on my own, depending entirely on my own feeble efforts.

Anyway, we each do what we can do, right?  I sit here and write having no idea of where this sentence will go, much less what will be written in the next sentence.  In a sense I am taking dictation, having no idea what I will write next.  I am simply the typist.  All my writings are much more amazing to me than to you, the reader, for you might think you know where these words come from, while for me it is a great mystery.

Some questions have recently come in.  I will respond to them here:

Someone wrote, "I don't feel I value or appreciate the preciousness of each moment.

“Here is my question:

WHY IS THIS LIFE SO PRECIOUS?

“What is it about being in THIS BODY that is so precious?  I want to fully appreciate the preciousness of each moment and am open to fuller understanding."

Being in this body is so precious because it carries a precious cargo.  It is our dharma to protect the precious cargo at any cost.  What if you could actually experience that nothing is inside this body other than God or Consciousness?  What if you were truly aware that you are carrying around the Lord everywhere you go?

If you felt alone with God, would you experience the preciousness of the moment? Well, in truth, you are alone with God right now.  God is peering through your eyes, hearing through your ears, and so on through all the senses.  There is no one in this body but God.  There is no middle-man.
When you fully understand this, you live in the consciousness of the preciousness of life.  You see that each moment is to be cherished and celebrated, because it is a distinctive part of the life you are living here on the planet Earth.  Why not cherish and celebrate each moment of life?  Is something ‘else’ going to happen?

This is how you experience the preciousness of the present moment.

Read Morehttp://truthofthepresentmoment.blogspot.com

Monday, March 31, 2014

Research: Women feel fabulous at fifty! Three quarters say they feel more confident in their fifth decade than they did in their 20's

Research: Women feel fabulous at fifty!
The old saying goes that life begins at 40, but now British women are feeling more fit and fabulous in their fifth decade, it seems.

After a lifetime of diets and body hang-ups, three quarters of women (76 per cent) feel more self-assured in their 50s than they did in their 20s, reveals a new study.

A third in their 50s (36 per cent) are happier than ever with their looks and one in seven (16 per cent) feel fitter and sexier than ever.

In fact, almost half (47 per cent) are so happy they love their body more now than they did in their 20s.

The research, of 40 to 74 year olds, found women in their fifth decade have stopped calorie counting and turned to exercise to stay in shape.

A third of women (33 per cent) have started to work out more in their 50s and 15 per cent are feeling more energised as a result.

Meanwhile, 45 per cent ditched diets for good on turning 50.

What's more, two thirds of women (66 per cent) spend less time and money on personal grooming once they hit 50.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2579996/Why-women-fabulous-fifty-Three-quarters-women-say-feel-confident-fifth-decade-did-20s.html#ixzz2xYbarcCO

Friday, March 28, 2014

Research: are you right-brained or left-brained? And what does it say about your personality?

Take the quiz ....

Are you rational and like to live by the rules? Or creative and curious? Now there's a quiz that will determine why this might be.

The idea is that we all have a dominant side of the brain - and this shapes our personality.

People who are right-brained tend to be creative, curious and intuitive, while those ruled by the left are logical, strategic and rational.

The quiz, created by the website Sommer + Sommer, involves determining which way a figure is dancing, picking an object that looks most pleasing to the eye and which shape most represents friendship.

Later, participants are asked to cross their arms, legs and squint - and see how side of the body reacts.

The idea comes from the idea that certain bodily functions are assigned to either the right or left side of the brain.

The brain's right hemisphere controls the muscles on the left side of the body, while the left hemisphere controls the muscles on the right side of the body.

In general, the left hemisphere is dominant in language: processing what you hear and handling most of the duties of speaking.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2569288/Are-right-brained-left-brained-And-does-say-personality-Take-interactive-QUIZ-out.html#ixzz2xJ0MDvio

Research: people decide to trust you within seconds

Research: people trust you decide to trust you within seconds
Scientists have discovered that it only takes saying 'hello' for someone to decide whether or not you can be trusted.

Researchers at Glasgow University have found that it takes around half a second to make a good first impression.

They discovered that people judge someone on how trustworthy or how dominant they are within the first 500 milliseconds of hearing their voice.

Psychologists from universities of Glasgow and Princeton in the US, have shown that a simple 'hello' is enough to allow most people to draw conclusions about personality type.

They also found that people will make these judgements, including how attractive they are, without seeing the person to whom we are speaking.

The findings echo a classic line in the film Jerry Maguire, starring Tom Cruise and Renée Zellweger.

At the end of the film, when Jerry expresses his love in a long-winded speech to Dorothy, she replies with the simple phrase: 'You had me at hello.'

A study played recordings of people saying 'hello' and asked test subjects to rank them according to 10 pre-defined personality traits including trustworthiness, dominance, attractiveness and warmth.

The study found that most of the recorded voices elicited the same response from participants and that these opinions were formed rapidly, after hearing the voices for only 300-500msecs.

This suggests that the tone of voice you use when saying 'hello' directly and immediately informs the first impression of the person to whom you are speaking.

The most important traits identified were trustworthiness and dominance.

This research sheds new light on the automatic judgments we make about strangers we meet +2

This research sheds new light on the automatic judgments we make about strangers we meet

The study found that males who raised their tone and women who alternated the pitch of their voices are seen as more trustworthy.

Dominance is partly indicated by lowering the pitch, but more so by changes in 'formant dispersion', which are adjustments of your voice caused by the structure of your throat.

The fact that the human mind is capable of coming to these conclusions so quickly and irrespective of visual cues implies that this is an ability that may have evolved in our recent history when decisions on who to trust and approach were crucial to our species' survival.

Dr Phil McAleer, from the Voice Neurocognition Laboratory, Glasgow University, who led the study, said: 'It is amazing that from such short bursts of speech you can get such a definite impression of a person.

'And more so that, irrespective of whether it is accurate, your impression is the same as what the other listeners get.

'It is perhaps also consistent that we are most attuned to recognising signs of trustworthiness and dominance, two traits that would have been central to our survival as we evolved.'

This research promises to help in the drive to improve the efficiency of voice-operated systems and learning aids, and to shed new light on the automatic judgments we make about strangers we don't meet face to face - from conductors making announcements on trains to business people making 'cold calls'.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2579998/You-hello-People-judge-trustworthy-half-SECOND.html#ixzz2xIzAyui8 

Monday, March 24, 2014

Research: Mushrooms kills the sexually transmitted virus HPV

Research: Mushrooms kills the sexually transmitted virus HPV
Everyone knows that mushrooms are a nutritious and low-calorie addition to a meal but now new research suggests they could also combat cancer.

An extract from a Japanese mushroom kills the sexually transmitted virus HPV that can cause cervical cancer.

Human papilloma virus (HPV) is a common, and highly contagious, infection that affects skin and the moist membrane linings of the body, for example, in the cervix, mouth and throat.

More than three quarters of all women acquire the virus during their lives and some strains can cause cervical cancer.

But American research found the extract active hexose correlated compound (AHCC) – which is found in shiitake mushrooms - may play a role in preventing HPV-related cancers.

In a study using mice, AHCC led to the eradication of HPV within 90 days.

It also decreased the rate of cervical tumour growth.

AHCC is a common food supplement and the researchers say it could eventually replace HPV vaccines.

Associate professor Dr Judith Smith, of the University of Texas Health Science Center Medical School, said: ‘The results of this study were very encouraging.

‘This study, initiated in 2008, shows that by itself AHCC has the potential to treat the HPV infection.’

AHCC works as an immunotherapy, which is a treatment that uses a body's own immune system to help fight disease.

Human and lab studies have shown that AHCC increases the number and activity of Natural Killer (NK) cells, dendritic cells, and cytokines, which enable the body to effectively respond to infections and block the proliferation of tumours.

HPV DNA has been detected in 99.7 per cent of cervical cancer biopsies, yielding the largest causative relationship of any cancer.

Several other types of cancer are also HPV related, including 95 per cent of anal cancers, 60 per cent of throat cancers, 65 per cent of vaginal cancers, 50 per cent of vulvar cancers and 35 per cent of penile cancers.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2587862/Could-MUSHROOMS-prevent-cervical-cancer-Fungi-extract-kills-virus-causes-disease-slows-tumour-growth.html#ixzz2wtr39gsr
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Do we need another tenure on Clintons in white house?

Do we need another tenure on Clintons in white house?
Kathleen Willey, his former aide, accused former President Bill Clinton of sexually harassing her. Now she says America 'deserves better' than another Clinton presidency.

Just weeks after publicly claiming that former first lady Hillary Clinton was waging a 'war on women' by enabling her husband's philandering ways, the aide who accused the former president of groping her in the White House has penned an article for a far-right-wing blog under the headline 'America Deserves Better Than the Clintons.'

Kathleen Willey was a Democratic fundraiser volunteering in the White House during Bill Clinton's presidency who claims the former president kissed and groped her inside a private study off of the Oval Office.

Now, with a potential presidential run by Hillary Clinton in the works, Willey has resurfaced to warn the American public about the 'dysfunctional' former first family.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2587613/Aide-accused-Bill-Clinton-groping-says-Americans-deserve-better-Clintons.html#ixzz2wto5bTOt

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The basis for much of Willey's latest criticism of the Clintons stems from Hillary Clinton's handling of the attack in Benghazi, Libya, that led to the deaths of four Americans, including ambassador Chris Stevens.

'The last time we saw Hillary Clinton as our secretary of state, she was testifying before a congressional committee about Benghazi,' Willey writes in the column published on WND.com. 'During that meeting on Jan. 22, 2013, we heard her shriek, “What difference does it make?"

'Earlier, right before one of the presidential debates, on Oct. 15, 2012, Hillary stated during a series of interviews that she, as secretary of state, was responsible for the security of the embassy staff. “The buck stops here.”

'I remember being so surprised when I heard it, but I was immediately suspicious,' Willey concludes.

Willey qualifies her shock by claiming that 'taking responsibility for anything is rare' for the Clintons.

She goes on to say the former secretary of state knows more than she's willing to reveal about the Benghazi attack.

'If it is revealed that she played a major part in the demise of our four patriots, as we suspect she did, she might want to consider retreating from public life once and for all and, together with her husband, play the role of senior stateswoman,' she writes.

Willey concludes her commentary by simply stating that 'we deserve better' than the Clintons.

In February, Willey made claims that when she was secretary of state, Hillary Clinton orchestrated a series of investigations designed to discredit the many women who have claimed her husband sexually assaulted them

'The point is what this woman is capable of doing to other women while she's running a campaign, basically, on women's issues,' she said. 'It just doesn't make any sense.'

'She single-handedly orchestrated every one of the investigations of all these women.'

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2587613/Aide-accused-Bill-Clinton-groping-says-Americans-deserve-better-Clintons.html#ixzz2wto1SygY

Friday, March 21, 2014

Research - Health and Aging: Build muscle and you'll live longer

Health and Aging: Build muscle and you'll live longer
New UCLA research suggests that the more muscle mass older Americans have, the less likely they are to die prematurely. The findings add to the growing evidence that overall body composition -- and not the widely used body mass index, or BMI -- is a better predictor of all-cause mortality.

The study, published in the American Journal of Medicine, is the culmination of previous UCLA research led by Dr. Preethi Srikanthan, an assistant clinical professor in the endocrinology division at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, that found that building muscle mass is important in decreasing metabolic risk.

"As there is no gold-standard measure of body composition, several studies have addressed this question using different measurement techniques and have obtained different results," Srikanthan said. "So many studies on the mortality impact of obesity focus on BMI. Our study indicates that clinicians need to be focusing on ways to improve body composition, rather than on BMI alone, when counseling older adults on preventative health behaviors."

The researchers analyzed data collected by the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) III, conducted between 1988 and 1994. They focused on a group of 3,659 individuals that included men who were 55 or older and women who were 65 or older at the time of the survey. The authors then determined how many of those individuals had died from natural causes based on a follow-up survey done in 2004.

The body composition of the study subjects was measured using bioelectrical impedance, which involves running an electrical current through the body. Muscle allows the current to pass more easily than fat does, due to muscle's water content. In this way, the researchers could determine a muscle mass index -- the amount of muscle relative to height -- similar to a body mass index. They looked at how this muscle mass index was related to the risk of death. They found that all-cause mortality was significantly lower in the fourth quartile of muscle mass index compared with the first quartile.
"In other words, the greater your muscle mass, the lower your risk of death," said Dr. Arun Karlamangla, an associate professor in the geriatrics division at the Geffen School and the study's co-author. "Thus, rather than worrying about weight or body mass index, we should be trying to maximize and maintain muscle mass."

This study does have some limitations. For instance, one cannot definitively establish a cause-and-effect relationship between muscle mass and survival using a cohort study such as NHANES III. "But we can say that muscle mass seems to be an important predictor of risk of death," Srikanthan said. In addition, bioelectrical impedance is not the most advanced measurement technique, though the NHANES III measurements were conducted in a very rigorous fashion "and practically, this is the best situation possible in a study of this size," she noted.

"Despite these limitations, this study establishes the independent survival prediction ability of muscle mass as measured by bioelectrical impedance in older adults, using data from a large, nationally representative cohort," Srikanthan and Karlamangla write, adding that BMI's association with mortality in older adults has proven inconsistent. "We conclude that measurement of muscle mass relative to body height should be added to the toolbox of clinicians caring for older adults. Future research should determine the type and duration of exercise interventions that improve muscle mass and potentially increase survival in (healthy), older adults."

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140314095102.htm

Thursday, March 20, 2014

March 2014: Interview with Edward Snowden on TED (video)

GCR: Why the Vietnamese Dong will Revalue

GCR: Why the Vietnamese Dong will Revalue
Vietnam has achieved a truly remarkable thing.  While being a dumping ground for U.S. dollar inflation and having its own currency consistently devalued, Vietnam has managed to produce one of the fastest economic expansions and modernizations in the history of the world.  It’s a model of modernization built upon the experience and lessons of China, Korea, and other Asian countries which developed before it.

The modernization of Europe and the Americas took centuries.  The modernization of China was achieved in approximately 50 years.  Compare that to the astonishing modernization which only began in Vietnam in the mid 1990’s.  In less than 20 years, the country has turned from a destitute population on the verge of starvation to an expanding middle class that is considered by all economic indicators to be the fastest such expansion in the world.

In true Confucian fashion, Vietnam utilized the tactics of economic warfare deployed against it as a tool of economic development.  The exchange rate of the dong was devalued on a continually basis to encourage use of the U.S. dollar within the country.  This ensured another market for the dollars inflation to be sent to avoid a hyper-inflation situation back home.

In addition, the Vietnamese understood the economic potential of their resources and trade capability.  The strategy was one of patience and long term gain for short term detriment.

Vietnam is much more than the story of an American war of aggression or gold theft.  For our purposes here, we will start our brief history with the Multilateral Co-Operation Agreement made between the NATO Countries (except Ireland) in January of 1950.  The purpose of this agreement was to control the type and level of trade between the western world and the communist world.

South Vietnam held the largest agricultural potential while the North held most of the heavy industry, such as coal, steel, tin, and phosphate fertilizer.  The full potential of the offshore oil and gas fields was still unknown.

There were many reasons for the western involvement in Vietnam which began many years before, with the French, and later America.  The threat of communism was a smoke screen for something else which we will not touch on here as the scale of it will only serve to dwarf this essay on currency revaluation.  There is also the Yamashita gold theft and recovery attempt which we touched on in America’s Karma and World War Two Gold Theft.  During the time period between WW2 and the dissolution of the Soviet Union on December 26, 1991, Vietnam depended on economic subsidies from the larger communist state.  When these subsidies ended, trade with the United States became very important for Vietnam.

Over the years there have been many variations of the dong currency with varying exchange rates.  The different forms of structure to the dong have been the following:

- Commercial Currency
- Non-Commercial Currency
- Official Rate
- Convertible Currency
- Effective Rate
- Auction Fixing (this structure becomes important in 1991)
- It’s too much too breakdown and cover each currency type and its value fluctuations over the years so we will focus in on the important dates and valuations.

On December 18, 1971, after the U.S. dollar devaluation, the official exchange rate of the dong was 2.71 per 1 dollar.

On February 13, 1973, after another U.S. dollar devaluation, the official exchange rate was 2.44 per 1 dollar.

On May 3, 1978, a uniform dong was introduced at an exchange rate of 2.17 per 1 dollar.  It’s interesting to note that during this time period the dong to dollar exchange rate was maintained within a narrow margin while the SDR rate for the dong was allowed to fluctuate.  This SDR fluctuation was a foreshadowing of things yet to come in our present time.  See SDR’s and the New Bretton Woods.

On July 6, 1981 the exchange rate was VND 9.045 per 1 dollar.

On Sept 14, 1985, the State Bank of Vietnam was authorized to issue a new dong currency and withdraw the old ones from circulation.  One old dong got you 10 new dong. The new exchange rate was set at 15 dong to 1 dollar.

Devaluation of the dong continued throughout the 1980’s which was actually encouraging what little trade Vietnam participated in.

On March 13, 1989 the multiple currency structure as outlined above was ended and a unified currency structure was put in place.  The commercial dong and non-commercial dong were merged and the exchange rate was set at 4500 dong per 1 dollar.  This was 9 months before the Berlin Wall began its fall which lead to the eventual collapse of the Soviet Union.  Remember that Vietnam depended on subsidies from the U.S.S.R.  Perhaps this constitutes a slow transition from subsidies to light import and exports.

On August 30, 1991 there was put in place a method of foreign exchange auction, which was only allowed in U.S. dollars, to support banks and trade organizations helping economic interests needing such foreign exchanges.  This move created the inflation dumping grounds for the U.S. dollar.

The rate of the dong today is approximately 21,000 to 1 dollar.

Back in the year 1975 Vietnam wanted to exploit its rich agricultural and timber resources in the South and develop its coal production in the North, as well as producing oil and gas from its offshore fields.  Unfortunately for Vietnam they were under a trade embargo from the United States.  The Export Administration Act of 1969, amended in 1979, restricted the export and/or re-export of technology which originated in America.  The embargo was only on North Vietnam at first but was extended to the South in 1975.

Post war Vietnam is one of only a handful of countries that did not experience a reconstruction boom after hostilities ended.  In fact, they experienced a drastic economic deterioration.  Through economic sanctions, a ban on imports to Vietnam produced a shortage of foreign exchange capital required for the reconstruction process.   Sanctions also lead to extremely high unemployment in the export industries and a reduced industrial capacity.

A similar ban on exports deprived the country of the essential commodities required for development and growth.  It also denied Vietnam access to foreign capital markets to raise funds for building factories and other industrial facilities.

Exports to communist countries were considered a violation of America’s strategic interest.  The embargo even blocked aid from the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.  Vietnam, to its credit, did the only thing it could do by focusing on exporting natural resources and cheap labor to a handful of countries that stood in violation of the embargo.  This was a bare sustenance strategy by Vietnam which did not eliminate starvation and destitution in the country.

Throughout this time period Vietnam was subjected to typhoons, floods, and droughts which served to severely hinder its attempts at food grain production.  This weather caused considerable damage to Vietnam’s agricultural lands.

It brings into question the use of weather manipulation weapons which may have been used against the country.  For those who doubt the reality of such weapons, I suggest you ask yourself why Defense Secretary William Cohen stated the existence of weather and earthquake causing weapons in his speech given at a 1997 Conference on Terrorism in Athens, GA.  I will leave this area to the reader for further exploration.

When the Cold War finally ended many American business interests wanted the sanctions lifted immediately so as to capitalize on the virgin market.  But the U.S. would not lift them.

But with the low exchange rate of the dong to dollar, other countries couldn’t resist the lure of doing business in Vietnam and making the windfall on the other end.  Countries that began investing in Vietnamese imports and exports were:

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