VOTING IN AMERICA

Trump’s Greatest Challenge & Flaw

Statistics provide a clear picture of who we are as a people. Many Americans have taken the right of voting for granted. In 2016, 250,056,000 Americans voted, which was only 55.5% of eligible voters. That’s a strange statistic for a country where more than a million people have fought and died to protect the right to vote. Why do so many not take that privilege seriously?

President Johnson

In 1964, only six percent of African Americans voted, but after the Voting Rights Act of 1965 more Black people voted. By 1969, 59 percent of African Americans voted. According to the Pew Research Center, the Black voter turnout rate in the presidential election of 2016 declined for the first time in twenty years, falling to 59.6% after reaching a record-high of 66.6% in 2012. That seven percent decline from the previous election is the largest on record for Blacks. One could conclude that neither Hillary Clinton nor Donald Trump were attractive to those voters, or perhaps African Americans felt they had a sure win with Obama in the race.

Another statistic that cracks right between the eyes is 38% of those in Congress are millionaires. Startlingly, that’s not much different from the first years of the American government. The flatly stated theory goes like this; let the rich, white, planter-plantation owner class protect their business interests, and everyone else will be fine. Sadly, there’s not much difference today.

While Trump stirs up dust about Twitter and Facebook taking down his lies and misinformation they feel will hurt their subscribers, more people are dying of COVID-19 infections. While Trump is passing along stupid QAnon conspiracy theories and lies, there are people in Georgia and other states waiting eight hours in sprawling, hot lines to vote. How can any of us believe we are a great country when one of our political parties works so hard at voter suppression? They openly state their belief that when fewer people vote they do better. What is the difference between Republican actions to suppress voting and ballot burning in a third-world country after all the citizens have voted? Any US citizen involved in vote suppression, regardless of their place in society, should at least be charged with voter intimidation.

Trump sees the electorate through the filter of his belief that the American public will believe whatever he tells them. Remember, he said he could shoot someone in the middle of New York’s Fifth Avenue and wouldn’t lose any supporters. Maybe Trump feels he must react to some of the “fake news” that has been published about him. But in reality, this guy has no credibility pushing back because he’s stuck in a ad hominem loop. He truly believes all negatives about him are untrue, therefore, even when the other guys tell almost truths about him, no one on the Democratic side believes him. He’s the boy who cried wolf so much, no one is really listening anymore.

Lunatic Leader

Probably emboldened by Trump’s successful fight with COVID, the West Wing is now pushing the B.S. that “everyone is going to get the virus.” It’s the same “herd immunity” idea Dr. Atlas dumped into Donald’s defective brain months ago. Our President now says, “See, it’s not that bad. Get back to work and reelect me.” What about losing the lives of two million people? “We are just going to have to live with it.” To a young person, the fact that they are still living is an invitation to party recklessly.

The flaw in Trump’s thinking is that people thoughtlessly do what he says. All his supporters shouting and screaming arm to arm at his rallies won’t get sick and die, but maybe some of them will come to their senses when they or a loved one starts to violently cough while gasping for air. Each false step, each tragic error, forces another crack in Trump’s armor.

The reality Trump must now confront is the wave of voters who are NOT going to stay at home. We already know that more than 15 million people have voted, and more than 60% of all mail in ballots were cast by Democrats. Trump made so many amateur mistakes as an incumbent. He could have embraced mask wearing from the beginning and air dropped millions of MAGA masks into swing states. It’s too late now. He politically over-positioned mask-wearing and the result could be many of his supporters too sick to vote.

Another junior achievement Trump ploy was getting his donor-lover-boy Louis DeJoy to disrupt the United States Postal Service in an attempt to sabotage mail in voting efforts. The overweight, orange pumpkin did this while fomenting distrust by saying the process of mail in ballots is ripe with fraud. If true, why did he make no effort to fix the problem? He is the most impotent president of all time if he can’t stop a pervasive fraud.

It’s impossible to apply logic to the actions of Trump and his grifter-enablers in Congress. They are all broke-dick cult followers and failures as patriots and people. It takes a whole nation to be a whole nation, and despite Trump’s position of needing walls to have a nation, what we truly need are voters to save our democracy. As many as legally possible. Maybe I am naïve or over-optimistic, but I believe the 2020 election turnout will be larger than ever. After the election, I want to start a campaign against the hypocrites who have too much power over us. I will be writing letters to suppress not only their voices but their Congressional votes.

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.


ORIGINALISM VS INTERPRETIVISM

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.


THE ESSENTIAL DEBATE FOR AMERICA

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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Great companies hire great people. This short, easy-to-read book will help you recruit, review and refocus your new workers into the style and culture of your company. Motivating people to do great work will manage turnover and keeping good workers at your company will maintain your success. Employee inspiration makes a positive difference in our competitive world. HOW TO HIRE GREAT PEOPLE covers everything, including testing, training, tricks and tips. Follow this guide and you’ll assemble strong teams with smart workers, and you’ll learn some time-tested techniques about how to keep them.

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THE 1619 PROJECT

Trump’s White Privilege Revealed

There are times when the great, orange hype-master in the White House makes a gigantic stink about something hardly anyone knows about, and by rebuking it he creates not only a viral event but also makes more people aware of that very thing he wants them to ignore. Such goofy thinking!

We have had starts and stops with racial matters in America. There are times when we make some progress, then other times we fall back and trample our “better angels,” the ones President Lincoln turned to at times. One of the things I have learned is the more I study our presidents the less likely I’m inclined to hoist them onto a huge glory pedestal.

Thomas Jefferson

When we heard the recorded conversations of Kennedy, Johnson and Nixon, their uncensored language about “Jews” and “colored people” was dreadful. I read some of the things Dwight Eisenhower said after he had a few drinks, I was stunned and saddened. It was nothing less than racist language and a continuation of “established” racist views held by many Americans. I’m sorry to burst any bubbles, but racism is the norm in America, not the exception.

When the New York Times launched their 1619 Project in August of 2019, I assumed it was a marketing ploy to increase readership. It commemorated the 400th anniversary of the first arrival of enslaved Africans at the English colonies of mainland North America in August of 1619, thus the name.

If you want to dive more deeply, you can learn more here. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you have heard that these articles have been met with much controversy. The entire undertaking is not riddled with lies, but it is being challenged and maligned by historians of every ilk and political persuasion.

One of the most challenged premises in the 1619 Project is that American independence from Britain was a way for our new country to maintain slavery. In fact, the slave trade wasn’t outlawed in Great Britain by Royal Assent until March 25, 1807, but a man was freed by British Chief Justice Lord Mansfield. That ruling in 1772 stated that that “no master ever was allowed here (England) to take a slave by force to be sold abroad because he deserted from his service… therefore the man must be discharged.” And so James Somerset, a slave, won his freedom. The founding fathers knew that this only applied to England and not the 13 colonies, but they heard the footsteps of freedom. They worried that they would be next.

Remember we debated and concluded that we needed to break away from King George in 1776 over a long list of grievances clearly stated in the Declaration of Independence. You can read that legal document here.

Some people get hung up by certain aspects of our justice system, like the notion that someone who lied once means everything else they say is tainted. Ask Michael Cohen. If you write something, especially if it has the sheen of a scholarly work, someone will challenge you, if not in a letter to the editor then in a court of law.

Some choose to fight the battle based on an adoring viewpoint that our founding fathers were righteous and driven by the Magna Carta, rather than being money-oriented and goaded by wealth and profiteering. Don’t ignore human nature here, folks. Many historical accounts demonstrate that the white planters hyped a revolution because they wanted to make sure they kept their land. For example, a unique 215-foot-high rock formation in Rockbridge County, Virginia, along with 150 surrounding acres, were purchased from King George III of England by Thomas Jefferson on July 5, 1774. Jefferson knew the monument would have significant value (as a tourist trap) and he named it Natural Bridge.

When America was a colony of Britain, the settlers developed their own governments in each state, loosely based on what they knew from their motherland. Our founding fathers were still British citizens who believed their deeds, documents and demands of common law should not be abridged. King George brazenly decreed that none of those documents would be honored. This pissed off the landowners and founding fathers so, yes, it’s true that economics was very much a driver in the liberation of the 13 states.

One of the ways our rich, land-owning white forefathers kept the laborers and non-Blacks in line was taking away land from freed Black slaves or indentured servants and giving that land to white men. A bond that was massaged with Christianity, white privilege and pro-slavery kept everyone on the same page for a revolution. Could our founders have spread the word that if we didn’t break away from the mother country all our slaves would be released to burn down the suburbs? That is hard to know, even for the New York Times, and I hope I’m correct in thinking that stone has already been unearthed by at least one of our many newspapers and writers.

Did the early power brokers and self-proclaimed intellectuals know that Great Britain was going to outlaw the slave trade in 1807? How can one know the future? Maybe they had advice from people like Ben Franklin, who lived primarily in London until 1775. After Franklin completed his role in the Continental Congress, he moved to Paris. The things a man will do to get out of the house! Ben was supposed to keep France on our side and provide loans to keep this country solvent, and it wouldn’t have been beneath Franklin to spread some useful lies. France didn’t declare slavery illegal until 1848 however, so the idea that Uncle Ben could have told us about the future demise of slavery is not credible.

Most Americans don’t realize that the King, or Queen of the United Kingdom is also the head of the Church of England. Back in the late 1770s, King George had the power to declare the slave trade dead, but he didn’t. Now, let’s return to today’s America.

In July 2020, Republican Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas proposed the “Saving American History Act of 2020.” It prohibited K-12 schools from using federal funds to teach curriculum related to the 1619 Project. Tom Cotton says, “The 1619 Project is a racially divisive and revisionist account of history that threatens the integrity of the Union by denying the true principles on which it was founded.” While this “cotton-picking” Congressman from Arkansas pisses on the Frist Amendment, I would add that his belief that he, and he alone, can save American history is audacious and laughable.

Mr. Cotton didn’t go it alone. He was able to manipulate one other person to take up the sword against a newspaper. This week, Donald John Trump stated on Twitter that the Department of Education will investigate whether California public schools are using the 1619 Project as part of their school curriculum and, if they are, they will “not be funded!”

It wasn’t just Tom Cotton who pulled the wool over Trump’s eyes, it was also Tucker Carlson, the Joseph Goebbels of American media, who broadcasted a major show on the 1619 Project. Now, the President thinks that words on a paper are more dangerous than Russia, North Korea and the global pandemic all rolled into one. Things Tucker Carlson has said and proposed over the years leave no doubt in my mind that he is a racist. Cotton, on the other hand, should know better.

The real reason Trump is fighting so hard against the 1619 Project is because he sees racism and America’s racist history through the lens that Fred Sr. implanted in his deficient head. Like a bad software update, these prejudices make the Donald unable to understand anything that challenges his white privilege.

According to NPR, “Trump won just 8% of the Black vote in 2016 and current polls show the vast majority of Black voters backing Trump’s Democratic rival, former Vice President Joe Biden.” African American women vote more than Black men, but the key question is will Trump’s efforts against the 1619 Project make him look like a white plantation owner, wanting to keep the facts of slavery from the young Black and white voters out in the street protesting? Or maybe he’s just another racist waving his white sheet… yet again.

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Great companies hire great people. This short, easy-to-read book will help you recruit, review and refocus your new workers into the style and culture of your company. Motivating people to do great work will manage turnover and keeping good workers at your company will maintain your success. Employee inspiration makes a positive difference in our competitive world. HOW TO HIRE GREAT PEOPLE covers everything, including testing, training, tricks and tips. Follow this guide and you’ll assemble strong teams with smart workers, and you’ll learn some time-tested techniques about how to keep them.

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STANDBY TO TAKE OVER

Trump’s Mysterious Hospital Visit

Donald John Trump made an unannounced, unplanned Saturday morning visit to Walter Reed hospital last November. The trip did not follow the protocol of a routine presidential medical exam, which Trump claimed was the reason for the trip. Many sources have since confirmed that the staff at the hospital did not get any notice about a presidential visit to the medical center in Bethesda, Maryland. Why the secrecy?

My conjecture, judging by Trump’s age, is the appointment was related to an early morning blood test in the White House showing an elevated level of prostate-specific antigen. PSA is a protein made by both normal and cancerous cells in the prostate gland. A doctor will suggest a biopsy of the prostate cells when there is a high level of PSA. Some patients prefer anesthesia for this procedure because it’s uncomfortable and sometimes painful. This brings us to VP Mike Pence.

According to the New York Times, “Vice President Mike Pence was put on standby to temporarily assume the powers of the presidency during President Donald Trump’s unannounced visit to Walter Reed hospital in November 2019.” The source of this story is Michael Schmidt, a Times writer who is about to publish a book containing the information.

Some men are ashamed of a prostate biopsy and they worry about the possibility of cancer. Perhaps they shouldn’t fret because there are many successful procedures and operations, but we all know Trump is fearful of anything that makes him look vulnerable, weak or less manly than his self-conceived image.

You might ask why in the hell am I making this assumption about Trump. Well, I am just trying to help the discovery process. I wouldn’t have to throw out my opinion had the President and White House told the country what was going on. If Trump’s condition involved an early warning and successful steps to resolve whatever was lurking, his explanation could possibly save other lives. But, of course, he’s too vain to care about anyone other than himself.

We need a reporter to boldly ask Trump, “How’s your health?” He doesn’t release his medical charts or his tax returns. He doesn’t let us know much about the questions we have. Maybe he is the “empty suit” he accuses others of being. The lack of meaningful thoughts, critical information and digestible data from the Donald is dumbing and numbing.

This kind of speculation really drives Trump crazy. In that new book, Donald Trump vs. the United States, New York Times reporter Michael S. Schmidt claims that Pence was made ready and some are speculating that Trump may have had a mini-stroke. Wow, Trump hearing this report, just had to tweet: “It never ends! Now they are trying to say that your favorite President, me, went to Walter Reed Medical Center, having suffered a series of mini-strokes. Never happened to THIS candidate – FAKE NEWS. Perhaps they are referring to another candidate from another Party!”

I am sure when Trump made that short drive from the White House to Walter Reed he pondered the possibility that Mike Pence would be president for a few hours. Maybe he declined the procedure or manned-up and took the pain of a needle prick in his prostate. Perhaps he justified not getting a test with his patently false premise that if you don’t test for it you don’t have it. If he didn’t get tested he could still have cancer, and cancer, like COVID, doesn’t care if you are a Democrat or Republican. Cancer loves sugar.

Trump’s health information is pertinent to all Americans. The mental and physical well-being of the most powerful leader in the land is paramount, especially on the eve of an election. He can hide under the covers, but sooner or later the President’s health must be known.

This person who accuses others of being crazy and sick seems to be hiding something from us. If only we could get back to transparency with our president. That would also be the best way to restore faith in our institutions. We know this won’t happen with Trump so let’s press on without him!

It’s time to vote him out of office. If you are voting by mail, head for the postal box NOW!

TIME TO REPAIR THE ECONOMY!

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Great companies hire great people. This short, easy-to-read book will help you recruit, review and refocus your new workers into the style and culture of your company. Motivating people to do great work will manage turnover and keeping good workers at your company will maintain your success. Employee inspiration makes a positive difference in our competitive world. HOW TO HIRE GREAT PEOPLE covers everything, including testing, training, tricks and tips. Follow this guide and you’ll assemble strong teams with smart workers, and you’ll learn some time-tested techniques about how to keep them.

Kindle and Paperback Click Here


REPETITION IS NOT INTELLIGENCE

Trump’s fallback: “Through no fault of their own.”

When I had less than a pot to pee in, I still had my words. When I achieved a comfortable bank account, I still counted on my words to get me through each day. I have a firm repulsion when the blame-game gets in the way of finding a solution to a problem. We are all occasionally guilty of wasting time and energy on assigning blame or, said in polite terms, giving priority to “accountability” rather than understanding why something took place.

One of the justifications that Donald John Trump uses for helping people is a thin strip of logic using the words, “Through no fault of their own.” His meaning is the subject deserves something but can’t be personally blamed for what happened. I’m not a psychologist, but I sense the Donald is projecting a lack of blame for virus victims as a way of escaping blame for the situation we are in. He often accuses others of what he just did. He says the Democrats are being political, and in the same paragraph he becomes totally political and disingenuous. Donald, a paragraph is a distinct section of a piece of writing usually dealing with a single theme.

The phrase, “Through no fault of their own,” was also used by President Obama to describe the predicament of young children who were brought to America by their illegal, immigrant parents. It was Obama’s way to promote sympathy for the dreamers. He signed an executive order to create Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), which helped more than 800,000 young people and, through no fault of their own, many conservatives have been trying to end the program for years. Some of the dreamers have had children themselves by now.

We hear another ad hominem from many on capitol hill that if you give people unemployment compensation during the pandemic they will never want to go back to work. That is total BULLSHIT! First, where are the jobs they can go back to? WHY ARE THEY BLAMING THE VICTIMS? If you work at a movie theater, you aren’t staying home because you want to suck money from the government; your place of business is closed. There are also people trying to decide whether going back to work will lead to a COVID-19 infection that will kill them. Through no fault of their own, they care about staying alive.

When the numbers from two different reliable pollsters came in today, the news was not good for Trump. According to Rasmussen, only 26% of Americans say the US heading in right direction, and that was from the week ending on July 30, 2020. Other polls are backing up those numbers. Clearly, more than 70% of America thinks we are going in the wrong direction with our fight against the global pandemic.

Through no fault of their own, the press report facts and present questions that should be answered. Lying to the press, because of the ever-present ability to play back the actual words that were used just days, weeks or months ago, can not only embarrass a person in power but also drain their credibility on an issue. Many of us have now seen the brilliant interview of Donald Trump by Axios’ Jonathan Swan. When Swan confronted our President with the fact we have a large death count from coronavirus in the United States, this is what we got,

SWAN: “Oh, you’re doing death as a proportion of cases. I’m talking about death as a proportion of population. That’s where the US is really bad. Much worse than South Korea, Germany, etc.”

TRUMP: “You can’t do that.”

SWAN: “Why can’t I do that?”

TRUMP: “It is what it is. And we’ll still be lucky if we all live through it.”

This is the fucking President of the United States, throwing up his hands and ignoring reality to the point he cannot be trusted. But then, you already knew that.

There’s a lengthy list of the stupid things Trump has said. After his first hundred days in office, I documented many of them in my Trump impeachment book. If you have the paperback edition, check out the back cover. Added to that list are, “There are fine people on both sides,” and “I fell in love with Kim” (Kim Jong-Un of North Korea) and we should all remember what he said about COVID-19 on February 26, 2020, “This is a flu. This is like a flu. And you treat this like a flu. It’s a little like the regular flu that we have flu shots for.” Thirty-three days later, he took all that back and declared the coronavirus was not at all like the flu but “vicious!”  Wonder what changed his mind? People dying?

Through no fault but his own, Donald Trump fails to comprehend that his words have great power and influence. I think he doesn’t believe that anyone will remember the latest lie. He knows there are more than 156,000 dead Americans due to his administration’s lack of actions, plans and preventive measures, yet he insists that he and his minions have done a great job. The reason he repeatedly says that we are having a tremendous success fighting the virus is because he’s knows it’s not true. This might be a push, but does he become aroused sexually when he lies? Okay, yes, too far.

He says many things over and over and anyone who knows anything about media would tell him to just SHUT UP. The more he talks, the more he embarrasses himself and America. Through no fault but his own, he has given the other candidate lots of quotes to use IN CONTEXT in TV ads to lower his numbers. Buffoon is a word that comes to mind. Why would Donald Trump on national TV say the explosion in Lebanon was a “bomb” before anyone from that country determined that the blast was an accident? A good leader would have asked if anyone in the US is storing chemicals in large warehouses.

Fat Man in pickle

I remember a heated and bombastic interview on CBS’ Face The Nation with Stephen Miller, the head ideolog and xenophobe speech writer for Donald Trump, who used the words, “The powers of the president to protect our country are very substantial and will not be questioned.” That’s much like a reporter asking Trump a reasonable, fact-based question and getting pushback with the reply, You can’t do that!” Where do these people get the idea that they cannot be challenged? If the president’s power to protect our country is so substantial, then why hasn’t he used it to save us from this pandemic? He doesn’t have a clue about what a president is supposed to do. It’s just a game to him. He’s the banker sitting at the monopoly board but not engaged with reality. He’s not responsible for our losses and remains solely focused on how to print more money. FAILED PRESIDENCY!

Brand New Book for the Recovery

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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.”

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


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.


POLITICIANS SUCK!

A Vacuum Without Truth

Politicians are people, and all people have moments when they make senseless statements, but what a politician says matters. Due to our fabulous free press we get fact-checking, opinions and analysis of our “public servants.” Often we see their lies.

Politicians have tons of research and think they know the beliefs of the majority. Before a politician gets elected, he or she will say just about anything to get the job, but many times they don’t follow through on their statements and promises. It gets my goat when a politician continues their lies or misdirection instead of admitting they were wrong. They prefer to make up a second lie to cover the first. That’s why THEY SUCK!

Let’s get specific. Kelly Loeffler is a big donor who bought the Georgia seat in the Senate. She is a Republican who votes 100% the way Trump would want her to do. Ms. Loeffler and her husband handed Donald Trump a million dollars for his reelection. Loeffler has also been accused of insider trading. After she heard a security briefing on the possibility of COVID-19 coming to our shore, she and her husband sold a bunch of stocks. She wasn’t the only person in Congress who sold stock, and they were all questioned and investigated by the Security Exchange Commission. No one was charged. It’s important for you to know that Loeffler’s husband’s company owns the New York Stock Exchange.

Kelly looks like the typical wealthy politician who wants your money to add to the piles she already has. She donated $750,000 to Restore Our Future, a Super PAC supporting former Governor Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign. She and her husband recently gave the National Republican Senatorial Committee $247,500. Like I said, she bought her appointment. Trump wants Doug Collins, the House member from the 9th district in North Georgia, to be the Senator in Georgia. Trump believe Collins is more supportive of him. It’s too bad the Democrats don’t have a top-shelf candidate to run in this special “winner takes all” election. By the way, the other two candidates are African American Democrats.

That brings us to racism. I lived in Georgia for more than twenty years, and even as late as 2000 racism could be found on every corner. As one of the original 13 states, Georgia is especially important. The population of the peach state is about 10.6 million, which will probably soar to 12 million after the census. The 2018 US Census Bureau estimated that the state’s population is 58.3% White, 31.6% Black, 4.2% Asian and 2.9% consisting of smaller races and tribes. Kelly Loeffler has no intension of serving that 31.6% of African Americans voters. Here’s proof.

Senator Loeffler owns a minority share of Atlanta’s women’s professional basketball team, the Atlanta Dream. In a letter Loeffler recently sent to WNBA President Cathy Engelbert, she screeched that Black Lives Matter (BLM) is “totally misaligned with the values and goals of the WNBA and the Atlanta Dream, where we support tolerance and inclusion.” Instead of having WNBA players wear warmup shirts emblazoned with Black Lives Matter and courts painted with the same message, the senator urged the WNBA to put American flags on its jerseys as a “unifying rallying point for the American people.” Doesn’t the arena already have a US flag that we see while singing the National Anthem before every game?

In her letter, Loeffler went on to claim that the BLM movement harbors “anti-Semitic views” and promotes “violence and destruction across the country.” Then, like most Trump sycophants, she appeared on the Fox News channel to amplify her views. During her interview she misdirected with, “This is a very divisive organization based on Marxist principles. They threatened to burn the system down, literally and figuratively, if they don’t get what they want. This is an organization that seeks to destroy American principles, and I had to draw the line.” I’m glad she can draw, but can she read?

PERSONAL NOTE TO MS. LOEFFLER: Kelly, you really embarrassed yourself when trying to link BLM with Karl Marx. I’m not sure what you learned at the DePaul business school, but if you took the time to read you would see that Marx’ and Engel’s theories are more than racist, and they probably had a great influence on Adolf Hitler. They said, “Races endowed with superior qualities would boost economic development and productivity, while the less endowed ones would hold humanity back.” That is why Hitler killed Jews and why southern racists, the KKK and white supremacists killed black people. In short, dog, you are barking up the wrong tree.

I am sure Kelly Loeffler is a “nice person” and she would probably think I’m a jerk, but I would ask her to read the chapter Take a Knee for America in my most recent book, Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs. Most rich, white people have no grasp of the Black Lives Matter movement and its layers of nuance and power of its message. They aren’t saying a white person’s life doesn’t matter, but they are demanding their lives must mean more that what they currently have.

In February of this year, the House of Representative passed a law moving lynching onto the list of federal crimes. The vote was 410 to 4 and, oh, the fucked up four who voted against it are Ted Yoho (R-FL), Louie Gohmert (R-TX), Thomas Massie (R-KY), and Justin Amash (I-MI). It has taken us 120 years to get this far, but I am sure Kelly Loeffler will vote against it when that bill comes to the Senate for a vote,.

3,446 African Americans (that we know of) were lynched in America between 1882 and 1968. Murdering Black Americans with ropes was designed to intimidate them. Louie Gohmert serves as the US Representative from Texas’ first congressional district. I am sure he would never stand by and watch any human be lynched, but his actions and words are NOT helpful.

Kelly Loeffler’s comments are just more white people talk to stir up a base. They are also a cry for acceptance from Donald John Trump. I would ask Loeffler if she is against police brutality and wrongful deaths. I would ask if her relatives ever owned slaves. Mine have, and I am deeply embarrassed about it. Loeffler is not deaf on this subject, she’s brain dead about race relations in America today. She comes off like a 1950s politician, and they really SUCKED!

Senator Loeffler will lose the election because she failed to understand the need to serve ALL THE PEOPLE. It’s bad business for her to put down the viewpoints of her players (workers) and most African American basketball fans in Atlanta. If the players don’t play, there are no games. The players of the Atlanta Dream are asking Loeffler to sell her shares of the team and get out of the way. The American dream should trump the inanity of owner of the Atlanta Dream. The vacuum in this case is obviously between Kelly Loeffler’s ears. Next.

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.