CONGRESS IS THE REAL PROBLEM

Reading is mandatory logic, not so much

If you thought that just because an individual is elected to Congress, they have a certain level of intelligence, you would be incredibly incorrect. It has become vividly clear that anyone who has enough money, an intriguing rap, the gift of gab or a reasonably lackluster competitor can get elected.

I’ve never looked at popularity polls to determine how well a given Congressperson was doing, but there does come a time when it becomes necessary to judge the work of an elected representative. Unfortunately, we have to wait way too long to do something about electing the wrong person. Thus, the name of this very blog. Yes, we can vote every two years on Representatives and every six years on Senators, but that’s not fast enough in today’s sped-up reality and news cycles. Six years is a wait much too long for undoing a bad Senator.

Recent polling is not good for Congress. Last month, a Gallup Organization survey found that only 28% of those researched approved of the job the House and Senate are doing, while 69% disapproved. And I might add that 3% had no opinion. Who are those people?

Gallup Research

2001 set the highest mark in the ongoing Gallup polls. That’s when Congress was voting to go to war in Afghanistan and invade Iraq due to trumped up lies about weapons of mass destruction. This underscores the reality that even when we like them, Congress is often doing the wrong things for the right reasons.

And that brings us to the politics of it all. No member of Congress wants the United States government to default. Any member who does should be arrested and charged with treason, but there’s a word that has lost its power and seriousness. When the former president was told that that some of his allies and administration officials had broken the law, he simply pardoned them. There are members of Congress who think investigating the insurrection of January 6th is bad for America. Truth is, Republicans fear becoming tarnished should the public come to fully understand their involvement in Donald Trump’s effort to “Stop the Steal.” Really?

Delusional Idiot

Congressional grifters use information gained from subcommittees and intelligence briefings to shape their investments and give themselves an advantage in preserving and increasing their wealth. Sure, they add rules and polices to help their tribe along the way, but they have never passed legislation that makes it hard or impossible for them to profit from their positions in Congress. If they were serious about making America better, they would pass potent regulations about financial disclosure, term-limits and the amount of political campaign contributions they can personally use. The true reason Donald Trump hasn’t declared his candidacy for the 2024 presidential election is to avoid disclosure of the cash in his campaign coffers. He’s a grifter.

When a member of a party, especially a leader or whip, tells his or her caucus how they are going to vote on a bill before it’s even debated, they are no better than the political bosses of the 1940s and 1950s who manipulated their members and thwarted any discussion on the merits of proposed legislation. Have we really grown from there?

Making law requires intense labor and demands tons of reading. When I was working with a local Little League group in Atlanta years ago, I volunteered to revise and publish the rules of the games. What a mistake! First of all, there were different rules for each level of play and all the rules had to be in-sync with the national rules from headquarters in Williamsport, PA. That project ended up as four packets of fifty pages each.

Well, imagine having to go through 1,500 pages over a weekend. That would be like reading three 500-page books. It’s most likely that the average Congressperson never reads an entire budget bill. They direct their staffs to find the things they ardently object too, or the things that are really good for them. The underlying words and meanings no longer have objective analysis until laws are passed. And this playing with the economic status of the country you claim to love just to shit on the other guy’s party, how many US citizens approve of that?

The demonizing of Joe Biden will happen no matter what he does or says. The media seems to like kickin’ old Joe to the ground right now. Sure, his numbers are down but anyone who says the economy is bad is ignoring three major realities.

Kissing the ring

First, under Donald Trump, Congress passed a major tax cut by restricting the ways corporations house their money. The corporate tax rate was changed from a tiered tax rate ranging from 15% to as high as 39%, depending on taxable income, to a flat 21%. At the same time, some related business deductions and credits were reduced or eliminated. Yes, stocks soared, and corporations bought back stock, but the disparity between the wealthy 1% and the rest of us grew. Yay, score another one for the rich people!

Second, Trump blew the federal response to Covid-19. It was his “Katrina,” only on a national level. His advisers can take some of the blame, but the more he told us it was nothing, more and more of us realized it was truly something, and that something was really, really bad. You can’t go to a restaurant that is closed, and a restaurant without enough employees provides an unpleasant experience. Just like Obama inherited the financial crisis, Biden was handed the challenge of righting a post-coronavirus tanked economy. Sadly, far-right saboteurs think fighting against the vaccine is good for their political gains even while their opinions are killing us.

Third, forced errors like the Afghanistan evacuation, the rising conflict at the southern border and our selling submarines to Australia are front and center. We need to remember that Trump pulled out of northern Syria and 130,000 Kurds, our allies in the fight against ISIS, were forced to flee their homes and hundreds of them were killed. Trump wanted to invite the Talban to negotiate a peace treaty, but he excluded the legit government of Afghanistan. Why were we so surprised when the Taliban took over?

While all the pontificators and pundits are overanalyzing the “Biden Doctrine,” it might make more sense to keep the government open and pay our bills. Why are we tolerating Republican actions to make America weak? It’s just a budget bill, and not any different than Trump shutting down the government because he thought it would hurt the Democrats. He even called it the “Schumer Shutdown.” Let’s see, how did that work out for him? Oh yeah, he’s not the president anymore.

Let’s focus on just one fact. Joe Biden’s approval rating is 43% while that of Congress is 28%. Who is the fairest in the land?

BRAND NEW BOOK

We knew that the great divide in America would have a major effect on the presidential election in the year 2020, but something else was lurking that we didn’t anticipate. The world suffered a global pandemic of Covid-19, and everything changed. The lockdown motivated one author to write MASHED POTATOES: Covid, Cancer & Comfort Food. The cover ironically claims the book is a “humorous” recollection of 2020, but one might ask, “Where was the humor?” This is a work of survival to motivate those who desire to get beyond Covid-19, beat cancer and defend our precious Democracy.  The world got Covid, the writer got cancer and we all ate copious amounts of comfort food. It’s time to swallow the truth, survive the madness, take a large spoon and savor some delicious MASHED POTATOES. Get some here. 

Book for the Recovery – Build Back Better!

How to Hire Great People: Tips, Tricks and Templates for Success

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

 

New Modern Art – Doodles and Cartoon Website

www.thedreamwindow.com

 

 

 


GUARANTEES & WARRANTEES

Spoiled Americans with Unreasonable Demands

I am sick and tired of people complaining. I live in a town where the median age is 69.1 years of age, and old people love to nit-pick, but I’m turned off by it. Maybe they have lived so long they believe all things should be working perfectly. Well, they just aren’t. I find myself repeatedly asking these days, “Why is that? For example, when I google Pandora 50% of the time I get links for the jewelry company and the other half I get those of the music service. They should know I use the music service and present only those.

People quibble over the least important aspects of life. Let’s take Mike Huckabee. He’s 65-years-old, so he’s bound to say something stupid half the time he opens his mouth. But his daughter, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, is only 38 and she’s running for Governor of Arkansas. You’d think she would know how to avoid saying stupid things, but no! Here’s a little back story for you. Arkansas currently is one of two states with the largest increase in Covid-19 cases. So, young Sarah Huck-a-wanna-bee rode to the rescue and wrote an op-ed piece to convince more Arkansans to get vaxxed.

If you want to read her diatribe you will find it here, but let me throw out some tidbits. Ms. Huckabee opens with a rather astonishing and unbelievable remark, “Like many of you, I have had a lot of misinformation thrown at me by politicians and the media during the pandemic.” Really Sarah, what exactly did they say that was WRONG and why did you wait so long to get the vaccine you gratuitously labeled the “Trump vaccine?” In your overbearing idol worshipping you mentioned his name 17 times in your article. Yes, okay, we can thank the former president for giving big Pharma the money needed to start the gears turning, but he did nothing to promote confidence in the vaccine. 95% of everything he said when the vaccines were rolling out had to do with the big lie about the election. So, what good was he?

My frontal lobes burst into fire when reading, “I was also reassured after President Trump and his family were vaccinated. If getting vaccinated was safe enough for them, I felt it was safe enough for me.” Yes, young Sarah, but why wasn’t Trump promoting the vaccine and its effectiveness? If he’s responsible for this great thing, why does he never mention it? His only recent claim was people stopped getting the shot because they don’t trust the Biden Administration. Really? What does that have to do with the TRUMP CURE?

Ms. Sanders proclaims that events and church should not have been shut down, and there shouldn’t have been mask mandates. Sarah adds, “As the number of covid cases and hospitalizations once again rise exponentially in Arkansas, information is emerging that I hope people will consider. Recent data demonstrates that those Arkansans who are not vaccinated are at significantly greater risk for serious illness from covid. In fact, 98 percent of covid patients currently hospitalized in our state and 99 percent of recent covid deaths were people who were not vaccinated. It’s clear that the Trump vaccine works and is saving lives.” Sarah, the immunizations are neither the “Trump vaccine” nor the “Biden vaccine,” they are AMERICA’S vaccines. We paid for them. They are being made by Moderna, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson, not by any administration or president. Get off your hyper-partisan high horse and start making sense.

No Trump on the label

It’s a ridiculous approach to ask people to do what is medically right for America by wrapping it in a Trump flag with the expectation that vast numbers of people will now stick a needle in their arms. All Sarah Huckabee Sanders has done is confuse people, which seems to be easy to do in Arkansas. I mean, really, they elected both Bill Clinton and Mike Huckabee as governors and now they will probably put her in that chair. OMG. I want my razor back — to kill myself.

There are no guarantees in life and during a global pandemic words truly matter. More than once, Baby Huckabee lied to us from the press room in the White House. As they asked Michael Cohen, “Why would we believe you now?” Does anything Sarah Huckabee Sanders says carry meaning? She does point out that, “Many of our hospitals are now dangerously close to maximum capacity due to rising covid cases.” Yeah, but is that true? Sorry, I am being ironic there. I hear those hospital statistics from reliable sources, you know, the media you go out of the way to malign in your piece. You speak with forked tongue.

The bottom line? Sanders is merely using vaccination to pitch her run for Governor. She’s not a worthy messenger. If it’s a Trump vaccine, why isn’t his picture on every vial? You know, like Colonel Sanders’ face is on every bucket. Sarah, you could’ve gotten the shot seven months ago. Where were you then? Perhaps too busy trying to overturn an election? I’m glad you got the shot but hope you don’t get the votes.

BRAND NEW BOOK

We knew that the great divide in America would have a major effect on the presidential election in the year 2020, but something else was lurking that we didn’t anticipate. The world suffered a global pandemic of Covid-19, and everything changed. The lockdown motivated one author to write MASHED POTATOES: Covid, Cancer & Comfort Food. The cover ironically claims the book is a “humorous” recollection of 2020, but one might ask, “Where was the humor?” This is a work of survival to motivate those who desire to get beyond Covid-19, beat cancer and defend our precious Democracy.  The world got Covid, the writer got cancer and we all ate copious amounts of comfort food. It’s time to swallow the truth, survive the madness, take a large spoon and savor some delicious MASHED POTATOES. Get some here. 

Book for the Recovery – Build Back Better!

How to Hire Great People: Tips, Tricks and Templates for Success

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


DARK MONEY, LIGHT REASONING

When contributions become bribes

If you are under forty years of age, you probably don’t know about the concept of “equal time” for radio and television. It was a rule codified by the Communications Act of 1934, and it required broadcasters to allow candidates to purchase airtime at the same rate as their “most favored advertiser,” meaning at the lowest possible rate. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rightfully was concerned that broadcast stations could easily manipulate the outcome of elections by presenting just one candidate’s point of view while excluding those of all other candidates.

I’m a former broadcaster and I remember times of having a candidate talking and joking on the air with the morning crew for twenty minutes. Afterward, I had to send a letter to all the other candidates offering them the same time. Of course, games were sometimes played. If the “snake handler Nazi” candidate demanded equal time, the station gave him twenty minutes on Sunday at 4AM.

The equal time rule should not be confused with the now-defunct FCC fairness doctrine, which was introduced in 1949. It required the holders of broadcast licenses to present controversial issues of public importance and to do so in a manner that was honest, equitable, and balanced. The FCC eliminated the policy in 1987.

This brings us to Citizens United v. FEC (Federal Election Commission), a 2010 Supreme Court case whose ruling asserted that corporations are people and removed reasonable campaign contribution limits. This allowed corporations and unions to use dark money in attempts to influence election results by advertising for or against one or more candidates. Wow, how did we get here?

Neither you nor I have the time to get into the details of this outrageous decision, but the highest court in the land said in no uncertain terms, that they 1. Don’t believe that disclosing who gives a candidate money helps democracy and 2. Corporations have the same first amendment rights as individual people. Okay, I get it, money talks and nobody walks, but why can’t we know exactly who is talking?

Corruption is as old as language because once a person could communicate with another they could give in order to get. The essence of quid pro quo was around long before the Latin words, quid, pro and quo were invented. The phrase means something for something, and after a person has been given something, especially something of great value, that individual typically will deliver something in return. Politicians are like kids set loose in a candy store and told their parents won’t be back for an hour. They know that eating too much candy is wrong, but hey, no one is there to stop them.

Our campaign financing system is broken and the only way to fix it will be getting these less than honest grifters out of the candy shop. Even the more moderate and semi-honest politicians in both parties complain about how much time they waste making phone calls to donors and Super PACs. They already get paid handsome salaries for doing their jobs, so why should they be allowed to fund raise on our dime? The annual compensation for most Senators, Representatives and Delegates is $174,000, and they get more when in leadership roles. They also have great healthcare insurance and average pensions of $74,028. Why do they beg for money? Because they need as much as possible to buy more advertising than their challengers. Simply put, that corporation, you know, that “person,” will pay whatever is necessary to put their candidate’s message on the air UNEDITED and UNCENSORED. They can say whatever they want.

A television or radio station doesn’t have to take political advertising but should they sell one political ad they must take commercials from other politicians until they are sold out. Candidates rush to buy their advertising schedules early to insure they get on the air. A few years ago, I was researching political advertising for a major firm and one candidate bought so late there were only a few spots available. They lost.

The term “dark money” is unique to the United States. Our unreasonable laws allow “nonprofit organizations” to raise funds for the purpose of influencing elections without requiring disclosure of their donors. These monies are dark, sinister and secret by their very nature. In fact, they are NOT dark; they are invisible.

Those political con men and women who talk about how they want politics and government to be transparent are full of shit. Two congresspeople, Georgia Republican Marjorie Taylor Greene and Florida Representative Matt Gaetz, have raised between $1.4 and $1.5 million in donations by teaming up to hold rallies in states they don’t even represent. By the way, it’s a two-way street. Representative Liz Cheney has reported to the FEC a $2.4 million bankroll, which is major moola for Wyoming. You see, the wind blows both ways and the dollars fly to anyone with a presence and controversial tail wind.

Call it what you will, but that money, regardless of its origin, is a damn bribe. If I give you money, you must profess my beliefs. For example, a candidate or congressperson can raise oodles of cash by stating belief in the BIG LIE. It doesn’t matter if deep-down inside they don’t believe what they are shoveling, the more shit they sling the more money they get.

SOLUTION? End Citizens United and pass a law requiring the disclosure of all political contributors or donators. Any “non-profit” that buys a political ad, must have a website detailing all monetary donations and sources. Also, anyone running for, elected to, or filing to be on the ballot for any federal office must disclose the last three years of their tax returns. None of this is unreasonable but should it all happen you’d quickly see many corrupt sons of bitches running out the door.

Transparency is better than darkness. As the Washington Post says, “Democracy dies in darkness.” True, that.

BRAND NEW BOOK

We knew that the great divide in America would have a major effect on the presidential election in the year 2020, but something else was lurking that we didn’t anticipate. The world suffered a global pandemic of Covid-19, and everything changed. The lockdown motivated one author to write MASHED POTATOES: Covid, Cancer & Comfort Food. The cover ironically claims the book is a “humorous” recollection of 2020, but one might ask, “Where was the humor?” This is a work of survival to motivate those who desire to get beyond Covid-19, beat cancer and defend our precious Democracy.  The world got Covid, the writer got cancer and we all ate copious amounts of comfort food. It’s time to swallow the truth, survive the madness, take a large spoon and savor some delicious MASHED POTATOES. Get some here. 

Book for the Recovery – Build Back Better!

How to Hire Great People: Tips, Tricks and Templates for Success

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


PANDEMIC BY-PRODUCT

Capitalism Goes Back to School

You have probably heard a theory about why employment figures haven’t roared back to pre- pandemic levels in America. The grand presumption from Republicans is people are not returning to their previous jobs because they are making so much money from the government’s pandemic relief checks.

As you might suspect, I have thoughts on this. First, let’s examine unemployment history. In October of 2009, right after the financial collapse, unemployment was at 10%. After a great recovery under two presidents, Obama and Trump, that number fell to 3.5%, one of the lowest unemployment numbers of this century. Then, Covid-19 came to the world and unemployment jumped to 14.8%. The federal government handed out assistance checks to people and some companies enrolled in the Paycheck Protection Plan (PPP) to obtain government loans to pay employees and keep their businesses afloat.

In March 2021, US unemployment dropped to 6%, but instead of cheering on this great improvement the GOP complained that recovery was taking too long. They insisted that all pandemic relief payments needed to end so that poverty and need would drive people back to work. Okay, that description is tilted and subjective but let’s stop and think about this. The Republicans may be wrong.

I found this interesting viewpoint in The Hill, “Is questioning whether unemployed Americans respond to the availability of unemployment compensation just another way of insulting their intelligence? If one can make more money being paid to stay at home, a rational person should do that, mindful of any effect on future employability, of course. Do we really need proof of the obvious? To be sure, it is a bit cynical to frame this as ‘being paid to stay home,’ but that’s what it is — or more neutrally, compensation for being unemployed, which one will lose by taking a job.”

The restaurant industry is facing a huge workforce challenge. I tried to go into a Starbucks and another breakfast establishment recently only to see signs that they were closed because not enough workers showed up to work that day.

Here’s a headline from the Restaurant Manifesto blogsite: The Restaurant Labor Shortage Was Inevitable – Stimulus payments aren’t the only thing keeping workers on the sidelines. They say, “Some hospitality professionals have abandoned the industry altogether. Months of waiting to return to their old jobs has left many workers worried about being left alone at the altar. Others chose to relocate to places where jobs are plentiful—cities like Miami where disruption to restaurant businesses has been ameliorated by more permissive public health policies.” I would add that some workers didn’t want to return to a job placing them in direct contact with mask-less customers.

The article continued, “Some individuals who’ve lost their jobs also lost their health insurance coverage during the worst public health crisis in a generation. When the industry shut down, many owners immediately laid off their entire staff, no questions asked, even their most loyal workers.”

One of my suppositions is that laborers who were isolated and quarantined had time to question what is important to them. They started to see the difference between a low-paying job with ill-tempered supervisors as compared to fulfilling work that paid them properly under managers who treated them respectfully and fairly. It’s not hard to find someone who has worked in the food business with many stories of rotten experiences, including tales of sexual harassment, tips being stolen by co-workers and long shifts with meager compensation. Maybe that’s why they aren’t going back to their former jobs.

The good news is capitalism never sleeps, it continuously finds ways to survive and grow. What has the pandemic mentality forced companies to do? Well, motivation is at the top of the list. Companies are offering bonuses just to get people in the door to fill out an application. From free food to fifty bucks, the corporate lords have found religion – MONEY.

While trying to get more workers, they are also reviewing their hourly wages and benefits such as healthcare. They are now forced to compete with not only direct competitors but also other industries. Our media outlets love to point out how “bad” it is to work for Amazon, but their warehouse jobs are plentiful and they pay well. You can work in a restaurant and hope your daily tips are substantial or you can punch-in every morning to feed the monster Jeff Bezos created and making good moola.

It’s appalling to me that the Republicans assume everyone getting financial assistance is scamming the federal government. Instead of investigating and understanding real people problems, they just cut off the money, stop the abortions and make it harder to vote. Thanks for nothing. Maybe it’s time you do some research and listen to objective logic.

Congress has become a hydra, with each of its two heads canceling the other. The Democrats want to help but fail to unite around one solid plan. The Republicans lay in wait until an idea floats to the front, then they attack it regardless of its substance. I cannot believe that grown men in Congress are still afraid of Donald Trump. It’s clear that Mitch McConnell and Kevin McCarthy are nothing but Trump puppets, lacking backbone and vision.

If we take 6% as a starting place for recovery, we could be much more optimistic and perhaps see that slower reduction of unemployment might be driven by businesses reluctant to overextend themselves until the coast is clear. I suggest Republicans open the book about the disaster of a global pandemic to learn the number of permanently closed businesses. If Lindsey Graham knew the real number of those places that closed forever, and counted all the workers they used to employ, he might be a bit less vindictive toward people who are getting checks. If you are curious, South Carolina currently has an unemployment rate of 5.1%, and in government employees they are at  negative-3.5%. Time to give out some government jobs, Lindsey.

BRAND NEW & AVAILABLE

We knew that the great divide in America would have a major effect on the presidential election in the year 2020, but something else was lurking that we didn’t anticipate. The world suffered a global pandemic of Covid-19, and everything changed. The lockdown motivated one author to write MASHED POTATOES: Covid, Cancer & Comfort Food. The cover ironically claims the book is a “humorous” recollection of 2020, but one might ask, “Where was the humor?” This is a work of survival to motivate those who desire to get beyond Covid-19, beat cancer and defend our precious Democracy.  The world got Covid, the writer got cancer and we all ate copious amounts of comfort food. It’s time to swallow the truth, survive the madness, take a large spoon and savor some delicious MASHED POTATOES. Get some here. 

 

Book for the Recovery – Build Back Better!

How to Hire Great People: Tips, Tricks and Templates for Success

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

 

 

 

 


CRITICAL RACE THEORY IN SCHOOLS

Three Kinds of Americans

I don’t expect everyone to get the nuisances and subtleties of American life. It’s difficult explaining to those across the pond why we do certain things here. They often laugh at us, then say with a slight smirk, “That’s not how we think.” No shit, Sherlock, as in Holmes, a Brit.

Let’s start with a brief look at US history. A bunch of white religious zealots came to a new land in search of religious freedom and food. They bought into a false biblical allowance of slavery, bought Africans from British traders, and started a new country with free labor. You may try to defend that atrocity by pointing out all the great things slavery did for our new, democratic form of government, but you cannot and should not ignore the original sin. Unlike the Irish, Italians, and others who came here, Black people were slaves.

Critical race theory, known as CRT, is an academic movement of United States civil rights scholars and activists who seek to diagnostically examine the law where it intersects with issues of race and to challenge mainstream liberal approaches to racial justice. CRT examines social, cultural and legal issues as they relate to race and racism. Just so we get our timetables aligned, CRT started in the 1970s and became full-blown by the 1980s. Now, these scholars are encouraging us to teach their position to young students in America.

Attempts against CRT are simple. Some ask why we are making young people hate America, while many on the right feel some CRT findings are untrue. As John Oliver pointed out on his HBO show, store owners cannot justify why Black hair products are locked up while the same products at about the same price for white people are openly stocked on shelves. One might say that hair products for African American women are stolen more often, but even if that’s true the store owners’ actions are fundamentally “racist.” Oh my, I used the R word.

According to Stamped from the Beginning, a book by Ibram X. Kendi, there are three kinds of people in America. There are anti-racists, racists and assimilationists. That last group takes significant heat because their goal is to assimilate all “others” into their Caucasian-European social, cultural and legal viewpoints. They are more or less saying that if everyone is more like them then everything will be fine. If you don’t know the essential qualities of racists and anti-racists, you might want to take a course in critical race theory. Without historical knowledge a person cannot offer a reasoned viewpoint on racism.

Louisiana is one of many states where legislators have proposed bills to bar educators from teaching “divisive” concepts like white privilege and racial equity. Former President Trump, who says he’s anti-racist, went out of his way to denounce school teachings with critical views of the white men who founded our country. Boy, wait until the history books are written on him; now that will be embarrassing. His biggest punch to the movement came when he was convinced by Congressional racist Tom Cotton that the 1619 Project was an evil work. Too bad it wasn’t a book; they could have simply burned it.

Trump condemned the 1619 Project, a Pulitzer Prize-winning 2019 New York Times report led by reporter Nikole Hannah-Jones. It contends that America was not founded in 1776, but rather in 1619 when the first enslaved people were brought to the colonies. Educators embraced the message and began a search for resources to teach a more accurate and holistic history of the country.

According to NBC News, “Trump rebuked the project as a ‘warped, distorted’ portrayal of American history.” It is uncertain if Donald John Trump ever read any of the 1619 Project, but his and Cotton’s comments sparked a special commission that presented a white paper titled The 1776 Report, which combatted the contents of the 1619 Project. The 1776 Report is not a serious historical work. I characterize it as a “pro-America” document that warps, distorts and justifies some dark aspects of our history.

No matter how hard people like Trump and their cotton-pickin’ masked racists try to defend slavery, it’s still slavery. Many Republicans have pushed into the bright lights to claim that America is not a racist country, yet not one of them has said there is no racism in America. Former Attorney General William Barr claimed there is no systemic racism in America’s police departments, but quickly added that there are racists in America and certainly some of them are police officers. Is that progress?

Ask just about any white American if they are racist, and I suspect they would quickly unflinchingly answer “No.” So, there you go, that’s that. Are we done here? We have not only a failure of communication but many different interpretations of what “racism” actually is. As Larry David pointed out on his TV show, the mere action of checking the locks on your car doors when you see a black person could be racism. If you honestly believe that your high school football team got better because African American families moved into your district, you just might be a racist. If you are shown a photo of two white guys and one Black guy and are asked, “Which of these men do you think raped the girl at the beach,” you are probably a racist if you select the Black guy.

The debate about critical race theories gets under the skin of many white Americans because they are called “critical” and are merely “theories.” Maybe it’s a nomenclature problem. “Global warming” was the wrong name for a condition that would not only create heat waves but also 25-inch snowfalls. If a person’s response to the saying “Black Lives Matter” is “All Lives Matter,” then it’s clear they don’t understand racism. Then there’s this. Why do some white people want dreadlocks? Is it an attempt to assimilate the Black race or an appropriation of white privilege? Oh, I’ll take that.

Maybe we need to change the name of Black History month to HISTORY MONTH. African Americans don’t own American History or critical race history — we all do. It’s time to own up to the fact that some of what has happened and what is happening here in the good old U.S. of A. is damn embarrassing. I am mortified when Tom Cotton and Donald Trump speak about racism because I honestly believe both of those guys are racists, but we allow them to speak because we have a First Amendment, and we are the home of the free. By the way, Tom, and Don, Black people weren’t free in 1619, and couldn’t speak their minds for more than 240 years in this country and judging by your whitewash of history you still don’t want them speaking here in 2021. Shame on both of you!

Book for the Recovery – Build Back Better!

How to Hire Great People: Tips, Tricks and Templates for Success

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

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 conversation 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.

COMING SOON


POPULISM & PANDEMICS

Political Beliefs Can Kill You

I and a group of friends took part in a “Ridin’ with Biden” campaign event last October in Florida. We came across a group of Trump supporters camped out in front of an early voting location and I put my large megaphone out the window of the car and yelled, “He’s going to kill you! He’s going to kill you!” The trumpers were oblivious to the way Trump’s Covid-19 policies were hurting and killing us. I get it, they love him and trust him with their grandmother’s lives. Why? It’s all part of a populism religion they decided to follow.

This sectarian concept has overtaken large portions of our country and our elected representatives. Sectarianism is a political or cultural conflict between two groups often related to their form of government. Prejudice, discrimination or hatred can arise in these conflicts, depending on the political status quo and which group holds more power within the government. One of the worst parts of America’s current populism is a constant war on science. By denigrating experts, big, strong-man populist leader Donald Trump first gets the attention of the downtrodden workers and eventually entices them to seek his advice rather than that of credentialed, knowledgeable experts.

Fareed Zakaria

Fareed Zakaria wrote in the Washington Post in March of 2020, “Trump, for his part, fuels fears by constantly talking about how the disease came from China and how he heroically saved American lives because he ‘closed the borders to China’ in late January, 2020. Thank goodness he doesn’t seem to know that the H1N1 virus was first detected in Mexico. If he did, he might close the border with Mexico, just to be safe.” Donald Trump has never trusted any opinion that is opposed to his own viewpoint.

Zakaria came back to that discussion on his CNN show yesterday morning. His experts were fair to point out that not all populist leaders in the world denied the danger of Covid, but they often tend to rebuke experts, disconnect from science and make decisions based on what they think their followers will swallow, rather than the truth. In the beginning of the pandemic, Indian’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi was rather draconian with the lockdown and those polices kept the virus at bay. Then, he made the same mistake Trump did by pushing to reopen the country too soon. This caused a crisis of pain and death that will probably destroy his political career.

Brazil has a leader who was in total denial of the coronavirus and mingled with people at rallies, shook hands and called Covid-19, “just a little flu,” until he got it himself. He then softened his misdirection but continued to blame everyone else for what was happening in his country. The more people listened to him the more people died. He repeatedly fired his national health directors and appointed replacements, believing mismanagement was causing the spread of the virus.

Brazil’s Jair Bolsonaro

At this point, Brazil has more than 14.7 million people infected and more than 400,000 have died. Right now, India has more than 350,000 new cases each day and a total of 19.5 million infections with more than 215,000 deaths. We don’t know how many people have died in China or Russia, where dictators make policies. Some say that China, where the virus originated, has only 4,636 deaths. In a country of 1.4 billion that’s a totally unbelievable number.

Some sources say that Russia has 109,000 deaths, which makes more sense than the China statistic. Remember, Russia has a population of 145 million people. We know the case counts of democracies are more accurate. We also know that overzealous populist leaders, irresponsible state governors and state-run media have cooked the books on Covid-19. But as the World Health Organization puts more pressure on nations to cough up current statistics, we learn more about the effect of this virus on the planet.

The democracies of the U.K. and Israel had some rough coronavirus moments, but also amazing accomplishments. The U.K. was on the edge of disaster and Prime Minister Boris Johnson came down with a wicked case of Covid-19. In the U.K. currently, more than 34 million people have had a first vaccine dose and over 14 million have had a second. An average of 415,000 second doses are now being given daily. The National Health Service in the U.K. is very organized and thorough. For example, 98% of the people over age 50 in Scotland have received at least one vaccination already. The lowest percentage in that same category is London, with 87%.

Israel has done a fantastic job with vaccinations. As of May 2, 2021, Israel had fully vaccinated 87.3% of its population. Even with 900,000 people who contracted coronavirus in the country, they had only 6,363 known deaths. That is a particularly good outcome in a country of 9 million. Perhaps their general population has more awareness of science and medicine.

Populism attracts people who often reject things based on status or labels. If an intellectual in medicine is presented as an elitist by a populous leader, their followers tend to adopt the simple lie rather than the complicated realities of math, science and medicine. It’s interesting to note that a person doesn’t have to be less educated to take on a belief counter to well-known and proven facts. Steve Jobs denied conventional medical wisdom and it killed him. The word we should focus on is “wisdom.”

We all want our leaders to apply a sense of experience, knowledge and good judgment to their actions or decisions, but in some cases, they may not have enough knowledge or experience to act effectively. Where they lack knowledge, they must trust and depend on others for facts and guidance. If they don’t have good judgement, they might take advice from people who are totally full of shit. The quality of judgement is evaluated after the fact. Leaders talk of using their “best” judgement, but they cannot say it’s good judgement until their action bears fruit.

India’s Narendra Modi

India’s populist leader Narendra Modi made good choices in the beginning, but since the country was organized around a strict caste system the first wave of Covid-19 hit the lower classes and then slowed. When Modi began believing his own press, he opened the country to political rallies and large religious events, which was not only bad judgement but fatal to thousands.

Bad choices and ignoring science have consequences. This from Reuters, “The incumbent chief minister’s party in India’s West Bengal state has defeated Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s party in a state election held as the coronavirus pandemic surged to crisis levels. Modi has been criticized for focusing on the elections instead of making the pandemic his top priority.” So, there’s another populist who cares more about power than people. Bye, Bye!

Book for the Recovery – Build Back Better!

How to Hire Great People: Tips, Tricks and Templates for Success

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

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 conversation 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 NFL DRAFT: WHO CARES?

Money, Fans, Fun & Fortunate Sons

My family members have been involved in sports, specifically baseball, for several generations and this has given me an objective view of professional athletes. Most fans have an illusion that the game is easy. They may know the rules and watch hours of play, but until they become close to a player or actually attempt to play the game they are never fair in their judgements.

Most of the players who make it to the pros have spent more than a decade playing the sport. Less than one percent of all Little Leaguers make “The Show,” the nickname pros have given Major League Baseball (MLB).  Less than eleven in a hundred, or about 10.5 percent, of National Collegiate Athletic Association senior male baseball players will get drafted by a Major League Baseball team. Approximately one in 200, roughly half a percent, of high school senior boys playing interscholastic baseball will eventually be drafted by an MLB team. Since 1871, out of a total of 19,966 players only 333 have been voted into the Hall of Fame. In other words, only 1.6 percent of all MLB players are considered the “greats.” To further appreciate the difficulty of playing professional baseball, realize that those same great players were unsuccessful at the plate 65% of the time.

This weekend we are experiencing one of the grand traditions of American sports, the drafting of eligible players into the National Football League from the college ranks. Unlike baseball, professional football doesn’t have minor leagues from which to draw new players, so they deploy an organized, rule-based system to obtain the greatest college players into the league. To put it in layman terms, the worst teams get the first choice of available players. This process is designed to bring parody to the league, make competition fair and eliminate the advantage of rich teams in large cities. For the most part it works well but doesn’t stop a well-financed team trading for a higher draft pick by giving another team more than one player or a really great player they would have no chance of getting in the draft.

Even with such cunning skullduggery, there is no guarantee that having the best new players will get a team to the promised land of football, the Superbowl. For example, Tampa Bay had a decent team but when they added Tom Brady, a guaranteed hall of famer, to their lineup – BAM! — they won the big game. However, that achievement also depended on good plays, excellent coaching, and oh yeah, did I mention, a really good quarterback.

Some people put down players by calling them “cry-babies” or “spoiled millionaires,” without considering they worked their asses off for more than ten years to get where they are and they must continue to stay in shape and remain sharp or they will get deleted from the roster. Tons of money supports professional football and the sport demands as much perfection as humanly possible. The resulting pressure has pushed some players to take performance enhancing drugs or seek advantages in the strangest ways. Even the great Tom Brady was accused of asking for the football to be slightly underinflated to give him a better grip. Hey, it’s short of steroids but still not right.

When the 2020 Covid-19 crisis threatened the college football and basketball seasons, many were concerned about the potential damage that would affect players trying to make the pros. Basketball teams are smaller in numbers and the shutdown of March Madness last year was bad for the players. College football finally got up to full speed and championship games were played, giving potential pros a chance to strut their stuff. This weekend’s draft will bring us the results of that play.

The number one pick in this year’s draft was Clemson’s quarterback Trevor Lawrence, and he was taken by the team with last year’s worst NFL record, Jacksonville, Florida.  The Jaguars will probably give Mr. Lawrence a contract worth nearly $37 million, and if he produces and the team has a winning year the investment will be well worth it. Not all number one picks go on to be Hall of Famers. Injuries, underperforming teams and mishandling fame and fortune have dethroned many in the history of football, but such things give the fans lots to talk about.

Trevor Lawrence #1

My hometown team, the Pittsburgh Steelers, always look for great players. I was happy to see them get some good ones this year, but it’s a big business and all the other teams are trying to do the same thing. Beyond the money and fortunate sons, there is a desire for city pride, intense excitement and the glory of a championship. The word “fan” came about when someone called them “fanatics,” and such obsession is not purely American. All over the world people are more than fanatical about their “football” teams. It’s just FUN! Stop complaining about how much money they make. Well, maybe complain a little bit. Have you seen the prices of the tickets today? WTF? Why do they make so much? Oh yeah, because someone pays them that much. Chill, it’s out of your hands.

Every new season brings rebirth and a fresh start. May the best teams win, especially my team, and should that not happen I’m sure the fans will be yelling, “Hey, open up your checkbook and buy some good players.” So, you see, we are the problem.

Book for the Recovery – Build Back Better!

How to Hire Great People: Tips, Tricks and Templates for Success

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

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 conversation 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.


ANGLO-SAXON VALUES & UNITY

From Mild Racism to Tea Party to Insanity

If you had told me this story a few years ago I would have thought you were quoting the Onion comedy site. Sadly, this is not a dated comedy routine or a satirical gem from Andy Borowitz. It’s the latest black hole some radical Republicans are trying to push their comrades into for certain political death.

Here’s the story. Far-right Republicans in the House of Representatives, including Georgia’s Marjorie Taylor Greene and Arizona’s Paul Gosar, were seeking to set up an “America First Caucus” that would push a nativist agenda to respect “Anglo-Saxon political traditions.” This was first reported by Punchbowl News, and the Republican group warned that “mass immigration” threatened “the long-term existential future of America as a unique country with a unique culture and a unique identity.” Okay, but was this ever a real thing? They did admit they were going to charge dues!

Was the caucus a real plan? Does anyone whose family came from Europe, Asia or even Russia believe this? Those questions were soon asked, and the media did a great job taking down a conspiracy before it even hatched. This is what we learned before the weekend was over.

According to a Washington Post article, “On Saturday, Greene (R-Ga.) described the document as ‘a staff level draft proposal from an outside group’ and claimed she had not read it. She blasted the media for ‘taking something out of context,’ but did not specify to which policies in the document she objected. However, Greene did not deny plans to start an ‘America First Caucus’ and ended a lengthy Twitter thread by saying she supported former president Donald Trump’s America First agenda.” Wait, if they are so sure of their own beliefs and prejudges why did they need an outside firm to tell them what they believe? Better yet, why would Marjorie Taylor Greene not take the time to read a proposal she supported?

I’ve never believed that Ms. Greene has the gravitas or depth to process complex information. She seems unable to grasp facts or debunk a conspiracy theory, but she does have a platform. 229,827 people voted for her and put her in office, but that number might be quite different today. The voters of District 14 in Georgia will have to ask themselves at the next election what has she done for them? I don’t think being on TV helps her constituents. I contend that the more she’s on TV the worse it is for her.

So, what are Anglo-Saxon values? Anglo-Saxons, a “cultural group,” inhabited England in the fifth century. They were immigrants from northern Germany and southern Scandinavia long before those places were countries. According to Bede, a monk from Northumbria back then, they were from some of the most powerful and warlike tribes in Germany. Bede names three of these tribes: the Angles, Saxons and Jutes. If you believe in all that DNA stuff you might wonder if these were the same people who gave us World Wars I and II. Not really. It’s not the Arian race crap that Adolf was slinging, but pretty much the same hook American white supremacists have hung their dogma on for years.

Arizona’s Paul Gosar

Someone got the document and leaked it, fearful there was a chance that other members would support Greene and Gosar and adopt the platform. SLATE reported, “There won’t be an America First Caucus after all. At least for now. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene accused the media of making a big deal about something that wasn’t even a reality yet and aides said she wasn’t starting any new group…. She also accused the media of focusing on race and using it to divide the American people with hate through identity politics.” Nick Dyer, Greene’s spokesperson said earlier in the weekend that the caucus would be launched soon. Okay, real, or not?

There are no lasting values we can attribute to the Anglo-Saxon peoples, after all they assimilated into a vast group of humans who came to the British Isles early on. The Anglo-Saxon people, culture and language developed over time, but the authors of this crazy revisionist view ignore what happened in Britain after the Norman invasion.

The conquest by the Norman elite captured much of the Anglo-Saxons’ land and revised their values. The Normans restructured the Church (made it Catholic), brought new architecture (castles and Romanesque cathedrals) and feudalism became much more widespread. The most long-lasting change was the English language absorbing thousands of words from French, Latin and even German. The melting pot of Britain was a precursor to what happened in America, and the assimilation made the people stronger, not weaker.

I doubt that white supremacists, neo-Nazis and those high verbal folks in the America First Movement have any idea what the term “Anglo-Saxon values” truly means. They throw out the idea that being a European is far superior to being a person of color, but have they been to Europe lately? It’s not so white and not so Anglo these days. Dorothy! Kansas City might be whiter than Miami, but that doesn’t make it more American. The far right equates Anglo with Caucasian but were they to travel back in time they wouldn’t even be able to communicate with an Anglo or a Saxon. They would be the alien.

The phrase “Anglo-Saxon values” is a trumped-up tag line that fell out of the bag of tricks that the losers and conspiracy nuts carry around. It’s also a quick sucker punch to the Dems. If Greene and other assholes of her ilk took the time to do the research (google it, jerkoffs), they would find the Anglo-Saxon earthly virtues were bravery, loyalty, generosity, and friendship. Being made to look stupid isn’t brave, it’s just fucking futile. Yes, they are loyal to their cause, but then so were the young members of the brown shirt brigade in 1939 Germany. Generosity is not an attribute of the far right. I don’t see them out raising money to help get the homeless vaccinated. As for “friendship,” the other day I got yelled at for having a Biden sticker on my car. Funny, she never mentioned “friendship” as she flipped me the bird.

Using the term “Christian values” would have been riskier, but more people might have swallowed it. Ask an Italian about Anglo-Saxon values, or perhaps any of the millions of Hispanics or Latinas who are legacy Americans what they think of that expression. Better yet, ask a Native American about Anglo-Saxon values. All they wanted to do was live in peace, but the Anglo-Saxons brought them bullets and diseases. Those religious Anglo zealots poured salt into the wounds by taking away the native peoples’ gods and spirits. You see, these aren’t values at all but rather legalized genocide and self-serving brainwashing. Have a nice day, Marjorie. Anglo-Saxon my ass! I demand your 23&Me DNA spit test.

Book for the Recovery – Build Back Better!

How to Hire Great People: Tips, Tricks and Templates for Success

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

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 conversation 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.

 


AMERICA’S DISPOSABLE PEOPLE

Why So Much Killing and Disregard for Life?

How many times do we need to read this, “It is unclear what motivated the shooting, but investigations are ongoing and will continue into most of the day…” One of the by-products of being in a Covid lockdown is not only did we avoid colds and the flu but the mass shootings were put on hold. Now that we are beginning to reopen, guns and shootings seem to be in the news every other day. WHY?

Jim Jordan, Representative of Ohio, once again embarrassed himself and his state by verbally abusing Dr. Anthony Fauci in a hearing on the Hill yesterday. It seems that Jordan’s agenda is to use his taxpayer-funded job to harass, vent and inflame citizens with no productive result.

The fact that Jordan disrespected Congress by not wearing a coat in a formal setting speaks to the character of the man, but isn’t it a moral affront to pit the number of people who have died from Covid-19 against the debate about when we will get all our rights back? Jordan was only trying to get on the news, which he did, but how do you think the families of those who have succumbed to the virus feel about his diatribe? Fauci is trying to save lives and Jim Jordan was yelling at him for no good reason. WHY?

All the numbers start to run together when seeing the daily stats, but we must always remember those numbers represent people. According to a Washington Post analysis of data provided by the Department of Health and Human Services, during the past week thirty-eight states have reported an increase in the number of people hospitalized with Covid-19. But the national statistics don’t capture the intensity of the coronavirus emergency in the hotspots. Michigan reported more than 10,000 new infections on Tuesday alone. On Wednesday, the state reported an average of 46 deaths a day, up from 16 a month earlier. If 46 people were killed in a mass shooting, we would be alarmed and saddened.

Remember how you felt the morning after October 1, 2017 when Stephen Paddock, a 64-year-old man from Mesquite, Nevada, opened fire on the crowd attending the Route 91 Harvest music festival on the Las Vegas Strip? He killed 61 people and injured 867 of the attendees. Put the coronavirus statistics in those terms and it begets a raw emotion and perhaps depression. Every day in MICHIGAN, more than 10,000 are hospitalized with Covid and 46 to 60 of them die.

According in CNN, 45 shootings have taken place in the last thirty days in the USA. Here are a few of the more infamous ones. On March 16th, eight people were killed by a gunman at three massage businesses in Atlanta, Georgia. Six of the victims were of Asian descent. On March 22nd in Boulder, Colorado, a shooter at a supermarket killed ten people, including a police officer who was the first to respond to the scene. In Orange, California on March 31st, a gunman killed four people and critically wounded a fifth at a Southern California office building. On April 7th, former NFL player Phillip Adams shot six people, including Robert Lesslie, a prominent doctor, his wife and two of their grandchildren along with two air conditioning technicians. His brain is now being examined for possible degenerative disease that has been shown to cause violent mood swings and other cognitive disorders in some athletes and members of the military. At least in this case, we might get an answer, albeit, too late.

Indianapolis, Indiana

Just last night, a gunman opened fire outside and inside a FedEx Ground facility near the Indianapolis main airport, killing eight people, wounding several others and sending witnesses running before taking his own life. We’ll probably never learn the true motivation of this former FedEx employee, but it’s pretty damn clear we have a huge problem in the United States of America.

While we are watching bad guys with guns shooting good people without guns, we are also seeing police officers around the country shooting people for minor issues and traffic stops. We watch the court cases with witnesses and experts giving their testimony but the victims have no voice there.

I am angered by Jim Jordan’s obvious disregard for life, his disrespect of a medical expert and his disdain for a united effort to beat the virus. He’s so worried about the Frist Amendment he’s forgotten about all of our rights to “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.” My idea of happiness is not laying in a hospital room on a ventilator. Should Jordan’s shredding of policies and extra care taken to lower the spread of a virus make things worse then he’s complicit, just like Wayne LaPierre of the NRA is complicit in every mass shooting in America. Yes, I get all the Second Amendment stuff but what suggestion or steps has LaPierre made to solve the problem of American mass shootings? Bupkis.

The idea that a good guy with a gun will keep us safe is more than fallacious, it just doesn’t work at all. If we had a competent president when the global pandemic broke out, we would not have sacrificed hundreds of thousands of American lives to keep the economy rolling. It’s not helpful to debate our freedoms when we have kids being shot by cops, a virus taking a thousand lives each day and mass shootings wasting people all over the country. Where does Representative Jim Jordan get off screaming at Dr. Fauci when he has not put forth a single idea to cure Covid-19? He’s much beyond a squeaky wheel, he’s a horrendously loud human fart.

We should not have disposable people. Human life is not sacred when we talk one way about Roe vs. Wade and then other ways about gun control, national health policies and police reform. If you care only about your dogma, then you are most likely disregarding the people you supposedly serve. Elected officials have a supreme responsibility to make sure all Americans are safe — safe to live, safe to work and safe to travel without fear of becoming infected with a virus or being executed by a cop. We must get back to our values with the understanding that life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness mean something. If not, then we are just another third-world county but with lots of money.

Book for the Recovery – Build Back Better!

How to Hire Great People: Tips, Tricks and Templates for Success

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

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 conversation 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.


EASIER OR JUST BLOWING SMOKE?

New Voter Law Is A Trojan Horse, What’s Inside?

Back in my high school days, education officials made a rule that disallowed wearing jeans to class. There was no reason given for this draconian rule. Had we not been in the suburbs but in a rural area this law wouldn’t have worked. The administrators believed that wearing tight jeans would somehow make us act up and disturb the educational process. Really?

Sometimes we make a law in search of a crime and it takes the outcries of people to reverse it. I remember when the Atlanta Braves opened a new stadium and a woman was stopped because she was carrying a small cooler containing formula for her newborn baby. Less than 48 hours after this story broke the team ownership pulled the rule. Later, they loosened the restriction even more by allowing patrons to bring in food.

Voting has always been a challenge in America. The first mistake was not making the federal election day a holiday so that no one would have to miss work to vote or miss voting to work. Not one of the newly minted voting laws fixes that problem, which is #1 on my list.

Long Voting Lines in Georgia

Then there’s this. Early voting, whether it’s motivated by a pandemic or not, is a good idea. Any rule stating that tabulation of early votes cannot take place before election day, or worse, can’t begin until after the polls have closed, is foolish. How does that help the voting process?

Because we have many states that allow mail-in voting, which is a good thing, we must make sure the United States Postal System works properly in all fifty states and territories. The idea of no-excuse absentee voting is not a rare bird, nor should it be. You can see a list of all the states that support the concept here. And in case you didn’t know, Washington, Utah, Oregon, Hawaii and Colorado use mail-in voting exclusively, so what’s the fuss all about?

Lurking inside these new laws are grievance politics, partisan wounds and leftover racism that isn’t comprehended by many, including those people forging the new laws. The concept of disallowing a person to bring food or water to a voter waiting in line is a masked attempt at voter intimidation. Here’s the language, “No person shall … give any money or gifts, including, but not limited to, food and drink, to an elector…within 150 feet of the outer edge of any building within which a polling place is established,” but there’s a trick in that stick. First, “the outer edge of any building” is inappropriate, given a polling location may have voters form a line around the perimeter or the building and “150 feet” might include everyone in the voting line. Also, are states actually prepared to arrest anyone who brings food or water to those of color waiting in line? That would be very intimidating, especially since cops have guns.

What’s really upsetting is the lawmakers know there will be long lines and they are attacking their citizens in the voting lines rather than working to make the lines shorter, the wait times less and the voting process faster. Anyone who views food and water you are giving your granny as temptation for voting a certain way is irrational, cynical and stupid. If anything, one waiting in a ridiculously long line to vote might be tempted to cast their ballot against the foolish people in power.

Here’s something from today’s New York Times, “Amazon, BlackRock, Google, Warren Buffett and hundreds of other companies and executives signed on to a new statement released on Wednesday opposing ’any discriminatory legislation‘ that would make it harder for people to vote. It was the biggest show of solidarity so far by the business community as companies around the country try to navigate the partisan uproar over Republican efforts to enact new election rules in almost every state. Senior Republicans, including former President Donald J. Trump and Senator Mitch McConnell, have called for companies to stay out of politics.” The sad reality is these politicians take money from large companies for campaign expenses, but when those same companies point out a problem the grifters bark at them to back off. If they feel so strongly, why not pass a law that prohibits corporate funding of any candidate, party or Super Pac? Fat chance.

We live in a fast, souped-up world where we demand speed, efficiency and accuracy, not partisan bickering and built-in voter suppression. I am sure Brian Kemp, the Governor of Georgia, believes the new voting law he signed makes things better for his state. Why then are so many people telling him the law is bad?

Here is a major flaw that has nothing to do with food and water, it’s about power and control. One of Georgia’s new provisions is the state’s right to take over county elections offices the legislature believes have “persistent problems.” It wouldn’t be a surprise should they snatch control in Fulton County, which has 800,000 mostly African American voters. The Democrats won big there, and the Republicans believe there was corruption in that county, yet after three vote recounts no fraud was found. These idiots prefer Donald Trump’s lies over their own Secretary of State, Election Board members and, oh yeah, their voters. The law effectively changes the sixty plus year tradition of the Secretary of State being the sole keeper of Election integrity and places that responsibility in the hands of a party loyalist, perhaps appointed to overturn the will of voters. WHY IS THIS NOT A BAD IDEA?

We can debate the requirement of having a picture ID to vote, We do it in Florida and it’s not a problem. Florida lets you register to vote when you get your driver’s license. A voting ID card is not a bad idea. These are frightening times.

Were you to ask representatives in the Georgia State assembly if they were racist, they would honestly say no. But should you ask any of them what would give their party a better chance of winning in the next election, he or she would tell you that fewer votes from Black people would do the trick. So, you see, it’s not racism at all, it’s merely normal southern politics. By the way, they aren’t wrong. The more African American voters the more votes will be cast for Democrats. I guess people of color don’t like the policies of those Republicans who are pushing the trojan horse into the town center. Wouldn’t it smarter to figure out what the voters really want and just give it to them? Why try to take a bottle of water out of their hands? Remember, Coca-Cola makes DASANI and they certainly would be happy to provide the state with enough water for every voter, at a reasonable price or course. After all, they are capitalists.

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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 conversation about peace. And if you are worried about social media, you really should check out the chapter called “Social Media Menace.”

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