egon1984 solved it!!
Thank you!!! You are the only one who had the answer! After a recent Mac update, the supposed-to-be invisible "mach_kernal" was showing right in the root of my hard drive. I stupidly deleted it. That's why the latest Flash update wouldn't install!
To restore mach_kernal from TimeMachine, you need to make hidden files visible in Finder (and thereby Time Machine), like this:
defaults write com.apple.finder AppleShowAllFiles TRUE
Now go to Time Machine and go back to a date when you still had that file "mach_kernel" and restore it.
Now go back to terminal to return Finder to its normal state:
defaults write com.apple.finder AppleShowAllFiles FALSE
A user deleting a NECESSARY OS file is NOT (repeat: NOT) an Adobe problem. I've seen about a hundred people post in the Apple Forums this week that they did the EXACT same thing: deleted the Mach Kernel file, and it screwed up their entire OS. Apple f'ed up their 10.8.5 update to allow it to be visible, but that doesn't place ANY burden on anyone here.
Kinda reminds me of my earliest days at AOL when people would call in because they deleted "rundll32" from their Windows 98 and then couldn't reboot.
I hope everyone has learned, "If you DON'T KNOW what it does, leave it alone till you've researched it"
Your fix is USELESS to people who DON'T have a time machine, you know that... right?