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The Ancient Roots of Holism


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The American

The American Reconstruction Department,

of City and Rural
Areas Authority

the Course,'
an education









Health Care








The Science

Upcoming 2013 Science Debates
Science & Economy and Solar Energy



"The adoption of a holistic worldview globally may represent humanity's greatest chance for a promising future to be shared by all." yasha husain














A Voice on Free Trade
by Yasha Melanie Husain
Posted March 9, 2013

We seek dictum in law and not its metaphor. And, in addition to the law, precedence, not malarkey. These notions apply not only to domestic legal practice or “tender” but to international treatises and agreements.

Free trade agreements, in light of this, are not intended to be fodder for unacceptable market manipulation or corruption. Yet, as a reflection of both the recent Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership talks, nontransparent and transparent negotiating tools alike reveal seeming abuses of the law's intended purpose.

In the February 13, 2013 Washington Post-Bloomberg article, by Howard Schneider, “With trade already flowing, U.S. and European Union aim for something deeper,” a title that's seemingly steeped in irony, Schneider reports, in response to the US-European trade talks:

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The National Commission on Forensic Science
By Yasha Husain
February 19, 2013

In today's fast-paced world, we shouldn't let science seemingly run ahead of us and we as citizens not understand its laws. What does this say for forensic science and the new National Commission on Forensic Science? It suggests that in the United States we should remain abreast of even this cutting edge commission, ensuring the work of the agency is as forthright and commendable as the work of any other agency that provides services for the citizenry.

In that case, when you look up forensics on Wikipedia, interestingly what you come across first is the famous Eureka! story of the scientist, Archimedes, of Syracuse. That story is noted as an early development of forensics science:

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Redevelopment of City and Rural Areas Authority – Staying True to Our Heritage
By Yasha Husain
February 4, 2013

There comes a time to artfully, in a peaceful manner that promotes only the truth and unity of an overarching situation, press for the change that's been waiting to happen, and make it happen. It's hard to come up with a good reason why that time is not now. In fact, it's seemingly impossible to argue the time isn't now for Americans, along with President Barack Obama, in his second term, to address poverty in the United States, and global warming at the same time, via a new institution I would name: the Redevelopment of City and Rural Areas Authority – Staying True to Our Heritage (RCRA).

Similar to the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) in terms of its discipline, but radically new in its approach, could be the RCRA, “uplifting neighborhoods from coast to coast, providing equal opportunity rights, and, pursuant to life and happiness, in a proactive nation that protects all of its people's interests and their environments.”

The Redevelopment Authority (RCRA) would be responsible for uplifting neighborhoods by way of physical reconstruction and job creation. In so doing, it would simultaneously work to resolve global warming by ensuring neighborhoods are not only liveable but sustainable. Native American communities would hopefully, if they so choose, be amongst those participating.

The RCRA would renovate and rehabilitate poor neighborhoods so that the quality of life there becomes adapted to the way of the Tao (the middle way), borrowing from age-old, Chinese wisdom. The physical constitutions of these neighborhoods, the architectures that build them, would provide serenity to those otherwise living under less than tranquil conditions. Neighborhoods not well-suited to redevelopment could be torn down and rebuilt in a new space that's environmentally sustainable, contains open space, and is kept Tao-like.

In addition to the physical transformation of neighborhoods in need of redevelopment and upliftment there would be progressive job creation for the people of these neighborhoods, or impoverished people across the country. Training should be local and provide for livelihoods born out of immersion with agriculture; integrative and preventive medicine; holistic education; architecture, building and design, and the arts, in just a handful of examples. So people, as a part of the change taking place, could go to local trade associations, specially organized, certification houses and university, to receive the training they need, even while beginning to experience the transformation of their homes and environments. They can also complete work as a part of the transformation, toward agriculture and building or construction, for example, and that way afford what would also need to be affordable training and schooling that allows individuals and families to achieve, gradually, more sophisticated positions in the marketplace.

The raised neighborhoods would themselves be immersed with newly designed schools, libraries, playgrounds and parks that provide positive reinforcement for the citizens. Overall, the space of the community would include many shared spaces, between which one can enjoyably walk or bike. There should be ready access to nature, as it stands remote from civilization, in its pristine state.

This is the face of the future, filled with promise, under which the United States tackles its ails in the present, particularly poverty, simultaneously training its citizens in sustainable farming and holistic sciences and arts.

What happens in America should be an example of what can be happening elsewhere in the world, too, the eradication of poverty, and poverty-stricken neighborhoods. The RCRA is in effect a good approach for creating homegrown solutions to these dilemmas and can be remodeled to tailor similar efforts in other nations of the world, similar to how the American Reconstruction Department I've proposed might be re-adapted to the needs of nation-states around the world. (My article about the proposed American Reconstruction Department is available at my website, in the Opinion section: www.yashahusain.com).

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(RCRA Oped link currently not working)


Energy from the Sun
By Yasha Husain
February 3, 2013

Truth be told, all energy is solar, and countless sustainable forms of solar energy are available to us, which we should be exploiting.

Following is a blueprint of how to do solar energy in America, creating a robust, localized system, that also stretches from coast to coast.

To begin with, build a national grid that is minimalist and a flexible structure, that can take and leave local, sustainable, energy sources, that contribute to one stable energy pool, with capacity for constant and directional power, locally.

Second, local solar, energy sources should include the following:

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Saving money in healthcare
By Yasha Husain
January 16, 2013

Saving money in health care: Starting with the basics in America, the dairy, meats and seafood battles are won, and in process, and the organics battle is near won, and in process.

The upcoming vote on the farm bill should actually build on the 1948 farm laws, thus aiding the sustainable farming movement, hopefully at the same time, putting an end to genetically modified foods.

Health food stores are on the rise, as are health food aisles at grocery store chains, and healthy dining can now include fast food drive-thrus and chain restaurants, like Applebee's.

There's what is a shortcut impression of the state of health care in America, while daily exercise at home becomes more and more prevalent for every person.

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An American Reconstruction Department
By Yasha Husain
December 29, 2012

A logical next step for the Obama Administration and its efforts to triumph against the challenges of the 21st century, is, strategically speaking, the creation of an American Reconstruction Department, a Franklin Roosevelt-type initiative.

All wings of the proposed Reconstruction effort, listed below, would be carried out concurrently by diverse teams of experts, the heads of which meet bi-monthly. Expenditures will come chiefly from already distributed, or budgeted, dollars, in exception of R&D and special projects, e.g. pilot projects, including ones that meet the needs of poor, underserved or polluted communities.

For each wing of the department, there will be three "well-schooled" and "well-rounded" experts with a specialty in their field area, be it, for clean energy, wind, solar or geothermal. Each will be a holistic, which also implies, global, thinker, in their own right, but above them will still be a world-class expert, who is firstly a holistic and global thinker, whose job it is to arrive at the most common sense energy solutions for localities, regions and the nation, with the rest of his or her team, or panel, and the nation.

The panel of the Clean Energy wing would, for example, work in coordination with the Department of Energy. It would have a specially appointed person to work with think tanks, and the media, to get the word out of the progress of the Department. The panel member's closest relationships would be to Congress, as selected Congress members would be asked to help write legislation, and all of Congress would act as constant liaison between the nation's people and the Reconstruction Department.

The head of the Reconstruction Department may be a residing Senator or Congressperson.

In light of climate change and the international economy, domestic and world affairs would largely be tackled with the follow-through of an American Reconstruction Department.

The idea for the Department comes not only from Roosevelt's defeat of the Great Depression, but from Japan, which in the wake of the 2011 earthquake and tsunami, and in response to its environmental demands, instituted a nationwide, regional and community-based reconstruction effort, according to Habitat for Humanity, which ran a special ad about Japan in Bloomberg Businessweek (Oct. 22-28, 2012).

It's true that after the 2008 financial crisis has wound down, Obama's in earnest planning stage is finally upon us. No better time, then, to start the ambitious goal setting, based on a long range vision, with a centralized department, with outreach capacity to communities across the nation, and world.

The logical next step in the Obama Administration's efforts to promote change is an American Reconstruction Department, that could be replicated internationally, its various wings:

1. Celebrating the Family and Perfect Love

2. Emergent Education, Adapting to 21st Century Needs, Including Job Creation

3. The Role of Faith in Culture

4. Exchanging Nonviolence

5. Guideposts: Sharing the Wisdom of All Time

6. Harnessing the Creative Potential Utilizing “Perfect Knowledge” (Self-realization)

7. On the Nature of Competition: Holistic Competition

8. On the Role of Science: Holistic Science

9. Holistic Farming

10. Helping Hands for the Poor

11. Developing Cognitive and Behavioral Health Advancements, Thinking Out-of-the-Box

12. Integrative, Holistic Medicine

13. Sound Design Materials

14. Graduated Engineering

15. Architecture and Design

16. Rail and Vehicular Design and Transfer

17. Clean Energy Projects

18. Remediation

19. Environmental Monitoring

20. Technology Transfer

21. Realigning Military and Intelligence to Carry Out More Diplomatic Missions

22. Mixing of Economies

23. Cross Cultural Exchange for the Continuation of Cultural Heritage

24. Global Participation

25. Development

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Give Initiative a Chance
by Yasha Melanie Husain
First appeared in The Leader Herald (Gloversville, NY)
September 20th, 2012

Gov. Andrew Cuomo's Cleaner, Greener Communities initiative, an interdisciplinary approach to sustainability now in its planning stages, is an opportunity to push a sustainability agenda for New York state that relies on energy efficiency, renewable energy and other carbon abatement measures.

Building on what's been developed by the 10 Regional Economic Development Councils, the CGC only stands to improve the state's efforts to go green in a way that's truly sustainable.

A bottom-up approach, the CGC is an opportunity for local experts, administrators and the public to draw up sustainability plans that best suit their region before the plans are finally submitted to the New York State Energy and Research Development Authority - the agency that oversees the CGC - in January 2013.

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Blog: Decision '09, The Science Debates

Debate #3:
Elusive Water Vapor: High
Altitude Hydrogen Jets, and the Delicate

Moderator Question:

What do we know about manmade water vapor emissions in the lower stratosphere and the implications of risks involved in their release?


Water vapor remains among the most elusive of greenhouse gases. Perhaps in part because of its innocuous sounding name, its story has seldom been told.  

A 1996 study, however, titled, “Molecular Hydrogen and Water Vapour Emissions in a Global Hydrogen Energy Economy,” by Zittel and Altmann, assumed that about 20 percent of planes at the time flew in the upper troposphere / lower stratosphere. The report, presented at the 11th World Hydrogen Energy Conference, declared a hydrogen fleet of planes emitting water vapor emissions would need to fly well within the troposphere to keep from disrupting the delicate, dry balance in the stratosphere. Starting in 1996, the year the study was published, NASA's modified U2 spy plane, the ER-2, began collecting samples of stratospheric air from which to draw such conclusions. Since then, scientists have continued to elaborate on Zittel and Altmann's findings as well as apply unique methods of analysis in their attempts to understand the potential for stratospheric ozone destruction from commercial hydrogen fleets.

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Blog: Decision '09, The Science Debates

Debate #1: Biomass from Poplar Trees (3/13/09)

Moderator Question:

Can bacteria-induced, hybrid poplar tree farms located on Superfund Sites be used to produce energy from biomass safely, and more efficiently than if we were to continue using corn to produce ethanol?

Will the poplars be able to grow on the depleted and contaminated soils of Superfund Sites, simultaneously cleaning up contamination through phytoremediation?


In this groundbreaking topic for debate we look at how bacteria strains, when induced into non-GMO poplar clippings, have been shown to accelerate the growth of trees, possibly making bacteria-induced poplars a valuable source of biomass. We'll look at whether this manner of cultivating poplar farms for biomass will be a balanced one.

What adds significantly to the reasoning behind the science is that the hybrid poplar tree farms would be situated on Superfund Sites, and through a process called phytoremediation would effectively clean toxins from the environment as they grow.

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Why Not Build Your Own
Solar-Powered Lawn Mower?

By Yasha Husain
First appeared in The Sunday Gazette (Schenectady, NY)
August 12, 2007

For anyone looking for a project to keep them busy this summer, how about building a solar-powered lawn mower?

By doing a simple Google search and punching in "solar powered electric lawn mowers," a handful of sites will come up offering step-by-step instructions for how to convert a gas-powered mower to run on solar power.

The sites are replete with information from weathered tinkerers; they include listings of the parts needed, including: a used or old mower (or a new gas or electric mower), an electric motor that runs from a 12-volt battery, and a solar panel.

Benefits from making the conversion: zero emissions (not counting the emissions involved in the manufacture of parts); savings (since there won't be a need anymore to buy gas for the lawn mower); noise reduction (the electric motor has a relaxing sound reminiscent of a large fan); and know-how (look at the mower as a steppingstone toward bigger and better solar home-improvement projects).

Significant polluter

According to the EPA, up to 5 percent of the nation's air pollution results from garden equipment, and in metropolitan areas, the percentage is often much higher. In 2001, a Swedish study showed that running a gas-powered lawn mower for an hour is nearly the same as driving a car for 100 miles, and that analysis, compared with others, is conservative.

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In NYS, Why Not Safe Disposal of Unused Prescription Drugs?
By Yasha Husain
First appeared in The Sunday Gazette (Schenectady, NY)

August 5th, 2007

In the past few years, across the country, there's been a growing interest in take-back medicine programs that provide communities with designated drop-off locations for the safe disposal of unused pharmaceuticals...

Getting take-back medicine programs up and running had a lot to do with the 1999-2000 watershed study by the United States Geological Survey (USGS) that tested for the presence of wastewater organic compounds, also known as emerging contaminants, in 139 streams in 30 states. Emerging contaminants, including prescription and nonprescription drugs, and hormones and steroids, were found in 80% of the samples collected.

A 2006 report by Dr. Kim Winton of the USGS goes a long way in outlining how these emerging contaminants adversely affect the physiology of wildlife, as well as humans.

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Time for a New Direction for Fulton County's
Waste Management Operations

By Yasha Husain
First appeared in The Sunday Gazette (Schenectady, NY)
April 22, 2007

To save money down the road, and to do more to protect the environment in which people live and breathe, more responsible forms of waste management, the kinds taking place in Europe, Peel, Ontario in Canada, and San Francisco, could begin to be administered here.

At the Fulton County landfill on Mudd Road not only have household wastes been landfilled, but also construction and demolition materials, contaminated soils, industrial sludge from tanneries, wastes incoming from an area with an operating paper mill, sewage sludge, and asbestos.

While the landfill, which has been open since 1989, is considered state-of-the-art because it contains a double composite liner to minimize leakage and contain gases, regulations still allow a maximum of twenty gallons per acre per day of leakage. And the liner itself is helpless against the two main instigators of complete failures at landfills: 1) the deterioration of cover after the landfill has been capped and 2) clogging of leachate lines.

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A Call to Adopt Earth Architecture
By Yasha Husain
March 2007

Behind the sad images and stories of horrible loss associated with natural disasters, there's a reason for hope.

Well-developed architectural designs called Superadobe exist to be utilized to build homes, office buildings and schools that would minimize the scale of damage incurred when natural disasters happen.

Developed by the Iranian-American architect Nader Khalili, Superadobe earth architectures can be used to build homes for the wealthy who seek non-toxic environments, the destitute who seek safe shelter, people in need of emergency housing, and refugees of war-torn regions.

Khalili once ran a successful practice building modern, steel-frame structures until he closed his offices in Tehran and Los Angeles in 1975 to begin experimenting with earthen structures. He dreamed of building homes that would withstand strong winds, heavy rains, and powerful earthquakes, and be suitable for people worldwide, in particular, for the rural poor in his country.

"Every man and woman should be able to build a home for his or her family, using the earth under their feet, and integrating some features of modern technology to make their homes resistant to fire, flood, hurricane, earthquake and other disasters," Khalili's quoted on his Institute's webpage as saying.

In the mid-1970s, with a clear goal in mind, he set out to use only the four basic elements, earth, water, air, and fire, to empower people to build homes that could survive Earth's sometimes violent impacts.

For five years he traveled through the desert of Iran on his motorcycle, investigating old architectures and occasionally sleeping in mud huts and adobe homes, or under the stars. He discovered how kilns in the desert that had been fired during their functional lives remained standing through the centuries, and as a result soon came to combine the ancient principles behind dome-shaped adobe huts and the firing of bricks in kilns, or ceramics.

The resultant architectural form, only the first of several advanced earthen forms developed by Khalili, was coined Geltaften, it involves the firing of an adobe home in order to stabilize a structure.

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