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

 

 

 

WHY TED LASSO?

Changing American Tastes in TV

When I first heard the name Ted Lasso, I thought he might be a Lash LaRue character from a 1950s cowboy movie. Then I found out this modern-day character is played by Jason Sudeikis and my interest was piqued. I wanted to give the show a try but was disappointed to learn it was on Apple TV+, one of the few video platforms we didn’t have.

While out West for a wedding this summer, my significant other spent some time with her old friend who had Apple TV+ and she watched the first eight Ted Lasso episodes. She got hooked and she bought the Apple gizmo when we got home so we could experience Ted Lasso.

I’ve always liked Jason’s approach to humor, so I expected quality comedy, but after watching the first season I realized a number of things were happening with Ted Lasso.

First, the premise isn’t new. It’s similar to the Charlie Sheen movie Major League, which was released in 1989 when Sheen was still funny. Both feature a woman who takes over a professional sports team, but the similarity ends there. The woman in the Sheen film wants to grow her franchise for profit while the Lasso woman wants her London soccer team to fail to anger her ex-husband. To that end she brings aboard Mr. Lasso, an American college football coach from Kansas City who knows nothing about soccer, a game known as football in the UK.

I had an epiphany watching Ted Lasso win seven Emmy Awards the other night. Americans are moving toward different kinds of entertainment and sources of distribution. Maybe it’s not such a remarkable observation. After all, technology has been driving the migration away from over-the-air television during the last ten years. But thinking about the many aspects of how Americans now consume entertainment made me realize just how profound the changes are.

Network TV is no longer satisfying people, especially those who can afford multiple platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, Paramount+, Disney+, Peacock, Apple TV+, Sling, YouTube and, well, I could go on, but I’ve made my point. Smart TV’s have enabled the use of those applications at the touch of a button, but it’s not just technology that drives binge watching, it’s the content.

Ted Lasso came along at a fortunate time. We fell for this guy who’s been forced to be away from his family back in Kansas City, perhaps reminding us of FaceTime with our kids and family during Covid. In a sense, the soccer team members are Ted’s kids, and he is trying to give them fatherly advice, even when in the beginning of the series, they totally disrespect him. Lasso knows nothing about soccer but that doesn’t matter. He was brought in to destroy the franchise.

Ted Lasso is a story about redemption. The lead character’s analogies, metaphors and daily doses of shortbread biscuits brought to his boss are totally misunderstood by the locals, but he slowly grows on them. The success of the show has also spawned social media and exploitation experts to give us things like this.

It’s not a sports story as much as it’s a “dramedy” filled with tons of pop cultural references that are easy to miss if you aren’t watching closely. Corny pun driven quips flash by to keep the pace fast and crisp. Clever writing like, “This place reminds me of that movie Once. I liked it so much I watched it twice!” will make you laugh.

The show was developed by Sudeikis, Brandon Hunt, Joe Kelly and Bill Lawrence. The lead actors are totally involved in the writing, as was true with Jason’s roots in Second City and SNL. Unlike most shows, the characters’ lines are not created by a committee of writers and the language is not shaped or censored by attorneys and network suits. The writing technique gives characters their natural vulgarity and relatability. They also have kids using adult language that throws viewers off at times and, well, is funny.

There are some truly heart moving moments in the show. I find myself feeling for these people despite my natural blocking of predictive emotional heart plucking or equally obvious embedded lessons being dispersed. Why is this? Could it be, just damn good writing?

There is a certain vulnerability to Jason’s portrayal of Ted Lasso. The hyper-positive “Pollyanna” outlook of the man, which is magnified by his “cracker” over the top southern accent, keeps you wondering if Ted is the ultimate goldfish out of water or if he’s playing everyone for what they want him to be. As he slowly evolves from “wanker,” to “semi-respected wanker” and you root for him. In our age of cynicism and division, we can see the globalism of the team as well as the divide between the Americans and Brits, but mostly we go along for the ride. Lasso affects everyone, and even lacking success, he makes them feel good about themselves. Instead of a preacher, a politician or even a spouse, we all want to be around someone who rises above the shit of everyday life.

As I watched shows like The Crown, The Queen’s Gambit, Hacks and Mare of Easttown win most of the awards, the influence of British writers, actors and producers on American entertainment became obvious. Then it truly hit me. Oh my God there were no awards for ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX or other US network shows. We shouldn’t judge an entire medium based on awards, but people were missing the point while yelling “Oscars and Emmys so white.” The audience was way ahead of the award shows.

Over-the-air networks still have millions of viewers, but they focus on competition shows like The Bachelor, Dancing with the Stars and The Voice along with one-season, second-class sitcoms. Perhaps this should come as no surprise. As viewers’ language and community standards change, network TV cannot “go there.” Sure, shows like Blackish are funny, but they fall short of the quality of humor that can be seen for a small monthly fee. We are changing and how we spend our entertainment time is also changing. The only network shows I regularly watch are the late-night talk shows, nightly news, and true crime shows like Dateline, 20/20 and 48 Hours. I’m sure there are many other just like me.

TV has always been used as an escape and the streaming platforms offer better escapes now. Just as Howard Stern left over-the-air radio to be able to say what he wanted on satellite radio, many talented people are now escaping to HBO, Apple, Hulu, Showtime, Amazon Prime and other streaming networks to share their uncensored and authentic stories. The success of Ted Lasso is the canary in the coal mine. The video streaming services have become the renewable entertainment sources of today and tomorrow.

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

 

 

 

AMERICAN CONFUSION & DELUSION

The Implications of the Opposite Are Stunning

Last weekend, a group whose name doesn’t matter held a rally in Washington, D.C. in support of the arrested insurrectionists of January 6th. They titled their little gathering the Justice for J6 Rally. It was said that as many as 700 people would attend, but only 200 showed up. It would be laughable if such a small crowd turned out at a Walmart in Fort Wayne, Indiana for a Black Friday sale. Of course, the media went on a feeding frenzy bashing the former President and his small band of hardcore devotees. My definition of this oxymoronic principle is that some people believe or hear the opposite of what has been said. They didn’t see the attack on the capitol as a bad thing, why?

With so many press people, political observers and well-fortified police officers on the scene last Saturday, it was difficult finding protesters who would face a TV camera, open their pieholes and make comments. Most of what they said is familiar, but as time goes on their messaging becomes more and more absurd. They are still hanging their hats on the Big Lie about the 2020 presidential election being stolen, although they are silent when it comes to those Republicans who were legitimately elected. I’m not sure why a deep-seated force that changed votes didn’t do so in those states where Trump won. Maybe it’s hard to recruit talented hackers.

One thing worried me. These people were arguing that the Capitol Hill attack on January 6 was perpetrated by people who were bused in to make Trump supporters look bad. Really? If that is the case, why then did Trump and others make speeches at their rally on that day? The first words out of the mouths of many of those arrested on January 6 were that Trump sent them to do what Mike Pence didn’t — STOP THE STEAL. Why would anti-Trump operatives go there and almost succeed at stopping the certification of Joe Biden’s election? Clearly the implication of the opposite.

There are those who speak of the January 6 events as being nothing but a peaceful protest about the election. Okay, if that is so why were so many police officers injured? What about the deaths that occurred? No court of law in the US will agree to that horseshit. More than 600 people have been arrested due to their hateful actions on that terrible day.

Donald Trump loyalists love the man, but where is their love for law, order and justice? They claim that many Black Lives Matter protestors did much worse, but they were “let go.” Problem is that simply isn’t true. People were arrested and charged with the crimes they committed, such as looting and burning during BLM protests. Perhaps those Justice for J6 folks forget that in Kenosha, Wisconsin, two protesters were killed. There were injuries to a firefighter and police officer, which caused them to be hospitalized. One individual was charged with two counts of first-degree murder while others were charged with firearms possession.

I’ll bet there’s more than one Justice for J6 person who would be surprised to learn that at least 55 people were arrested in Seattle during the May 30 riots, and that happened on just one day. The same kind of stats can be found in many cities where peaceful BLM protests turned violent and destructive.

America has a history of lionizing criminals and positively marketing their behavior. People liked and helped Bonnie and Clyde, why even the FBI website glorifies them, but let’s not forget that in the end 75 bullets were fired into their car. Many people believe people who commit acts of treason, insurrection or murder should be shot down immediately while committing their crimes. Trump did the country a huge disservice by saying, even before the election took place, that if he didn’t win the whole event was rigged.

The Great American Traitor

To go on national TV at 2:30 AM after the election and say, “We were getting ready to win this election.  Frankly, we did win this election.” Then, he added some icing on the shit cake, “This is a major fraud on our nation,” while presenting no evidence to support his assertion. It was one of the most embarrassing moments in America history. Donald Trump has done demonic damage to our democracy.

Some have reported that QAnon and other elements of the radical right told the Trump zombies not to attend the Justice for J6 Jamboree. They claimed it was a false flag event to help the government ID, track and eventually incarcerate those who attended. A false flag is a hostile or harmful action designed to look like it was perpetrated by someone other than the responsible person or group. So, are we to believe that a former Trump campaign official put this rally together not to show support for a bunch of thugs, ideologs and disloyal Americans but rather to help the government? That isn’t even a believable implication of the opposite, it’s just insane.

What Congress should really care about is the fact we have no law that can be used to charge the J6ers or others with Domestic Terrorism. I guess we never imagined that we would need such a law. Attorney General William Barr released a statement saying “the violence instigated and carried out by Antifa and other similar groups in connection with the rioting is domestic terrorism and will be treated accordingly” but nothing was done. Trump wanted Antifa labeled a domestic terrorist organization, while Black powerbrokers pushed for the same to be said of the KKK, but nothing was done.

We certainly have much work to do with the 649 arrested in connection with January 6th. Most will be charged with “Knowingly entering or remaining in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority; disorderly and disruptive conduct in a restricted building; violent entry and disorderly conduct in a Capitol building or grounds; parading, demonstrating, or picketing in a Capitol building.” According to a quick search on the internet, “A person who commits the following acts faces up to six months’ imprisonment and a $5,000 fine: enters or remains on the floor or in the gallery of the U.S. Senate or House chambers without authorization. obstructs or impedes passage through or within the Capitol building or grounds.” Really, only six months in jail for all they did?

My wish is that as time goes on fewer and fewer people will want to put their family through the embarrassment of defending people who have broken the law. Perhaps some of the loonies will come to their senses and begin to see that all this was based on a lie by a consummate liar. It will be shocking when they slowly eradicate their confusion to see the main purpose of the game as an illusion to exploit their time and money. Sadly, some will never figure it out. They will always believe what someone else tells them. The truth becomes a lie while a lie is now the truth, and the implication of the opposite is America’s greatest curse.

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

 

 

 

THE ANTI-BIDEN VIRUS

Is there a vaccine for it?

Who said it would ever be easy to calm the crazies and far-right and far-left lunatics? I believe that when a Congressperson or news reporter says their number one goal is making a president’s administration unsuccessful, they are voting against America. The Donald Trump administration drummed up support of a loud vocal minority, but much of what it did was not successful in terms of America.

I hate this, but when statements are made, they must be verified. Are there more or fewer countries with nuclear weapons since Trump came to power? There are more. Is the trade imbalance that so many screamed about better or worse? Well, it’s just about the same. Was the bragging that we defeated ISIS just more hype in an administration that gave Afghanistan back to the Taliban? Yeah, that’s about right And, yes, the withdrawal was terrible, but I am sure the Generals behind closed doors were honest about the ineptitude of the Afghan army. By the way, I wonder why members of the Afghanistan government were not involved in those Taliban negotiations that the Trump team finalized?

Taliban Leadership

We now know that unvaccinated people have an 11% greater chance of dying of Covid-19. So, the Biden administration worked to get more people vaccinated and the far-right media soon reported it was an OVERREACH by an out-of-control president. The Fox-Brains screamed about using executive orders to get more people vaccinated. Did they forget that Trump signed 220 executive orders in four years? It’s a normal path presidents take to get things done. Why is the practice suddenly demonized? Woodrow Wilson signed some 1,800 orders during his eight years in office. If you care to look, click here.

Clearly, the far-right dumb-sters and hardcore Trumpers in the GOP have taken a stance against any further government management of the global pandemic. Our governor in Florida has placed all his power in the idea to protect “parent’s rights,” even though his actions have clearly hurt children. His vindicative garnishing of schoolboard wages to get back at them for imposing mask mandates is indefensible. As Ron DeSantis’ poll numbers decline, he’s doubling down on a harmful and scornful strategy. After missing so much school kids are now missing even more because of the Covid resurgence. Every expert agrees, better to be in the classroom with a mask on, than at home without one.

Republicans who believed in Trump’s cry to end the war in Afghanistan have done a one-eighty and now sound like they want us to send in more troops to quell the inevitable, an inevitable that Trump brought them. Let’s not forget that Trump wanted to host the Taliban at Camp David on 9-11! Yes, he did. It’s all right here if you want to read about it. And may I mention one more thing? Joe Biden wanted to get out of Afghanistan years ago but was overruled by President, Barack Obama.

Joe Biden is a good president because he’s been in politics so long he has experience with all we’ve done, both right and wrong. He knows that Obamacare was a good idea. because more people have healthcare insurance. He knows that partisan politics and bad press coverage are part of the game. Sure, he likes to be liked, but I am sure he doesn’t lose any sleep over such stuff that doesn’t matter.

Chris Wallace

In Chris Wallace’s new book, Countdown bin Laden: The Untold Story of the 247-Day Hunt to Bring the Mastermind of 9/11 to Justice, the ace reporter and interviewer discloses that the night Obama was making fun of Donald Trump at the Correspondent’s’ Dinner in D.C., his team was working behind the scenes to plan the raid that killed Osama bin Laden the very next night. Chris points out that a president must keep his focus on the important things, even while they are being speared and skewered by self-serving zealots and jealous partisans.

Many people are so wrapped up in the dogma of their dens and tribes they fail to see the bigger picture. The doctor of one of my neighbors asked him why he hadn’t gotten a vaccine yet. My neighbor answered the question with a question, “So it’s really that bad? How many people have died from Covid this year?” The doctor didn’t know the answer. Shame on him! I sure know. In 2021 so far, 100,000 people have died from Covid-19. In eight months, that’s thirty times the death toll of 9-11. Why shouldn’t that be a cause for concern? If your possible death could be eliminated by getting a shot, why wouldn’t you do it? To me it seems unamerican to not get the vaccine.

A president telling everyone to wear a mask and get a shot is not an act of treason. How many more people need to die before the non-vaxxers begin to wonder, “What were we thinking?” Truth be told, they many never reach that point. It’s because Fox News, One America News Network and Newsmax have signed a pact, not with America but with their investors to keep strong ratings. Unless someone starts a sponsor boycott, or sues them, they will continue to tout unsuccessful or dangerous remedies for the coronavirus, looking for every opportunity to exploit the unaware.

They pound the other side hard, but any plausible deniability for them is gone. It’s no longer moral or factual to say that everything our president does is wrong NO MATTER WHAT. Joe Biden took matters into his own hands. Where I come from, we call that leadership. We surely need a leader right now and Joe is our guy. He’s trying to save lives. What on earth is wrong with that?

Biden isn’t the virus, he’s the doctor. And right now, we need to listen to him!

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

SPERM, EGGS AND MEN

It’s Time to Mess with Texas

Most laws over the millennium have been written by men. We know the Koran was authored by a man, and no one has ever proved that any portion of the Holy Bible was written by a woman. Even here in the most celebrated democracy on Earth, we didn’t allow women to vote until the 19th Amendment in 1920.

Many believe the first induced abortion took place in Egypt in 1550 BCE. Most of the methods back then were, thank goodness, non-surgical. To end the pregnancy, a woman was made to do strenuous labor such as climbing, lifting heavy weights or diving off high cliffs into water. If none of that worked, a woman might have been paddled into miscarriage.

Over the centuries, men have used abortion to punish women. Perhaps dissatisfied with not getting a male baby or as a means to control population, there were times a man demanded that a woman have an abortion.

Views concerning the morality of abortions have ebbed and flowed over time. It is said that the Stoics believed a fetus to be plantlike in nature and not an animal until the moment of birth when it finally breathed air. The Stoics found abortion to be morally acceptable. Aristotle believed the line between a lawful and unlawful abortion was marked by the fetus having sensation — feelings. It’s has not been determined if a fetus can experience pain. Experimenting with an unborn human is simply too dangerous.

So, the abortion debate has raged for a long time. Does life begin when a sperm penetrates and fertilizes an egg or eggs, does it take place when the first heartbeat can be detected either acoustically or technically, or is life launched with the baby’s first breath and that reassuring wail?

For Christians and Jews, the Holy Bible (Exodus 21:22–24) describes two men fighting, one of whose wife is pregnant. If she is struck during the fight and the result is a miscarriage, the perpetrator is fined. If she dies, however, the perpetrator must forfeit his life according to the law of “a life for a life.”

It’s more complicated for those of the Islamic faith. The Quran does not directly address intentional abortion, leaving greater discretion to the laws of individual countries. According to the Hadith, written by scholars after the Prophet’s death, the fetus is believed to become a living soul after 120 days of gestation. Abortion after that point is impermissible. Remember that number. We will come back to it.

This brings us to the new, highly controversial and poorly conceived (pun intended) Texas law named H.B. No. 1515, or what has been painfully called the “Texas Heartbeat Act.” This bill was written by the Texas State House of Representatives to solve a problem those people have with the 1973 Supreme Court’s decision in the Roe v. Wade case. The new bill clearly states that none of Texas’ laws against abortion were rescinded after the Court’s decision in that landmark case. This territorial dig has nothing to do with law, but the bill goes on to say that unless a mother’s life is in danger no abortion should ever occur in the Lone Star State. They are unabashed and very clear that their real aim is to have the Roe v. Wade decision overturned so they can be as restrictive as they want concerning abortions in their state. Their intent is written in black and white.

READ THE WHOLE LAW: HB01515I.PDF

I’ll cut to the chase here. The new Texas law basically says that no one can perform an abortion or aid or abet another performing an abortion after six weeks of pregnancy and/or after a heartbeat is detected. And get this, the audio of that heartbeat must be played to the mother while she undergoes a lecture on probability of fetus survival. It’s incredibly arcane for the state to codify interference in the relationship between doctor and patient.

If an abortion is performed in Texas after six weeks, it’s not the woman who can be sued, but those involved any way in the effort. One example is an Uber driver being liable if he transports a woman to her clinic for an abortion. It’s only a $10,000 award to the snitch, but the involved person must also pay the legal fees of the accuser. A vindictive part of this law states that a defendant who is found innocent in the court case cannot retrieve any fees from the person suing or the court. That’s a one-way street most state law looks down upon. As Jia Tolentino said in The New Yorker, this is nothing more than a “diabolical bounty structure.”

The law awards all state officials and employees sovereignty, meaning they are protected from any legal action brought on by this law. They can mess up someone’s life by outing them, cursing them or belittling them on television or social media, and the maligned person has no recourse to stop them or right the injustice. There’s no injunctive relief allowed. What country do we live in? Did the Supreme Court even read it?

Supreme Courthouse

The new law has a list of all the things that a doctor or medical professional must place into their records. The law has no “off the record” provision, which flies in the face of current federal HIPPA regulations which clearly state, “No agency shall disclose any record which is contained in a system of records by any means of communication to any person, or to another agency, except pursuant to a written request by, or with the prior written consent of the individual to whom the record pertains; subject to 12 exceptions.” 5 U.S.C. § 552a(b). If you would like to examine the letter of the law you can find it here.

Part of the propaganda element of this Texas law is a demand that the physician turn pro-active preacher and disclose certain information. Before they perform the procedure, the doctor must disclose his or her identify. There may be no secret doctors. They must state the medical risks when performing the procedure, such as the possibilities of infection, hemorrhage or future infertility. Now comes the topper. The law demands the doctor state that abortions carry a potential of breast cancer risks because of the “natural protective effect of completed pregnancy.” This is demonstrably not true. When the determining factor in cancer cases are genetically linked, abortions are not a factor. Some experts believe women who have recently given birth may actually have an increased risk of developing breast cancer. The state is just trying to scare the patients, which is in fact, “doing harm.”

The law states that, “medical assistance benefits may be available for prenatal care, childbirth, and neonatal care…” and then it declares, “the father is liable for assistance in the support of the child without regard to whether the father has offered to pay for the abortion.” What a strange thing to code into law.

Nowhere is there any mention of a “father” until we get to this part about an obligation to support the child. How is this possible? I am sure there are some Texas common laws that cover a biological father’s liabilities, but if the man is not married to his pregnant companion and he paid for an abortion there would be no need to support a child. Think about this incredible, diabolical loophole in the law. If the man who impregnated the women pays for her abortion or drives her to the procedure, he could be sued by the woman who got the abortion. If she wasn’t a state employee or official, she could maneuver the law to create a business? Remember, the boyfriend would have to pay all her legal fees. If the judge found for the plaintiff, the woman could get a payment of up to $10,000 from the sperm donor.

Not only does the state want to see all the patient’s records in the doctor’s files, but they demand to know the where the patient lives, her year of birth, her marital status and her race. There’s certainly no privacy in this draconian law, but race information? What is that all about?

We see this all-caps paragraph pop out on page 21 of the 23-page Texas law: (my bold)

(6) I UNDERSTAND THAT I AM REQUIRED BY LAW TO HEAR AN EXPLANATION OF THE SONOGRAM IMAGES UNLESS I CERTIFY IN WRITING TO ONE OF THE FOLLOWING:

___ I AM PREGNANT AS A RESULT OF A SEXUAL ASSAULT, INCEST, OR OTHER VIOLATION OF THE TEXAS PENAL CODE THAT HAS BEEN REPORTED TO LAW ENFORCEMENT AUTHORITIES OR THAT HAS NOT BEEN REPORTED BECAUSE I REASONABLY BELIEVE THAT DOING SO WOULD PUT ME AT RISK OF RETALIATION RESULTING IN SERIOUS BODILY INJURY.

___ I AM A MINOR AND OBTAINING AN ABORTION IN ACCORDANCE WITH JUDICIAL BYPASS PROCEDURES UNDER CHAPTER 33, TEXAS FAMILY CODE.

___ MY UNBORN CHILD [FETUS] HAS AN IRREVERSIBLE MEDICAL CONDITION OR ABNORMALITY, AS IDENTIFIED BY RELIABLE DIAGNOSTIC PROCEDURES AND DOCUMENTED IN MY MEDICAL FILE.

(7) I AM MAKING THIS ELECTION OF MY OWN FREE WILL AND WITHOUT COERCION.

It’s revealing how they throw this in near the end. It’s an attempt to keep this new law semi-kosher with some pre-existing laws. But those are not exemptions to whether you can get an abortion, these are exemptions from seeing the sonogram images or hearing the whole anti-abortion pitch from a doctor. These points reveal a distinction in how a woman was impregnated or the potential of a miscarriage because of a medical condition of the fetus. Nowhere do they state a more in-depth examination of the fetus is needed to determine this.

Chapter 33 of the Texas Family Code provides for judicial authorization of an unemancipated minor to consent to an abortion in Texas without notice to, or the consent of, a parent, managing conservator, or guardian. REALLY? Yes, such an abortion must happen before six weeks of gestation or before a heartbeat is detected, but it’s crazy that Texas has such a law. This puts the decision of abortion in the hands of a judge! A kind of death panel of one.

If it was so important to include “sexual assault, incest or other violation of the Texas penal code,” in this section, why didn’t they spell this out in the rules of the game at the very beginning? They needed to make it clear that certain parts of what a woman had to be told would change if an assault, incest or other violations were involved in the pregnancy. It’s clear their intent was no exceptions because the law doesn’t mention “sexual assault, incent or other violation of the Texas penal code” are excluded.

CONCLUSIONS: First, I began with the history of abortion for a reason. Men tend to disregard the potential trouble their sperm can cause for a woman, and they write laws as if they had nothing to do with the dilemma of an unwanted child. Why is there no law that demands a man to control or preserve that life giving fluid? This myopic morality seems so misogynistic that women in Austin should be burning their bras. And Texas men, are you ready to have your sperm DNA tested so that your life-giving seed can be put in a database? Hey, don’t laugh.

Hey, I am not a lawyer or legal scholar, but shouldn’t laws be written in a way that people can read and understand them? It’s wrong to say that “not comprehending a law” is not an excuse for breaking it when that law has been written in such a way that a person cannot grasp its reason for existence.

And finally, let’s consider this: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…” So, Muslim religious law states that an abortion before 120 days, or 17 weeks is allowed, why then does the state of Texas violate the law of one of the world’s largest religions? I am totally amazed no one has mentioned this before and why not challenge the law based on the First Amendment? Where is the Supreme Court?

FACT: it seems pretty clear that the cost of an abortion in Texas is now $10,000. And the money goes to tattle tells?

We had late breaking news on September 6, 2021, Labor Day, when Attorney General of the United States Merrick Garland released a statement that the Department of Justice will use the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act to protect those who seek an abortion in Texas. He’s already reached out to the US Attorney’s offices and said the FBI could get involved. So, you see, there are ways to fight an unjust, unconstitutional law.

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

 

THE MINORITY RESORT

Evangelicals, Conspiracy Nuts & Whack Jobs

There once was a time when we all discussed things, and at times spun up some dust, but after the vote we counted the ballots and walked away knowing we had to abide by the will of the majority. Even politicians would say,”Hey, it’s what the people wanted.” We no longer live in that world.

I’ll begin by saying there is no deep state movement that tampers with our elections. Sure, Uncle Larry voted for his dead wife, but he cast that ballot knowing how she would have voted had she still been on the earth. Minor, isolated events like this have become cooked into the mind of a loser, and like a snappin’ turtle he’s not about to admit he’s not as popular as daddy always said he was.

Even though the Democrats won the White House, the House of Representatives and found a path to work their will without the Senate, they seem to be getting in their own way. The majority is now succumbing to the power and volume coming from certain minorities. The “TRUMP WON” campaign on display in the front yards of America is embarrassing. He lost big time. Then there are those people from the “far-crazy,” mainly followers of QAnon, who believe that in some “new future,” Trump will stride triumphantly back into 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, and everything will be “solved.” These buffoons weave a tale about a cabal of Democratic Satanists who will be removed from office and arrested because “incontrovertible evidence” proves their transgressions.

With Trump and QAnon pushing these lies, state legislatures have gone against all logic and law to construct procedural walls between the ballot box and elderly, minority and low involvement voters. They did this not because of any voter fraud but, like gerrymandering, they are building an artificial advantage for the next election. There’s one question that hardly anyone asks these zealots. Will their actions, policies and laws make it harder to vote? The answer is definitely, YES! So, why are these good actions?

The cowboy hat and boot wearing posers in Texas have just passed an anti-abortion law most likely to get them a primo parking spot at the Baptist church. They claim to have fought against those who follow the “heathen gods” who permit a woman to not only have the right over her own body but also to “murder” a fetus. Hello, most research shows over 60% of American voters think that banning abortions is a bad idea, but these jackasses don’t care.

Now that the Supreme Court has been stacked with ultra-conservative judges, they no longer can see America for what she truly is. Chief Justice John Roberts thinks we don’t need a federal mandate of fair and honest elections because the states will police themselves. Boy, is he ever wrong! And the three stooges, Neil Gorsuch, Brett Cavanaugh and Amy Conehead Barrett, are not at all worried about voting fairness. They are far more interested in creating a “handmaiden” state.

Women have long been the target of male dominated jurists, legislators and business leaders who think they know what is best for the females of our land. California has a Republican candidate running in the recall election, Larry Elder, who wants to eliminate all pregnancy leave from his state. God help California if this wanker gets elected. He’s simply not promoting a majority concept. Women make up 51% of the population, and I am sure there are millions of California men who need and appreciate the ability of their spouses to care for their newborns in the first few months of their lives.

I might suggest a late-term abortion for some sitting on the Supreme Court bench, but that would be murder, even though some of the justices don’t appear to have a heart let alone a heartbeat. The Texas law contains a diabolical way to police “illegal abortions” by using citizens to out the offenders. I hate to do this, but I must. In Nazi Germany, Hitler came up with the idea of brown shirts, youth who would rat out citizens for their transgressions against the state. Isn’t that what this is? Heil Abbott!

I feel we have too many Catholics on the Supreme Court. Catholics make up about 20% of the US population but we have six of them on the high court, I did the math, that’s 66.6%. Strange that it’s not legal to ask a job applicant about their faith, but we make a big deal of religious affiliation when it comes to Supreme Court nominees. Why is that? I have another question. Why are there no agnostics or atheists sitting on the Supreme Court?

The problem, my friends, is this. If you are raised from childhood to believe that abortion is a sin, eating meat on Friday will send you to hell and your religions institution demands loyalty to a church above state, how can you possibly be unbiased on matters involving morality? Your moral judgement has been baked in an institution that thwarted the law, abused thousands of children and covered it up for decades.

Throughout my life I’ve read about faith, religion, politics and people. With each passing year I have less faith in people, a growing disdain for politics and outright distrust of religion. Evangelicals push their agenda on all of us because of a strange intellectual flaw that their faith and belief system should be imposed on everyone else, period. Okay, but I don’t want to play that. I have four kids and I wouldn’t want any one of them to be taken away from me or my family. Amy Coney Barrett and her husband have seven children, two of whom were adopted. Okay, I have no problem with how she created her family and I have no problem with how she lives. Why can’t she let other people live the way they want? It’s simple. She cannot separate her judgements from her religion. I thought we were supposed to replace only ourselves, meaning two kids per family, to keep the planet from overflowing. But who am I to talk? I have four kids.

The Supreme Court has an interesting ego which appears at many obvious points in history. They don’t like to admit they were wrong, but at the same time they try to avoid stepping on the traditions and precedents of their former members. They must move on, however, or we would still have slavery, women prohibited from voting and LGBTs shunned as a subhuman set of citizens. If you rigorously followed the Holy Bible, women would be totally avoided during a certain time of the month. Leviticus 11:1-15:33 states that a woman undergoing menstruation is perceived as unclean for seven days and whoever touches her shall be unclean. Wow, now there is some pure handmaiden horseshit!

Abortion will be the true test, and some are skillfully arguing against the procedure by using technological advances in medicine. A woman cannot get an abortion until she knows she’s pregnant, and six weeks is too early to know in many cases. The Texas law was made in a way to trick the courts. Can a fetus survive birth at six weeks? No, but we know babies can be made in test tubes. Oh, it’s coming folks. You need to go back and read Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World.

Here’s the most destructive part of the new law in Texas. If a man or parent forced themselves on a woman, and the victim became pregnant and then got an abortion, that man could sue the woman for restitution. This Texas law has effectively codified a man’s penis as a legal weapon against women. How will those evangelicals and political whack jobs justify this horrible law to their God, or could it be that the core of religion is chauvinistic?

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

JUST BLAME JOE FOR EVERYTHING

Let the clawing and finger pointing begin!

Christian political operative Ralph Reed appeared on Bill Maher’s show last week to share an interesting observation. He claimed that the founding fathers argued a lot and what we ended up with was not so much a consensus but a compromise of ideas. That may be true, but those having a say were all white men, wealthy landowners and self-professed Christians. Whatever compromises were made did not harm them individually or collectively. These are facts.

So, now that we are closing in on nine months of Joe Biden’s presidency, many have forgotten the daily chaos that Donald Trump created just by opening his little round mouth or tweeting out lies each and every day. I believe that in the not-too-distant future average Americans will have forgotten all about the Afghanistan war and its cause. The withdrawal from Afghanistan was certainly not one of our shining moments and, let’s be honest, fighting there for twenty years was our collective sin. Nothing good will happen in that country now that we have left, but that’s based on our own definition of “good.”

It’s not Joe Biden’s fault that we got into Afghanistan and it’s not his fault that we stayed there so long, but Joe will take the hit for a shitty drawdown that was more escape than extraction. I think those using the word “retreat” don’t understand it’s meaning, but it seems to me that Republicans often vote for war then soon are opposed to the very war they started. The lame-ass, hypocritical statements being made by many members of the GOP are dreadful and dishonest.

People are going to investigate and analyze in an attempt to find forensic proof that Joe Biden, through a cabal of scheming deep-state operatives, was singularly responsible for more than a dozen US forces being killed at the Abby gate of the Kabul Airport. Now we must suffer those who will blame others for those things they created in the first place.

So, go ahead. Blame Joe for everything you don’t like about America. But somewhere along the line you must answer one basic question. Is what you are doing making America great again? If you think that outlawing abortions by way of citizen arrests and sending kids and teachers back into more Covid is a good thing, then you need to have your head fixed. You cannot be serious that the election was stolen. You cannot truly believe there are chips in the vaccines. A corpse might move a leg now and again but would never believe any of that QAnon shit.

Right now, the media folks just want to keep your attention. They pursue the golden rule of ratings and understand the powerful pull of drama and conflict. Sure, rev up the old “fair and balanced” positioning of your programming to blast away at our president’s administration. Biden’s whole staff are sitting ducks, but they don’t need you to understand every “why” and they certainly don’t need your pity. They hold the nuclear codes with solid awareness that their number one job is protecting the nation. Biden and company are running the show now, and if you continue to scream and post horse manure you will lose all credibility with the thinking people of America. So go ahead and take your cow de-wormer meds to be safe from the Delta variant, but don’t be surprised if it retards whatever is left of your brain.

Covid-19 Cases in America

One of my neighbors, a former military man, said this, “He’s the President, the Commander in Chief, you have to respect him.” He was speaking about Donald Trump, but why doesn’t leader of the free world Joe Biden deserve that? Some spoke about respect when the least respectful person imaginable sat in the White House, but now you want to hang a guy who made the right decision to end a stupid, fruitless war? You are exactly who George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and John Adams warned us about, a person who holds loyalty to something other than our country and our remarkable Constitution. After you take your last breath on this earth, no one will be reading your posts.

We were asked to give Donald Trump a chance and get beyond his political rhetoric, but the 45th President made every comment and decision to please a base of buffoons who can hardly be categorized as civil citizens. Joe Biden has been a civil servant for most of his life and we know his story. Sure, there have been moments when we question his judgement or actions, but he’s like that wise uncle with perceptive insight and shrewd actions. The best part is he means what he says.

We are beyond the endless lies and deceptions of Donald Trump as we march into the future with a competent leader. We all wanted to get out of Afghanistan, and Joe made it happen. Yes, the effort was flawed, but there were many issues. It’s time to stop second guessing Afghanistan and move on. Here at home, we must contend with border immigrants and asylum seekers, major court decisions, and keeping our elections safe and accurate. While some scream “Why are we trusting the Taliban?” perhaps they should take a look at Texas where elected officials are denying women’s rights and making it harder for people to vote.

We must stop pouring money into countries that cannot breathe our kind of democracy. And, for sure, why should one more life have to be taken by our flawed world policing and nation building? Let’s just judge the actions of our president and decide if they reflect a true care and concern for America. I think they do.

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

AMERICAN GRAY MATTER

Brains for the betterment of mankind

The grey matter throughout the human central nervous system enables individuals to control movement, memory and emotions. Most people have enough of the stuff to make a difference, but I must protest the notion that all men and women are created equal. Those are wonderful, inspirational words and aspirational goals, but the statement is simply not true.

When I used to argue this point with philosophy majors, I asked a straightforward question. If all people are created equal, then why is it that some can sing while others cannot carry a tune? Well, DNA or luck bestows certain gifts. Some people can swiftly swim or run like crazy, while others sit on the shore or plod along. I won’t overdose today’s post with all the stupid things some folks are believing these days, but there are many and I’ll share some of them.

There are those who follow the path of Scientology, which is neither a science nor a theology. The core belief is a human is an immortal, spiritual being or “thetan.” They claim the thetan lives in human form and that all of us came from extraterrestrial cultures. Roy Wallis was a sociologist and Dean of the Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences at the Queen’s University in Belfast. He taught that Scientology is a movement straddling the boundaries between psychology and religion and uses a graded hierarchy of ‘auditing’ and ‘training’ with the intention of releasing the individual’s full potential. People believe so much in these principles that they give the church millions of dollars. One might say none of the church’s claims are provable, but then who cares as long as it floats your boat.

L. Ron Hubbard, Fake Prophet

There’s another group of people who suck large amounts of tar and nicotine into their lungs daily and buy perfectly legal things called cigarettes to accommodate their addiction. More than seven million people around the world die from tobacco related illnesses every year. According to the CDC, more than 16 million Americans are living with a disease caused by smoking. For every person who dies because of smoking, at least 30 others live with serious smoking-related illnesses. Some even know the dangers of smoking, but don’t stop either because they don’t care or they can’t because of their addiction to the pleasure of nicotine.

During the reign of the last president, many believed he could do no harm and they believed most of the 30,000 lies he told during his term in office. It didn’t matter if a new lie was totally in conflict with a previous lie. His sycophants believed their safety and well-being was linked to the man’s rhetoric and theories, despite the fact finding to extract truths was an easy endeavor. Our ex-president believed whatever he wanted and then disseminated his “knowledge” to the masses through his powerful social media presence and pulpit. Even though his “remedies” for Covid-19 were useless, people believed him. Were they stupid, lazy or just incapable of intelligent thinking? Perhaps we’ll never know. It’s hard to study someone who refuses to believe evidence of truth.

That brings us to “Jack and the Beanstalk,” first seen in 1734 as an olde English fairytale named “The Story of Jack Spriggins and the Enchanted Bean.” Here’s how it goes. Jack, a poor country boy, trades the family cow for a handful of magic beans which grow into an enormous stalk reaching far up into the clouds. Jack climbs the beanstalk and finds himself in the castle of an unfriendly giant. The giant senses Jack’s presence and cries, Fee-fi-fo-fum! I smell the blood of an Englishman. Be he alive, or be he dead, I’ll grind his bones to make my bread.

Jack outwits the giant and retrieves many goods once stolen from his family, including a bag of gold. He also scores an enchanted goose that lays golden eggs and a magic golden harp that plays and sings by itself. Jack then escapes by chopping down the beanstalk. The pursuing giant falls to his death, and Jack and his family prosper. Now, is this story believable? Some lacking critical thinking might surely say it is. But why would a giant live in the sky? And if the beanstalk was the only way for the giant to descend and rob, why would the victims ever grow beans? And what drives this particular giant to have such a quandary with English people?

I was given an email this week claiming the Covid vaccines don’t work, no one is properly treating the coronavirus and the medical profession is fooling everyone. They suggest that doctors treat the disease by plugging patients into ventilators and waiting for them to die. They profess wild theories that we are not doing enough to study “known cures.” Goofball Senator Rand Paul says that “hatred of Trump” is blocking research into ivermectin, a deworming medication for livestock that some vaccine skeptics are touting as the miracle cure for humans suffering with Covid.

Okay, please let me properly position this. That animal medication is made by a multi-national company named Merck, which makes $9.7 billion a year selling chemicals and pharmaceutical products around the world. If they surmised ivermectin could be a solid cure for Covid, they would have done the research themselves and, if the treatment worked, they would have made tons of money selling it around the world. But hey, don’t listen to me; here are some statements from Merck: “No scientific basis for a potential therapeutic effect against COVID-19 from pre-clinical studies; No meaningful evidence for clinical activity or clinical efficacy in patients with COVID-19 disease; Because of a concern and lack of safety data in most studies, we do not believe that the data available support the safety and efficacy of ivermectin beyond the doses and populations indicated in the regulatory agency-approved prescribing information.”

Why would Rand Paul suggest, in such a high-profile way, that this horse and cow drug could be a possible Covid treatment without providing any scientific evidence to prove his claim? Instead of using his grey matter for the betterment of man and womankind, he’s just created a problem. People will try the remedy. Some may get sick or even die.

I received another stupid counterfeit-science email from a medical doctor who proclaimed two measures would prevent getting Covid-19: 1) Gargle with Listerine two to three times per day, 2) Use Xlear allergy nasal spray, available at Whole Foods, two to three times per day to kill Covid before or after acquiring it. This total bullshit from a licensed doctor is nothing less than potentially harmful information.

These doctors’ ramblings fail to mention the three credible and approved VACCINES that help prevent the spread of the virus. Gargling with mouthwash won’t keep you from getting herpes, let alone Covid-19. Us humans are a dumb lot, but we are becoming even more stupid when dealing with something we don’t understand? Why wouldn’t the thetan keep the Covid away? Why doesn’t all that tar in the lungs of cigarette smokers make them immune? Why wouldn’t everyone agree to chop down the beanstalk to kill the virus? Why aren’t we smart enough to just take the vaccine?

I’ll conclude with a quote from one of my philosopher friends, “Apparently the people’s right to know ENDS when the people don’t WANT to know.” God protect us.

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

IT’S WAR, STUPID!

The Truth about Afghanistan

Since the end of World War II, America has abused the privilege of waging war. You might think we’ve learned our lessons about nation building and getting drawn into wars, but we haven’t. Let’s disassemble the complexities and state some clear observations about what is now happening in Afghanistan.

When George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney first marched into Afghanistan, and then Iraq, it was all about revenge for 9-11. Yes, they wanted to get Osama bin Laden, but they also had a deep-seated desire to shake up the Middle East to force change. The war architects adjusted their justifications to human rights of the women and children in Afghanistan and the weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. One was real, the other was a colossally miscalculated scheme by power hungry politicians. Americans fell for it and many couldn’t wait to go in and kick some ass.

The Three Stooges

Historians mislabeled the Soviet-Afghan War of 1979-1989 as a guerrilla war, but it was actually a Soviet invasion which violated international law. The Soviet Army fought for almost a decade in the Afghan countryside, claiming that more than 26,000 of their forces were killed during their nine-year war. Official Afghan stats state that 18,000 Afghani soldiers were killed. Pakistan, which fought for Afghanistan, suffered almost 6,000 deaths. The forces of the Mujahideen (which Osama bin Laden was part of), believe that more than 90,000 guerrilla combatants were killed. So, you see, the country has always been protected by not only government troops but also armies of hard-core, independent forces. The Taliban is a remnant of that arrangement.

Here’s another point of fact. The Afghani people have no desire for continuous war, and what has transpired over the last 20 years has been a living hell for those who call the country home. You might need a good, stiff drink after digesting this research by Brown University. Since the occupation started, the Afghan security forces have lost more than 69,000 troops and more than 51,000 civilians and militants. More than 3,500 coalition soldiers have died since 2001, and about two-thirds of them were Americans. More than 20,000 US soldiers have been injured, and some of them will carry physical and mental scars for the rest of their lives. If you are shaking your head, stop. It’s WAR, Stupid!

Sure, America lost fewer men and women than Russia, but Afghanistan is truly a big black hole where vindicative, egotistical military “experts” tell the leaders what they want to hear and march forward with mission creep and twenty-year conflicts. The same thing happened in Vietnam. When the mothers and fathers whose sons and daughters were killed in the conflict see us pulling out “early,” they have to face the grim truth that more US kids being killed won’t bring back their loved ones.

Were the soldiers’ efforts valid? Yes, but war doesn’t care about who dies; it matters only to those who must endure the pain forever. I don’t want to hear that we must continue to fight because your kid was killed. I don’t want to hear any blame about the chaos and disorder of the pull-out. I don’t need to hear the former President’s claim that if Joe Biden had followed his plan everything would have gone smoothly. Mr. Trump, claiming that the Taliban “likes” you is not a metal of honor. It’s the curse of your bad deal, which you now deny.

We must take a sober look at some facts. First, Osama bin Laden was found and terminated in Pakistan. Did we march into that country and try to change the regime because they “didn’t know” he was there? Did all of our bombs and killing really make those radical jihadists respect us? We never defeated ISIS; we just took the land they were occupying. We never eradicated the Taliban, and now we are hearing that even Al Qaeda has reconstituted and is waiting for the next battle over the Middle East. We spent a trillion dollars to do… what? We just delayed the inevitable.

One might argue that we should have divided Afghanistan into two and given the northern provinces to the Taliban. Really? After we pulled out of the southern part they would have attacked just as they did when we announced our departure. One pundit said, quite accurately, the Taliban has been waiting twenty years for this moment. We never defeated them, they just waited until we got bored.

We cannot fly everyone out of Afghanistan. Yes, we should protect the thousands of US citizens who work in the country, and we have a moral obligation to rescue those who worked with us during the occupation, but we cannot prevent death. We taught the 38 million people of the country the feeling of freedom, but they will lose that in a few months. We must not believe the press agents of the Taliban. They will slowly shift back to strict Islamic rule and freedoms will be lost. They already extract millions of dollars from their people at gunpoint. What would make them stop that practice?

A newsflash came across while I was writing this post. The Taliban say they won’t allow Afghans to leave the country and they reject an evacuation extension. The blockade of the airport in Kabul means they will have to secure their borders to stop the exodus from their rule. They will wait until September 1st, then bring the hammer down. It’s their country now.

Sorry, dear reader, I don’t share the media’s accelerated enthusiasm for the blame game and bewilderment about how bad it all is. It’s war, Stupid. Wars are designed to kill people. Killing is the way a war is won, and the victors get to tell their citizens how they are going to live. Yes, the right-wing media and their lunatic followers will complain about all the landed immigrants Joe Biden is bringing into America, but surely those given the gift of freedom will be extremely grateful and will work hard to make their lives better. As for the left-wing zealots, I’m sure they’ll clamor to redeploy hundreds of thousands of forces to keep Afghanistan free. What, 20 more years?

People die when the loser leaves a war. In 1995, Vietnam officially estimated that 2,000,000 civilians on both sides (North and South) perished, and some 1,100,000 North Vietnamese and Viet Cong fighters were killed during the Vietnam War. The US military has estimated that between 200,000 and 250,000 South Vietnamese soldiers died. You want to wear that metal on your chest?

Just consider, the Korean conflict was never even called a war and the result was terrible for all the North Korean people. We left Vietnam for the communists, and now we buy our t-shirts from them. We never completed the first Gulf War, which lead to the false claim of weapons of mass destruction. Did we win that war? Not really. Realize that Afghanistan is the same. I’m not trying to be a smart ass, but why do we keep starting wars we cannot win? It’s not anti-American to be smart.

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

THE “ANTI” AMERICAN

The Divide Between Aware and Unaware 

I just came back from a tour of four western states. Yes, it was a vacation, but driving over 900 miles opened my eyes to some things about this country. Besides the native Americans living in abject poverty on valueless deserts and plains, we saw the rich ski lodges of the Rocky Mountains and the challenge of military families forced to live in underserved small towns. We have a lot to cheer about in this country, including the purple mountain majesty and a thing called democracy. I saw the bumper stickers reminding me that “freedom is not free,” and wondered what that actually means. Democracy gives us a say but freedom doesn’t mean we can do any damn thing we want. We have a responsibility to not intrude on the freedom of others.

I read the “My body my choice” signs held high at the anti-mask rallies by the same women who will be screaming against liberal women holding the same sign at Pro Choice rallies. The Covid-19 global pandemic has taught a lot, and now we know that Covid-19 can kill children. If Johnny doesn’t wear a mask it places Suzy at risk. Sean Penn, the actor and pro second amendment guy, says not wearing a mask is the same as pointing a gun at another. Covid-19 has the potential to hurt, sicken or kill our students and we must deal with this reality.

I am starting to think that the division in America is not political but a chasm between “aware” and “unaware” people. It’s all too easy to put a person down without understanding their personal knowledge base. Consider this. I hold a hammer and ask the person standing next to me to put their hands on the table. They quickly pull back, thinking I want to hit their hands with the hammer and knowing how badly that would hurt. Over our lifetimes, we have gained knowledge of hammers and hot stoves and we automatically avoid them. Those people screaming “enough is enough” at school board meetings claiming that little Bobby shouldn’t have to wear a mask are asking for the hammer to come down on their hands. They are unaware of what Covid-19 can do because they haven’t taken the time to understand it.

While the Sarasota school board here in Florida was debating mandatory mask requirements for students, Governor Ron DeSantis signed a law forbidding mask mandates in public places, schools and businesses. The rich irony of those who carry signs that say “We Don’t Co-Parent with the Government” is they don’t realize that the government is telling them what they CANNOT DO. It’s the exact same kind of powerful government overreach they are protesting. Why are these folks helping the government be more powerful and overbearing in their lives? Do they derive pleasure from the pain of the hammer?

The early figures from our school district here on the west coast of Florida are disturbing. In the first week of class, 166 staff members and 683 students tested positive for Covid-19. 69 staff members and 1,421 students were required to quarantine after contact with an infected person. Governor DeSantis forced the Florida Department of Health to slow the release of coronavirus data. What was he thinking? Oh, yeah, he wasn’t thinking. He even admitted during a press conference a week ago that a once- weekly release of Covid statistics was not in the public interest. I guess he did it to underscore his authority.

We’ve had a long history of the term “anti-American” activities. Donald Trump was quick to use the trope against anyone who disagreed with him or his policies. Any chance that the Donald could be a good president was dashed by his inability to see beyond his beliefs. He has a strange isolationist strategy. If you like him, he likes you and he gives, but if you are not a hundred percent with him then you are his enemy. Baby-Trump DeSantis has threatened to cut off education funding and the salaries of those who teach our children if they vote in mask mandates for their schools and students. He’s being anti-American by saying the state government should control local governments and school boards. Ron DeSantis is a vindictive son-of-a-bitch.

I heard lots of complainers on my trip. The conversations were anti-this or anti-that. Biden messed up Afghanistan, I don’t want my kids to wear a mask. One father demanded his kids be home schooled because the elementary school had a mask mandate. Another guy whined about bad roads and, in the same paragraph, said he was against the infrastructure bill because Biden was robbing the people. Being against something seems to be more popular than taking the time to be aware, to investigate and understand what is really going on. It’s so much more fun to be against something. Americans became more “anti” over the last four years because they were taught that being a complainer, a putdown artist and an outrageous personality wasn’t a disorder; it was a valuable attribute. Yes, it’s Donald Trump’s fault. Sorry to complain.

Motoring over stretches of barren land last week, it dawned on me that we Americans waste so much time on insipid conversations, unimportant social media rants, likes and dislikes that we no longer have awareness of what we are doing and what is happening all around us. We are melting our planet with emissions, burning our forests with raging fires, and creating strange weather pattens that will wash away our homelands. Did we want another whack of the hammer so badly that we elected a climate change denier?

We stood down and took foolish advice from a craven lunatic instead of fighting the pandemic. We should have shut things down and started wearing masks at the very beginning. Sadly, we had no one to lead us, no one to cheerlead us to victory. We simply had an unaware anti-American in the White House.

And those deeply loyal Republicans in power, who cling to a fantasy that things were oh so good with President 45, are just as much part of the problem. They, too, are anti-American. When Rand Paul claims that masks do nothing, I wonder what he would say if a doctor about to operate on him refused to scrub up and wear a mask. About 20% of us are anti-science, anti-mask and anti-vaccine. “I don’t trust anything from the government” may be an interesting bumper sticker, but we will tread on you if you stand in the way of our kids’ safety and health. You can be a drunken driver in your backyard, but as soon as you take your vehicle to the road you are on GOVERNMENT LAND. Follow the rules.

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