Solving the Hunger Games in America

I worked at a company in New York years ago that figured out a way to keep more employees in the plant every Friday. It was a benefit they named Free Food Friday, and it worked. Friday attendance increased, and some people who had the day off came in just for the chow but ended up doing a little work while they were there.

Food Bank Lines

Right now, America is facing some serious and staggering food statistics. According to NPR, “Even before the pandemic hit, some 13.7 million households, or 10.5% of all U.S. households, experienced food insecurity at some point during 2019, according to data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. That works out to more than 35 million Americans who were either unable to acquire enough food to meet their needs, or uncertain of where their next meal might come from, last year. The coronavirus pandemic has only worsened the problem. According to one estimate by researchers at Northwestern University, food insecurity more than doubled as a result of the economic crisis brought on by the outbreak, hitting as many as 23% of households earlier this year.”

When you have enough food and no worries about where your next meal will come from, this problem probably never crosses your mind. On the other hand, when a person can’t eat they may fall into a deep depression or do some bad things to get food. So, what can you do to help? Well, you could contribute to food a bank.

Maybe start here. That is Feeding America, which is a nationwide network of 200 food banks and 60,000 food pantries and programs that provide food and services to hungry people. For every dollar you give, the Feeding America network of food banks helps provide at least ten meals to people in need. You can click this link at their site to see the local food bank in your zip code.

As negative as this sounds, there are times I wonder if the people lined up in their cars to get a free box of food don’t actually need the help. Then it hits me. Who would sit in a car line for food if they didn’t need it? That’s much less fun than Free Food Friday.

The intense and distracting political partisan rhetoric in our government right now is drawing attention away from helping our fellow citizens during a pandemic. I don’t know about you, but I am utterly sick of the crazy conspiracy theories some of our desperate politicians are using when jockeying for power. It would be far better if they were addressing the problems of unemployment and hungry citizens. What fools these jokers are, arguing about things that don’t matter to 28 million households.

If you want to give your voice some power, click these links on my blog page to find your Senators and Representative. Send your Congresspersons a stern message. It’s time to feed America.

Thank you for your support.

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An Open Letter to my Republican Family and Friends

 My Fellow Americans,

When this country first announced it would separate from Great Britain and declare its independence, the Douglas side of my family had already been in the land for more than seventy years. We were Scottish farmers who landed at the James River Settlement, and then traveled to Dover, Delaware and then on to Lancaster, Pennsylvania where we grew deep roots on our farm. Over the next hundred years, we moved west and ended up in the Western part of the state. I guess that makes us immigrants.

As much as I love to throw that timeline at the immigrants and their families who landed later, I really shouldn’t. Regardless of when they arrived, most Americans are pretty much alike. We all have our small minded faults and fabulous imaginative minds. The majority of us speak the same language, give or take the localisms, idioms and accents. All that aside, today let’s look at the great divide. It’s a story we’ve been fed for years. We even paint our maps with each state’s voting preference, calling them red states or blue states. We have a few purple states, but not a single one lacks color.

Here’s a relevant fact. In every state that is declared to be one color, on one side, there are millions of voters on the other side. There are Republicans in New York and, wait for it, Democrats in Alabama, meaning there is a difference between a party and a people. We are all Americans, but if you spend any time on social media or watch cable news you might believe every person is born with an R or D sticker on their forehead. It’s not hard to imagine every newborn American baby getting a blood transfusion which determines their political values and affiliations for life. Not true.

My parents were Republicans, and I honestly believe their political choice was tied to my father fighting in World War II under General Dwight D. Eisenhower, who was a Republican. My mother and father adored Eisenhower and it’s no coincidence that my first name is Dwight. Maybe I was switched at the hospital with a Democrat infant, but I never bought into the fact that my father was a union member and a truck driver but not a Democrat. I had assumed that the Democrats were labor, and the Republicans were owners. That was the first of my personal myths I was able to disprove.

Anti-War Protesters

The anti-Vietnam War movement in my young adult days was much like the Black Lives Matter movement of today. It drove a wedge between parents and their kids. The concept of “taking a side” helped rivet the armor of every person and deflected any attempt at a logical argument that might lead to consensus. Some people say it’s okay to disagree as long as you’re not being disagreeable, but that’s bullshit to me. When I dive into an argument I want to win, and that means not that you see my side but that you convert to my idea. So, there you have it, I am the problem but at least I admit it. So, how do we make things better?

I understand the hurt when your friends, family and social media makes fun of you or the person who got your vote. It’s impossible to move forward when contrasting actions of one with the reactions of others. When someone posts a terrible picture of Donald Trump on social media and makes fun of him, his supporters are bothered by it. I get that because I was annoyed beyond description seeing photoshopped pictures of Obama as a Nazi or Muslim. Graphic graffiti is everywhere, even down to racist rants scrawled on the bathroom wall of a classy restaurant.

One letter cannot heal the wounds and change the face of bigotry and hateful comments about innocent people, but let’s look at our situation. Why did so many people fall into depression when Trump didn’t win? Do they really believe that deep-state radicals stole the election from the man who said that if he didn’t win it proved the election process was rigged? 74,222,593 people voted for Trump, despite his constant cautions that the election would be fraudulent, because the voters knew it wasn’t. They had faith that the system would work. Then there were the 81,281,502 people who voted for Joe Biden because they felt that Trump seriously mishandled the COVID crisis. Sometimes when we disagree with another we preface a critical comment with the words “nothing personal,” but this election was personal. It was a matter of life or death.

You may have poured a lot of emotional currency into one man, but just like the devoted wife who finds out that her husband of many years has been unfaithful, there comes a point when an unworthy individual no longer deserves the benefit of the doubt. Millions of people doubted Donald Trump’s words and deeds about the pandemic. I genuinely believe that if the coronavirus hadn’t attacked the US, Trump would still be president.

Goodbye, 45.

As we learn more about wanting power, talking about power and whipping up members of a “base” into some deep fervor against things, we might see that Donald Trump didn’t understand who we are and neglected to emphasize the good things. When a soldier is constantly under fire in battle mode, he cannot display warmth, empathy or grace. If I tell you what I really think about Donald Trump, why must you attack me? Why do you think I am your enemy? If you really knew me, you would understand that I care about America just as much as you do, and I also have a strong altruistic side.

I’m ready to move on to what John McCain called “regular order.” That arrangement of things was violently confronted and some people lost their lives during the riot on Capitol Hill. Why? Had the radical Trump people overthrown Congress, what would they have done next? Would they have hung Mike Pence and declared Donald Trump the winner? Then what? Following the French revolution, enemies of the state had their heads sliced off at guillotines in the Paris parks. That’s a major reason why intelligent and caring people distanced themselves from the Capitol Hill melee.

This brings me to my fundamental plea. Blaming and demeaning all Republicans is wrong, but Donald Trump’s brand is so tainted that members should denounce him and focus on rebuilding their party. That would be a huge step in bringing this country back to civil intercourse. We had a president who constantly squawked about how bad it is to be a loser, but when he actually lost, no one saw the irony. Donald Trump himself caused Joe Biden’s win and he is the reason Republicans lost the majority in the Senate. It’s proven that he suppressed the vote in the Georgia runoff election by telling Georgians their election was rigged, and the voting turnout was less than that of the general election. You’re smart, you know this, yet you want to let him lead the party in the future. Why would you let the wolf back into the hen house? Who wants to be led by a loser?

I laugh at my neighbors with their Trump 2020 and Blue Lives Matter flags flapping in the wind. I am too polite to ask them, “Still with the cop killer?” but until they see the dichotomy of supporting both ideologies, they will be at war with themselves and America. In this rare moment I admit that Mitch McConnell is right. Trump incited the riot and people lost their lives because of his lies. We need to move on from Donald and allow two strong parties to act as a check and balance. If Republicans allow people like Josh Hawley and Ted Cruz to fertilize the lie, the party will fracture into two factions and Democrats will win every election thereafter.

I want you to have one savior, not two. I want you to separate yourself from someone who did a bad job and caused many people to suffer. You don’t have to hate him but send that cheating husband away and let him try to earn back your trust, if he can. As for me, I just want people to stop dying unnecessarily. Unless we become united our democracy will decay. For the sake of our kids and grandkids, please open your mind to at least admitting there is more than one way to make America great again.

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Don, go away, you’re no good for me (or anyone)

Last night I powered down my cell phone because the constant barrage of breaking news alerts was driving me crazy. I needed to lock our asshole president out of my mind and life for a bit. Now this may seem like a non sequitur, but I get depressed when I go to the grocery store and see people not wearing masks. It saddens me to think my fellow citizens don’t care about life, but then I realize they don’t know any better because the large man in charge says masks are unnecessary. At times I wonder if I might be taking it all too seriously. For years I have been writing about how Donald Trump is bad for America, but every time another of his acts exposes himself for the authentic jerk he is, I get angry all over again. For example, take his latest onslaught of pardons. Trump would absolve Hitler if Adolf said nice things about him.

I wish I could form a mental blockade to impose a Trump blackout, but that’s not going to happen. He’s so needy for publicity and attention he will always find a way to make news and noise. It’s just not likely that he will ever melt away like snow in Florida. I wake up refreshed, fetch my local paper, read the letters to the editor and get set off all over again.

Let me share this one, Lest we forget, here is a reminder of some of the accomplishments of the Trump administration during Donald Trump’s four years in office.” Okay, I must take a deep breath here and prepare to handle each of these allegations.

The writer, whose name I will keep anonymous, says that Trump kept us out of wars. Well, the act of getting into a war is serious and should be done only if we need to defend our country or help our allies. The so-called success of war avoidance is a terribly low bar for any president. Yes, we didn’t have a war under the Donald but he facilitated global conflict by selling arms and equipment to warring nations. He pulled out of Syria, which was nothing short of abandoning our allies, the Kurds. Obama didn’t get the US into any wars, but he was chastised for leaving Iraq too early and creating ISIS. So, what will probably happen as the result of Trump’s withdrawal of troops from troubled, unsettled conflicts? More war! GRADE: D

Next, there’s the claim that Trump oversaw the Abraham Accords, normalizing relations between Israel and two Arab states, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain. The term “oversaw” is a long stretch. Yes, Israel is trying to play nice in the Middle East but, from the beginning, the goal of the Trump Administration was bringing peace to the region. How will establishing normal diplomatic relations with just a couple of Arab nations bring the Palestinians to the table? GRADE: C+

The writer boasts about Trump’s insistence that NATO countries pay their fair shares of the costs for their own protection. Okay, that’s fair, but realize this is not nations giving money to NATO but rather increasing spending on their military assets and agents. Should any nation demand that the US increase or decrease our military budget we would be repulsed and offended but, okay, time for more guns and bombs. GRADE: B

Our esteemed letter writer continues with a group of deeds and triumphs that can be placed under one heading, Immigration. The letter says Trump got Mexico to keep asylum seekers in their country until their US hearings come up, to strengthen its US border and to work with Central American countries to slow the exodus of their citizens. I guess this would be a reasonable achievement for those who subscribe to the anti-immigrant, xenophobic viewpoints of this administration, but let’s not forget that Trump also separated children from their parents at the border. His Attorney General said that abhorrent policy would deter others wanting to seek asylum. This is less a win and more a sinful, immoral myopia. We must never forget that we are a country of immigrants! GRADE: F

Now, here’s a claim that profoundly pisses me off. The writer alleges that the Clean Power Plan, which Trump repealed, would have increased our electricity bills and he adds that our energy needs were kept affordable by Trump’s abandonment of the Paris Climate Agreement. This is total bullshit. The extreme weather events and catastrophes caused by climate change will cost us more money. In fact, deploying solar energy in a sunshine climate like Florida would lower energy costs significantly. Someone drank all the Kool-Aid, kids. GRADE: F

Our unnamed letter writer concludes his missive with compliments about how Trump confronted China over the theft of American intellectual property and unfair trade practices, how he imposed sanctions on Russia and closed some of our consulates there and how he kept our oil prices low, which hurt the Russian economy.

Okay, I’ll take these things in order, or should I say odor, because they fail the smell test. The first point is rather funny. All the people at “state” and “justice” said Russia was behind the hacking of government servers, but Trump insisted it was China. So, the “confrontation” Trump and his sycophants lowered on China’s head did nothing to stop Russia and China stealing from us.

As for Russians and oil, Trump has bragged about the USA being energy independent due to our large supplies of oil and natural gas. So, how did sanctions against Russia help our gas prices, which are set by OPEC and Trump’s friends in Saudi Arabia? The truth is Trump has gone easy on Russia and used China and Xi as props during his overly long rally speeches. We have not become stronger in foreign policy under Trump. China’s economy grew despite COVID and North Korea has a nuclear bomb. GRADE: F

The final contention of our reader/writer is Trump helped speed the record-breaking development of COVID-19 vaccines. He says, “As bombastic and irritating as Trump is, a lot was accomplished during his tenure.” REALLY? This comment is totally disqualified and no GRADE is low enough. The claim of Trump speeding vaccine development would be like me taking credit for the Pittsburgh Pirates beating the New York Yankees in the 1960 World Series. After all, I watched the game on TV.

With more than 323,000 people dead from this wretched virus, a total failure in medical supply chain management, no national policy to defend the US from the pandemic and the administration’s ongoing disregard of expert recommendations for virus mitigation, these past four years have seen America at her worst. The things Trump has said on TV and in his tweets have made matters worse, not better. Because of his lack of action and unconvincing language, Donald John Trump has killed Americans. The man doesn’t deserve to be praised; he should be indicted for malfeasance and put in jail. Maybe someone will pardon him.

All of us want COVID to go away. While that would be great, some of us just can’t wait until the Donald goes away because he’s been bad for America. Perhaps he merits a participation trophy, but don’t try to sell me on any grand accomplishments. My 401K lost a ton of money, I can’t see my grandkids this Christmas, and he’s going to be playing golf. I hate him. Merry Freaking Christmas, Mr. Soon-to-be Ex-President!

[EDITORS NOTE: There will be no blog tomorrow, MERRY CHRISTMAS!

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Trump’s Lasting Contributions

Back in my schoolboy days, when I was not daydreaming in class, I did learn a few things, such as Isaac Newton’s third law: “To every Action there is always an equal Reaction: or the mutual actions of two bodies upon each other are always equal and directed to contrary parts.” I should hate Mr. Newton for inventing calculus and formulating the theory of universal gravity. One gave me bad math grades and the other forces me to avoid exercise.

Donald John Trump, soon to be a one-term President, has done a lot of bad things during his term in office. He did have a few good ideas, but those were cursed by his bombastic and distorted messaging. He stepped on his own accomplishments and drove people in the media and his opposing party to propagate contrary opinions and strong arguments against him. That’s on him.

Many Americans and people of other nations believe that Trump and his administration are anti-science. The White House downsized and deemphasized global pandemic experts, and their lack of emergency planning sent a clear message about the administration’s disrespect. When Trump pulled out of the Paris Accord, he told us many times that he doubted the reality of climate change. He went so far as to theorize that China invented the movement to hurt the US economy.

Greta Thunberg

When a young Swedish environmental activist named Greta Thunberg complained about Trump’s dismal view on science, he replied with this tweet, “She seems like a very happy young girl looking forward to a bright and wonderful future. So nice to see!” but he then followed that gracious comment with this, “So ridiculous. Greta must work on her Anger Management problem, then go to a good old-fashioned movie with a friend! Chill Greta, Chill!” Trump never addressed her science concerns or the fact that some of the world’s smartest people have warned us all that things will get worse.

Trump’s primary leadership failures were his outrageously dismissive comments, advice and hands-off approach during a global pandemic. His lies are stacked up next to the dead bodies caused by his malfeasance. It wasn’t 15 people on that day he told us it would soon be down to one, then zero. It was a lie when he said the coronavirus was no worse than the flu, and he doubled down on another lie by saying the pandemic was a hoax created by the Democrats to hurt him.

During a long and unhelpful press briefing on Sunday March 29. 2020, Trump claimed that he and his administration could say, “We all together have done a very good job if the number [of deaths] is limited to 100,000 – 200,000.” The prediction that 100,000 people would die was bluntly presented and devoid of any emotion or empathy. With Trump, the main message of everything he said was all about how it affected him and “his” people.

Donald Trump’s disastrous delusions share the common points of being anti-science and anti-global. Instead of rolling up his sleeves and tackling the problem like a real president, he expelled his energy by blaming China for the virus. In the middle of the COVID crisis, Trump wheeled out a doctor with no background in infectious diseases who urged Americans to swallow the ridiculous “herd immunity” theory. It was yet another colossal mistake that killed more people. This president told all of us we should wear a mask, and then didn’t do so himself. He also pitted American against American and encouraged fringe militia groups to protest shutdowns and mitigation efforts in many cities.

A phrase often heard during these times is “follow the science.” Here in Florida, a scientist was fired for refusing to fudge virus figures to help the governor open the state much earlier than he should have. Meanwhile, Trump’s little army of sycophants charged into the Michigan capital building with guns. It’s clear that Trump has problems with science, facts and things humans cannot control. A virus isn’t a Democrat, it’s a demonic parasite out to kill us. More and more people want to know about the “science” of things because of Donald Trump. It’s a force pushing back in the opposite direction, and the main reason Trump will be gone on January 20, 2021. He didn’t show up for science class and got a big, fat F.

The Trump Show

Now he wants credit for the vaccine. Okay, Fat Boy, you did it! You contracted the virus and you survived because of our friend medical science. Without the exotic and experimental treatments you received, it’s likely you would have died. When the Donald told us how much he loves clean water and pure air, we saw right through his transparent lie. It was just another Trump con to smooth the way for his EPA to open lands for destructive mining and development.

NIMBy means “not in my backyard.” It represents a person who objects to something perceived as unpleasant or hazardous in the area where they live, especially while raising no such objections to similar developments elsewhere. As long as the virus stayed in China, Trump didn’t care, but when it came here, he wasted no time starting the blame game. We don’t care about the water being polluted in Pennsylvania by fracking unless we happen to live next door, but when the cheaper water in Flint, Michigan hurt children, we awakened. Trump’s constant thundering against globalism has warped the minds of many Americans, yet they rush to Walmart to buy another something made in China.

Globalism and science are here to stay. Trumpism has taught us that the man was wrong about mostly everything. Remember when he said no one loses a trade war? That was another lie. Ask the soybean farmers who were foreclosed and put out of business.  As for judging the success on Donald Trump against COVID, well his “effort” was a total fucking failure.

More kids will look at science differently now. I often said that my kids experienced great financial comfort in our family, but it’s their memories of some really bad times that will drive them for the rest of their days. They know they must save their money, work hard and always have a Plan B. Joe Biden is now America’s Plan B, and we all need to work hard to help him succeed with everything he faces.

I predict more kids will get into science and care more about the environment because of the opposing forces of Greta and Trump. Our kids will remember wearing masks and wondering why they had to. The first step in learning is asking “why.” Why so many fires? Why so many floods? Why so many deaths? Perhaps chemistry and calculous will be exciting to those kids who will become our future doctors and scientists. I guess we can thank Donald Trump for his ignorance. If being dumb means dying, the motivation to learn must be greater.

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Who Will Talk Him off the Ledge?

My father’s side of the family came to America in the late 1600s. According to family accounts, they came into James River, Virginia, then traveled up through Dover, Delaware, and finally settled in Lancaster, Pennsylvania around 1720. Most of these ancestors’ offspring were farmers, and it took them about a hundred years to spread across the state to Western Pennsylvania and Pittsburgh.

At this writing, we have just received the projected vote count in my home state. As much as this process has created tensions, nervousness and even anger with many citizens, we are finally have a conclusion to this drama. We dealt with the recovery of a damaged democracy after the Civil War, and we can’t even agree on what would have made that work better.

Trump and real president

While I was clicking on my keyboard earlier, an ABC News story came across. “This week, judges in Nevada, Georgia, Pennsylvania and Michigan have rejected the [Trump] campaign’s efforts to halt the counting process, if only temporarily, or alter it in some way based on shaky allegations of improper or nefarious conduct.” The best line in the story relates to U.S. District Judge Paul Diamond. “He appeared startled when the lawyers then acknowledged that the observers had, in fact, been permitted within 15 feet of the poll workers.” Diamond cracked, “I’m sorry, then what’s your problem?” Diamonds don’t usually crack.

Just about all Democratic internet posters have the same question. Who should be the one who will tell Trump his show has been cancelled? It won’t be his Chief of Staff; Mark Meadows just came down with COVID. Might it be Lindsey Graham, Trump’s golfing buddy? How about Mitch McConnell, leader of the Senate?  Who will have their “Barry Goldwater” moment with the Donald? You might recall that it was Senator Goldwater who dropped the reality bomb of removal on Nixon and convinced him if he didn’t resign he would be impeached and removed from office.

Maybe it will be Ivanka, Melania and Jared Kushner, coming into the Oval Office to smooth talk their way through his swollen ego to get him to admit it’s over? Nah, that won’t happen. I don’t mean to sound demeaning, but Donald’s current wife is loyal to her marriage. She’s merely an actress brought out like a trophy to speak the lines written for her. It will also not be Ivanka and Jared. They are both greedy bastards succeeded because they have the same moral-less values of winning no matter what. They have the most to lose from Trump’s removal from office. They will be continuously testifying to committees and courts for the next five years of their lives.

This brings us to the only thing that motivates Trump, money. Perhaps fellow rich powerbroker, Rupert Murdoch might be able to get through to Donald Trump. In case you don’t know, Murdoch is worth $16 billion and was originally from Australia. He owns tons of newspapers and media companies around the world, including Fox News and the Wall Street Journal. Trump knows Murdoch and he always takes his call. Why would Murdoch do this?

Rupert Murdoch

I may be sounding a bit diabolic, but Murdoch’s Fox News empire will benefit if Trump loses and goes away mad. For the next four years Murdoch’s network would be able to exploit those sore losers and loners who love the Donald. If Trump stays in office, by hook or crook, Murdoch will have to make his network more responsible and accurate and that would be bad for ratings.

What could Rupert possibly say to Donald that would inspire him to maturely deal with the loss of the presidency but still have something to look forward to? Well, what if he were to offer him a daily show on Fox News? Trump’s ego and narcissism are his central drivers, and he would revel having a daily show where he could bark out his dogma to the world. This would also be a huge win for Fox News because a Trump show will guarantee big ratings and tons of advertising bucks. What could this new job be worth to Trump? I say he might become desperate for a platform should Twitter take down his personal account when Trump leaves office. He has used that as a mouthpiece for his administration and I don’t think it would be appropriate for that account to persist.

I know it seems ludicrous that a former president would make that kind of move but look at what George H.W. Bush did after being a one-term president. He joined the Carlyle Group and exploited his fame for millions of dollars in Arab oil interests. Even one of the Bin Ladens were on his board. After his one-term wonder presidency, Jimmy Carter helped build homes for those unable to afford housing in America. Big difference.

Trump will have many coming after him after January 29, 2021, and it won’t solely be about job offers. The Southern District of New York has some legal matters on its desk. Maybe a new administration will reinstate Geoffrey Berman as the US Attorney in the Southern District so he can complete his work there. There are many other cases and issues that need to be resolved in courts. Trump could do his daily show from the veranda of Mar-A-Lago, sipping diet Cokes and making fun of the people in charge, just as he does now.

Only time will tell, but from my vantage point I see lots of work that must be done. For example, President Trump has signed, 193 Executive Orders since January 2017. Many of them are toothless commentary, rather than substantial policies. Some of them, when challenged in the court, were found to be border line unconstitutional. Others are extremely damaging and must be eradicated ASAP. The most important next step is to replace all the horribly damaged or totally unqualified people Trump has installed in powerful positions. At the top of my list are the Attorney General, the Postmaster General, administrators in EPA, DHS and the entire Trump cabinet. Then there’s Homeland Security and its 240,000 employees who are in desperate need of real leadership!

Rupert are you listening? Remember that Civil War and bodily removal of a president are bad for business. And might I say that Donald John Trump doesn’t want the lasting-forever Wikipedia page showing him being escorted out of the White House. While that would be grossly embarrassing for him, it would be much more so for all of AMERICA.

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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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Shoveling Old Words with Cloudy Meaning

We are seeing thousands of people wait in long lines at polling locations in early voting states. Their wait times are as long as eight hours. Terrible. I’m not sure why the Senate Judiciary Committee would decide to have a hearing to consider seating a Supreme Court nominee in the middle of a pandemic surrounded by all the election campaign noise, but let me guess.  Could it be political power?

Amy Coney Barrett, the nominee, has declared she is an “originalist” as it applies to Constitutional law. Okay, what exactly is that? According to many websites describing such things, originalism is a collection of theories calling for adherence to the “original intent” of the creators of the Constitution. Types of originalism include strict interpretation and strict constructionism. I CALL B.S.

Judge Amy Coney Barrett

Anyone, including Judge Barrett, who has the audacity to claim knowledge about the “original intent” of our founders like John Adams, George Washington and Thomas Jefferson is full of shit. One cannot speak with them to ascertain their thoughts and intents about anything they once wrote, so it’s all about personal interpretation.

Those good United States of America justices who over the years did their best to understand how our founders would have ruled on a challenge given contemporary circumstances, and then wrote opinions about how their decision should be applied to a changed society, were NOT ORIGINALISTS! Thanks to them, voting, serving on juries and being seated in Congress are no longer limited to white, landowning males. Despite the ORIGINAL words of our Constitution, women can vote, and African Americans are no longer counted as three-fifths of a person and subject to slavery.

I liked Antonin Scalia’s use of our language, although some of his “originalist” thinking was absurd. When dissenting passage of the Affordable Care Act, he offered this famous quote, “The Court’s next bit of interpretive jiggery-pokery involves other parts of the Act that purportedly presuppose the availability of tax credits on both federal and state Exchanges.” Okay, we get it. Justice Scalia didn’t like Obamacare and he offered the shiny object of “jiggery-pokery” to distract us. Saying that the Act’s intention to help people with healthcare insurance was somehow “deceitful or dishonest behavior” is totally interpretive. He was not reading the original language in the Act. He was forcing his meaning onto the law and onto us, the people.

The Late Antonin Scalia

The idea of any Supreme Court justice reading 233-year-old decisions and understanding how their authors would apply them today is like reading the old Testament and deciding that any woman who was raped would be sent away into the desert. It’s like originalist doctors draining our blood with leeches when we had a cold. We can read what those in the past wrote, but we will never know what they were thinking or exactly what their words meant to them.

There are incredibly talented people in this world who can shovel words to convince you of just about anything. That’s how we got Trump. The fact that professional and learned constitutional law experts can achieve a lifelong position on the Supreme Court doesn’t mean they will be the best arbiters of conflict. Congress has the power to undo what they’ve done at the court, but those actions can then be challenged as unconstitutional. If Congress said the President of the United States was not permitted to wear makeup, that would be struck down. However, our current President has stolen budget money to build a wall on the border with Mexico. What gives him that right? Congress is supposed to decide where and how money is allocated. Where is the Court on this matter?

I cannot imagine Thomas Jefferson’s response should anyone have approached him with a plan to build a wall on the Mexican border. He might have said, “Why build a wall? We might be able to acquire that land for America.” Modern presidents believe everything is set in sand and old laws must be interpreted according to the current culture in which we live. Should originalists outlaw same sex marriage? Wouldn’t they be deciding the bigotry and small mindedness of our founding fathers was actually high moral ground? Remember, our founders laughed and looked away from gay people. The also looked away from Black people, but that didn’t stop them from buying them into slavery. How can these original transgressions possibly be worthy of continuing?

Amy Coney Barrett is just the latest pawn in the sick game of a set of elite humans determining the rights of lessor citizens. Don’t get me wrong. I buy into the system, but the process of analyzing words, phrases and meanings is serious business. People are funny. Most of yesterday’s social media complaints about nominee Barrett concerned her terrible speaking voice. That’s not to say the notorious Ruth Bader Ginsburg had a theatrical tone, but her views were 180 degrees away from Amy Coney Barrett. My thinking is Justice Ginsberg, if alive, might suggest to Judge Amy, “You seem to think you know the answers, but are refusing to give straight answers. Good luck!”

Judge Barrett’s writings indicate she opposes any controls or rules on gun ownership and thinks Roe V. Wade was wrongly decided. Barrett signed a full page ad that said Roe V. Wade was wrong. That was a commitment. She will force her viewpoints on the Court. That is what originalists do. They hide behind dusty word while they put their thumb on the scale moving us toward a more conservative, backward and locked viewpoint. When they use flowery words, we must question their bias.

The Late Great RBG

I find it outrageous to think that any social program passed by Congress with the aim of helping the disadvantaged and maligned minorities is unconstitutional. If you read the Constitution, you will find no mention of taxation being against the law. There is nothing in that document that stipulates the kind of healthcare a citizen must buy. It’s insane that a judge in any court would strike down a mandate by a governor to protect his or her state’s citizens. The attitude of those judges who believe one politician’s goals or rules for safety are different than those of a more conservative bent is ridiculous. They believed an unhinged President about some bizarre invasion coming from Mexico, yet then looked the other way when hundreds of thousands of people were dying. Who are these originalists? Until the aged justices retire or die, get ready for decades of anal retentive, religiously corrupt and politically motivated decisions from the Supreme Court. Once we’re rid of them, we’ll have a rebirth of intelligent interpretation and forward movement. As we have painfully learned, you never now when the next one will pass away or pass out.

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.


We Have a Broken Leader, Next

Ted Turner, the former chief of CNN in Atlanta, had a sign on his desk with a direct and clear message, “Lead, Follow or Get Out of the Way.” I worked for Mr. Turner as a consultant for a short time and I can verify that if an employee didn’t effectively lead or follow, they would soon be out of the way. My favorite Ted Turner story is about a radio station he owned in Chattanooga.

His Tennessee property had just done something that few AM radio stations were able to achieve back then, a giant ratings turnaround with a music format. It was more than just a holiday party that year, it was a grand celebration of their success. Big Boss Ted Turner commissioned a limo for transportation to the party. At the end of the festivities, just before Ted was to leave, he stood and announced, “Okay, ah, great job, but you know AM radio is going to be all news, not music. So, in the new year, we will change the format to All News, all day every day. Some of you will be able to stay, but we are going to go where the audience is going and there will be changes. Have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!” Then he walked out of the room.

Ted Turner

Ted Turner did not have a good bedside manner, but he was successful despite his crazy, impetuous and uncaring ways. He always focused on the prize and understood that if it all went bust it was just money. In 1963, when Ted was only 24, his father committed suicide and the young man was put in charge of an outdoor advertising company that was on the edge of bankruptcy. He turned it around. I mean, come on, his last name is TURNER.

Ted taught me to simply look at something, come up with an idea, then do it. It’s the concept that made him a billionaire, a real billionaire. Turner owns two million acres of land in the USA, and only one individual possesses more, John Malone who bought the Atlanta Braves from Ted Turner. Smart rich people know that American land is more valuable than branding hotels under marketing deals.

Donald Trump needs to get out of the way. Let me quickly mention a few things that prove this man is not good at what he does. First, in international relationships and foreign policy, Trump is a total failure. Our allies don’t trust us, and even though the Donald brags about his great relationships with Presidents Xi Jinping, Vladimir Putin and Chairman Kim Jong-un, those brutal leaders do whatever they want. They have walked all over Trump and his lack of action has weakened our nation.

Next, I’ll mention trade. Trump has not fully completed a deal with China and the reworked agreement with the North American partners is just a sanded down version of NAFTA. Yes, the agreement needs to be updated, but the final work will produce little change. By the way, that’s not bad. NAFTA was unfair only to those not benefitting from it. Sure, you can help a cheese producer, but the new United States–Mexico–Canada Agreement hasn’t propelled jobs here, especially now with a raging pandemic. I’ll also add that in the last two weeks about 3,500 US companies, including Tesla Incorporated, the Ford Motor Company, the Target Corporation, the Walgreens Company and Home Depot have sued the Trump administration over the imposition of tariffs on more than $300 billion of Chinese-made goods. They are claiming the application of the tariffs was a capricious move without their counsel or input. In fact, the legal briefs of these major companies claim that Trump’s moves have hurt US owned companies. Thanks, Don.

Let’s look at domestic polices and economics. Even before COVID-19 changed our lives, US Treasury funds were depleted by Trump’s colossal increase of the national debt and tax cuts for corporations and rich people. Great for the fat cats, but not so great for us common folk. Trump’s mad cow reasoning is based on his belief that any process or agency without a cash flow should be eliminated. He has no idea what the untold number of American bureaus do. The hurt he’s inflicted on the US Postal Service is just the tip of that iceberg. American taxpayers have already paid for these “services” and we demand to be served. The 45th President is driving our country into bankruptcy just like he did with his companies. Mr. President, America will not be bailed out by Russia.

Trump has created multiple myths that divide the nation, and he uses fear as his prime governing mechanism. When people are afraid, they usually don’t think clearly. Trump, like George Wallace and other racist politicians, keeps warning that the Black man is coming to take over the suburbs. Trump’s words are simply a repackaging of the pro-segregation policies of Wallace, or racist “Dixiecrat” James Strom Thurmond Sr. We have a xenophobic racist sitting at the Resolute Desk. Shameful!

George Wallace & Strom Thurmond

Here’s a Trump tweet that bulldozed a large divide between Americans, “I am happy to inform all of the people living their Suburban Lifestyle Dream that you will no longer be bothered or financially hurt by having low income housing built in your neighborhood…Your housing prices will go up based on the market, and crime will go down. I have rescinded the Obama-Biden AFFH Rule. Enjoy!” Trump could just as easily have written, “Hey, I just signed an order to keep Blacks and poor white trash out of your neighborhood. You should kiss my ass for increasing the value of your properties! YAY for me, I’m keeping the scum out of your suburbs.” Trump supporters would condemn any pushback from more lucid minds by saying, “Oh, you’re being unfair to ‘our’ President.” Many neo-Nazis and others on the far right would say, “Good job, Adolf!”

Trump has clearly made the American impact of the global pandemic a deep crisis. His tardy responses and inaction have helped kill our citizens. Oh, first you divide me then you try to kill me. I cannot understand why Donald John Trump is continuing to hold large rallies where people are exposed to COVID-19. Doesn’t he realize he’s going to kill his own voters, or does he simply not care? It’s probably both, and that is not only sad, it’s dangerous.

Even when he was asked to deny the far-right radical Proud Boys any more oxygen than he’s already given them, Donald Trump claims to know nothing about them. I must ask, WHY NOT? Your FBI Director has said they are a domestic terrorist threat, but you haven’t taken the time to know them and understand the threat they pose? What a SCHMUCK!

The one person who needs to stand down and shut up is Donald Trump. He’s not leading; he’s clearly following Putin’s playbook. Donald Trump needs to get the fuck out of the way. Let the COVID task force handle the pandemic. Let the state governors do that they were elected to do, lead their states. Stop threatening school districts and local government with defunding and lawsuits. And for God’s sake do not take healthcare services and insurance away millions of Americans during the most severe health crises we’ve faced in our lifetimes. Who are you Donald Trump, Joseph Stalin?

LET’S VOTE HIM OUT, then investigate him.

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Trump, Biden or the Soul of the Nation?

We can live a cliché, or we can live a lie, but in America, in my country, we get up every day, pull on our boots and do our jobs. We can believe what we want, and pretty much say what we want, but our actions are typically constrained by one driving, overarching force. It’s something that our fathers taught us, or our mothers demanded from us. It’s RESPECT.

The Clown & the VP

We respect our flag; we respect our neighbors and even if we think the person sitting next to us is a lunatic, we defend that persons’ right to hold and express their viewpoint. The totality of different people and their thoughts is the glue that keeps our country strong, diverse and successful. All of us are all cut from the same cloth embodied by John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, but it’s now clear to me that a traitor to our national respect has invaded our house.

Last night we saw two men debate, not under any sort of a traditional format but in an over the top, blatant perversion of the concept. Political performance art is supposed to help us determine who we should task with leading this great nation. Many times in our history, a presidential debate became more of a damn show and entertainment and less a dialog about ideas and plans but at least they included some productive discourse. However, 2020’s first presidential debate in Cleveland, Ohio last night was a total disaster and waste of time for America.

We hear people talk about the soul of this nation. What exactly is that soul? Some would say it’s a spiritual and immaterial part of our country which forms the immortal essence of who we are collectively as a nation. Others might say it’s the emotional and intellectual energy or intensity living inside all the citizens who call this place home. I believe our country has something beyond the big buildings, big bank accounts and big ideas. We have a spiritual core that keeps us all, well, American!

Last night we saw a desperate child trying to force himself to the front of the stage with nothing but boorish interruptions. He wasn’t even paying close attention, as evidenced by his inability to put forth reasonable rebuttals and lack of a clear, logical path to his next outburst. The President of the United States lacks substance and decorum, and through his shameful performance he embarrassed himself in front of our country and the entire world last night.

Donald John Trump is trailing Joe Biden by as many as ten points in the election polls of some states. Last night we witnessed this frantic man fumbling for a way to claw himself out of the deep, dark, dank, dismal hole he inhabits because of his utter incompetence and lack of understanding. I can’t help wondering what advice Rudy Giuliani and Chris Christie offered Trump that led to this public farce. I liken this bullshit “debate” to a public spectacle of feeding an entire meatloaf to a red bellied Piranha, only to have the fish eat so much and so fast that his entire bulbous form explodes right in front of our eyes.

During the early portion of the debate I started to fact check things I heard, but then realized that was a total waste of time. I didn’t need a motherfucking fact check. What I yearned for was a sock full of high school combination locks to bash the heads and knock some sense into the assholes who have let this Trump-monster out of the box. My anger is directed mostly to the complicit bastards in Congress.

Bozos on the Bus

In the more rational light of day, I humbly offer some points about what I learned last night. Donald Trump is a racist who would rather protect right wing crazies with AR-15’s than the rights of all Americans. He’s a fat, fake, mentally challenged, little prince, without any crown jewels. In fact, he’s both financially and morally bankrupt. He stood before the American public last night and lied about his tax returns. What an unpatriotic fool.

He’s not the friend of Black Americans, white Americans or any Americans. He will never hold accountable any police officer who breaks the law because those are “his boys.” How could Trump fairly judge any encounter with law enforcement when he simply believes people who agree with him are right those who disagree with him are the enemy. He sees himself as the top cop with the final word that cannot be challenged. Hey, wake the fuck up America. That is what kings think. Our President’s words and deeds permit and promote the growth of systemic racism.

Donald Trump doesn’t care about the well-being of America. He continues the repetition of a strange mantra about his “plan” to solve America’s pandemic crisis, yet he cannot describe his intention beyond use of the vague word “strongly.” Let’s face it. The Donald has no strategy to solve our terrible COVID crisis. As he said to Bob Woodward, “There’s nothing else that can be done.” Donald Trump is not equipped to make decisions because he’s either afraid of being wrong or he just doesn’t care about you.

Things will only get worse If Donald Trump is given four more years. The bile, hate and lies that ooze from his already stiff, stinking carcass has North Korea, China and Russia circling above us like vultures, waiting to swoop down and fight over the scattered remnants of our nation’s soul.

The headlines speak for themselves: “Lying, Cheating, Barking, Bullying: Donald Trump Hijacked the First Presidential Debate” (Huffington Post), or try this one on, “Donald Trump plunges debate into chaos as he repeatedly talks over Joe Biden” (The Guardian) or how about these shameful thuds, “With Cross Talk, Lies and Mockery, Trump Tramples Decorum in Debate With Biden – Interrupting Joe Biden nearly every time he spoke, President Trump made little attempt to reassure swing voters about his leadership. Mr. Biden hit back: ‘This is so unpresidential.’” (New York Times).

All those were clever but, quite frankly, CNN’s Dana Bash spoke the truth more concisely and precisely, “This was a shitshow!” Now, there are those who will attack and try to blame the debate’s moderator, Fox News’ Chris Wallace, but if you think he had a bad night imagine his late father, Mike Wallace, looking down and smoking a whole pack of Camels watching an unruly, festering, waste of fucking time.

I will be extremely disappointed if Joe Biden doesn’t end this farce with Trump right now. Why should us Americans have to sit through coverage that does nothing to help us know more about Joe Biden and his policies? We already know that Donald Trump is a sleazy, lowlife grifter who should be arrested for tax evasion, fraud and bad hair. When charged, we hope his punishment will include additional jailtime for his excessive, foul looking makeup. I know drag queens who are more attractive than Trump.

There will come a time for a full Trump postmortem, but can we all realize in this moment that this man is worse than Benjamin Harrison, Chester A. Arthur and Herbert Hoover combined? What is he one thing those three men have in common? They were all ONE TERM PRESIDENTS that America survived. We recovered our nation’s soul after those tragic presidencies, just as we will when our current clown President makes his exit from the Big Top.

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Another Trump Distortion

My father grew up on a farm and my younger brothers helped out there during their high school years. I used to say that farmer kids learn things city kids never do. For example, most farm kids know how reproduction works. It wasn’t the birds and the bees; they learned from the pigs and cows.

We are hearing our President talk about “herd mentality” and “herd immunity” as if they are interchangeable terms. He’s an idiot and knows nothing of the denotation or connotation of his own words. The utterances that tumble out of his mouth aren’t backed by thoughts, they are merely words, and this brings us to a huge problem in our country right now.

Before starting, here are the denotative boundaries for this discussion. Herd immunity occurs when enough people or animals become immune to a disease to make its spread unlikely. Understanding when herd immunity has been achieved is science, requiring the same kind of disciplines as creating medicines and vaccines.

Connotatively, the term “herd immunity” reduces human beings to the level of farm animals. Decades ago, cattle ranchers believed herd immunity was a solution for bovine brucellosis, an infectious bacterial disease. Farmers and ranchers, often with the help of veterinarians from the US Department of Agriculture, blood-tested every animal they owned to discover, trace and isolate the disease’s source and control its spread.

Many European countries had to deal with mad cow disease, or bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), a transmissible, slowly progressive, degenerative and fatal disease affecting the central nervous systems of adult cattle. The ranchers employed surveillance, culled sick animals and banned bovine meat products from their feed. Cows are vegetarian, not cannibals, so their diets do not normally include meat. What did farmers do when they found cows having the virus? They KILLED THEM.

It’s patently clear that Donald Trump, Dr. Scott Atlas, Senator Rand Paul and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis have no idea what they are talking about in terms of herd immunity. First, we are not going to kill people and burn their bodies should they test positive for COVID-19. Okay, sick joke here, but who would pay for that? Seriously, these goofballs are using the term “herd immunity,” blissfully ignorant that enacting such a plan requires the execution of human beings. This survival of the fittest routine is rather Darwinian, even by Republican standards.

My head exploded when I read the following in The Lancet, the highly respected medical journal, “Studies in June and July cast doubt on prospects for herd immunity: despite months of exposure, antibody surveys found a low seroprevalence,” less than 10%, in cities in Spain and Switzerland.” Commentators in The Lancet concluded that, ”In light of these findings, any proposed approach to achieve herd immunity through natural infection is not only highly unethical, but also unachievable.” *Seroprevalence is the level of a pathogen in a population, as measured in blood serum.

Unfortunately, Americans tend to collect and hold onto buzz words and catch phrases more than they do facts. The goofballs are trying to pull off their greatest lie yet, that somehow it might be better to let the virus “run its course” rather than fighting it head on with science, testing, tracing and a national plan. For months and months, we have heard about the forthcoming “great solution” but no one has presented a reasonable plan of action.

Some of our older readers may remember a hairbrained idea that was bounced around during the HIV/AIDS crisis. It suggested that those having the disease should be shipped to a deserted island. The trouble is, we tried that before with another misunderstood ailment. Until 1969, Hawaiian law allowed leprosy sufferers to be forcibly moved to the islands’ leprosy settlement where, over the years, more than 8,000 patients lived. The sad truth is, Leprosy continues to infect more than 215,000 people globally each year and there is no proof that isolation works. The dark side of HIV/AIDS included discussions about culling the population by execution of those with the virus.

Dangerous Enabler

People like X-Ray doctor Scott Atlas and eye doctor Senator Rand Paul challenge the VIRUS experts and think they know more, when the frontline scientists are openly willing to admit that they don’t know everything. These politician jerks are wasting our time. Every time I hear Rand Paul challenge Dr. Fauci, I can’t discern the point he is trying to make. Paul’s mission seems to be discrediting rather than seeking knowledge.

I’m tired of all this nonsense. Let me say it clearly, “herd mentality” will kill people. “Herd immunity,” by its very nature, will kill people. Let’s work on less death, fewer infections and keep pressing on with the known, scientific methods of mitigation. To be bold and direct, it’s time for Trump, Atlas, Paul and DeSantis to SHUT THE FUCK UP!

Okay, let me put my mask on.

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The Trump Divide Widens

One could argue that without Donald John Trump’s candidacy and presidency, we would have sailed along without committing to any particular position along the “left-right scale.” When I first joined social media, I listed myself on Facebook as a “radical Democrat.” When one of my posts was later rebuked by a right-wing hooey, I had a change of mind. The goofball stated that I had no credibility because of my political declaration. Perhaps I was being a weakling, but I deleted my political listing that very day. I would like people to hear me without prejudging according to my tongue-in-cheek quip from the past. In fact, because of Trump I’ve become more radical, not less. It’s all his fault!

The people who have joined the “cult,” as Michael Cohen calls it, possess neither the mood nor the mentality for a thoughtful discussion about why four more years of the orange pumpkin would be bad. See, I did it! I “disrespected” the man by calling him a name, because that is what he’s done to us, to me. I can argue intellectually to delineate the difference between a barb and a substantial act that might harm more that help people. On the other hand, most Trumpettes do not have the capacity or desire to take on facts that are against their preconceived notions. It’s such an ordeal to point out that those very predetermined opinions are incorrect. Trump is not a good guy.

I used to describe political polarity using the image of a giant circle, with 12 o’clock being at the top middle. As you move to the right, or to the left, you traverse the circle until the most radical forms of right and left meet at the bottom, near 6 o’clock. Think about it. Those in the ANTIFA movement are right next to the far-right Neo-Nazi and aggressive militias. Both are into violence and carry weapons they aren’t afraid to use. When local police departments endorse, support or look the other way with the far-right crazies, they are tilting justice toward that political segment. Where should the police department be on the political scale? I hope they would be in the middle, near 12 o’clock, but many aren’t.

The “Blue Lives Matter” campaign is not a cry for help. It’s a general defense of the institution of law enforcement. I get that, but call me a patriotic moderate when I ask why Blue Lives Matter proponents desecrate the US flag to underline their position? In the 1960s, it was an offense to create peace flags by changing the American flag. Why is it okay now? Aside from the fact that Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia claimed that burning the US flag was supported under our First Amendment rights, it bothers me when people change the flag. LGBTQ banners did so, and the day has passed when our flag colors were sacred.

At a demonstration in Tampa, Florida over the weekend, the rallying cry of the activists said America needs to be saved from the “destruction and division” being promoted by the left wing. They claim that the far-left is intolerant. Not only is that oxymoronic, it’s a childish reverse response, “No, you’re the idiot.” Unbelievably, the President of the United States has taken the liberty of telling millions of us which other Americans we are supposed to hate. Why? Because he believes that pushing radical people further into their political leanings will somehow help him. Sorry, but I don’t see how that helps at all.

Let me say this as clearly as possible. I would rather not have visceral, emotional reactions to the things Donald Trump says. I would like to see him go away after we elect a true moderate to the presidency, moving us toward healing without the daily desperation and heat blasted forth from the current administration. Trump’s deceitful tweets and proclamations zap energy from all of us, be we left, center or right. We all must decry his ridiculous claims and point out the hypocrisies, otherwise our silence justifies his insanity. Donald Trump is like the drunken uncle who keeps grabbing the young girls at family dinners. We can say he’s losing his mind, or laugh at him for being himself, but in the end he’s just a dirty old man, not President of the United States.

Sure, I tend to lean toward social programs that help people and keep the peace. The intrinsic inner core of my being is based on the Christian principles that we should love our neighbor and help those souls in trouble. Wow, I guess I am a faith-based “radical Democrat.” How can that be? Well, because it’s who I am. Who are you? People on the far-right have a kind of baked-in racism which manifests as a denigration of “lesser beings.” They honestly believe the old “pull yourself up by your bootstraps” to fix your problems, and don’t forget to add the demand, “don’t expect me to pay for it!”

I wrote a book titled “If God Could Talk.” God is a character in the book and, spoiler alert, he speaks. While doing so, he points out some fallacies of the Holy Bible. He’s quite a pro-life deity, and why wouldn’t he be? You can read the book, but I’m always curious about why the far-right and evangelicals are so hell bent on getting rid of Roe Vs. Wade when they have absolutely no desire to pay for the care and education of all those unwanted babies. Sure, adoption is an option, but that will never offset the large population bubble without a pro-choice law left intact.

Now we face a significant national debate about putting far-right conservative judges on the Supreme Court. Why are judges right or left? Why would it matter if there are three or eleven judges on the high court? Shouldn’t a judge simply read the complaint, apply the law and write a well-researched, deeply considered opinion? They know their words will be read for hundreds of years after, and they certainly don’t want to embarrass themselves and the court. The fact that any judge is known for their political leanings taints the court, lowers the faith in justice and gives the President of the United States too much credit. I am not suggesting that we all get a vote, that’s how we got Trump, but there must be a more pure, better way.

If I think your ideas are stupid, I am not necessarily against you. If I concentrate on your opinions, with a fair and balanced perspective, I can still like you while thinking your conclusions are shit. Should your beliefs be harmful to others, I won’t like you — the person. I don’t like David Duke, the KKK guy, because he believes white people are superior to Black people. I won’t shed a single tear when he goes “Bye Bye, in the Car Car.” When someone on the right goes too far, they are dangerous. When someone on the left goes too far, they are dangerous. A person can never be “too moderate.” Think about it. We need moderates right now, not people like Donald Trump, William Barr, Tom Cotton and Ted Cruise. They can all go pleasure themselves while reading QAnon posts. And God forbid any of “those people” ever get appointed to the Supreme Court.

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