NORMAL WINS

Guest Post from Jon Sinton:

The “Red Wave” turned out to be a puddle as normal overcame wretched, and Americans voted against the politics of grievance, lies, and conspiracy theories.

1.     The Senate remains in Democratic hands while the House is still too close to call [since publication, the Republicans won the House]

2.     The “Red Wave” that was supposed to sweep election deniers and fascist-adjacent anti-majority candidates into office were themselves swept into history’s dustbin;

3.     “Predictive” polling is wrong again.

Exit polls, which are definitively the only polls that matter, showed that while 20% of midterm voters supported ridiculous and repeatedly disproven election-denying lies and conspiracy theories, 80% of Americans aren’t conspiracy theorists, voted for normal candidates, are normal themselves, and demand normalcy from those we entrust to govern us.

Polls preceding the election said the economy was all that mattered; exit polls said different. Abortion and democracy, which seemed like such moving issues in the summer, had supposedly flamed out and taken a back seat to inflation. But the polls tuned out not to be predictive. As Karl Rove said on Fox News on Election Night, “Polling is broken. Let’s not kid ourselves. We had a golden era of polling when we all had landlines and we answered them. Now, anybody here got a landline?”

Predictive Polling is a gigantic waste of time and money. I spent a long time in the consumer research business performing studies for radio and television. It started out easy: you call people at random, seeking the right age/gender/socioeconomic combination. You pay them a small sum to participate in a “qualitative” focus group. (Qualitative research is where the opinions of a few respondents are extrapolated to reflect the opinions of society at large. To backstop focus groups, you also mount large, statistically valid, “quantitative” studies.)

By the early Nineties, as wireless phones became ubiquitous, finding qualified respondents for both types of research got harder. We upped the incentives, and that worked for a few years. But once the smartphone came along, people cut their landline service and became really hard to find. The real killer, though, was the fact we were running into a ton of “qualified refusals”—people who were the right demographic mix but hung up as soon as they knew they were being polled. As David Letterman used to joke, “If you’ve ever been poled, you know how painful that can be.”

Dwight Douglas, a retired political advertising analyst for Media Monitors, told me: “Most pundits overstate polls and underestimate the electorate.” Douglas also has thoughts on why polling has gone off the rails, “Viciousness and vitriol have ruined political research. [Plus,] the theory that a person says one thing on the phone—sometimes just to get off the phone—might be opposite from their purchasing or voting decision, is a valid supposition…Post-election research carries much more value than pollster predictions. After an election…you can ask, who did you vote for and why.” That’s where sentiment toward policy direction is best found.

The smartphone phenomenon meant that pollsters totally missed the youngest voters, who showed up for democracy and choice. John Dick, the CEO of CivicScience, today’s Bible of consumer research, said: “Gen Z made its presence known in a big way. I’ve told you repeatedly they’re going to save the world and now they’re strapping on their capes. If you aren’t laser-focused on understanding what makes today’s teens and young adults tick, let me know so I can short your stock.”

People love to talk; they love to make predictions based on their own desires, a phenomenon known as “confirmation bias.” Subject matter expertise is of course optional. Cal and UCLA Professor Scott Galloway put it this way, “Our brains make it easy for our ambition to exceed our ability: The Dunning-Kruger effect [section4.lt.acemlna.com] describes a demonstrated cognitive weakness, that the less we know about something, the more we overestimate our knowledge. That’s why stupid people, and people who make great cars and then buy media companies, are so dangerous.” (Apparently no one can resist deriding Elon Musk, who, in fairness, does make a pretty easy target.)

Right or mostly wrong, they never stop. Today, Morning Consult is revealing a poll that says Donald Trump would garner less than half of Republican primary votes if a vote was held today. That’s down from 57% in August. I’m not sure it’s believable or even relevant.

Reality TV got the Former Guy elected. “Apprentice” fans thought him to be a master of the business universe. He isn’t, and never was. What he was, was a TV star in a scripted drama that paraded as an unscripted drama. That’s the dirty little secret of Reality TV.

Meanwhile, he fights on, blaming pollsters and everyone but himself for his dangerous and silly slate of now-repudiated candidates. He hasn’t quite realized his need to call the Leg Warehouse, since he doesn’t have one to stand on.

©2022 Jon Sinton

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PROBLEM FOR THE PARTY

Trump Running, Major Challenge

Last night, Donald John Trump announced he has filed paperwork with the Federal Election Committee to run for president in 2024. It wasn’t much of a surprise; it was almost as if Trump were trying to beat some mysterious deadline. This will be his third race, and his move might have less to do with running for office and more to do with having a stay-out-of-jail card. He’s being naïve if he genuinely believes that running for president will provide inoculation against indictment. It’s just another lie he perpetrates and believes.

Now before we get into the minutiae of media manipulation and maniacal mental meanderings, let’s take a walk down history lane for a brief lesson in ego and politics.

In 1901, President William McKinley made a trip to the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York, where the new technology of an X-ray machine was demonstrated. Something horrible happened there. An anarchist shot the 25th president. After eight days in bed with his wounds, McKinley passed away because doctors were unable to remove the bullet. Some thought the new X-ray device could help surgeons seek the slug, but the machine’s inventors warned that a piece of metal exposed to X-rays would have a detrimental effect on the patient, so they did not use it. But wait, the story gets better.

McKinley

Some corrupt New York politicians and certain other elements of the political machinery hated Teddy Rosevelt, so they pushed him into the VP slot during McKinley’s second run. Well, McKinley won the election but lost horribly in Buffalo, therefore the crooked powerbrokers now had Theodore Rosevelt as the 26th President. They had gambled and lost.

Teddy Roosevelt served out McKinley’s second term (which only lasted one month due to death), but when running for reelection he said that, if elected, he would serve no more than one term. After winning reelection, Roosevelt began to regret his disclaimer. Nonetheless, he remained true to his word, and after completing his first elected term he left the office. Another Republican, William Taft, became president in 1909.

Roosevelt went off to explore the world and years after being away he returned to New York where the city threw him an outrageous welcome and parade. Teddy’s ego was ignited and he decided to challenge his buddy William Taft and run for president again. The fight went all the way to the Republican National Convention, where the egotistical Roosevelt lost the party’s nomination. In anger, Teddy marched out of the hall, got up on a flatbed truck and announced to the adoring press that he was forming a third political party, the Bull Moose Party.

What Teddy did to his own party and to his former friend Taft was unsightly and undignified. With a third party in the 1912 election, Roosevelt and incumbent William Taft each garnered roughly 25 percent of the popular vote. Princeton University President Woodrow Wilson won 42 percent of the vote to become the 28th US President.

Wilson was an unhealthy, bigoted racist human who was also woefully unskilled in world affairs. His lack of attention after World War I and inability to push back during the Treaty of Versailles discussions plunged Germany into financial ruin, which gave birth to the Nazi movement. One might be tempted to blame Teddy Roosevelt for this, but it’s impossible to know what he or Taft would have done at Versailles.

I think it’s safe to say Teddy Roosevelt’s ego was bigger than anything we’ve seen until Donald Trump, who’s now at his Mar-a-Lago resort screeching how he wants to be president again. Curiously, with his declaration that he is running again he’s also admitting that he LOST in 2020. So, I guess the big lie is useful only for raising money, not for legal declarations. But there is a bigger problem here.

If the Republican National Committee is smart, which is a giant stretch, they will rid themselves of the leadership of Ronna Romney McDaniel who is a Trump sycophant and terrible political operative. Just look at the midterm results. As for Florida Senator Rick Scott trying to unseat Mitch McConnell as minority leader in the Senate, well that’s much like appointing the fox to the night security position at the hen house. Rick Scott was the person who talked about eliminating Social Security and pushed the lousy slate of Trump-picked midterm bozo candidates. How in any logical world is this man ready to lead anything? And of course in a secret vote, Scott lost to McConnell who must have lewd pictures of everyone in the Senate.

Now we arrive at the crux of the matter. Let’s say that in about five hundred days a bunch of people run against Trump for the Republican nomination. Sure, we’ll have debates, and the primaries in states like Iowa, New Hampshire, North Carolina and others that might deal Trump a blow “like we’ve never seen before.” Further, let’s speculate they have the “come to Jesus meeting’ and tell Donald he’s not the guy. Oh, Boy!

Should that happen, I’ll lay money on Trump’s narcissistic personality disorder erupting and leading him to form a third party to burn down those who don’t like him. The action of an angry little boy taking his ball and going home will cause death and destruction along the way that will take decades to fix. By making a third-party run, Trump will pave the way for a Democratic win, even it if were Kamala Harris. Mark my words.

Politics is not a predictable concept, as proven by the recent slate of research figures. It’s always a gamble. We have no way of knowing what a given candidate might do as president. In this case, however, Trump is the devil we know, and he’s clearly stated he will get back at anyone in his way, pardon all the January 6th insurrections and, once again, tear away at American democracy.

As the Trump 2024 flags and signs go up, let’s all remember that America hates a loser. If Donald Trump wants to be the Buffalo Bills of politics it’s fine with me, but in the off chance he becomes president again I might be looking for a new place to live. Trump has just caused major problems for the RNC and those who work there. Watch out, kiddos. If you don’t make him president, he will take your ball and go home.

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SOCIAL MEDIA MADNESS

What in the world have we created?

I love technology. It makes life easier and helps people accomplish more in less time. Social media, however, may not be good for everyone. The internet was designed to be a tamper-proof means of communication, capable of surviving wars and natural disasters, and it works. Even though Ian the hurricane killed the power for days in our Florida home, when the electricity powered back up all our emails, tweets, posts and pontifications were there waiting for us.

Once the internet was fully in place, the computer geeks morphed from specialized complexities tantamount to morse code and ham radio to a very usable platform for the everyday letters and graphics of technically unsophisticated users. E-mail was all we really needed, but the ability of one to broadcast their ideas to many soon followed. Once the world wide web was unveiled, we humans found thousands of ways to use it. One of the big drivers during the early days of the web was pornography. You see, there is always a light and dark side to every technology, think Manhattan Project. Yes, the invention of the atomic bomb ended a war but also unleashed the fear and threat of human annihilation.

In the beginning, internet “bulletin boards” connected users. Next, social media became a slicked up and simplified outgrowth of that technology, and once some people became infused with its ego, narcissism and psychological reinforcements, however, the tech became a drug. Sure, Google wasn’t social media, but it delivered a straightforward way to locate specifics in the vastness of internet information. Forty years ago, I said the internet provided two basic needs, finding things and selling things. Not much has changed.

One of the menacing aspects of platforms like Tik-Tok, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and the rest is the instant gratification of launching whatever one has to say onto the world wide web. For the most part, that thrill is free to anyone in any country that hasn’t blocked the internet from its people. I misused the privilege of being a Tweeter and am now banned for life from that one. I have been put in Facebook jail more than once, and still don’t fully understand why they even care about anything I said. I must have pissed off another user, thus leading to my cancellation. Do I care? Well, yes, because I have always used social media less for socializing and more for promoting my books, web sites and opinions.

Operatives within Russia’s government eventually plowed their way into the threads and thoughts of US voters. These bots and bad guys demonized Hillary Clinton and got Donald Trump elected. I don’t have the desire, time or energy to debate this truth with you. If you don’t believe what I’ve just said then you are ill-informed, and if you are continuing the worship of the fat, false, orange prophet, you are a certified asshole.

Over time, social media companies became less communication platforms and more “publishers.” Under pressure from overreaching government goons and their own users, they began to censor their users. Oh, certainly for good reasons.

The platforms analyzed the traffic and figured out which were foreign influencer bots and who were pure humans. Then they decided to point out what they believed to be misinformation and turned down the demonic disinformation campaigns. Sadly, they were too late most of the time. Even after the social media platforms claimed to have “fixed things,” we still had mass shooters live streaming their deadly deeds. The social media companies were simply too big and stuffed with too much data, rendering them incapable of thwarting this activity. Most of the Facebook and Twitter accounts of the mass shooter lunatics are taken down only after their crimes have been committed, which is certainly not pro-active.

Elon Musk

Now, we have one of the richest guys in the world, with a hundred- million followers on Twitter deciding that “he and he alone” can fix what ails Twitter. To achieve this, he bought the company for $44 billion. Some experts say the day he took over Twitter Elon Musk lost $30 billion, yet Twitter is worth only $10 billion, and there aren’t enough people to fire or lay off to make a difference in Musk’s financial fiasco.

Lord Acton was the first person to say, “Absolute power corrupts absolutely,” and Elon Musk, like many humans having too much success, money and power, now believes his shit doesn’t stink. Well, he’s not always right, and what took place three days after his purchase of Twitter proves it.

Musk re-Tweeted a right-wing newspaper that claimed Paul Pelosi wasn’t attacked by a right-wing radical but received his skull fracture from a gay lover he brought home from a bar. Musk has since deleted that tweet, but really, it proves that without a firm, final filter Elon Musk will become Twitter’s number one problem. Ironically, his action removed any aura of him being an “arbiter of truth,” and if he wants Twitter to be a public forum of free and truthful speech, he should be banned from the platform immediately.

Just because someone has a lot of money doesn’t keep them from drawing graffiti on a bathroom wall. Yes, of course, “For a good time, call Elon,” but don’t hold your breath. He won’t answer your letters, take your calls or respond to any “common man.” I know, I’ve written him. Crickets…

It may sound like sour grapes because I was banned, but I believe that within three years Twitter will be gone. When Musk opens up the platform to all those exiled souls who had been sent away, we will all blow our wads telling him he’s full of shit. How will he manage it when he’s the target? He will ban us again. And as the advertisers leave because Elon allowed Trump to return to Twitter to tell us how fucked up the 2020 election was and how great he is, who will finance that overhead? I surely won’t.

This headline arrived even before the body cooled, “Twitter is planning to start charging $20 per month for verification.” I have no idea what that means, but if Elon thinks I will spend more than $200 a year for him to feel comfortable that I am not a bot, well, he can go jump in a river. Elon Musk is nothing but a rich-Republican, Putin-apologist. He doesn’t care about free speech, democracy or anyone other than himself. It’s all madness, and when he wakes up from his high-power stupor and tries to find some sucker to buy a depleted, demonic, dead bird, I wish him luck. Perhaps he needs to take a shut the fuck up pill and find ways to make better cars and rockets.

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THE ANSWER TO THE BORDER CRISIS

You might disagree with me

Let’s approach a subject with a clear mind and begin with two simple points. The first is America being an extremely popular place. Then there’s the notion that most problems, especially the difficult ones, are never solved by the most liked idea but only the best idea. As a starting point, let’s decide if we really have a “crisis.”

Let’s examine our record of letting people into our great land. There is an excellent article prepared and posted online by Princeton University you can see here. The report focuses on how changing immigration levels have affected the US economy and employment. Before 1920, immigration was mostly unrestricted and open. Sure, there were rules, and many were turned away, but the overall effort of building a nation was aided by the influx of people taking many of the hard labor jobs worked by slaves before the 1850s.

By 1920, the world was in turmoil because of a World War fought in Europe. America became uptight about foreigners and those who didn’t speak our language or look like us. According to the Princeton research, immigration fell from about a million people a year to 150,000. Let’s not forget the Chinese Exclusion Act that was passed by Congress in 1882. It provided an absolute ten-year ban on Chinese laborers wanting to immigrate to the United States and wasn’t rescinded until 1965. Yeah, look it up.

That brings us to the supposed “burden” at our southern border. It used to be mostly Mexicans coming through our “open” border, seeking employment or wanting to join up with family members living in the good old U.S. of A. Keep in mind that Mexicans are truly North Americans. Now, because of political turmoil in Central and South America, many people are making trips from their homelands to ours in search of opportunities and safety.

The latest immigration numbers are amazing, with a claim of six hundred thousand illegal aliens coming into the country last year and new numbers close to two million. Yes, this is a crisis, and it truly shows there is no immigration system at all. It’s a figment of someone’s imagination. I don’t want to go too far off the track, but I’ll insert a short story here.

I once lived in a very fine house in Atlanta, but it had a major problem of rain leaking into my basement every spring. After spending thousands of dollars trying to keep the water out, I finally found an expert who fixed the issue. He said, “Sooner or later water will find its way into your basement, so let it come in.” I looked at him like he was crazy and asked, “Okay, so what then?” He explained that when water comes in the best solution is making a way for it to get out. We dug a trench in the concrete foundation, a sunken river of sorts, which led the water to a drain on the low side of the house. The river was covered by a layer of concrete and we rebuilt the basement with no further flooding. Now what does this have to do with immigration?

There is always a price tag on a solution. I propose we let immigrants in, but we make the cost of entry high enough that we can deter some, while using the new funds to beef up courts, border agents and building a wall where necessary. My idea is each family of four or less would have to cough up $20,000. The large revenue stream could be used to pay for a better immigration program as well as job training, education, housing and the like. We obviously need more workers, not fewer, so it’s a win–win. My plan would also require immigrants to learn English.

What do we do with those who don’t pay the fee and come in anyway? Well, we do what we do now, send them back. We just can’t keep up with the numbers.

Some might react to this proposal as beneath us and our spirit of “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore.” Even in the non-restricted period before 1920, a potential US immigrant wouldn’t get in if they failed a basic IQ test. They were also turned away if they were physically unable to work or if they didn’t have a family or friend who would supply lodging.

Some might argue this will promote corruption, but we seem to have corruption in just about everything we do. Just this week some jerks stole millions of meals for school kids during the Covid pandemic. Maybe this wouldn’t happen so often If we had smarter people running our programs. We must also root out the bad guys with guns wanting a life of crime in America.

Martha’s Vineyard

There is a great line in the conclusion of the Princeton study, “…our research suggests the economic effects of restricting immigration are not so straightforward. While lost immigrant workers can be replaced by new workers (for example through outsourcing), they can also be replaced by new capital (for example through automation), which in turn might also replace U.S.-born workers.” That guy who owns the factory and sees an opportunity to lower his workforce with automation, does as much damage to US workers as immigration. That big boss who pays people in Vietnam to make his products, does more damage to our workers than a few million immigrants. When every business has a sign saying NOW HIRING, we need more workers, not less.

I say let the water in, but channel it to productive use, and make sure those managing the plan understand why people want to come to America. We are still that land of opportunity, but it will be beneficial if we can help those oppressive countries causing immigration influx to become more democratic and stable. But we must be careful and consider the possibility of unintended consequences. Sometimes our “fixing” another country just kills a bunch of people, wastes lots of money and lives and in the end, the place is no better. Just look at Afghanistan and Iraq.

And should you think my idea is crazy, well, we haven’t tried it. it just might work.

 

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TOO BUSY RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT

The Games People Play

With all that is happening in the world and at home, why do we need a fraternity brother politician wasting our money on stunts and pranks that help no one? While tons of pollution got dumped into Florida waterways, the state’s governor was on TV talking about how the US President wasn’t doing his job! Ron DeSantis wasted $615,000 on airmailing migrants to Martha’s Vineyard. WHY? Just think about how many school meals $615,000 could have purchased for our kids. I am sick and tired of this self-righteous leader prancing around for a sound bite, when the demanding work of compromising, getting things done and improving the state is pushed aside for fifteen-seconds of fame. DeSantis is EXACTLY what is wrong with America. He’s a smart man misusing his intellect trying to convince some people that he alone can fix things.

BIG MOUTH LOSER

Only a whole family can fix a problem, not a demigod. It was amazing how the community of Martha’s Vineyard reacted and acted when presented with that challenge. They brought clothing, food and love to the matter, and people who came here for a better life believe they made the right choice. They are the champions, not our short-sighted governor who told us on TV he was sending the migrants to greener pastures. They aren’t livestock, Mr. DeSantis; they are people.

Governor Ron is pledging to spend all of the two million dollars he personally put in the budget to sky bus immigrants thinking he can score points with the people who hate them. Doesn’t he realize this was done during the Jim Crow era when southern racist governors wanted to muster up some white sheet support? Probably not, he went to Yale, not Grambling.

It’s totally ridiculous that the person running a state with a population of twenty-one million citizens thinks he’s solving a problem by airlifting fifty people to one of the most beautiful areas of the country. Wait until the South American TV news channels show how well they were received — free food, free clothing and so kindly taken care of. It’s a travel ad.

DeSantis obviously believes it’s more important for him to go viral than help the citizens of the state he governs. Go home, Ronald, and ask your mother to wash your large basket of dirty laundry!


I DON’T LIKE THE TRUMP FAMILY

Let me tell you why

I am a gigantic news junky. You could say I am a crash test dummy for political abuse and distrust. My phone is subscribed to every news flash notification I can find, and when a news story breaks, it vibrates off the table. Perhaps someday I will figure out why I do this to myself, but for now let’s talk about my least favorite subject, Donald Trump and his terrible family.

I have never liked Donald John Trump, without a single doubt. From the combover, to the phony smile, to the poor use of makeup, to the fake existence as a human being, I’m not a fan! Long before he ran for president, he’s been the kind of person who makes America look parsimonious, petty and paltry. Since Trump became President and the aftermath of the dumpster fire where he couldn’t admit he lost an election, I have an unhealthy disregard for the man.

Nice Racket

Today, I’ll focus on his clown car of a family, who believes all the riches of the world should be laid upon a silver platter before them. Donald Trump has never felt any empathy for human beings outside of his DNA, but even within his familial circle he picks winners and losers. In the Donald’s mind Tiffany is a loser because she isn’t the phony, silicon-injected princess Ivanka Trump has become at the hands of her fawning father.

I don’t like complainers, and all the Trump men use the tools of ridicule and debasement to argue against those with whom they disagree. As for the women, they come in two boxes. One, the always loyal, former model, trophy wife, Melania. The other poses as intellectually capable, but her lower-octave, vocal fry attempt at sophistication is knee-capped by the worthless babble that drips out of her pie hole — yes, Ivanka. The disrespect of burying the kids’ mom Ivana on a golf course, shows they are despicable bottom feeders, floating turds in the punchbowl.

My main gripe is their constant attempts to convince us things are bad. Their negativity attempts to pull others down with them. Their narcissism shields them from public criticism, yet deep inside they have been groomed to need so much attention and love they are unbearable as people.

I am pissed off that the FBI had to raid his Mar-a-Lago estate and beach club. Why? Because of all the airtime Trump has acquired to bullshit about his warped view of the entire incident. Right after he was elected president, I attended a banquet for my local botanical gardens. I was seated next to lovely lady who was dating a lawyer friend of mine. This woman was not only wealthy, but delightful in every way. While conversing she asked, “What do you think of our new President?” I smiled, “He’s an idiot.” She balked, “No he’s not,” and that changed our relationship. I never mention politics with her and wonder why a highly educated, well-traveled, well to do and articulate person would think Trump was anything other than a silly buffoon of a con man.

I often hear people say, “I like Donald Trump because he tells it like it is.” To that I say, “He’s a liar. He never tells it like it is!” Those who think the opposite don’t read, don’t know or don’t care about the truth at all. I don’t think less of those in his rapture, but I do feel sorry for them. Think about all those Germans who stood by and watched Hitler kill millions of Jews. Yes, the holocaust is worse than an insurrection, but that whole mess in Germany was caused by one person who decided they were above law and order.

Think about all those Republican Representatives and Senators who still believe Trump was a good president. When Trump gets pissed off at anyone in power, he accuses them of dividing the country, this coming from the king of all dividers. Polarity has always existed, but Donald Trump has taken it to an extreme. There’s a guy in my neighborhood with a huge Blue Lives Matter sticker on his car who claims the FBI and DOJ are corrupt and should be defunded. So, if you go to your bank and all your money is gone and there is no FBI or DOJ, who are you going to call? I am sure the answer is not Ghostbusters.

I’ll bottom-line it. I dislike families who think they are better than others. I don’t like the notion of one person being better than another, especially when that specialness is based on fraud, lies and hate. The Trumps abhor anyone who gets in their way. Mothers and fathers, all the way back to the days of the Drumpf’s, have taught they are better than you and me. They are grifters full of boast and deception who don’t deserve most of what they have. Prison for Donald, well, okay if that is what you want, but I would be satisfied if every current member of the Trump family would be banned from running for any public office. Yes, the sins of the father should prevent his offspring from ever being in charge of anything.

But then again, maybe a little prison time will satisfy me, especially the photo op.

 

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THE WAR ON THE POOR

A classless society is beyond reach

One lesson in the teachings of a holy man two-thousand years ago truly stuck. Here it is, “Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them” (Matthew 7:12). You can call it the “golden rule” or you can call it the overarching philosophy of Christianity, but I call it freedom to pursue happiness, peace and self-esteem.

Let me place this in a modern perspective. I would never tell the Governor of Florida what he can or cannot do in his bedroom, and I certainly don’t want him to restrict my actions or freedom of speech based on his personal dogma, but that’s exactly what he does. As an older, retired person who is financially comfortable, this is more philosophical than a face-to-face fight, but for many poor or disadvantaged people this is the large boot on the neck that Justice Ginsberg talked about, a metaphor for control through laws and proclamation.

Let’s consider this first bit of reality, Roe vs. Wade. You can talk about what is or isn’t moral or what was decided rightly or wrongly, but by eliminating convenient and legal family planning you are pushing poor people of all color back into a box of arrested development. When a woman cares for one or more children, she necessarily must give up other things. If the child is unwanted because of rape, incest or a dominate male who was more interested in sex than support, she will likely enter the unending circle of multiple jobs, lack of money, and in some cases, lack of supervision of those she brought into the world. How can any sane democracy allow their government to dictate such a personal decision? When the laws of the land impose a ceiling on economic and upward mobility, it’s simply war on the poor.

We would rather shovel up the sleeping homeless and dump them in a camp outside of town than confront the problem of how they got there in the first place. It’s totally amazing to me that in the richest country in the world we have many families without food, and what some experts believe is close to half a million homeless people. How can we let this happen and still claim to be a moral nation? The reality that we throw out 80% of the food grown or processed, is unforgiveable.

Now, there is another virus going through the land based on the stupid concept that college is too expensive and not necessary to be successful, but I find it annoying that people put down education. Oh, I get it, some neo-conservative and libertarians claim college educators with tenure are there to groom our precious offspring and lure them into a liberal, bullshit-laden, cancel-culture American cult, but I thought going to college made one smarter.

People with college educations live better and vote differently than those who wander around the capitalistic bullfight ring trying to spear a high-paying job. Sometimes they get “replaced” by more educated and smarter people, then they walk around with a chip on their shoulder labeled “disenfranchised.” College is hard, and the discipline to get to the promised land comes with a judgement of who you are compared with others your age. When you get booted out for goofing off, that’s on you. If you leave early because you have a huge business dream, like Mark Zuckerberg, you might find yourself not driving a plush car when the marketplace rejects your idea. Hey, college is a fantastic way to find out what you might have in the brain of yours.

The real driver here is the cost of education. There is a general resentment that after you did the work you must constantly excel to pay off the debt. Bill Maher, who tells jokes and has stood out in his craft, berates college because of what they have become not what they offer. A person highly gifted in a certain discipline, software coding for example, can go places without an education, but working in an advanced science like nuclear engineering requires a college education.

But let’s get back to the war on the poor. We know that minorities and less advantaged people in America have a harder time qualifying, staying in and graduating from school. Of course, highly valued student athletes don’t need a piece of paper because of their gift, but the number of those lucky ones is so small we shouldn’t even consider their stories. The focus should be placed on the people who spent their whole life training, working and exercising but didn’t make a professional league. They may have enjoyed sixteen exciting Saturdays in their college life, but then… nothing. And the question arises, what are they qualified to do? There aren’t that many professional sports organizations in other countries to take all these former college “stars.”

Conservatives rail against socialism but liberals don’t have an answer, a plan or the will to pass Bernie Sanders’ proposal of free college for everyone. Okay, but Bernie, college is not for everyone. Its very nature limits access to those who qualify, but then, many desks, dormitory rooms and books are held by those so-called “legacies,” the offspring of the parents and grandparents who attended the same school. It’s a hierarchy that defies logic, but those older family members produce large endowments and cash flow and we look the other way when a C-student takes the place of an A-minority with no athletic prowess. And so, the beat goes on.

Attending college will neither lower crime nor produce an idyllic, equal and happy society, but it will make people smarter. Sadly, the lower percentage of college students these days will likely bring us more Marjorie Taylor Greenes. By the way, she attended a university and look what happened. She has a business degree from the University of Georgia, a great school, that produced a total idiot. How did she even graduate?

The poor are being pressed to the sidewalks of America by a new class of bigots, fools and racists. Those who fight against affordable housing are waging war with the poor. Those who want a total ban on abortion are declaring war on women, particularly poor women. And those who put down college education, are myopic misfits. Why the war on science, education and the poor? We quoted Jesus to start this post, and it’s clear that many Republicans in Congress don’t give a shit about poor people; or even obeying the “golden rule.” And I’ll go so far to say they are the money changers. They are changing your money into big houses they give to their children.

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POLITICAL PERSECUTION

Big Fat Loudmouth, Loser and Liar

We live in what must be the most attention deficient country in the world. One moment, my phone is blowing up with news about the raid on Donald Trump’s broke-dick mansion in Florida, and the next all those alerts are replaced by notifications that Serena Williams plans to retire. Okay, suddenly that has become more important.

I chuckled last night when I heard the news that Mar-a-Lago was under “siege” by members of the FBI, who spent hours at the former President’s residence confiscating what are probably government-owned documents. Of course, I was not at all surprised by the outcries of Republicans and right-wing lunatics. They turned on the Capitol Police and now they’ve turned on the FBI. Why? Because they somehow believe they are perpetrating a political action brought on by the “deep state.”

If you are wondering about the reason for the pre-dawn raid I’ll start at the beginning, but full disclosure first. Yes, I am one of those people who never liked the Donald when I lived in New York, hated his TV show and became depressed when he was elected President. I didn’t think Hillary Clinton was special, it’s just that I knew Trump would never take his presidency seriously. Throughout his life he has lied about everything, and I never want a liar to be my president. That is why I wrote and published this book two-hundred days into his first, and hopefully only, term.

First, why did the search take place so early? Well, that’s simply what the FBI does. Their raids and search warrant executions always take place early in the day. Next, why so many agents? Well, the more agents the faster it goes, and the procedure is then less onerous. Then there’s that word “raid.” Make no mistake, it was a true FBI raid and those who oppose use of that word are pedantic losers. The Federal Bureau of Investigation is part of the Department of Justice, and they always operate politely when executing a search warrant, unless they fear violence, death or harm to the public, in which case they break and enter with guns at the ready.

Yes, there was a search warrant, and if the lug-nuts over at Fox “News” would have taken the time to file a freedom of information act request they would have gotten a copy. A credible and respectable news outlet would have researched and revealed why the FBI was executing a search at a former president’s home. The fact that the home is also a private club probably complicated the issue, but still, no one is above the law.

Yes, the raid took place when Trump was away, but there’s nothing conspiratorial about that. Donald was in New York for a deposition by the state’s attorney general concerning possible state and federal tax violations. The FBI and Secret Service coordinated the raid; they both knew when and how it would go down.

Are you wondering what Trump did to deserve a search warrant? Well, the 45th President removed government owned documents from the White House and brought them into his home in violation of  The Presidential Records Act of 1978. The National Archives and Records Administration requested that Trump return all records and he didn’t, so the government had every right retrieve them. Should Donald be convicted of this crime he will never be able to run for Federal office again, no matter how popular he might be with the MAGA-heads. Of course, the jury is still out about the kind of brains in those heads.

I suppose the National Archives told the DOJ that Trump didn’t comply with their request and thus came this very public raid, which could lead to an indictment and arrest. If they find stolen materials in Trump’s possession, and he claims he didn’t know, that won’t fly with a federal judge who would most likely issue an arrest warrant.

Wouldn’t it be ironic if such a petty crime would finally bring down Teflon Don? Here’s this loudmouth, loser and liar of a man busted for shoplifting. It’s not surprising he might get caught up in a technical issue rather than a seriously smoking gun with his fingerprints all over it. He’s the complete idiot I have always known him to be.

Donald J. Trump’s ego and narcissism are so powerful he cannot believe any person or institution has the right to control him. He will continue to claim the 2020 election was rigged because his fragile ego will not allow him to think he lost , and his followers feel the same. Well, get it through your thick heads; he got fewer votes than the other guy. It’s over, and a true political leader would have long ago conceded and moved on. Trump can’t, however, because he’s addicted to the cheers and love he didn’t get as a child.

I, like many Americans, don’t need to see him behind bars, although that would be a righteous outcome in so many ways. I am sure Joe Biden would never pardon him, but the next Republican president probably would. A proper compromise would be banning Donald Trump from ever again running for federal office. I am not willing to allow his mental deficiencies to ruin the country I love.

It’s time for Trump’s sycophants to stop whining about this raid. Sure, have your hearings and confront law enforcement in Congress, but just remember to keep your nose clean, because if you break the law you can expect to be investigated. That is what the term Law and Order means. Got it?

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RASPUTIN, EPSTEIN, GAETZ

The Way Justice Works

You might be wondering what Grigori Rasputin, Jeffrey Epstein and Matt Gaetz have to do with each other. First, notice I didn’t call them gentlemen. Each of these three had or have a perverted and socially unacceptable viewpoint about women.

Let’s start with a look into Grigori Yefimovich Rasputin. This chap was a peasant from Siberia who gained power through his convincing fraud of healing the imperial couple’s only son Alexei, who suffered from hemophilia. He was a divisive figure at the court of Emperor Nicholas and Empress Alexandra after being endorsed by some leaders in the Russian Orthodox Church. Although Rasputin held no position in the church, he was touted by many as a mystic, visionary and prophet, but he was nothing but a charlatan.

The Empress believed Rasputin helped Alexei and rumors swirled that he had seduced not only her but also the four grand duchesses. Eventually the truth behind Rasputin’s power over the Czar and his wife led to the belief that he was harmful to the empire and nothing but a “false prophet.” Some deeply religious types labeled him as the “Antichrist.” In 1916, they all killed him.

Rasputin, Far Right

Okay, let’s discuss Jeffrey Epstein; a guy you probably know about. He was a self-made financier and conned many smart and powerful men who elevated him in the world of investment banking. He convinced powerful politicians, attorneys and royalty that he was a legitimate businessperson who could make them loads of money. Two notable examples are  A.G. William Barr’s father and the men who ran Bear Stearns. Epstein was fired from Bear Stearns, and, to this day many cannot  figure out how Jeffrey attained his wealth. Maybe his “hobby” provided a way to influence and control powerful people. Epstein was into sex trafficking and, like a drug addict who gets into the business of drug sales to satisfy his own addiction, Jeffrey’s control of underage girls was part of his plan. He sampled the goods, gave some of the stock to his friends and targets and used evidence of the escapades to increase his personal cash flow.

After buying his way out of trouble several times, Epstein was finally nailed to the cross by Julie K. Brown, a tenacious investigative reporter for the Miami Herald newspaper. Her reporting disclosed Epstein was given an unbelievable deal while exposing the corruption of R. Alexander Acosta, the federal prosecutor in Florida who brokered the deal for Epstein. When the story broke, Acosta was Trump’s Secretary of Labor and forced to resign. Coming back from one of his many offshore love nests, Federal Marshalls arrested Epstein and incarcerated him without bail in a New York prison. After an alleged attempt on his own life, Epstein was found dead in his jail cell. Suspiciously, that night the security cameras were turned off and the guards on duty claimed to have fallen asleep and missed their rounds. Experts have doubts whether Epstein committed suicide and many facts raise the specter of murder. There are powerful people who would have wanted him silenced.

Yes, I hear you saying those are really horrendous things, but how can Matthew Louis Gaetz II, US Representative for the First District of Florida, be compared to Rasputin or Epstein? Let me help you with that.

It would be easy to state Gaetz’ undying love of Donald Trump is somehow at the root of things, but he shares that flaw with many in Congress. His father, who was the most powerful Republican in Florida for years, is also named Donald. Perhaps Trump is a surrogate father, but let’s move on. Trump isn’t relevant here.

In December of 2017, Gaetz was the only representative to vote against the Combating Human Trafficking in Commercial Vehicles Act, a bill allocating additional government resources to help combat human trafficking. The United Nations defines human trafficking as “The recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of persons for the purpose of exploitation.” Gaetz tried to justify that his vote against this was driven by his “small government principles,” but something else soon surfaced that made his vote disingenuous.

Chuckie & Matt

In January of 2020, the US Secret Service received a tip that, in April 2018, five months after his vote, Gaetz along with his friend Joel Greenberg, the Seminole County tax collector, were allegedly involved in producing fake IDs. Greenberg was indicted in August 2020 on an array of charges, including sex trafficking a seventeen-year-old girl in 2017 and creating fake IDs to facilitate other sex trafficking exploits. Remember what Gaetz voted against?

Federal officials next investigated some of Gaetz’ related activities. In late 2020, the Justice Department opened an investigation into Gaetz for allegedly sex trafficking the same seventeen-year-old girl in 2017 and whether he had violated federal sex trafficking laws by paying her to travel with him across state lines. As part of his plea bargain, Greenberg cooperated with the investigations into Gaetz and others. Remember, this took place in the State of Florida, where officials looked the other way in the Jeffrey Epstein sex trafficking case.

If you’re thinking “witch hunt,” you are wrong. Greenberg has testified he used a website to lure young women for sex. He introduced them to Gaetz who also had sex with them. Evidence, including mobile payment receipts, suggest Gaetz had illegally exchanged money for sex. Investigators found a 2018 Venmo transaction record showing Gaetz sent nine hundred dollars to Greenberg, containing a memo that named the woman. The disgraced tax collector then relayed money containing the memos “tuition” and “school” to three women, one of whom was eighteen years old.

So, why hasn’t Matt Gaetz been indicted? Here we go again friends, it’s another lucky sperm rich kid who has the power to stop an investigation and charges. Will politicians ever gain respect for law enforcement and the judicial process? Here we have an alleged sex trafficker who is not only allowed to be free but has the power to vote against the laws to protect the victims.

I was so proud of the way former Mike Pence Chief of Staff, Mark Short handled Gaetz’ prediction that Pence will never be president, “Well, I don’t know if Mike Pence will run for president in 2024, but I don’t think Matt Gaetz will have an impact on that. In fact, I’d be surprised if he’s still voting. It’s more likely he’ll be in prison for child trafficking by 2024.”

News and social media are making a big deal about that putdown, but they should be nailing Gaetz to the wall about his pronouncement that “Women who support abortion rights are too fat and ugly to get pregnant.” I wonder what his mother thinks about that line. Maybe we should interview his wife about her husband’s constant misogynistic comments, actions and crimes? In August in 2021, Matt Gaetz married his girlfriend Ginger Luckey, who is the sister of Oculus VR founder and major Republican donor Palmer Luckey. I guess Ginger is no longer lucky because Matt continues to view women, politics and power through a virtual reality headset where he always wins and gets the girl at any cost. I wonder when the cost of sex trafficking is going to be paid.

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