Interview with jDean (Jarrett Dean Grimes)
©2014 NNS/ Jdean16.com
Q: Where are you from originally?
J: I’m from Manhattan Beach, CA all though most of my family is in central California. But, my Mom went to Whittier College and met my Dad in Manhattan Beach during her first year of teaching. I was lucky enough to grow up on a walk-street (a street designated for walking only – no cars), but also unlucky enough to grow up on a walk-street… I say unlucky because I grew up three blocks from the beach and two miles from school. If you look at my student records, you’ll see what happens to a guy like me when you have a choice of going to school (uphill both ways) or downhill straight to the beach.
Q: How did you end up in Tahoe?
J: I ended up in Tahoe because of my grandfather. (Eulogy) He bought my Mom a time share back in 1983 when Club Tahoe in Incline Village was built, and I’ve got sort of a spiritual connection to that exact space.
Q: What makes it spiritual?
J: A lot of memories. For example, my Grandpa lit the porch on fire one year. You can still see where the hole was, they just kind of covered it up with a semi-reasonable piece of wood. It’s been painted over a thousand times, but, I know what it was, I was there. (Laughs) But actually, that little section of Incline is still my piece of heaven. I live a block away from Club Tahoe now. That’s how much it means to me.
Q: Best of both worlds? Beach and Mountains. Which do like better and why?
J: Well, I spend nine months out of every year living in Incline Village. The rest of the time I travel throughout the US and abroad, and I pretty much call Manhattan Beach home, with the exception of Fourth of July which I spend in Incline Village.
Q: Coming from California, you must have a favorite car. What is it, and what do you drive?
J: I really like what Tesla is putting out. As soon as I can afford one, that’s what I’ll drive. But, currently, especially coming from California, I try not to drive. I have an old 1974 Honda CR125 that gets me around a bit. But, I prefer not to own a car – I guess I’ve become a little environmental friendly when it comes to getting around. And, let’s face it, In Incline Village, you really don’t need a car. And in LA, there’re plenty of ways to get around if you don’t own one, so… I don’t.
Q: If you had to choose a way to make our world a better place to live in, what would you do first?
J: I have three things I would do, and I would do them in this order: One, build a high speed electric railroad from Reno to Las Vegas…
Q: Why would you do that? And why first?
J: Well, we need to build an affordable means of transportation (other than a freeway) that can bridge our state together. And here’s the thing about it… Say Tesla built the engines and Amtrak ran the railroad. Both could profit from each other, and since Nevada and the US Government owns most of the land between here and Vegas, the state could rent the land to whomever operates the railroad. And, since Tesla is already here in Nevada, coaxing Amtrak to build the railroad and bring all of their manufacturing to the state – Well… both will make Nevada an exciting place to work, live, and… with Nevada’s film incentive (although a better one needs to be created) we can increase jobs and bolster the
economy through entertainment. Entertainment benefits everyone – and when I say entertainment, I mean all forms of it. From tourism, to gaming, to alpine sports, to sustainable adventure / eco-tourism, Nevada will end up setting the bar for how to reinvent our economy using sustainable technology that can evolve as humanities needs evolve. Starting with an electric high speed rail does that… and more.
Q: What is the second thing you would do?
J: Well, if we really want to make the world a better place, we have to focus on nuclear disarmament. We have to get all the nukes in the world… out of the world. It’s the only way we can guarantee humanities survival.
Q: How would you get rid of them?
J: Space. Space is the answer. We need to go back to the moon. And, while we’re doing that, we need to find a way to round up, and transport the world’s nuclear arsenal to someplace like the sun. In essence, the result would be militarizing a certain portion of our space program, but, basically, it would help us divert money usually spent on the creation of weapons and use it to push our boundaries in space – that is, better spacecraft, faster spaceships, development of cargo ships, creation of more jobs, building better relations and regulations with other nations to get the job done. And really, space is the third thing I would work on – but, basically, getting rid of all nuclear weapons would be a number one priority for me… It’s the only war that would be worth fighting for – at least for me.
Q: What is your stance on war?
J: I would never purposely invade a country. Nor would I allow America to be invaded. But, we have several non-lethal methods of persuasion at our disposal that are neither diplomatic nor invasive militarily.
Q: If someone were to tell you that they would never give up their nuclear arsenal, how would you persuade them to change their mind if no military action was taken?
J: The military should always be ready to do their job, but, there are ways to utilize them without invading a country. Regardless, I won’t get into the specifics of that should I have to use those tactics and they become a national security policy of some kind in the future.
Q: If you’re elected to the US Senate, what would you do to make an impact?
J: Watch, learn, develop, and apply. Watch what’s going on (how incumbents do what they do), learn from them, and by doing, develop my own technique to represent my constituents in the best way possible, and motivate my team to apply the technique to whatever issues are at hand. I also rely heavily on the advice of experts in whatever field needs attention. Nevertheless, I would ultimately make the best decisions I could using all of the resources available to me.
Q: What would your national security policy be if you were able to institute one?
J: It would be based on my philosophy which is based on Ubuntu. Step one is to meet directly with leaders of a nation that has a disagreement with the US. Sometimes, it’s just not appropriate, but, should I be able to, I would like to hear what they have to say before any military action is even remotely considered. My policy would be, and is, listen first. Then I try to determine, "what are they really saying? What are they trying to accomplish? Is it for the good of their people? Or is it a selfish
maniacal desire?" These are the starting points of interest for me. Because, sometimes, just listening provides a solution of its own. Sometimes, people just need to be heard. But, if listening isn’t the answer, talking is sometimes the best option. As a teacher, I used this tactic when listening failed. The key to talking is ensuring that the other party knows that you are not willing to hear or listen" any more. The goal is to convey the idea that you’ve made up your mind about why they are doing what they’re doing, and now, you are informing them of the consequences of their actions. So, for example, if I was dealing with a country that was unreasonable, I would politely remind them that I was not there to listen, rather, to explain what they have done, how it effects the rest of the world, provide a solution to salvage what remains of the relationship, and inform them of their remaining options. America, however, should NEVER negotiate with anyone. That said, the military option for me, will always be the last resort.
Q: Why do you say that about negotiation? Isn’t there value in negotiating with at least some nations?
J: No. If America is on the brink of deciding whether or not we should go to war, we are already past the negotiation point. There is no room left for bartering. There is only room for us to talk, and the offender to listen.
Q: Are we America’s police force then?
J: Negative. America is not the world’s police force. We are not here to clean up everyone’s mess. We need to clean up our own first.
Q: What is America’s mess?
J: Pollution, guns, employment, and more importantly. America’s education system. In fact, if we fix our education system, we can overcome most of our issues with pollution, guns and employment.
Q: what does America need to do to fix our education system?
J: Invest in vocational education.
Q: How so?
J: Well, to begin with, America needs to adopt a national education policy that works. No child left behind is a program that was developed by a Texas based group and was built upon the output of students from a high income area, and the testing system is based on those results. What we need is something that diverts students into a vocational skill set, and an academic skill set. Students who graduate from high school should still be able to get a reasonable job where they can take care of their families. Likewise, students who want to be doctors, should be able to. Vocational education and a system that flows through and stems from it, should be a national priority.
Q: What is your stance on drug use and prevention in America?
J: Drug use in America is a huge problem, but I think that it all goes back to education. The more we educate our students, the more they will achieve and get out of life. Again, going back to vocational education, give someone a job, give them hope. Give someone hope, keep them off drugs, off the streets, out of violent crimes, away from weapons that kill people.
Q: What about guns?
J: 64 million dollar question. But, we have the right to bear arms, and we should. American’s are responsible for themselves, no one should ever try to take away their rights to own a gun. I hate to use the phrase, but, until I come up with a better one, "People kill people, not guns."
Q: What about assault rifles?
J: Personally, I would never own one, but, I understand why people are interested in owning them. I would never own a hand-gun either, but, that’s just me. I’m not going to begrudge someone just because they collect, or have an interest in them. But, how they are purchased should be looked into, and we should, again, go back to education. I remember how valuable my Hunter Safety course in California was. We are after all, life-long learners, perhaps we can learn a little more about what the effects and proper use of assault rifles are. My guess, education will always make a difference.
Q: What about federal regulation?
J: I own three guns. All of which I inherited from my father and grandfather. I think that regulation of guns particularly of assault rifles is absolutely necessary, and tougher regulations may need to be in place, but, in order to change our current policies, we have to change our attitude, and changing the social attitude is a tough thing to do. Nevertheless, I’d work hard on making it right for gun owners, buyers, manufacturers, and law enforcement. What "right" is, I’d have to look deeply into as I’m neither an advocate of guns, nor an opponent. I see their value, the value in our right to have them, and I see more value in educating the public about the positives and negatives of the entire subject. Again, I’ll divert my answer to changing our education system.
Q: How do you view the world politically?
J: Basically, the world is divided. I see a need for bridging the gap between our world views, and I’m doing everything I can to help deregulate where it’s possible, regulate when a problem needs to be addressed, and find a way – or ways - to grow positively, grow individually, and expand our collective consciousness to ensure that all views from all sides are heard, understood, and accepted as perhaps not our own way, but that someone else’s way may work for them. We are a collective of individuals. Individuals that are connected through the symbiotic relationship that we all share with mother Earth, the universe, and each other.
Q: How would you bridge the gap?
J: We need to take a long hard look at what our differences are. And, in the theaters of war we are already involved with, we need to take a closer look at what our opponents are trying to accomplish. I have to go back to the idea and concept of understanding. Understanding why we can’t see eye to eye. Knowledge is more powerful that any oil field. Understanding is 80% of healing. And healing is where it’s at for me. I want the world to heal. And I believe that the world can heal through knowledge of each other, understanding of each other’s needs, and finding a solution to help each other. This I think we can do peacefully, with compassion for each other, and through a common need. And our common need to is not only to exist side by side, but to extend an agreement of mutual equality into our political arenas, our theaters of war, and in our economic goals. In the world that I want to be a part of, there is no such thing as war. In the world that I want my children to be a part of there are no differences between skin color, hair, color, or where we live in the world. In the world that I want my grandchildren
to live in, there are social barriers, our images of inequality. In the world that I believe we all can achieve, there are no boundaries, no obstacles, no differences between me and you. Instead, the world I believe in is built on individuals that compose a collective. Through our collective consciousness, we can and will realize that working together, we can accomplish any task. To illustrate my point more clearly: Someone once asked me how 50 people can make a difference when standing among a million… I answered, "Speak loudly with one clear voice." It’s the I in US that makes the difference. And the I is YOU.
Q: What is the "collective?"
J: I, you, me, us, everyone. We are the collective. And… together, each one of us makes a difference. No one person can change the world. It takes all of us.
Recorded by: NNS ©2014 jDean16.com