Sunday, July 17, 2016

Blame the "Protectors" but not the "Doers?"

It often appears as if the so-called civilized world has lost its mind.  One of the recent news articles said that those who erroneously allowed the truck driver in Nice onto the road where he killed so many people were being blamed...at least in part...for the deaths.  The anger in France...or in any country where terrorists act out...should be focused on the terrorist(s), not those who do their level best to protect others.  The French are not alone in their apparent desire to ignore the actual "doer" of the atrocity in favor of attacking those who were trying to prevent such occurrences.

In America, I have seen minorities "cop and attitude" with police when approached for almost anything.  In an era where minorities have ambushed and assassinated police, those who serve as police are logically on alert.  When they approach someone and issue an order (such as "don't move your hands" or "keep you hands where I can see them") and that order is not obeyed, I know of no logical person who wouldn't react as if there were a developing threat and react accordingly.  But in the aftermath of these events, even our President accuses police of "overreacting" ...or even of discrimination.

Today, in America it is not hard to get a cop fired.  This administration will virtually require local police departments to punish and/or fire any officer who is complained of by any minority.  The logical action, then, would be to behave very quietly when approached by any member of the law enforcement community and then bring it to the attention of the police department and the Justice Department.  Instead, some just insist on not obeying commands and/or mouthing off as they move their hands in ways that could constitute a threat.

Who is blamed?  Why, the law enforcement officer(s) of course.

Over the years, I have been approached by police nine or ten times.  Each time, I responded as I would have to any person with authority: directly and politely.  Was I uneasy?  Sure...in some cases I wasn't sure what I had done wrong, in others I had been speeding and was chagrined that I had been "caught."  Another time there had been a "hit and run" and I was questioned if I had seen a particular color and make vehicle.  And one time, coming home from school, I had a brake light that wasn't working.  Big Deal?  Not really.  Life goes on around us and sometimes we're the hammer and other times we are the nail.

What I don't understand is why the human race seems bent on allowing those who initiate behavior that results in consequences feel that it is appropriate to deflect consequences on the responder instead of the "doer" who's actions began the whole thing.  I can understand how the people involved would like to accomplish that...but not society as a whole, each member of which should know better.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Why the protest against Patriotism?

Our schools and many of our politicians today want to do away with patriotism.  Even the courts seem to agree.  Schools no longer start the day with the Pledge of Allegiance or singing the National Anthom, something that use to be the norm.  Why?

I know of no other country on earth that provides the combination of opportunity and the lack of a "class" attitude that prevents individuals from working to accomplish great things.  Many of our largest, most profitable, most generous, and most innovative companies were started by people who came from low or middle class backgrounds and who accomplished much without even completing a college degree.  It was their effort and accomplishment that was rewarded.

And it was rewarded by the United States of America and its economy.  No other nation state provides the opportunities for individual success that does America.

Yet there are apparently a sizable, if not a majority, of those who control education in America that deem America a "bad" entity; who take every opportunity to focus on her faults and ignore her strengths.  Not satisfied with that, they work to cease teaching our children to value the good that exists in America; they often extol the belief and economic systems in other countries, arguing that America is bad because it doesn't proved equality of accomplishment and pay to every person who resides (note that citizenship is not a factor) in the country...or even visits.

These individuals and groups ignore that no other country provides the opportunities that are available to every citizen of America.

More important, they ignore that many countries and ideologies in the world seek to destroy the entity that we know as America.

Why?

If they know of another governing entity that is better, why not extol it factually, providing the basis for all citizens to evaluate their point of view.  Why do they use subterfuge and flawed emotional arguments to eliminate competition in schools, rewards for excellence and diminution of accomplishment as a basis for grades...and even arguing that grades or performance is "hurtful."

These people seek only to destroy the United States as a shining example of individual achievement when given individual freedom.

Why do we allow them to hold office, positions of power, and honor them with acceptance?


Thursday, June 30, 2016

We are a "stricken" country!

I suspect that most of the citizens of Greece and of Rome were surprised when their civilizations collapsed.  After all, just living life and taking care of one's responsibilities to provide for one's family and to attend to each of our obligations takes time and attention.  We all tend...and I thing the citizens of Rome and Greece also..to trust those with governmental power to preserve our safety.

We assume!

Of course we are aware of just how wrong that is...but we do it anyhow.  In part, we do it because those who got our vote promised us that they would look out for us...and, after all, they grew up in our town or county and knew what our attitudes were.  How could we expect that they would ignore us in favor of "strangers?"  Yet...they did.  And do.

Once our politicians leave our (their) town...they don't want to come back.  Even running for re-election is a chore and make them uncomfortable.  Just watch them at local "Town Halls."  Notice how controlled it is!  Notice how it "feels" like "us" versus "him (or her)".  Didn't feel that way the first time he or she ran for office, did it?

They went to Washington and became part of a new community.  The Washington establishment doesn't truly care about your town, your county, or your state.  They no longer are a part of it.  They have become a part of the elite establishment who, as a group, reassure each other that they "know best" and that your interests are just "wrong."

Are any of you who read this post for even one instant think this isn't so?  Are you that naive?  Or that wrapped up in your individual life pressures that you haven't noticed?  You have been...and continue to be...scammed.  Conned.  Lied to.  And...IGNORED.

But...you are too busy to do anything about it, so our country is stricken and on the way to oblivion.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Have we become a nation of "victims?"

Once upon a time (and, no...this is not a fairy tale) America was a country full of people who "did" things.  Our forefathers never ever expected to be given anything; they expected to live or die on the basis of whether they succeeded or not.  And many did die.  The actual number of people that died as America was settled and then expanded west is unknown...at least I have never seen any estimate supported by good research.  Those who survived accomplished amazing things.

These people were of all kinds: kind, cruel, gifted, lucky and all sorts of other mixes of character traits.  The common trait, however, was that they had only themselves to rely on and that meant they had to take responsibility for the path that their lives took.  They were doers...NOT watchers.  They acted.  They acted to accomplish goals: to eat, live, support their family, to defend their family.  None of them...that survived...expected this to be done for them.  They didn't sit around waiting for someone else to support or protect them.

Very few people of that frame of mind exist in America today.  Those that do are vilified as cruel, unkind, uncaring and/or racist...in addition to many other terms of disrespect.  Why?  For two main reasons: 1. that sort of attitude is embarrassing to those who are supported by government handouts and if acknowledged as a good thing would leave the recipients feeling "less than";2. the politicians who use the "giving" of other peoples' money to those who don't achieve in order to "buy" their votes and thereby remain in office do not want that fact...or the fact that they usually never keep their promises...highlighted, lest they lose their position of power.  I can remember the days of the Community Chest and local Churches and Charities taking care of the "deserving" poor.  Yes...I said "deserving."  Because in those days every town and county had hard working folk who had disaster visited upon them unexpectedly and were as hard-working as any other member of the community...they deserved help.  Likewise, every town had some who were poor out of lack of effort or impulse, making a career out of looking for a hand out.  Those folk were never indulged...except for the "elitists" and Progressives in town who were rich and make themselves feel worthy by ostensibly giving funds to any poor person providing it could be done ostentatiously...in public.

Today's America is populated by an increasing number of passive and active "victims."  Almost half now receive money from the government that has no basis on their contributions to government programs, like Social Security.  That is money that was paid by the recipients over past years, and that is repaid by the government now on the basis of how much you contributed during your working and productive years.  No...I am talking about reverse taxation, unemployment, welfare and the like.

There was a time when a majority of people who found themselves in a position to have to take such support were embarrassed to do so; they knew that they hadn't earned it, and looked forward to getting back on their feet so that they could take pride in living off of what they earned.  No such embarrassment today; in fact, there is a certain pride and braggadocio exhibited by those who are "stealing" tax dollars from those who do work and pay the taxes that are so blithely redistributed by politicians.  And the majority allow this sort of attitude...even applaud it.  I find it disgusting.

The same goes for defending ourselves.  We allow the government to abandon guarding or enforcing our borders.  We make excuses to not hold those that attack us accountable, thereby keeping from having to react in any forceful way to eliminate such attacks.  A majority sit around as if there is nothing to be done...except to chant mantras and call for peace and love.  I remember a saying common when I was growing up: "God helps those that help themselves."  One didn't sit around moaning about something...you did something about it.  Maybe you failed, but you tried.  You didn't whine about it or mis-characterize it for some unrelated agenda item.  It wasn't about words.  It was about doing!  Victims whine.  Independent free human beings act, and take pride in that fact.

Too bad that America has forgotten how to do that.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Is Mr. Obama the reincarnation of LBJ?

Few politicians in the history of the world have been as successfully Machiavellian as was Lyndon Baines Johnson.  Most citizens remember him as an accomplished politician that served in the House of Representatives, then in the Senate, and ran successfully as JFK's Vice-President, becoming the Thirty-fifth President of the United States on the occasion of the assassination of President Kennedy on November 22, 1963.  The most enduring memory is of his unsuccessful oversight of the Viet Nam "War," and his decision not to run for re-election because of the unpopularity that he suffered as a result.

Some have suggested that Mr. Obama's legacy will suffer a similar fate as a result of his lying about the effect on citizens of the passing of the "Affordable Healthcare Act," the false narratives used to conclude a treaty with Iran on limiting the production of Nuclear arms by Iran, and his readiness to govern through Executive Orders, rather than negotiating with Congress.  Be that as it may...and only history and time will reveal what the public wishes to see as the truth...it is worth some time to compare the manner in which these two politicians operated.

Time has revealed much about Johnson that was generally unknown to a majority of Americans until less than a decade ago.  He was a tyrant to his staff and his wife...and, actually, to anyone who did not have the power to advance his success...behind closed doors.  And in many ways he was a vulgar man by standards (today, perhaps discarded) of the time.  He was a genius in detecting the needs of those in power around him and in playing to those needs; he was seen by all as being on "their" side and who thought like "them" even when each of those people were on opposite sides of the spectrum.  It is easy to come to the conclusion that Johnson actually had no ideological belief...his ideology was his own success and rapid progression to positions of power.

There is a three volume study of LBJ written by Mr. Robert Allan Caro that, for the student of history and politics, is an essential read.

It is questionable that LBJ could have operated in the manner that provided some much personal and professional success today; the ubiquitous nature of phone cameras coupled with the pressure to fill a 24/7/365 news cycle makes creating different personas for different people and groups impossible.

However, to even a casual observer, there seem to be immense similarities between the approach to professional goals displayed by LBJ and by President Obama.

Let us start by eliminating any discussion of where they are different.  Mr. Obama seems to have a firm ideological point of view that is consistent and constant; LBJ did not seem to have any inherent ideology, shifting his public positions as was politically convenient.  LBJ was a master at manipulating his fellow politicians and seemed to enjoy the process if not the necessity; Mr. Obama has shown himself to not play with others well, ignoring Congress as much as possible and depending on Executive Orders and an obsequious Supreme Court to accomplish his goals.

Both had very clear goals.  LBJ wanted to become President of the United States.  Otherwise, his interest was in preserving his own power and reputation as a master of the political craft.  Mr. Obama also wanted to become President, but his over-arching desire was and is to move the governance of the United States of America to the Left of the political spectrum, seeking to adopt and establish a democratic socialist norm in Washington, and providing rigid governmental oversight of what has been a primary dependence on Capitalism as the basis for the United States of America.

Both saw deception as legitimate in accomplishing their aims.  LBJ would encourage his colleagues and others in power to see him as an ally regardless of his true purpose, hiding the truth until the very last moment, or supplying a rationale to opponents that caused them to not realize how they had been manipulated.  His deception was totally successful in that if discovered at all, it was after his goals had been accomplished or after his death.

Mr. Obama's skill was oratorical. When planned carefully and followed meticulously by utilizing the teleprompter, Mr. Obama's use of the English language was matched in the modern era only by President Reagan.  The language was nuanced in a manner that every listener or viewer could interpret the words used to be a reflection of each listeners beliefs and desires, much as was done in personal interactions by LBJ.  The listener was able...actually encouraged...to hear what they wanted to hear.  This was particularly true when Mr. Obama was campaigning...and even after a successful election he continued to campaign, leaving the drudgery of actually administering the government to his trusted assistants.

The spotlight of modern communications prevented Mr. Obama from achieving the level of success LBJ enjoyed in hiding conflicting positions taken with different groups and individuals...but Mr. Obama took what can arguably be called the "Goebbels approach" to that challenge; when lying, do it consistently, never acknowledge it as a lie and imply that those who insist on claiming that a lie was told are doing so because of personal animus or racial animus.  As did LBJ, Mr. Obama was able to keep the media on his side by providing "leaks" and interviews to those media outlets that presented him in the most favorable light.

Both surrounded themselves with people who served them, placing family, country and mores far below their dedication to his success.

Mr. Obama's accomplishments prior to being elected to public office have been sealed.  When they become available, it would not be surprising to see some evidence of an intense study by Mr. Obama of LBJ's life and the means used to gain power.  They both show more than the average level of vanity, temper (and the need to hide that most of the time), high opinion of themselves, looked down on others as "less than" and were ready to sacrifice everything to the accomplishment of their goals.

It is too bad that our public schools have virtually abandoned teaching anything remotely resembling perceptive history or even current events, much less in anything like an objective manner.




Saturday, April 2, 2016

Perhaps now is the time for "THE TEN SUGGESTIONS"!

During the course of the last century the United States has slowly, but most certainly, ceased to be a Christian country.  Oh, our roots are in a Judeo-Christian heritage.  But a majority of our citizens and residents no longer hold that heritage as central in their personal, business or spiritual lives.

Moreover, the Government, including the courts, of the United States no longer hold in any reverence the symbols of Judeo-Christian beliefs.  They have decided that freedom OF religion means freedom FROM religion, and the majority of Americans seem quite content with that.

I think that is a mistake.  But in order to correct a mistake, it is first necessary to admit that there has been a mistake.  Currently there are folks who do not think that the battle has been lost.  They ignore the constant attitude of the courts, the politically correct vision of life that is contrary to Judeo-Christian tenets that permeates the entertainment industry, the failure on all sides to see the Ten Commandments as being tantamount to Law.

It is time to admit the loss of the battle, and in so doing bring to the forefront of every American's mind and soul the reality of what has been allowed to take place.

In every public square, every courthouse, every school...everywhere it appears...it is time to relabel the Ten Commandments as "The Ten Suggestions!"

This would have a number of benefits: First, it would acknowledge that the ten rules for living life are no longer law or revered as a matter of civilized behavior; Second, that it would eliminate the legitimacy of efforts to remove them from public life as being religious in nature; and Third, it would save communities huge sums of money that they might otherwise need to appropriate to defend the presence of the "commandments" in their communities public areas.

The most important benefit would be that it would made America once again an honest nation.  No longer would anyone feel bad about the failure to rush to the aid of prosecuted Christians around the globe, or to feel that defending other religions but not Christianity was some failure on our part to honor our heritage; that antisemitism could be now viewed as simply a choice made by the majority rather that a failure to abide by the precepts of civilized behavior.  It would make our claimed positions on what life should be consistent with our actions, and that would make it possible to consciously consider if we want to continue this slide...or stop and even reverse it.

And THAT would be a good conversation to have in every public square.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Reverse Evolution surrounds us

I recently had occasion to read some microfiche of newspaper articles from before and after the Civil War.  All but forgotten was the personal nature of attacks on politicians running for office and their families.  My High School classes (when High School actually taught you something instead of confining its activity to that of a badly run Day Care Center) had covered the lack of civility and the crass accusations that took over the newspapers of the day during the election season...and they were an embarrassment even to a bunch of cynical highschoolers.  More than 60 years ago we commented to ourselves and our teachers that such no longer happened and we were far more civilized now.  How presumptive were our assertions.

Today's electioneering and candidates actions and statements  make those ugly days of the past seem both civilized and moral by comparison.  Today's fellow citizens leave me embarrassed.  Why?

Somewhere in our inner selves...in  our minds, our souls and our very being...we know that attacks on family are just wrong.  At some basic level, we know that liars are not good leaders; we know that policy is fair game for comment and attack, but that personal attributes (other than truthfulness and moral behavior) mean nothing.  A handsome face does not guarantee anything but a good picture.  A less than handsome visage, with or without hair, or with a wig (good or bad), doesn't make a person a bad leader.

There was a time when bad language, baseless attacks, personal attacks, derogatory comments about family members, a reputation for falsehoods would render any person unqualified for public office.  There was a time when a person's policies would be demanded and then evaluated for effectiveness and sound financial base.  There was a time when the citizens of the United States of America wanted to vote for a person and policies, not against them; we wanted to be for something, not chose the lesser of two bad choices.

Apparently a majority of our citizens have replaced judgement with greed and narcissism; the impossible promise of "free" stuff is now sufficient to cause voters to forego an examination of whether a promise is possible to fulfill, whether a candidate is a liar, whether a candidate is the kind of person that we will be proud to say stands in our stead to the rest of the world.  How disgustingly and offensively cretin-like.  Our collective acceptance of , and dependence on, such behavior should leave us all ashamed.  But we clearly are not ashamed.

We make excuses for ourselves and for our candidates.  We say things like: "All politicians lie, so you have to put up with it."  You hear, "I wouldn't say it that way but what can you do?"  We nod when we hear, "Its about time someone running for office stopped 'pussyfooting' around and called it like it is!"  And yes, we do get angry with the failure of our leaders to keep their promises, and to solve problems.  Yet we also know that solving those problems will cost us money and now a majority of us don't want to hear that truth or contribute to the cost.  The result: we not only allow the lies...we condone them by electing those who lie to us.  And then complain about it...such hypocrisy!

So now we look to have three possible candidates, one of whom will be elected President of the United States: a liar, a vulgarian and a Socialist Septuagenarian with policies proven over the centuries not to work after the money of the rich has been spent.  Boy, do we know how to pick 'em!

I would not give any one of these people my power of attorney, yet our political system is about to give one of them far more power over each of us that would be granted by such a power-of-attorney.  We seem intent on proving to the world our collective stupidity and lack of caring for our country's and our own well-being.