Political

Where’s the Love

Growing up, I was always told I would be a preacher or politician. I am a gay Agnostic, so that pretty much eliminates both of those possibilities. But I have realized that I do have my little blog here to preach MY message. The LoveFew read, but I can feel I am trying to be a part of the civil discourse. Now, The Black Eyed Peas have a position of influence… and they are using that by releasing an updated 2016 version of their 2003 hit “Where’s the Love?” Celebrities appearances mixed with heart wrenching images makes me ask where is empathy, sympathy, and concern for others and our society. In 2003, I am ashamed to admit I remember more dancing to the song than listening to it.

Part of being Agnostic for me is I am ok with saying I don’t know. People confuse being Agnostic with being Atheist, but I feel Atheist have the same certainty there is NO God as Religious people do that there IS a God. Being Agnostic, I can say not only I don’t know, I can say – I don’t care. I don’t have to BE right… even though I do think I am right! (lol) Why do we have to have an absolute RIGHT side of EVERY issue? Living in the middle I get FRUSTRATED when Christians try to legislate how I as a gay man can live, and justify their “right” to not make gay wedding cakes because of THEIR beliefs. I am ANGERED by Islamic extremist that use terror as a means to associate that message with ALL Muslims to attempt to control lives of others. I am AGGRAVATED that we as a society look at issues only from our point of view and how it impacts us.

OmranThe photo of 5 year-old Omran Daqneesh sitting in the back of an ambulance in shock, wounded by a bomb that struck the building where his family lived is HAUNTING! I actually heard someone on tv say why had his family not fled, why did they stay in a war torn town. If I had been able to talk through the tv, I would have suggested the father may have seen the 2015 image of the lifeless toddler Aylan Kurdi on the beach of the Turkish resort of Bodrum, whose family had attempted to flee the Syrian war.

These images are events that happened about a year apart and in Mockthat year, US Presidential candidate Donald Trump was ranting about the threat of accepting Syrian refugees (and I like to remind people that this is also an asshole that feels it is acceptable to mock disabled people). He worries about the possibility of “terrorist” being able to use this as a way into the United States. I say the terrorists are here… they are the people cheering Trump’s hateful rhetoric. Britain is so frightened that they voted to leave the European Union based MOSTLY on fear of immigrants. How can ANY American look and these images and not be more terrified of the idea of doing NOTHING, not HELPING? When our society has become so cold, callused, and afraid of doing what is right, what is the danger of a Trump Presidency? We are accepting our fates to be isolationist that care ONLY about ourselves! I will FIGHT for what’s right and that, for me, means fighting Donald Trump’s candidacy. Even as much as I may not like Hillary Clinton… she does understand the basics of what’s right.

It’s not even like we have to look internationally to see issues that are no brainer issues that have become divisive. black-lives-matterWhy are so many white people so offended by the “Black Lives Matter” movement? It is as if they are so afraid of black people that they have to embolden the idea that there are NO bad cops and that “Black Lives Matter” hates cops. When the African-American population is disproportionately impacted by violence, poverty and incarceration, it is a sad refection on all people to act as if that issue does not exist. Americans HAVE such a need to react to “Black Lives Matter” with “Blue Lives Matter” or “All Lives Matter” because it is easier to be divisive and not listen, ignore or even blame the messenger. Or are they so color blinded that they think the idea of “BLACK Lives Matter” is to the exclusion of other races? Why are we as a society so afraid to agree that “Black Lives Matter” without having to dilute the message before listening or attempting to look or work on the issue?

B E AwareI am a white guy and what makes me a little different is that I can acknowledge I have benefits because of white privilege. I know when I am pulled over by a cop, I am privilegeuncomfortable, but not afraid. I KNOW there are great cops! But that does not blind me to the evidence that there are some BAD cops and that some of those “bad cops” have gotten away with murder or at least manslaughter. A crooked justice system that gives bad cops a pass only endangers the good, honorable, and admirable cops. I wonder if Americans were to answer honestly if they would admit that cops over use their authority to a point of intimidation? Innocent black men have died just in the process of being arrested for minor violations. But a lot of white America cannot even acknowledge this injustice or acts as if it doesn’t exist.

Etan

Ethan Couch

Two BIG white boy cases that OFFEND me to my core are Ethan Couch and Brock Turner. Ethan Couch killed 4 people driving drunk. He was drinking under age, had stolen the beer from WalMart, his blood alcohol was over 3 times the legal limit for adult drivers, speeding with 7 passengers in his father’s pickup (one of the passengers was paralyzed in the accident also), and tested positive for marijuana and Valium. Ethan’s lawyer argued that poor Ethan suffered from “Affluenza”. Affluenza has nothing to do with the flu… but basically is a condition brought on by

Brock Turner

Brock Turner

too much affluence, he grew up rich and did not understand his actions had consequences. He ended up sentenced to probation and therapy. Look Ethan Couch up on Wikipedia for even more details of his white privilege granted via the US justice system. While the 2nd guy Brock Turner needs less discussion, he was convicted of raping an unconscious girl and was only sentenced to 6 months in jail and only had to serve 3 of those months.

These 2 assholes were convicted and paid no real penalty. In 2015 alone, over 100 unarmed African-Americans were killed by cops… key word “UNARMED”. Only 10 of these incidents resulted in charges and only 2 led to convictions.* In the same year (2015) there were 36 non-accidental firearm fatalities for US law enforcement.** We all know ALL lives matter, but we should see that this issue unjustifiably impacts one community more than the other! But for some reason, people do not listen and find ways to justify status quo.

Status quo is not acceptable anymore! We have to find the love! I wanted a Hollywood ending for this post… I tried. I The futuresearched for more recent photos of Omran. I wanted to see a photo of him well, happy, running and playing. But there is no “updated” happy ending for these issues I am struggling to understand. But to keep me motivated to find the love… I need the haunting image of Omran. At times, that photo comes to mind and I think… Omran is someone’s child, brother, nephew, cousin, buddy… he is more than that photo. I keep thinking of that photo and as I play with my blonde-haired, blue eyed, great-nephews that also have Arab last names. I have to do something so that their world is better! I hope to influence them with good, principled ideas, and there are NO more cases of “Affluenza” (or asshole lawyers that even consider ignorance a defense)! I hope that they will know a better, welcoming, loving America and be a part of a society that WANTS to help and protect ALL lives – especially the ones that don’t have the same privileges as others regardless of color, nationality or socioeconomic status. I hope they will not understand why TWICE The Black Eyed Peas felt the need to sing, “Where’s the Love?”

Where

*http://mappingpoliceviolence.org/unarmed/

**https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/sep/04/police-deaths-2015-law-enforcement-safety

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Is America Great?

Allen Etzler

Is America great? It depends on who you are listening to. Trump’s presidential campaign is based on the idea that No… America is not great but he can “Make America Great Again”. Yeah again… because it is not great now. But Trumps reply about Colin Kaepernick’s protest of not standing for the national anthem was, “Maybe he should find a country that works better for him.” But I guess he is not willing to take his own advice? Since Donald Trump does not think America is great… maybe he should go find a country that works better for him. It may surprise people who know me when I suggest, maybe Donald Trump should stay, as well as Colin Kaepernick. They both are expressing an idea that America could be better. They can each work to Make America Better! Everyone should agree things could be better – for everyone. They each have their audience but there is no surprise for many here… I support Colin’s message more!

14079990_1062989783792518_4193278889116713697_nNow… I do take issue with memes like this that try to imply that ONLY soldiers can be heroes or simply being a soldier makes a person a hero. I find that offensive! What about school teachers, parents, community leaders, celebrities or heaven forbid… people who play sports? They can’t be heroes? Are they less a hero because they are not a soldier? Or is it a competition as to who is more heroier!!  (lol heroier is not a word but I hope you get its implied meaning!  lol) Colin Kaepernick has put his career, his reputation, his endorsements and the way Americans are about guns… he has even put his life on the line to stand up, or in this case sit down, for what he believes. I feel they have both made admirable decisions for their life. With this meme… my answer is they are BOTH heroes!

Why are people so offended Kaepernick did not stand up for the national anthem, but are NOT offended by the social injustices he is attempting to bring light to? I am white and I see, understand, and will “whitesplain” that African-Americans are disproportionately affected by violence, police brutality, arrests, and incarceration. I also know that most police are very dedicated and serve their communities admirably. Both can be true. We as a nation can and should be working together to make it better. I understand also that some people don’t want lights to shine on problems, they are afraid they may find they are part of the problem. Some prefer their shadows. We all need to spend a little time investigating our shadows and learning to HELP each other see the light on MANY issues.

Our biggest obstacle to making America better is most everyone has a side they defend without listening or caring about the other. Recently I was told that I had been brainwashed because my opinions were so different. But it did help me realize, I felt the same about her. She shined the light on my obstinacy. I want to be open to other’s ideas, thoughts, and opinions but too many of them I just see as wrong and BAD. I struggle to find a solution. As she stands her ground, Trump stands his, Kaepernick sits his and I try to find mine… I wonder if it’s possible?

Thomas Johnston 2020 – Make America BETTER!

Herbo

This was a great read on the topic also: http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2016/08/29/criticize-colin-kaepernick-but-support-donald-trump-think-again/89551082/

 

P.S. I am proud that the 49ers allow Kaepernick’s protest and support his right to protest.

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We ALL Lose

We All Lose

I have never been shy to share my thoughts about politics. That has not changed. What has changed is my FEAR about political outcomes. I have thought myself rational and even when faced with opposing views may have felt challenged but not afraid. What is frightening to me about this 2016 presidential election is that I can’t defend “my” own candidate of choice, I can only say that her opponent scares me more.

I have joked that I voted for the lesser of two evils most elections but the choices here are Obamathe most extremes of evil I have had to choose from. I like President Obama but grew frustrated with the stalemate between the executive and legislative branches of government. With either candidate… America will have even more of that. If Hillary wins without Democrats also winning control of the legislative branch NOTHING will change. I will also bet there will be paralyzing scandals. Donald has so little support from his own Republican party that if he wins… stalemate becomes standstill and then standstill will become a stagnate pool of festering malice!

Hillary Clinton is definitely qualified to be president, but she is SUCH a politicianimpeachment by nature, I don’t trust her. I expect her term(s) to be scandal filled, lest we forget history!  Her political ambitions make her seem to follow polls instead of having real leadership abilities. Where was she during the gay marriage debate? She was waiting for the poll numbers to show a 51% support before she could also support it. Her husband’s administration brought America DOMA (Defence Of Marriage Act – ruled unconstitutional by the US Supreme Court June 2015) AND Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (repealed in 2010) and his impeachment (without removal from office). Where as Donald Trump has NO qualifications to be president. Running a supposedly successful business is not a qualification to be president nor is being a reality tv star. If his business IS so successful, why won’t he release his taxes? Again, he can’t be trusted. He campaign slogan, “Make America Great Again” is offensive. America IS great and someone that thinks it is not should not be running for president.

My biggest disappointment this election cycle is that I did have a candidate that I could Bernietrust, that I felt had true intentions to do good for Americans – Bernie Sanders. I resent Hillary and see her as power-hungry. She has a net worth over $80,000,000. Along side Bill’s $120,000,000 makes them worth $200,000,000. Politicians can’t be worth that and not OWE someone favors or relate to the everyday struggles of most Americans. Donald Trump’s wealth is disputed as to what he claims, what journalists report and what his supporters believe. Bernie Sander’s had a net worth of $500,000 after more than 25 years in politics, a lot by my standards but still not enough to have corrupt influences.

How many presidents were millionaires before taking office? In the last 100 years only 3 presidents had less than $1,000,000 before office: Woodrow Wilson, Calvin Coolidge, and Harry Truman*. That is 63 years since someone was even close to being representative of a typical American lifestyle in the White House.

ThroneIncome inequality is the greatest threat to our democracy and Bernie is the only candidate that campaigned on that issue. Now he is out, even for Hillary it is no longer addressed as a major issue. How can Donald Trump even pretend to understand an average American’s life and struggles? The photo on the right is when he and Pence were interviewed on 60 Minutes. Who the hell has such tacky, gaudy furniture? Oh… I see!  lol  What I see in the photos is also what scares me… Donald Trump has the same temperament to be president as Gadhafi and Hussein. The US democracy is like Citizens United, money = voice. So those without money are not heard and understandably lose interest in a representative government that no longer represents them.

PoorlyUntil Americans stop voting for president like they would a popularity contest, we will continue to be stuck with candidates that can and will say this, “I love the poorly educated.” Yes Trump not only said that out loud, he said it as part of his victory speech in Nevada, February 24, 2016.  So thanks to an uninformed populace, we have a choice between unqualified, Mean Girl Donald Trump and MS I will not be able to get anything done Clinton.

SupportMy fear of Trump is not only him, but his supporters. How can they not see his vitriol? Watch the video link below of him mocking a disabled journalist… they laugh! Trump says he is a great negotiator… is this the man you want representing the US in negotiations?

To sum this up… I am a disgrundled Bernie supported who begrudgingly supports Hillary because Bernie Sanders did not win, and Donald Trump scares me. My vote for Hillary will be a vote for the lesser of two evils. As Americans, we are losing democracy by continuing to vote for evil of any kind, but it’s my civic duty!  lol

https://embed.theguardian.com/embed/video/us-news/video/2015/nov/26/donald-trump-appears-to-mock-disabled-reporter-video

*(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_United_States_Presidents_by_net_worth)

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Doing Your Job Is NOT Persecution

For a good part of my life, I identified as a Christian and at one point I was even pursuing the ministry as my Bible Mixvocation. Today, I identify as Agnostic at best (leaning toward Atheist). How did I make such an astonishing transition? The biggest change was I began to empathize rather than feel victimized. What propagated the change? I admitted who I was not only to myself, but publicly – I am a gay man. It took me YEARS to accept myself and eventually learned not to feel shame about being who I am. Recent “religious freedom” laws are only good for reinforcing the “IDEA” that Christians are losing freedoms or are being persecuted – which is irrational and asinine (using it now I wish it were spelled ASSinine).

The most frequent excuse I would get when inviting someone to church back in the day was – there are Tattoo Sintoo many hypocrites. I was brainwashed by my years in the church and could easily counter that excuse by explaining all the good the church and Christians do. Once my perspective changed, I was amazed I was so blind. I tried reading and studying the Bible more and that just convinced me more the excuses I had heard were valid. The  hypocrites had their justification because the Bible can support most any prejudice. There are few things “Christians” hate more than when someone can use the Bible against what they are doing and saying. I have written before that more “Christians” should be called “Biblicans” because the hatred and intolerance they feel can be  justified using the Bible and there is NOTHING Christ like in their behavior – based on HIS teachings. The saddest thing to me is how they are blind to their hypocrisy.

The "thing" is... Atheists don't need proof of nothing! lol

The “thing” is… Atheists don’t need proof there is nothing! lol

I want to understand WHY Christians in the United States feel they need these religious freedom laws? As I see it… the freedom they want is to force others (the general public including gays) to be bound by their religious beliefs. Why would others (especially gays) having equality be a threat they need freedom from? What right have they lost or need protection from? Oh, the right to discriminate against gays; to make sex and contraception subjected to their views. Hobby Lobby is who I blame for all this shit! Providing contraception to employees should not be based on religious beliefs of the company. If the employees were forced to receive contraception, then it would be different!

Paranoid Much?

Paranoid Much?

The paranoid idea that religious freedoms are under attack is fueled by the likes of Fox News constantly having “news” (or rant) pieces about things like “The War on Christmas” that help bolster their ratings! Have they not been inside a WalMart in September? Christmas is in full bloom in the US for at least four months! Saying a non-offensive greeting like Happy Holidays is a threat? They need to go overseas to understand war on Christians. There are persecuted Christians in other countries. Like the boy that cried wolf… I have grown numb to their ideas of persecution.

It could also be fear of having to do their job for someone they USE religion as an excuse to justify their prejudice, Gay Cakediscrimination, or even hatred. All this bullshit about bakeries being FORCED to make cakes for gay weddings is RIDICULOUS! Christ taught “If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles.” ~Matthew 5:41 A blog by Jessica Kantrowitz (http://tenthousandplaces.org/2015/04/01/bake-for-them-two/) explains this better and in a more pleasant tone than I can. Memories Pizza in Indiana received more than $850,000 from sympathetic “religious” folks for closing 8 days after standing up to a hypothetical situation that gays would force them to cater and serve pizza at a wedding. They felt persecuted for publicly stating they would discriminate against gays.

Gay pizza party... maybe. Gay wedding.... NO!  lol

Gay pizza party… maybe. Gay wedding…. NO! lol

While I respect Memories Pizza’s rights to believe what they want, it is that they made a fortune given by others that are also paranoid, scared, and frightened by unrealistic hypothetical situations that would not happen. #1 – it would be very unlikely that Gays would ever serve pizza at a wedding. #2 – anyone getting married (gay or straight) asks not forces people to make cakes, take photos, or even plan their wedding. Who wants hate cake, an unhappy photographer or an unenthusiastic wedding planner?

A GOOD reason for a gofund me! http://www.gofundme.com/pizza4equality

A GOOD reason for a gofund me! http://www.gofundme.com/pizza4equality

Bill Maher has asked why moderate Muslims have not been as vocal against the likes of ISIS. I ask why aren’t moderate Christians more vocal? I know there are moderates and extremist in any and all religions and beliefs. But the problem I have is when the extremist are ALLOWED to be the LOUDEST voices, the moderate and reasonable are complacent with what happens in the name of their religion or beliefs! I only wish I could be louder for gays, reasonable people and the nonreligious; but when others join in… we will be louder than a gofundme for hypothetical and unreasonable prejudices!

Why are Christians so BLESSED?

Why are Christians so BLESSED?

Jesus even taught,“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake” (Matt 5:10). If the LGBT community HAD equal rights, there would be no need for gays or objecting Christians to stand up for their rights… we would be equal and Christians in the US would no longer feel so hypothetically persecuted!

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OUR President

I had to post this because I almost forgot what a REAL President and First Lady look like….

The photo to the left is a post I recently saw on facebook!  I shot off this post on facebook as my status, “I saw a post earlier today that was a photo of FORMER President George W. and Laura Bush with a caption that read, “I had to post this because I almost forgot what a REAL President and First Lady look like….”! How DISRESPECTFUL! I am sorry America… but PRESIDENT Barack Obama and FIRST LADY Michelle Obama are REAL and he is PRESIDENT! Even if you do not agree with their divisive politics that help the poor have insurance and teach children about nutrition and exercise… at least have respect that they ARE the PRESIDENT and First Lady of the United States of America!! Even when the person you did not vote for wins….he (or she) is still winner and comments like above just show you are a SORE LOSER!”  

I was ashamed and embarrassed for the person that posted it for so freely being disrespectful to OUR current President and First Lady, Barack and Michelle Obama!  True, not all Americans love the current President and some may even miss FORMER President George W. and Laura Bush.  But for someone to infer that President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama are not REAL and deserving of our respect is a VERY SAD commentary of discourse in America.  To disagree with the politics of the President is completely normal if you have differing views, but the growing acceptance to disrespect the office of President is alarming to me.

I did not want to mention it in the very first paragraph, but now I am one sentence into my third paragraph I will say it – I think it may, in part, be because he is black!  But now I said it I will not dwell on it, but it does deserve mentioning.  I find ANY white woman pointing in the face of a black man to appear racist to me.  To see a sitting governor do it to a sitting President!  WOW!  I am not so naive as to think Obama is the first President to be disrespected, but to mention race one more time…. as a society, maybe this is a good place to start toning down the hatred, rhetoric, hyperbole – even if it is so we do not appear to be racist.  Political discourse will ALWAYS be a part of politics, but it is possible to disagree without being so blatantly RUDE!  

The following is a reply I recieved about my post, “We’ll just have to ‘Agree to Disagree’ on your post. Obama is NOT my president, and Michele will never be my ‘First Lady’. Disrespectful or not, what is disrespectful, in my opinion, is how fast Obama’s administration has managed to degrade and destroy what has taken millions of working-class families decades to accumulate. Perpetuating the ‘handout mentality’ of low and poverty-level Americans is like ‘keeping them in chains’, they might as well call it ‘Slavery’.”  All I could say to myself was WHAT THE FUCK?  I want to respect her opinion, but I am at a complete loss to know what she THINKS Obama has done?  It is rhetoric that has NO fact to support it!

Yes… we (she and I) DO have to agree to disagree! I in NO way have seen him perpetuate ANY such policy – namely because Congress has done NOTHING to support ANY of his polices since ObamaCare.  Even ObamaCare is not so much about entitlement for the poor (the poor already had Medicaid) but for people like me with pre-existing conditions like Multiple Sclerosis! I had no health insurance for 2

Our President is ALSO a loving husband and father!

years and so YES, I supported ObamaCare… because now I have insurance and I am getting treatment again. But I feel conservatives only see he is a Democrat and does not understand that ObamaCare was built on Republican Bob Dole’s health plan that was the basis for Romney as a Republican Governor to also use.  Even in an effort to gain bipartisan support, they tried to demonize the program that in Romney’s own suggested alternative (as Presidential candidate) to his own plan established in Massachusetts wants to keep the KEY provisions of ObamaCare! They FIGHT it just because it is a Democrat’s plan.  But even as a Democrat… I never said or acted as if Bush were not MY President, because at the end of the day we are all still Americans and that even includes President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama!  As all past Presidents, I feel they have represented America with ALL the best intentions that what they did (do) was (is) good for our country!  I feel both the President and First Lady have represented America very well, with grace, poise and  dignity – they are a GREAT First Family!

Repeating LIES does not = Truth!

I have a disdain for A LOT of the Tea Party’s divisive politics and how they feel cooperation and compromise are an evil part of politics.  Even

Hyperbole is BAD for the Nation and BAD for your soul!!

as a CHILD I was taught to share and play nice with others!  A concept that escapes most Tea Party idealist.  The Tea Partiers seem to ALWAYS go back to our “Christian” fore-fathers as their point of reference.  They want to legislate their Christian beliefs in a nation founded on Christianity – NOT FREEDOM!  The founders of our nation left England because the KING was basically “legislating” his idea of Christian beliefs .  The founders intentionally left religion out of our constitution because they knew religion and government were separate entities.  As a gay man in America, I am astonished at the idea that Christians (not all… but A LOT) in some way feel that if I am given equal rights and benefits of marriage, it in some way  effects their marriage.  They feel they have a responsibility to remove freedom in our nation and enact laws based on their beliefs.

MY Presidents!

Bush was MY President, Obama is MY president and even if Romney wins he will be MY President, because I am proud to be an AMERICAN more so than a Democrat (or even a Republican as I was most of my life)! People need to unite, love, support and encourage each other – not say things like Obama is NOT MY President… unless you have left the USA and surrendered  your Passport & citizenship- He is YOUR President…. just maybe not who you voted for! 

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I Enjoy My Rage: Am I the Only One?

Republicans continue to attack the poor and seek to further benefit the rich! Where is Americans outrage over what the Republicans are allowing the tea baggers to do?  I once considered myself a fiscal conservative with liberal social leanings.  Now the Republicans are trying to pass their CRAZY “budget blueprint”, I am seeing that I cannot even call myself a fiscal conservative anymore by this far, far right fiscal thinking.  I am beginning to have RAGE against the Republican Party for allowing the tea baggers to be the tail wagging the dog.  Republicans are proving crazy is infectious!

The Republicans are alienating independents like me by catering to these nut bag tea baggers.  Even Donald Trump is gaining momentum with the “birther” theory as part of this “Tea Party” movement (I agree with Bill Maher – I will stop calling them tea bagger when they stop calling it Obamacare).  Showing this is a movement of nonintellectuals.

The “budget blueprint” that passed the House of Representatives today (Friday, April 15, 2011)1 calls for changing Medicare to a voucher system, cutting Medicaid and food stamps, all while not only keeping the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest but also reducing the top corporate and individual income tax rates from 35% to 25%.  Where is the rage against this?

The Democrats by default come across as less fanatical and more level-headed.  “Democrats dismiss this strategy, saying that although some spending cuts are needed to rein in deficits, wholesale reductions in education, public works, research and other core government programs leave Americans unable to compete globally.” says Pat Dollard2.  While programs like Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and the defense make up the majority of the budget, these programs can be improved, made more efficient or even reformed without throwing the baby out with the wash! Where is the rage from the poor?

GE made $14.2 billion profit and paid no taxes and in fact received a $3.2 billion tax benefit. 3 GE also employs a 975-employee tax department4 to insure they find as many loopholes as possible.  Why are the Republicans leading their fight by attacking programs that assist the poor and elderly instead of attacking the corporations they are trying to help even more with an even lower tax rate?  Why are they not trying to get the U.S. out of 2 very expensive wars?  My thoughts are the Republicans are influenced by the self-serving interests of the Tea Baggers.  The tea baggers are self-indulgent and have the idea, if it does not benefit me – cut it.  Where is the rage against Corporate America?

Wall Street bonuses increased 17%5 from an already astronomical amount, after the government bailout.  Why have the Republicans not besieged Wall Street in this “budget blueprint”?  Again, does it have something to do with protecting big money?  The poor are an easy target that find it difficult to have access to defend itself in a government that money = access!  The poor do not have access as demonstrated by my unsuccessful attempts to have an elected official listen to my concerns about E.R.I.S.A. and inspiring a blog Mr. Smith Still Needs to go to Washington6.  Where is the rage against Wall Street?

There was a time when it was political suicide to even mention cutting, changing Medicare or Social Security!  The idea of such  caused outrage!  Where are these groups now?  Are they allowing the Republicans to hang themselves?  Why aren’t the old school Republicans curtailing the Tea Baggers?  Where is the call to reform for Corporate America & Wall Street?  Where is the rage against the Tea Baggers?  In the past I would hear tea baggers say they wanted to “take America back” and I would ask, who are they taking it from?  Now I know, they want to take it from the poor and helpless so they have more for themselves.  I am glad my tax money does something to help the poor, sick and elderly because I do not have the money the tea baggers are trying to protect from the government.  I wish I could do more to help the poor, sick and elderly! Why don’t the Democrats harness this rage and take America back – from the crazy tea baggers (note: I am not using rhetoric, I am saying who I want America taken back from)! Am I the only one outraged?

Help me out… give anything… even if it’s only a $1

1 http://www.aolnews.com/2011/04/15/house-passes-6t-spending-cut-plan/

2 http://patdollard.com/2011/04/republicans-propose-6-2-trillion-in-budget-cuts/

3 http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/25/business/economy/25tax.html

4 http://www.accountingtoday.com/news/GE-Bringing-Creative-Tax-Strategies-Light-57849-1.html

5 http://articles.nydailynews.com/2010-02-23/news/27057087_1_bonuses-wall-street-personal-income-tax-collections

6 https://thomasajohnston.com/2010/11/09/mr-smith-still-needs-to-go-to-washington/

Categories: Life, Political | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Not Even If There Was A Ladder!

Two injured soldiers on top of a snow-capped mountain, out of ammunition, pinned down by enemy fire know they will not make it.  The more injured soldier tells his long-time buddy to go, climb down.  The buddy replies, “Not even if there was a ladder!”  WOW!  When was the last time any of us had the dedication to anyone, anything or even a principle to stay knowing we would face death?  Or have any of us ever had the kind of dedication to stand by a friend, stand up for an idea or principle without even threat of bodily harm?  That scenario is from a movie but it does not change importance of the questions or better yet the answers to the questions.

I want to change the E.R.I.S.A. law of 1974 and have asked for help from my readers.  It has not helped my cause much because so few took any action – most climbed down the ladder over a simple request to send an e-mail on my behalf.  So now let me take the effort off of my goal of changing a bad law to something broader – bringing our troops HOME!  There should be more support for this idea.

2,977 Americans were killed in the 9/11 attacks.  In Operation Enduring Freedom/Afghanistan, Operation Iraqi Freedom now re-branded with an even friendlier sounding name Operation New Dawn; more than 5,880 (*1) American soldiers have died as of January 11,2011.  When another 114 die, it will be double the number killed in the 9/11 attack.  When will we as Americans have the outrage for the deaths of our soldiers?  They are sons/daughters, husbands/wives, brothers/sisters, and friends of ours as well as the ones killed in the original attacks.  Are their lives less valuable?

The U.S. military is made up from volunteers.  These young men and women fight for our liberties and freedom, but who is fighting for theirs?  I even ask who are they fighting?  A war on terror is quite ambiguous.  The longer we are there, the more terrorist we are creating!

Why are we so disliked by the people we “liberated”?  In Afghanistan 8,813 civilians have been killed and 15,863 have been seriously injured. (*2)  Even worse in Iraq 864,531 Iraqis have been killed with 1,556,156 seriously injured! (*2)  That is 2, 445,363 people and their families that have been hurt because of our “liberating” them.   821 times more people than were killed in 9/11.  We will never defeat terrorist while innocent Afghan and Iraqi civilians continue to be killed as we so call “protect America”.

I HATE this image of America and our troops!! They are so much better than this!

We will never be 100% safe and there will always be terrorist – it is time to BRING OUR TROOPS HOME!!  The United States needs to stop using our money for war and use it to save our economy and HELP the world not FIGHT the world!!  I will not use the ladder and stop fighting the injustice of the E.R.I.S.A. law but I will also fight to help our troops!  We need to have the same determination that our troops have and say “Not even if there was a ladder”, we will stand up for our troops to bring them safely home.

Our troops need to be brought safely home to fight for more meaningful and better causes!

*1 – http://www.defense.gov/news/casualty.pdf

*2 -http://www.unknownnews.net/casualties.html#fn3

Categories: Life, Political | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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