DEEP STATE vs. DEEP CLEAN

Trump’s Obsessions Obfuscate Reality

Some students at a Georgia school recently tested positive for COVID. When the school board announced they were sending all the kids home and would be doing what they called a “deep cleaning” of the building, I laughed.

I know you must be wondering how the hell I found humor in that news, but I did. You see, buildings don’t carry the virus, people do. Oh sure, they say that the germs on certain surfaces stay active for a time, but how long and how much still seems to be a mystery.

In the article I read there was no mention of testing all the students before they come back to the cleaned school. Why? The article didn’t say there would be contact tracing of the students who tested positive. In three days, after the school gets all nice and clean, the kids will come back and get temperature checks. Really? If any are asymptomatic, they won’t be running hot, making re-infection a true possibility.

President Donald Trump has no knowledge of about how all this virus stuff works, and worse, doesn’t he doesn’t follow the guidelines of the experts. He believes in a deep state and doesn’t know what a deep clean is. He’s the worst possible person to be in charge right now.

Trump keeps demanding the schools to open and says that student athletes, who have “worked so hard,” should be allowed to play. Okay, we get it. TV contracts for College football produce millions of dollars. In fact, according to the NCAA governing body, at 1,100 NCAA schools more than $18 billion was spent on athletics in 2018. Of that figure, $3.5 billion went toward financial aid for student athletes and $3.4 billion was spent on coaches’ compensation. Wow, I guess they can pay the coaches a lot of money because the student athletes don’t get paid, but that’s for another post.

I was recuperating from a hospital stay when the global pandemic started. I focused on my own health after a routine procedure. Once I got back on my feet I had to sit down and stay in because of COVID-19. Since I was interested in making sure a few family members and friends were up to date on the virus, I would get up early every morning and cut and paste data from many websites into a newsletter. As the virus got worse, my daily reports got longer and longer and took more time to compose. I wasn’t claiming to know anything; I was just mining data and then regurgitating it. The daily dose of data gave me a sense of purpose. Oh, yeah, the mailing list grew.

Then I had an epiphany.

First, let’s take some stuff apart. We have a virus. We don’t have a cure or a vaccine. If we did, I would still be sleeping. Next, we have huge numbers of people who have been infected. No offense to the more than 154,000 people who have died but being infected is not always a death sentence. Only 3.2% of those we know had the virus died as a result. In a country with 330 million people that could mean that ten million people could die before we get a vaccine. Now do I have your attention?

Just like contracting HIV/AIDS does not surely lead to death, getting COVID-19 doesn’t mean certain death. HIV/AIDS has been in the US for 40 years. We’ve been working on a vaccine, but we STILL DO NOT HAVE ONE and, take a gulp, we might not see a COVID-19 vaccine in our lifetime.

We have cases of COVID all over the place and the testing of people is going to slow down. WHY? Because of political bullshit, money and time reasons. Who wants to sit in a car queued up in a six-hour line for a test? On top of that, results are so slow some might have to be reminded why the health department is calling.

We can no longer look at CASES and see them as bad things. Yes, a positive test can lead to symptoms and maybe then you have to go to the hospital. I don’t want to sound goofy, but that is called HOSPITALIZATION. If you then cannot defend yourself against the virus it usually leads to DEATH. That’s the bad part.

Then, it hit me like a ton of bricks. Would someone please pick up the bricks, they are blocking the driveway. Why are we focusing on cases? We know that a certain percentage of reasonably active people are going to get the virus. Focus on this: The US has 4% of the world’s population but 25% of its coronavirus cases. If we are so rich and smart and we’ve already been made so GREAT AGAIN, how did this happen?

Let me share a conversation. One of my neighbors causally stated, “Well, no one has died from taking hydroxychloroquine.” and of course, my knee jerk, with the emphasis on jerk, comeback was, “That’s not true.” Here’s what well known FDA cardiologists have stated about the dangers of that drug, “These adverse events included QT interval prolongation, ventricular tachycardia and ventricular fibrillation, and in some cases death. The FDA also said patients who have other health issues, such as heart or kidney disease, are at increased risk of these heart problems when receiving these medicines.”

The only reason we keep talking about this “Fake News” is because Trump is an idiot. Why does he say things without researching them? Because he’s an idiot; did I mention that?

We need to stop focusing on CASES. We should study HOSPITALIZATIONS, INTENSIVE CARE UNIT BEDS, VENTILATORS in use, and DEATH caused by COVID-19. Why are we trying to measure a viral spread by some state health department’s incompetent testing? I am totally convinced that Kansas and West Virginia aren’t even trying.

As Bruce Springsteen once sang, “Someday we’ll look back on this and it will all seem funny.” We simply don’t know what we are doing. They didn’t know what to do in 1918 and they had two waves of a virus that killed 50 million worldwide and about 675,000 Americans. We just don’t get it. So, ride your motorcycles and gather. Hopefully, your kids can get some good money for those old hand-me-down Harley’s.

You know, with the sweep of a magic wand this will all magically go away, said the man who claimed that the virus was so bad in 1917 it caused the end of World War II. Wrong year, wrong war, wrong President!

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SHUT UP AND GO AWAY

Obvious Need for Leadership in America

Why do I keep writing about Donald John Trump? Because we all must remember the reckless things he says, his terrible policies and his dangerous advice. It’s not two personalities, it’s one messed up, crazy, senile old man’s views of the world and our country. He’s not testing democratic ideals; he is assessing how dumb the 30% of his loyal followers are. Seriously, let’s focus on the Sunday morning developments.

According to CBS News, “Dr. Fauci explained why the US has continued to see a surge in cases while European countries have seen a sharp decrease. He says most European countries shut their economy by 95%, while the US throttled back its economy by only 50%.” We all know that to be true, but the orange minister of lies – DONALD TRUMP –tweeted this propaganda, “Wrong! We have more cases because we have tested far more than any other country, 60,000,000. If we tested less, there would be less cases. How did Italy, France & Spain do? Now Europe sadly has flare ups. Most of our governors worked hard & smart. We will come back STRONG!”

Did you ever argue with someone whose final gasp before admitting defeat was, “Well you have your opinion and I have mine,” or the more demonstrative, “I guess we simply must agree to not agree.” In my former debate classes, students scored points and those scores determined who won the argument. It might seem ridiculous to even try, but I feel compelled to take a stab at it. Here goes.

First, places like Italy, France and Spain did their quarantines better than the United States and there’s one big reason why. They used Federal orders and laws to direct and manage their shutdowns. While we waited for clear orders from the White House, we had 52 different ways (Puerto Rico and D.C. included) of going about it. Trump praised Republican governors while throwing mud at Democratic governors. His tweets caused massive resistance to mask wearing and shut down orders in states where he said he didn’t like the governor. What a bitch.

If Trump took the time to learn the demographics of each country, he would see that Italy has a smaller youth population because of fewer births and the older Italians were hit hardest by the virus. Almost all those who died from COVID in Italy were over 55 years of age. The country was able to keep the lid on a greater spread because they ORDERED an early shut down.

Donald keeps repeating, “We have more cases because we have tested far more than any other country,” but by continually barking the new total (60 million tests completed) he fails to understand the statistics are really showing an increase in infections and deaths. It’s easy to see that our Presidential ostrich has his head in the ground. Lions and leopards are both predators of the ostrich and hyenas and wild hunting dogs will also attack an ostrich. These ostrich predators need to be extremely careful however, because an adult ostrich can deliver a powerful kick with its strong legs! The kick in the face to the American public is the reality that Trump cares more about himself and the coming election than how many people die from COVID-19. He understands neither medicine nor science and he will never take this pandemic seriously unless he gets the virus.

Doesn’t Trump realize that by trying to discredit and malign the virus experts, he’s pushing moderate Republicans away? His erratic behavior is starting to make some right-wing Congresspeople nervous. According to CNN Politics, “That means big trouble for the GOP attempt to hold seats in states where Biden leads such as Arizona, Colorado, Maine and North Carolina. The nonpartisan Cook Political Report recently pronounced Democrats favored to achieve the net gain of at least three seats they need to gain the majority if Biden wins or four if the President is re-elected.”

If Trump believes that STOPPING ALL TESTING would make the virus go away, then why doesn’t he sign an executive order to cease all testing of COVID? Surely, that would help the professional sports leagues. They would all blindly play until each of them dropped. With an order to end the testing, all the schools could open with each state ordering body bags for kids and teachers. Ending testing could prevent the deaths of people, you know, like Herman Cain. A great follow-up to his stop testing order would be a swing-state rally each day. He could make them mask-free and pack together oodles of people. I’m kidding, of course.

As Donald Trump said, “Wrong!” Yes, it would be wrong to end testing, but I’m sure some people would say that is exactly what he should do. No thinking person in America falls for the “if we didn’t test…” myth. While we learned that Florida has more than 7,000 deaths from COVID-19 and the US has topped 155,000 deaths, the 45th President of the United States traveled to his Virginia property to play golf. He does that a lot. In fact, out of the 1,291 days that Trump has been in office he played golf on 283 of them. Wow, 21% of his presidential life is dedicated to golf, not fighting the virus.

Of course, the President deserves to get out there and “exercise” a bit, but while Congress was deadlocked on another relief bill to help those losing unemployment benefits, Donald was driving a golf cart while not wearing a mask. He didn’t wear a mask when he met with sheriffs in Georgia and one of them tested positive for the virus the same day. What a foolish dolt.

Several TV pundits have suggested President Trump has given up the fight against the virus. Trump lies in our faces by saying he has a great relationship with Dr. Anthony Fauci. Back in May, the good doctor said to Science magazine, “the appropriate people speak to Trump and explain how to be careful about this and don’t say that. But I can’t jump in front of the microphone and push him down. OK, he said it. Let’s try and get it corrected for the next time.” Nothing has changed in three months. Trump is saying the wrong things, giving out bad advice and opinions and making the global pandemic worse. Yeah, I guess Fauci, Birx, Redfield, Azar and Adams should have jumped to the microphone and shouted that what Trump was saying was NOT TRUE and SHOULD NOT BE DONE, but as I say to Maine’s Susan Collins, you had your chance to do the right thing and now it’s too late.

The depressing part of all this is that Trump bragged early on that if we kept the death count under 100,000 it would indicate the Administration has done a really good job. I even heard him say, “We’ve done a fabulous job with the virus!” the other day. WOW! Well, he pulled the 100,000 number out of his fat ass, and if he truly was a big, old ostrich that is where he would stick his own head. That would shut him up.

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WHAT DID WE EXPECT?

The Trump Train Crashes, Again

I hate writing about Donald Trump. I wake up every day and I consume a healthy amount of news articles, posts and pontifications. Ever since I was a newspaper delivery boy in Pittsburgh sixty years ago, I’ve read about our government every day. I know that lunatics usually attract other lunatics to their camp, and when such a group decides to act on a rumor, conspiracy or lie, bad things happen. As we all know, the government is not always on the side of truth or its citizens. Small-minded people in power usually protect themselves at any cost, even if they must lie.

America is being beaten into submission by a global pandemic and many of our leaders either ignore the facts or, unbelievably, pass along false information. Donald John Trump has no idea what he’s talking about, especially when on matters of medical science and COVID-19. Why do they let him talk and who is the “they” in this equation? He cannot accept the fact that he could be wrong about anything. It amazes me that he will likely kill more people with his ongoing, ruthless promotion of an unproven drug. We have 63 million doses of hydroxychloroquine sitting in the national stockpile. The FDA says we shouldn’t use the drug to treat the coronavirus, while Trump continues pitching it The President says he treated himself with hydroxychloroquine, but no doctor has verified that claim. I wonder who in the administration owns stock in the manufacturers of this treatment?

Could Trump be so focused on his early commitment to this malaria drug that he’s trying to get doctors to treat COVID patients with it simply to justify his decision? Did you notice that the Donald retweeted a total WHACK JOB DOCTOR and claimed that she was creditable when he doesn’t know anything about her? It’s par for the man’s course of non-action. He’s an ineffective fool and needs to be removed from the process of fighting the virus.

At least the stupid tweets of Donald Trump Jr. got him off Twitter for twelve hours. I’ve been there, done that, have the T-shirt and can only hope he will get banned for life, like I did. Twitter claimed that I was, wait for it, “interrupting conversations” and “manipulating multiple accounts” to increase my trends. Isn’t that what the Trump family does? But let’s get back to the real problem, the obese, old man.

The big orange pumpkin is trying to get people to NOT WEAR MASKS, take a drug that could kill them and strong arm local boards to reopen their schools, now! He ignores the science, research and medical realities. He’s like Napoleon going to Waterloo and worrying more about getting the presidential suite at the Ritz Carlton than fortifying his army for the big battle. Trump has met his Waterloo, and it’s a tiny, silent, invisible virus.

Witch Doctor to Trust?

Trump and the media have been tricked into giving a crazy Houston doctor, an immigrant from Cameroon who has practiced medicine in New York at the Bronx-Lebanon Hospital Center, too much press and power. Her name is Stella Gwandiku-Ambe Immanuel, and when not practicing at her small clinic in a strip mall she preaches at her church in the parking lot. While saying that the devil has a hand in masturbation, she also claims that scientists are taking alien DNA and producing a vaccine that will make people abandon their religions. This is more than a distraction; it’s a travesty.

And this just in from one of our readers, quoting Sean Hamill of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “An infamous nursing home in Beaver County (north of Pittsburgh) where so many residents died was administering hydroxychloroquine and zinc with permission from the state department of health. They were supposed to get permission from the patients, or at least, the patients’ guardians, but they didn’t bother with that nicety.” These people should go to jail, and the person who encouraged this witchcraft should be in there with them.

The worst part of the President’s little press briefing yesterday was his stupid denial that there is no disagreement or conflict with the COVID task force. Trump keeps saying that he and Dr. Anthony Fauci get along, but then he maligns him. He says the same thing about Kim Jong-Un, President Xi and Putin. What a dolt! My mouth fell open when he riffed about how Fauci’s poll numbers were so much better than his and couldn’t understand why. He claimed that people don’t like him because of his personality. Poor baby.

To end my pile of steaming anger today I say that Trump’s personality is bothersome and annoying. He overuses the word “strongly” and often applies it incorrectly. I wonder if he ever studied the English language. When he talks about the horribly bad deaths of 151,000 Americans, he uses the word, “tremendous.” Now we know that word means a “great or large amount,” but it also means “extremely good or impressive and excellent.” Connotatively, one might think that Trump believes something that is bad is actually good. He’s full of what I call “hamburger helper” words that don’t add meaning and many times imply the opposite of what he’s trying to communicate. What did we possibly expect would happen? TRUMP IS AN IDIOT AND WE NEED TO BE RID OF HIM!

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HYBRID EDUCATION

DeVos & Trump Need More Facts

Healthy people often have an unaware viewpoint on illness, but that doesn’t stop them from getting COVID-19. Professional baseball player Freddie Freeman was surprised when he became infected with COVID-19. His wife commented, “Freddie never gets sick.” After three days of fever, which topped off at 104.5F, he survived and rested himself back into health and back to the field this weekend. He’s lucky.

Freddie Freeman

When I heard that the mask-free, national political convention scheduled for late August in Jacksonville, Florida was canceled by President Trump, I asked about the inconsistencies. The aspirational bullshit that Trump pumps out of his small pie-hole confuses and divides people. If it’s not safe to have a convention, then how could it possibly be harmless to send kids back to school? United States Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos is either dumb or she’s under the spell of Trump’s insanity. She’s not worthy of her lofty position in America.

Many former Trump administrators have told us that our great orange president does not read. His press secretary claims that the Donald can read, but most people have been successful convincing him with pictures (Syrian use of chemical weapons) or videos (Caravans in Mexico). Yes, a picture is worth a thousand words, but the words are where one finds facts, figures and nuances. Trump is NOT into those things.

In my newest book How To Hire Great People, I point out that human beings learn in three different ways. Some folks learn by reading the instructions and studying the how. Others learn by working with a mentor who performs and teaches the task. Then there are those who jump in blindly trying to master the task on their own. The first two are more reasonable. We wouldn’t want airplane pilots or nuclear power plant workers to use the third method. I have always been around educators and have several in the family. My mother was a secretary at my hometown elementary school. I was always put in the third reading group in school because of how slowly I read. I loved reading but speed wasn’t the issue, it was comprehension.

I never did well with mathematics scholastic testing during the 1950s and 60s, but I always scored highly in “abstract thought.” I assumed that meant I was a good daydreamer and storyteller. If only we could understand how to better teach students with specific talents, we might have happier pupils and a more productive educational system.

Betsy DeVos

We turned to home schooling and online learning when the coronavirus pandemic hit America. Some of those programs worked, but those students without an internet connection and computer were left behind. Witch of Education DeVos thinks that giving families money to pay private schools to take their kids back is a workable plan, but that would do NOTHING for all the kids. She’s a disgraceful, rich, privileged disregarder who doesn’t understand children. None of her kids attended public school, she was never a member of a PTA group and I am sure she doesn’t understand the term, “hybrid education.” While she and her husband were conning housewives into an almost-pyramid scheme at Amway, educational budgets were cut to the bone.

Trump wants to reopen schools only because his advisors tell him that parents cannot go back to work if their kids are at home every day. That point is true, but at what cost? Donny and Betsy have not considered the health of teachers, administrators, cafeteria workers, bus drivers, security guards and the many volunteers working in schools every day. Their focus is on the kids and an imaginary armor against disease. The unproven statement that kids do not spread the virus as much as adults is as disingenuous as the statement, “Anyone who wants a test can get a test.” It was a lie when Trump said it months ago, and it is still a lie.

I am amazed that this country, which litigated and decided it’s okay to home school our kids, is mandating our students back into classrooms right now! What most parents would like is a hybrid educational plan, so that families can remain safe while advancing their children’s learning. After throwing money to large corporations and cunning small businesses, America has failed the need for education. We didn’t calculate the cost of mitigation for each school. When Trump said the CDC plan to open the schools was too expensive and too difficult to execute, he was being a bully and a supreme asshole. Why shouldn’t we spend money on our kids?

The final straw for me was the advice the CDC promoted after the spanking from our President. After Donald Trump is voted out or leaves office on his own, we should blow up the CDC, Homeland Security and Border Protection services and start all over. When Betsy DeVos is gone, we should invest in a research project to classify students who can learn with online material, who can be taught by reading and who can absorb from experience. We need to revamp our educational systems and funnel tax dollars into methods that work. Screw the notion of choice, it’s just another means of segregation. How much money are we giving to private charter schools and do they make better students? Most importantly, we MUST have an educator run the Department of Education. No more broke-brain donors with wrinkled dumb looks and no answers.

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THE BOLTON BOOK

For those too busy to read

Most people have one of two viewpoints on John Bolton. Some see him for what he is, an intelligent neoconservative (neocon) while others view him as a self-serving public servant who decided that he knew better than Donald Trump. According to his book, The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir this Bolton curmudgeon is always right and has the power to back sell. In diplomatic terms, his righteousness attempts more to impress and less to illuminate. That being said, there is value in reading this book. For those on the left, it reinforces all the previous memoirs and hatchet jobs. For those who follow the neocon religion, you will see that Bolton is just as recalcitrant as Trump. If you call anyone who confronts President Trump’s petulance and lies a traitor, you will only get steamed.

One of the best quotes in the book is Bolton’s reaction to the way Trump typically handled communication. Bolton said, “As was often the case, Trump had truth mixed with misunderstanding and malice.” One of the low points in the tome is Bolton’s defense of his statement that we should employ the “Libyan model” when dealing with North Korea and Kim Jung-Un. In fact, after Muammar al-Gaddafi got rid of his nuclear capabilities the Arab summer came. The two have nothing to do with each other, but in the latter Gaddafi was run out of office, captured by a mob and murdered on a road. Bolton uses the Latin “post hoc, ergo propter hoc,” which means after this, therefore, because of this. The use of Latin throughout the book is a literary trick. He inserts arcane words and phrases to stamp his IQ on the text rather than aiming for effective and understandable writing.

Throughout his book, Bolton posits an incredulous vision of the past. Of course, the supreme leader in North Korea heard the phrase “Libyan model” and assumed that America was going to take away his bombs, overthrow him, then kill him and unite the peninsula. The walk-back in the book is flimsy.

Bolton clearly highlights one of Trump’s worst habits, not listening. Certainly, one can keep their mouth shut while not listening, but Bolton points out a different situation with Trump. When someone starts talking, the “leader of the free world” rudely interrupts and filibusters until everyone submits to his will and parrots his opinions. Bolton claims his role was keeping Trump from disastrous actions. He also shares his harsh criticism of the Trump term, “My Generals.” It can best be said that Bolton had a pure Napoleonic complex and viewed himself as “protecting” the nation from an ill-prepared president.

John Bolton’s book is noticeably big. Its 592 pages seem to cover every event that happened while John Bolton was Trump’s “Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs.” Hmmm, his title is just about as long as the book. It’s written in diary style and follows the timeline of the way events unfolded. Don’t expect any descriptive passages based on visual observation. The book mostly focuses on the dialogs of its main characters.

Caution, in its initial release this book has many semi-typos. This is probably the result of too many hands touching the work. The White House wanted much of it to be redacted because they said it contained extremely sensitive, classified information. That’s doubtful. I think they were concerned about how the book’s details make Trump look bad.

Most of the book covers what Trump said, and how he handled leaders around the world. Those accounts are embarrassing not only to Trump, but to all of us. We elected an idiot. Trump’s lack of discipline with and execution of the duties of his office is stunningly glaring in this book. I came away from each chapter thinking the 45th President is so misinformed that he’s dangerous.

Who should read this book? The person who first comes to mind is Donald Trump. It’s John Bolton’s big reveal of all those times he didn’t speak truth to Trump’s face and the information he didn’t share with the oversight committees in Congress. If only Trump could read, perhaps he could begin to understand how people feel about him. Of course, it would hurt his feelings, but at this point who gives a damn?

A legal specialist might suggest that much of what is in Bolton’s book is hearsay, but at least he has conveyed those things he “thought” and “witnessed.” It would have been so much better had Bolton testified during the Impeachment Trial. Those involved in supporting Trump during that debacle should study this book and then ask themselves, “Why am I supporting our imbecile president?”

I highly recommend this book to any young person who is thinking about going into government, law or politics. It clearly expresses not only how governance should NOT be conducted, but how things SHOULD work in our Executive Branch. What I took away from this book is that Bolton believes Presidents George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush and Barack Obama are not as smart as he is. Each of his opinions is highly filtered through his own ideological prism. While at times he can be objective, his sense of humor is sarcastic and heavily dosed with ad hominem.

There are some descriptions in Bolton’s book that make me question if he wrote the opposite of what he believes or was just being sarcastic. Most of the time my conclusion was the latter, but anyone could easily misunderstand his position. I have an impression that John Bolton is just as recalcitrant as his former boss. He’s also a “save his own ass-type” with a lengthy chapter on Venezuela, which is Trump’s and Bolton’s personal “bay of pigs” embarrassment. Bolton blames everyone else for the failures, just like Trump blames Bolton.  Bolton admits that he combined the pandemic healthcare group with the biological warfare group, claiming that made them more efficient. He says they did their job on the COVID-19 case but that the real problem was the empty seat behind the resolute desk in the Oval Office, a clear attempt at his own vindication.

Now that we have psychological details about Trump’s life in the new book by his niece, Mary L. Trump, Bolton’s tome will be pushed aside and slowly dropped from news coverage. For a true news freak and political junky like me, Mary L. Trump’s book is amazing. A person trying to figure out who to vote for in November will view the book’s content through their own filters and prejudices.

If you want to save your money, you could wait until Bolton’s book arrives at your public library, if it is still open during the pandemic. To me, John Bolton has confirmed what all others have said before. When your critics think you are bad at what you do, and everyone who once worked for you thinks you are stupid or foolish, what more do we need to know? Many who have any sort of conversation with Donald Trump feel that he doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Bolton’s book simply confirms this.

Bolton says he won’t vote for Trump or Biden in November. Although Bolton wants us to think he’s some great “patriot,” he will waste his vote on someone else, like a “Bernie-bro.” I had no respect for John Bolton before I read his book and that hasn’t changed. He’s just another person who was tormented in his youth, spent his life being a good student with an excellent IQ and worked over and over to prove himself. He may be getting back at those who scorned his intellect, but he is in no way helping America. He’s helping John Bolton. At best, the book is a B-minus. It has some pictures at then end, but still, Trump will never read it.

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs: If you only read one chapter of this book, try “Take a Knee for America” and think about our never-ending conflicts between minorities and the police. I’m not asking you to take a stand but having a deep and honest conversation about why some people think the way they do would be productive. This is a book for the moment which seeks to start a conservation about peace. And if you are worried about social media, you really should check out the chapter called “Social Media Menace.”

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BULLETS TO BALLOTS TO BOYCOTTS

The New Trump America, Ugly, Cruel & Vindictive

From America’s very beginning, there have always been complaints and grievances about many of our ways. It makes sense. Some people left Europe because of religious persecution and threats. The Amish were jailed and killed for not baptizing their children until they reached late teens. The Catholics were harassed by the Church of England. The Irish ran out of potatoes, complaining so much while making their way to America for the French fries. Seriously, we were against many things over there and we came over here to get away from things bad or unjust.

Once we arrived on these shores, King George III became our complaint target. He was exploiting us at every turn. The biggest break came when England tried to take land away from those early Americans who used guns and bullets to end their indentured servitude. Those settlers never considered they were doing the same thing to African Americans, but that’s another story. The fact that our founding fathers gave only white landowners the right to vote was terrible, but at least ballots replaced bullets in decision making.

All people want to have equal rights and equal voices. As one historian recently said, “The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution weren’t perfect, but the language was so well chosen, one could use the words to demand more.” First, we freed the slaves, then we gave African American men the right to vote and, finally, we gave all women the right to vote. We always want more, such as eliminating discrimination and poll taxes, but we have achieved neither. To this day, a vast conspiracy of voter suppression is still happening in our country. We have stupid tricks like gerrymandering which distort voter choices.

We all have a right to protest and peacefully air our grievances. It’s in the First Amendment, which says nothing about looting, burning and bullets. Still, we are allowed to speak our minds. Some even yell at others for wearing a mask to help rid us of a virus, but that too is protected speech. Not wearing a mask is a dumb idea but speaking against doing so is protected.

The other day, a woman asked me about the phrase “cancel culture.” It’s a popular term that refers to a form of boycott after a person has spoken or acted in a questionable way. If the person is a celebrity, they have much they could lose, but when there is nothing of value to take away from someone’s stupid remarks, all you can do is besmirch their reputation. If a former but now cashless Hollywood star posts a rash remark on Twitter, they may be discredited instantly, dashing any chance of a comeback career.

The CEO of Goya Foods, Robert Unanue, visited the White House and said, “We are all truly blessed at the same time to have a leader like President Trump, who is a builder.” The heir and leader of the Goya empire continued, “And that’s what my grandfather did: He came to this country to build, to grow, to prosper.” Of course, people of all races and origins took to social media to launch the #Goyaway and the #BoycottGoya hashtags intending to hurt the company. I have a hunch those efforts will be successful.

Now as much I try not to quote anything from unlucky sperm Don Jr., this one fits nicely into the discussion, “The leftist mob wants to cancel one of the largest Hispanic-owned companies in America because they recognize that the president has shown great leadership.”

Let me add some perspective. The Unanue family owns the Goya company and the brand is worth $1.1 billion. As legend goes, their grandfather moved from Spain to Puerto Rico with only one dollar in his pocket. He then moved to New York and started the Goya company. Robert Unanue may see similarities between his family and the Trumps, but maybe he should have tempered his praise and questioned why Mexicans are rapists and why kids from that country were put in cages. Before becoming a poster boy for the “Cancel Culture” of America, perhaps Mr. Unanue could have asked President Donald John Trump what he was doing to curtail the damage COVID-19 is doing to the Hispanic communities of his country.

Criminal First Daughter

But getting back to beans, this just in. The president’s advisor and part-time daughter decided to come to the aid of the Goya company and Mr. Unanue by tweeting what was a blatant endorsement to her many followers on the social media platform. This is a violation of law. To be exact, according to the Justice Department, “an employee may not use his public office for his own private gain or for that of persons or organizations with which he is associated personally. An employee’s position or title should not be used to coerce; to endorse any product, service or enterprise; or to give the appearance of governmental sanction.” She should resign today.

What I would like to ask Robert Unanue is whether Goya took PPP money. We should know if they did. Can anyone find out? This might be just another Trump quid-pro-quo, with the bean maker risking his reputation for a fistful of dollars.

Some sponsors are pulling their advertising from Facebook because of that company’s lack of control over political ads and hatred. The sponsors feel that Facebook has created a negative environment for their ads. Some companies have cancelled their ads on Fox News’ Tucker Carlson show. If you want to help in the effort to get a TV show canceled, just find a way to convince the sponsors to retreat.

My theory on all this boycott, cancel culture, putdown stuff is that it comes partly from Trump but also from peoples’ desire to have a say in things. Yes, you can use your ballot, but it’s obvious that great results often don’t follow. Politicians are incredibly flawed and often don’t operate in office the way they said they would when campaigning. Other times we must choose between equally unworthy candidates. My home state is Florida, and I had to choose between an ill-equipped zealot without a brain and a loquacious smooth operator with a recently disclosed addiction problem. The guy without the brain won.

So, yes, we want to cancel things and people. If we could recall the Governor of Florida right now, we would. If we could replace Governor DeSantis with Nikki Fried, the Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Services, we would be far better off, but that won’t happen. It’s hard to boycott a Governor, but you it’s great that we can heckle him at a press conference, which is what happened yesterday. I applaud that guy but wonder how in hell he got in there. By the way, the COVID crisis in Florida is real and is being handled ineptly by the guy without a brain.

We don’t need to use bullets and we must wait too long or get poor results when using ballots. For now, let’s use our voices to protest the fools who claim to know best but are doing the worst. Should they be sponsored in any way, boycott whatever it is they are selling.

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs: If you only read one chapter of this book, try “Take a Knee for America” and think about our never-ending conflicts between minorities and the police. I’m not asking you to take a stand but having a deep and honest conversation about why some people think the way they do would be productive. This is a book for the moment which seeks to start a conservation about peace. And if you are worried about social media, you really should check out the chapter called “Social Media Menace.”

Get the Kindle Version HERE. Or order your paperback edition HERE.


SCHOOL’S OUT FOREVER!

Trump’s Classroom Conundrum

I could open today’s post with a wise crack about the commander in chief not knowing the meaning of the word, “conundrum,” but I won’t. We are at a fork in the road with two possible routes, and both are challenging.

Our kids have been out of school for more than five months. Some districts and families created robust, online programs to keep the students up to speed, but no one would argue that non-teacher interactions are better than real schools. Most children would also agree because they want to see their friends and learn. Yes, once a kid gets into the discovery mode they want more.

In my recent book, Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs – A Collection of Essays on America, I included two chapters that focused on education in America, 165 Doors and Charter Vs. Public. Public schools are both taxpayer-funded and managed by an array of political people and structures, which can keep a good district down. While teachers’ unions and bargaining agents were created to get teachers better deals, some believe their draconian rule making interferes with community budget planning and any contraction attempts. Our future has always depended on education of the next generation and no one wants to go backwards.

I can’t imagine many mothers and fathers returning to work without the publicly funded babysitter program. Sorry, but that is what some people call it. However, I am sure we all can agree that getting our offspring back to school will make America better. The person who inflicts the most damage to American schools is not Donald Trump. It’s his Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, who is a totally unqualified Republican donor promoting a 21st century segregation scheme under the cloak of “vouchers” and “school choice.” By funding religious and private schools with public money, DeVos is helping to disenfranchise those who cannot afford private education. It’s a policy that divides people from their very first day of school.

Unfortunately, people are focusing on the kids, assuming school administrators and teachers can remain safe at work. Sure, one can scrub down those facilities, but will the schools do this five times a day? Unlikely. The theory that children can deal with the virus better than adults may be the biggest flaw in a rush to get back to school. If a school infection breaks out and a student dies from COVID-19, it it will reflect very poorly on Donald Trump and Betsy DeVos. Of course, Trump will simply blame or fire DeVos for anything bad that happens.

The burden of school districts to clean the structures and test their teachers will demand more money from the federal government and state leaders. Keeping kids safe and smart is paramount. Because the President of the United States has diabolically made the global pandemic personal and political, we will never know what could have been if we had taken careful and scientific steps. We tend to go overboard in protecting our children, and the rush to open schools violates the thoughts and feelings of most parents. Some don’t even let their kids be vaccinated, so why would those same PTA members want to take such a risk? No parent wants their child to be the lab rat in a government experiment.

Most school districts take their guidance and funding of safety measures from their state, not the federal government. Yes, all schools get money from the national budget, but most school boards believe Washington doesn’t know how to run their schools. The President dictates that schools open on his command, but only teachers and administrators understand the stark implications. School districts are currently calling on their administrators to craft a plan, while teachers are seeking a strong strategy to stay safe. Teachers unions are asking important questions that I am sure have never been considered by the village idiots, Donald and Betsy. And of course, the states to open first have the highest percentages of positivity rates.

The most frustrating thing about the coronavirus is the lack of proven and reliable information. One day we are told it spreads six feet, then we are told it doesn’t stay on surfaces, then we are told it that it does stay on surfaces, for hours, then we are told that small droplets can stay in the air for a long time and infect more. Could our indoor social distancing guidelines not be based on exact science? Our slow uptake on mask wearing means we have lost an advantage in this fight. We are playing catch-up ball.

I want to ask Donald Trump why he is pressuring schools to open after saying that decision is up to the state governors? He’s been rebuked for not issuing a national order of mask-wearing and was told directly that he doesn’t have the power to make governors do his bidding. He might want to ask the local leaders what they think is best and stop being a bully.

The misinformation and lies by our President have made the pandemic worse. He forced his sycophant governors to open early, and they are paying the price. The skyrocketing number of cases, hospitalizations and deaths in Texas, Georgia, Florida and Arizona show the power of this virus and the biggest reason NOT TO OPEN SCHOOLS until we are certain it is safe to do so.

The large orange ostrich with his head in the ground needs a good swift kick in his fat ass so he can pull his head out of his partisan hole. The conundrum of reopening schools should not be a global endeavor. Each school and district are unique. Private schools, even with some sense of immunity from prosecution, will shutter their businesses rather than going through a wrongful death lawsuit, and that places the public schools directly in the crosshairs of this virus. What a terrible way to run a country.

Trump has now tweeted that those states ignoring his arbitrary demand to open their schools will lose federal funding. The Department of Education in every state should be happy they are being treated the same way Trump treats Ukraine. It’s a big, fat quid-pro-quo! Trump’s deal is simple, “You make me look good, and you get the money.” What a horrible President!

During Wednesday’s presser Dr. Robert Redfield didn’t answer the question whether he would change the latest guidelines because Trump didn’t like them. Then a minute later, the large white puppet Pence said the CDC will be revising and publishing a new guideline next week. What a dodge.

The big news out of the COVID Task Force press conference was that there has been very little, if any, testing of kids under 10 years of age. They admit they don’t know the dangers, especially with those with pre-existing conditions. This is another failure of leadership that could be a catastrophe for our kids.

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs: If you only read one chapter of this book, try “Take a Knee for America” and think about our never-ending conflicts between minorities and the police. I’m not asking you to take a stand but having a deep and honest conversation about why some people think the way they do would be productive. This is a book for the moment which seeks to start a conservation about peace. And if you are worried about social media, you really should check out the chapter called “Social Media Menace.”

Get the Kindle Version HERE. Or order your paperback edition HERE.

 


BROADWAY DARK, AMERICA DIM

Trump Has No Answers and Cannot Lead

I was deeply saddened last night when I heard that Broadway star Nick Cordero lost his battle with COVID-19. He spent three months of sheer agony and pure hell that included a leg amputation. This guy was at the top of his game and only 41 years old. There is nothing more American than Broadway entertainment, and I have never seen a show there that was anything less than the highest levels of professional production and achievement. It’s tough to make it on Broadway and we will miss Nick.

I felt a slight burn in my heart last night viewing the statistics panel on the TV news programs showing 130,000 dead Americans to the coronavirus. Why am I having this feeling now? Humans are rather protective with their emotions, but some things occasionally cut through. When a famous person gets or succumbs to COVID-19, it makes the contagion seem more real, remarkably close and nervously inevitable. I hoped the President’s tone would change after the announcement that Herman Cain and Don Jr.’s girlfriend, Kimberly Guilfoyle, tested positive for the virus. That didn’t happen, but there is still time to save some lives.

Confession here, I am reading John Bolton’s book The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir, and as I get further into the case Bolton presents I become even more deeply doubtful that Donald John Trump will, 1. Ever Change, 2. Listen to anyone else and 3. Find a reasonable way to help both the economy and the health of the American people in a way that won’t cause more harm than good. It’s not the country that is “dim;” it’s the guy running the place who has no logic lights in his brain.

I understand some of the “grievance” and “revenge politics” that pour out of Trump’s little, ill-formed puss, but all of that is getting old. Does this President genuinely believe that those stone and bronze statues represent real heroes who are more important than living people? There was another Don, Mr. Quixote, who thought windmills were out to get him. No one can think clearly if they see an enemy lurking in every shadow. Killing another windmill will not earn you knighthood, Mr. Trump. Your words and behavior make you look panic-stricken and stupid.

Donald Trump is dealing with this global pandemic the same way that Herbert Hoover handled the financial collapse in 1929. Hoover spent only one term in office and he was called the “Do nothing President” by Democrats. After Hoover was defeated, newly elected President Franklin Delano Roosevelt launched stronger policies to bring back the country. It’s history.

Trump knows the clock is ticking, yet he’s done nothing to keep people safe and achieve financial stability during this pandemic. Because of his ineptness, we were late to fight the COVID crisis and the deaths of so many Americans are all the proof you need. Let’s also not forget the surging cases in those states that opened early. That was Trump’s gamble, and he LOST.

Nick Cordero’s death comes in the middle of this crisis, not the end. Don’t trust what the Donald wants you to believe. His mouth spews only lies and political bullshit. The pandemic is serious and real.

The fact that our President is spending so much energy, time and words on Confederate monuments and his dark decree of a left-wing revolution conspiracy is profoundly unworthy of the America people. We deserve clarity and focus, but we will never get those from him. Just like his pronouncement that wearing a mask would make him look ridiculous, Trump’s obsession with protecting traitors like Jefferson Davis makes a person wonder if he has any understanding of American voters. None of them care about the Confederate flag. They are focused on their jobs, finances and families. Donald Trump is just a waste of time.

Trump’s ridiculous claim that 99% of the COVID cases “are totally harmless,” when some states are seeing as high as 16% of those tested being positive, shows what an idiot he is. Even an asymptomatic carrier can do much harm in the community. It’s called “community spread.” The President’s family has the virus and they could spread it to him. What a fool.

The future looks dim and Trump has neither a plan nor words to bring us together. Maybe we can gain some clarity from four of the greatest American songwriters, Cynthia Weil, Barry Mann, Mike Stoller and Jerry Leiber, who worked together to create one of the greatest songs of all time, On Broadway.

“They say the neon lights are bright on Broadway, They say there’s always magic in the air, But when you’re walkin’ down the street, And you ain’t had enough to eat, The glitter rubs right off and you’re nowhere…” Trump fails to understand that this “virus thing” isn’t a plot that’s after him. It’s coming for us, all of us. Donald Trump refuses to stand between the pandemic and the country.

The President says the pandemic is a Democratic conspiracy against him. Maybe he should explain to Amanda Kloots, Nick Cordero’s wife, that it was simply a “hoax” that took her husband from her. Maybe Donald can fund a scholarship for Nick and Amanda’s one-year-old son, Elvis, BUT WHAT ABOUT EVERYONE ELSE? Trump can’t show any respect for the dead and the families that will carry this pain for the rest of their lives. The man has no empathy!

The glitter has fallen off the grifter’s diminutive hands and he is nowhere. He’s the absentee president who is the primary problem of our country. He needs to get sucked out of the Oval Office, like Hoover.

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs: If you only read one chapter of this book, try “Take a Knee for America” and think about our never-ending conflicts between minorities and the police. I’m not asking you to take a stand but having a deep and honest conversation about why some people think the way they do would be productive. This is a book for the moment which seeks to start a conservation about peace. And if you are worried about social media, you really should check out the chapter called “Social Media Menace.”

Get the Kindle Version HERE. Or order your paperback edition HERE.

 


HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA

Red Racism, Blue Anger and White Power

We speak English in America, but it’s not British-Oxford English. Our speech is simply American, and the reason we have a different patois is because of a bunch of words on a piece of paper called the Declaration of Independence written in 1776. I grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, which has some strange words and arcane ways of speaking. For example, we would urge someone to clean a space by saying, “Red up the room.” It was a bastardization of the old Pennsylvania Dutch, “Make ready the room.”  Then there’s the wonderful Pittsburgh word “gumband,” better known as a rubber band.

I have been accused of saying some stupid things, and my response was always, “Hey, I’m from Pittsburgh,” which was like saying, “Don’t mind me, we are all stupid.” Perhaps that’s not the best foot forward when trying to seem like you aren’t dumb.

In Pittsburgh, Black people, or as my father called anyone of African American roots “colored people,” lived in a neighborhood called “The Hill District.” When the city was young, many Jewish merchants had shops in this section of town. As the neighborhood changed, those of the Jewish faith moved further east to a place called Squirrel Hill. Today, those neighborhoods are remarkably the same as they were when I lived there fifty years ago.

I grew up in a totally white suburban town named Brentwood, and I believe this stunted my understanding about race and America. Once I got to college, I was exposed to a whole new world. In my everyday life I was engaging with African Americans, and it was rewarding. I was never afraid or against anyone of that race, but I was not at all knowledgeable about the “black experience” in America back then. I knew we were different, but I never viewed that as limiting. I thought it was just another life lesson.

One of my good friends in college was a guy named Ron Chavis. I always enjoyed being with him and, incidentally, he was African American. Ron was probably one of my first Black friends and we have been lifelong buddies ever since. One day, I was walking past a bus stop where Ronnie was waiting for the bus. Next to him was an older white woman. We exchanged greetings and then Ron said, “Hey, brother, I want you to meet my mother.” I’m sure I must have looked surprised because I thought he was fooling around, but it was indeed his mother. My small, little 19-year old mind couldn’t comprehend that since Ronnie was a Black man, how could he have a white mother. There was my first confrontation with my own baked in racism that was seeded by ignorance. Another lesson learned.

In the early 60s, a comedian named Lenny Bruce was the first real “shock jock” of the standup stage and his act made us aware that words are just words. His liberal approach to language led to many arrests of the funny man, and his persecution was more than a complex. While he was appealing a four-month sentence for a charge of obscenity, Bruce turned to heroin, a common drug with jazz musicians and actors in that era, and that drug killed him. The charges were eventually dropped. Lenny Bruce confronted many societal norms like sex and religion. One of his favorite lines was, “Every day, people are straying away from the church and going back to God.”  I can’t imagine what Lenny would have done with the Black Lives Matter movement, but I can envision him making fun of it and urging the brothers to get guns and kill the motherfuckers.

As a 4th of July gift of sorts, I got an email that urged me to forward it to ten friends. The opening written by someone I don’t know who was trying to explain how white people are being unjustly accused of racism in America. He included the transcript of the standup routine that Michael Richards did that got him banned from show business. In case you forgot, Richards played Cosmo Kramer for eleven years on Seinfeld. The racist rant “Kramer” tried to pull off was said to be a reaction to people coming late into the venue in 2006. I believe the reason Lenny Bruce “got away with” his language was his clever, intellectual way of writing. In short, Richards is no Lenny Bruce and the old maxim should be applied here, If you go over the edge, it’s got to be really funny!

I understand when people are challenged for their beliefs and undertones of actions and language. I do not like it when an African American in power attempts to put down their workers by accusing them of “white privilege.” Now before you get your underpants in a knot, you should know the meaning of RACISM. It’s prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against a person or people based on their membership in a racial or ethnic group, typically one that is a minority or marginalized.

So, the color of your skin or membership in a group doesn’t determine how your words and actions are defined and interpreted by others. If I am antagonistic toward, say, the AMISH, I could be a racist. They are Caucasian, and I am a white man, but in this example, I would be a racist. We must learn what the words mean before we define ourselves. One person can never know what is in someone else’s heart. My mother and father didn’t believe they were racist, but they were. I did not judge their ignorance, but I strived to figure out why they thought and spoke in racist ways. Why did they teach me so much about the Bible and our fabulous democracy, but never instilled a loving attitude toward people of other cultures or ethnic groups? Maybe it was just a reflection of their parents’ beliefs.

I bristle when I hear people going overboard and reacting defensively in racial discussions, especially when the word racism bothers them. I can hear a subtle hint of white privilege in what they are saying but they don’t even realize they have a chip on their shoulder. When a white lady pulled a gun on a Black lady at a restaurant recently, the video revealed she yelled, “White people are not racists.” I laughed and thought, wow, she knows every white person in America?

I’ve lived in the south for half my life and if you asked many of my neighbors over the years, “Which race is smarter, White, Black or Asian?” Lots of these God fearing, church going folk would say, “Asians are smart.” WHY? Why would they say this about Asian Americans but not AFRICAN AMERICANS? It’s not a trick; it’s the ugliness of RACISM.

We should be all working together to cure our abundance of boiling anger and hate. Our country is 244 years old today and I love AMERICA. I love our freedoms and our system of government, even when it’s stained by partisan bullshit and lies. If you give the people the truth, they will do the right thing.

We are different. We don’t look alike, but that is not a weakness, it’s a strength. We are white, African Americans are black and ah, … what color is an Asian? If yellow popped into your head, it is dripping with the RACISM you didn’t even know you have. I am not asking you to agree with me, I am asking you to think about who you are as a person.

American greatness will be judged by what we do next, not continually justifying the sins of our past. For those who have no slaves in their family trees, you will never understand the grievances, fear and anger of those amongst us. They don’t want to look at the confederate monuments and flags. It hurts them.

Excuse my freedom of speech here, but you should fucking know what those colors really stand for in our flag. Historians say, RED symbolizes hardiness and valor (some say blood shed for our freedom), WHITE suggests our purity and innocence (newborns don’t know prejudice) and BLUE represents vigilance, perseverance and justice. And those are the only colors you need to focus on today.

HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY!

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs: If you only read one chapter of this book, try “Take a Knee for America” and think about our never-ending conflicts between minorities and the police. I’m not asking you to take a stand but having a deep and honest conversation about why some people think the way they do would be productive. This is a book for the moment which seeks to start a conservation about peace. And if you are worried about social media, you really should check out the chapter called “Social Media Menace.”

Get the Kindle Version HERE. Or order your paperback edition HERE.

 

 


COVID, COWARDS & CANARDS

The Trump Legacy: State Induced Stupidity

As we enter the fifth month of this terrible global pandemic, it’s probably a good time for some perspective. The world was introduced to its first pandemic, the Bubonic plague, in the sixth century. She never really went away, and she keeps coming back.

It took the stable geniuses back then more than a thousand years to figure out that fleas travelling on the bodies of rats on ships was the source of the disease. The disease affected the lymphatic system of humans who were bitten by an infected flea. We didn’t discover a cure for the plague until 1947, meaning it was almost 1400 years until we got a vaccine. So, are we smarter now or not?

If someone back in the sixth century knew that by killing every rat in the world, they could have saved lives, I am sure they would have done the right thing. Science constantly brings us new knowledge. The virus that brought us the plague, yersinia pestis, was recently found in archaeological digs that are more than 6,000 years old. Not all viruses or cancers are products of the here and now, sometimes they have been around for years.

There are people in America who think that if you don’t test for COVID-19 it doesn’t exist. The President doesn’t take the virus seriously because he’s never felt any pain. The folks in the sixth century weren’t that lucky. More than 25 million people died and when the “Black Death” returned two hundred years later it killed more than 50 million. I guess whoever the 1937 version of “Dr. Fauci” was, didn’t know much. There are some who believe a third of the world’s population perished when the virus came back. It was still around when William Shakespeare was born in 1564, and the plague could have killed that true genius just because the world was dumb about science.

So, here we are in today’s America. Hardly anyone believes that the global pandemic is a hoax. Many of us know someone who has been gravely, or at least incidentally, affected by COVID-19. Sadly, there are some people in powerful positions who have avoided the truth and disseminated misinformation that hurt the citizens of this country. The canards they have transmitted are just as ridiculous as what people in the fifteen-century believed. Could the Lieutenant Governor of the state of Texas be a time traveler from 550 A.D? FINALLY, the Governor of Texas, Greg Abbott, announced a protective mask mandate. Maybe someone in Texas is thinking.

Back in the day, some people thought the plague was a punishment from God, while others were quick to blame foreigners or those who followed a different religion. They believed these “bad actors” had poisoned the wells to make the plague come to life. There were those who said that bad air was responsible, while still others figured the position of the planets was the fundamental cause. Boy, that sounds like what the internet is saying about the coronavirus. When people get up before a city council and claim they will die if they wear a mask, maybe we should throw them in the river and see if they float.

This latest global pandemic has wiped out more than one half million humans on the Earth, and more than 128,000 in the United States. It’s not the bubonic plague but animals are again involved. Many believe that flying rats, or what we call bats, carried the virus and infected humans with it. Even though we know where it came from, we still must figure out how to kill it.

Head Cheerleader Donald Trump has said a vaccine is going to be here soon. That isn’t such a good bet. Just as the White House has been touting how good things are and demanding we reopen the economy, there is a report that a swine flu has reared its ugly head in China. Great, two pandemics no waiting, and the usual winter flu will soon be hitting. We already have a good idea for battling COVID-19. All we need to do is maintain social distance, wash our hands and wear masks whenever we are in public, but a lot of people ignore those suggestions.

The Lone Stranger

Politicians are afraid to demand that everyone must wear a mask. Why? Because Trump set them up. Since the beginning of this pandemic our President failed on the messaging. Trump is a coward and every one of his little puppet governors are chicken shits. Why can’t they just go on TV and sternly say, “Wear a mask for the rest of the summer so we can get this under control.” When things matter the most, Trump hits the golf course. His renunciations of expert medical advice and lack of leadership is swelling dissent on both sides. We need to get our schools open and the economy up and running, but we cannot force more virus onto the population of America while doing so. It’s obvious that those premature openings in many states, with or without Republican governors, was a bad idea. More people will die because our leaders feared Trump more than the virus.

This state induced stupidity stems from the fact that science has been Trump’s whipping boy his entire life. Logic and reason are not part of his DNA and we can prove this by examining what his kids say in public. Sadly, this gene misalignment has been inherited and it wouldn’t matter to us if Trump was NOT president. I’m not sure if the family would commit to the slogan STUPID PEOPLE MATTER, but they are halfway there.

Trump doesn’t believe in anything he hasn’t believed in from the beginning. He’s an empty man of no growth, no learning and no leadership. If Trump were the all-powerful leader during the time of the plague, he would have executed anyone suggesting that boats were bringing in the virus. He would have complained that we cannot stop commerce and trade because it would make him look bad. How many people does Orange Boy think he can kill and still get elected?

Yesterday, in a slight walk back, Trump said he has no problem wearing a mask because he thinks it makes him look like the Lone Ranger, and he likes that. Here’s the backstory of the fictional Lone Ranger. As the story goes, this former Texas Ranger’s real name was John Reid and he was the sole survivor of a group of Rangers who were thought to have been killed in ambush by a gang of bad guys. He wore a mask to conceal his identity so he could clandestinely travel through the West fighting for law and order. Trump’s version of this fantasy would definitely not include a native American sidekick, but we should endorse whatever it takes for him to reverse his anti-mask positioning. He knows HE WAS WRONG and that he hurt people.

We don’t need him to apologize, but it might help if he called all the governors and demand they mandate masks in their states. I am sure the Donald talks to himself when in his bedroom late at night and all alone. Maybe he says, “I was wrong. What should I do?” Trump’s doubt summons the ghost of his late attorney, Roy Cohn, who whispers in his ear, “Never admit anything, never apologize, never back down.” Next, he turns on Fox News and they assure him he is right about everything. What a seriously infected COWARD!

PERFECT FOURTH OF JULY GIFT

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs: If you only read one chapter of this book, try “Take a Knee for America” and think about our never-ending conflicts between minorities and the police. I’m not asking you to take a stand but having a deep and honest conversation about why some people think the way they do would be productive. This is a book for the moment which seeks to start a conservation about peace. And if you are worried about social media, you really should check out the chapter called “Social Media Menace.”

Get the Kindle Version HERE. Or order your paperback edition HERE.