WE ARE ALL MINORITES

Until we come together

“When faith in our freedom gives way to fear of our freedom, silencing the minority view becomes the operative protocol.” Joel Salatin

Democracy therefore requires minority rights equally as it does majority rule. Indeed, as democracy is conceived today, the minority’s rights must be protected no matter how singular or alienated that minority is from the majority society; otherwise, the majority’s rights lose their meaning. In the United States, basic individual liberties are protected through the Bill of Rights, which were drafted by James Madison and adopted in the form of the first 10 amendments to the Constitution. These enumerate the rights that may not be violated by the government, safeguarding—in theory, at least—the rights of any minority against majority tyranny. Today, these rights are considered the essential element of any liberal democracy.”

 

In the 2016 US presidential season, we have been given a choice to remain the America that was imagined by its founders, or a retrenching of a more familiar and mistakenly imagined America from a time that only exists today in the fragments of our collective memories. The passing of time and the subsequent changes therein can find us exhilarated by the possibilities or decimated by the vagaries inherent within these changes.

Deindustrialization, digitalization, and over-population are just a few of the monstrous evolutionary changes us mere mortals have been subjected to at hyper speeds.

hyper_speed by Akira-Shimizu Akira Shimizu

 

In some very important ways, it should be no mystery as to why our planet is deeply unhappy with Homo sapiens, and it mirrors the increasing distress being experienced by those same Homo sapiens. In the science of evolutionary change extending back to our molten lava beginnings some 4.6 billion years ago, we have gone through some ginormous changes.

Earth in the beginning

The rise of Donald J. Trump, therefore, is infinitesimally teeny-tiny, but he mimics for political purposes something that is being experienced all over our shrinking globe. Our tribes are being broken up and scattered about like shards of window glass in a violent earthquake. Some days, while watching the international news, we are collectively acting like the end is near. The future is no longer a passing glimmer of light symbolizing a better world; we collectively seem to be desperately seeking to slow things down if not slam on the brakes of this magnificent sphere we fly around space on.

“They” (the intruders, the minorities, those others) are being disrespectful and unfamiliar with “our” familiar. In an era when the speed of change within newly perceived human rights outstrips and overcomes our capacity to adequately adapt to those changes, I would like to think we can begin to understand how our planet is feeling.

human overpopulation

The capacity of our psyche to accommodate the emergence of so many minorities (women-who by the way were not in the minority, LGBT, Muslims, Hispanics, Asians, Africans, and those with impaired abilities to name a few) in such a short period of time (the short lifetime of today’s average senior citizen) is creating anger (behind anger always lies fear). You can see it and feel it on display around the world; in the Middle-East, the African Continent, Europe (Brexit being a recent and fully-rapped-with-a-bow example), and of course, the US presidential election.

Boris_Johnson2

donald trump-thumbs up

 

America, the once great and fearless advocate for freedom and liberty for all (as long as they were land-owning white men), is now cowering in fear of all of these minorities demanding what they had been led to believe were their rights as American citizens.

Mr. & Mrs. KahnKhizr Khan and his wife, the parents of a Muslim American soldier, Capt. Humayun S. M. Khan, who joined the Army after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and was killed during service in Iraq, spoke on Thursday night [2016 DNC]. Damon Winter/The New York Times

 

Here is the really scary point, however; we are all minorities and completely different one from another. The main thing we share though is this increasingly fragile 3rd rock from the Sun, and this is no time for America, as frightened as we have become, to turn, run, and hide under our memory blankie we call the “good old days.”

Nationalism and isolationism are evidence that human beings are not sophisticated and mature enough to remain a viable species. We are all minorities…see…

world's population by race

 

So unless we come to grips with that fact, and quickly, we will all be like the frog in the increasingly heated pot of water.

I get that the world is moving at speeds with which Homo sapiens have never had to endure. I get that this fact has very real and occasionally tragic consequences for the modern day family, community, state, nation and world. But the one thing you can take to the bank or your grave, we are all minorities until we come together.

J W-Bee

August 20, 2016

REGRETS?!

REGRETS?!
Like what Donald?

Regrets, I’ve had a few;
But then again, too few to mention.
I did what I had to do
And saw it through without exemption.

I planned each charted course;
Each careful step along the byway,
And more, much more than this,
I did it my way.

Frank Sinatra

And just like his buddy he’s had regrets but they were obviously “too few to mention.”

I have a few of regrets too Donald; and I am sorry I said some hurtful things to some people out there at different times in different places. Of course, I will not say who I think that is, because who knows, they might not know I said those things to hurt them. Furthermore, in your case Donny boy, almost all of those few things you have said that might (or might not) be hurtful, attracted a few thousand votes, and God knows you can’t afford to lose any of them, so let “them” fill in the blanks (or not).

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump smiles during a rally, Thursday, June 2, 2016, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump smiles during a rally, Thursday, June 2, 2016, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

J W-Bee
August 19, 2016

TRUMP’S COALESCING

This ain’t no stinking shakeup!

(Coalesce: to come together to form one group or mass)
(Shake up: an important change or series of changes in the way a company or other organization is organized or run)

“I am who I am. It’s me. I don’t want to change. Everyone talks about, ‘Oh, well you’re going to pivot.’ I don’t want to pivot,” Trump said in a Tuesday interview with Wisconsin television station WKBT. “I mean, you have to be you. If you start pivoting, you’re not being honest with people.”

You see, a shakeup presupposes “a company or an organization”, or in this case a campaign organization. However, when it comes to “Donald J. Trump’s Egotistical Mystery Tour”; well, I think James Carville has said it best:
“The Trump campaign is not a bad campaign. It’s not a messed-up campaign. It’s not a dysfunctional campaign. There is no campaign.”

Therefore, forget this imagery of shaking up something tangible; Mr. Trump is the heart, soul, and butt hole of this run for the presidency of the United States; move along, there’s nothing more to see here.

donald trump-thumbs up

This is where anyone who has become enamored with this Trumptastic political garbage dump has got to give this “small-fingered vulgarian” all of the credit he so justly deserves; Stephen Bannon is an exquisite selection for this one pony parade.

“I have a bit of experience with Bannon, given that I was the editor-at-large of Breitbart News for four years, and worked closely with Breitbart and Bannon.
[Ben]Shapiro called Bannon ‘a legitimately sinister figure. He is a vindictive, nasty figure, infamous for verbally abusing supposed friends and threatening enemies,’ Shapiro wrote Wednesday. ‘Bannon is a smarter version of Trump: he’s an aggressive self-promoter who name-drops to heighten his profile and woo bigger names, and then uses those bigger names as stepping stools to his next destination. Trump may be his final destination.’”

Stephen Bannon

“Trump is a first-time candidate who has talked about professionalizing his campaign, and yet he has hired a media bomb-thrower with no experience on the trail. But on another level, it is no surprise, since for years there has been a political symbiosis between Trump, Bannon, and Breitbart Media, the news organization that Bannon has led for the last four years. In truth, Bannon and Breitbart Media were Trump before Trump, creating the political philosophy and the political army in waiting that has been the engine for the candidate’s astonishing rise in American politics.” (The vanityfair.com article this quote comes from entitled, EXCLUSIVE: STEPHEN BANNON, TRUMP’S NEW C.E.O., HINTS AT HIS MASTER PLAN, is a must read.)
So, and this is the scary part, what is Mr. Bannon’s “master plan?”
“Bannon seemed to recognize that until he can ultimately win over a significant slice of working-class blacks and Hispanics, his movement—and now Trump’s campaign—seems likely to remain a significant but secondary operation.”

For me, these are the take-aways from this latest attempt to coalesce around Mr. Trump and his run for the presidency.
1) This is not a political campaign; it is one man’s self-promoting marketing scheme taken far too seriously by angry disenfranchised White people.
2) Do not expect this next 10 weeks to be anything but a vulgar shit-storm; Mr. Trump just went all in on his bet to be himself. This will be an under-staffed, under-funded, social media-paloosa, which will not, in the end, cost him a dime (indeed, he will make money on this deal).
3) The way our media works these days, Mr. Trump has demonstrated that if one is willing to say any crazy-assed thing that comes to mind, and there is an angry enough audience in America willing to shovel this shit into their minds like human cesspools; voila…a new political constituency is born. The old two-party system of American government has been forewarned.
4) Mr. Bannon has been called by his staff; “Donald Trump but more intelligent.” He is the perfect hire for Mr. Trump. He is ruthlessly smart, he will say and do anything for ratings, he dislikes Republicans almost as much as I do (but for way different reasons), and he has a plan to build a multi-racial “America First” (i.e. nationalistic) coalition for fun and profit. America’s third party?
5) I simply do not know if our political leadership (name your flavor) has become so mired in this DC-self-serving-money-grab, post-Citizens United, that they can wake up fast enough to smell the stench of human suffering and anger. Because if not, the second great depression that will be brought on by our multinational purveyors of greed and it will make the first great depression look like a walk in the park.

On that pleasant note, let me quote the magnificent Betty Davis one more time…

fasten-your-seat-belts-its-going-to-be-a-bumpy-night-quote-1

J W-Bee
August 18, 2016

Whiskey, Tango, Foxtrot

Trump quote on second amendment

I won’t take up too much of your day here, but I just could not let this incessant piece of garbage, masquerading as a presidential candidate, get away with calling for the assassination of a US President. And please don’t insult the intelligence of me or any other law abiding citizen by trying to explain this away as a call to vote by NRA members.

Trump supporter 'aghast'

This man knew what he meant.

 

Read the quote again folks…“if she gets to pick her judges” that makes her the President; the votes have been cast and counted, and it’s a new morning in America. Sorry says Trump, “there’s nothing you can do (at that point)”…or maybe there is you gun-loving-Hillary-hating Second Amendment defenders. Why what’s that Donald…wag your finger at her…call her names…throw a tantrum? Give me a f-king break!

Taken in context, Ronald Reagan’s daughter, Patti Davis, had this to offer.

Patti Davis quote on second amendment

 

Just how bad has this malicious insanity gone? Try this on for size from Joe Scarborough.

“We are in uncharted waters but that does not mean that the way forward is not clear. It is.

The Secret Service should interview Donald Trump and ask him to explain his threatening comments.

Paul Ryan and every Republican leader should revoke their endorsement of Donald Trump. At this point, what else could Trump do that would be worse than implying the positive impact of a political assassination?

The Republican Party needs to start examining quickly their options for removing the Republican nominee.

A bloody line has been crossed that cannot be ignored. At long last, Donald Trump has left the Republican Party few options but to act decisively and get this political train wreck off the tracks before something terrible happens.”

No sir, this obscenity will only stop in November once “The Donald” gets his hat handed to him while being shown the door back to his golden cage at the top of Trump Tower.

In the meantime, the rest of the world will hold those Trump hangers-on to account, especially those in public office, for allowing themselves to be even vaguely associated with this thug.

J W-Bee
August 11, 2016

THE TRANSPACIFIC PARTNERSHIP

This is a “yuge f-ing deal!” Trying to get my mind rapped around it has been a bugger of a research project. Just for the record, I came into this task torn between my faith in Barack Obama’s worldview, and the political reality that the TPP has become a “no sale” for those on the political left. Having said that, the one thing I wanted to better understand is will this help or hurt America’s beleaguered middle class, and does it further engorge the multinational’s bank accounts? One thing is for sure, however, this is one monster of an agreement and the perspective you bring to it will heavily influence your opinion.

TPP marchers

What is the TPP?

“The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is a free-trade agreement between the United States and 11 other trading partners bordering the Pacific Ocean. On February 4, 2016, officials from each country signed the agreement. The negotiations were successfully concluded on October 4, 2015. It now has to go to each country’s legislature for approval.”

“The TPP is between Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States, and Vietnam. The countries involved produce 40% of the world’s total GDP (Gross Domestic Product) of $107.5 trillion, 26% of its trade, and 793 million of its consumers.”

tpp-map

“The TPP covers a broad range of goods and services, including financial services, telecommunications, and even food safety standards. In this way, it affects foreign policy and even laws within countries. For example, it suggests that countries set up an agency like the U.S. Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs to analyze the costs and benefits of new regulations.”

“The TPP will now undergo a two-year ratification period in which at least six countries must approve the final text for the deal to be implemented. After its successful ratification, the agreement is expected to serve as a model for future trade pacts.

tpp-pros-and-cons-partners photo

 

The first question to ask yourself is do you have a dog in this show? I’m talking about things like your job, which directly impacts your ability to meet the needs of your family. Because if you do, all of the economists in the world telling you this is “generally” a good thing for America (which a majority do), will not mean spit. Globalization is almost certainly here to stay, and free and open trade on a macro scale may overall be a good thing, but good hard working people who keep their heads down and take pride in their labor don’t live on a macro scale. The reality is that individual jobs are both gained and lost in international trade agreements; but overall, a modest number more jobs are created than lost. The problem for the average worker, however, is that this all happens up and away from an individual’s view and control, and the vast number of those new jobs will require very different skills.

If like me, one has retired to Mexico and is living on social security along with a few investments which rely on growth, then TPP is likely to be a good thing. If one is in a profession like being a stock broker, banker, or managing investments for others, TPP is likely to be a good thing. If one is in a line of work that cannot be done by someone else overseas (a grocery store owner, running a hair and nail salon, or providing a community-based service like a health clinic), then TPP is likely to be a good thing. If someone is in a specialty trade like rebuilding old cars, or constructing ornate gazebos, or rehabbing older homes, TPP is likely to be a good thing. If, however, one is working for a big business that is a service provider, or God-forbid is in the manufacturing business, the ground that person stands on today can get real shaky real fast.

shaky ground

 

My cut on these trade deals in general, after a couple of dozen hours of research, is that multinational corporations can’t afford to care about the individuals that work for them. They have owners and executives that only care about one thing, the next quarter’s profits. They are not tied to a single piece of ground in a particular town or region. Because labor costs are often times one of their biggest expenses, if they can find a machine that works 24/7 and doesn’t give them a load of crap every few years, bye-bye folks. Or, if they can find a hungry group of human beings in another country who are ready to take what Americans would consider shit wages, why would they not say bye-bye to minimum wage headaches, vacation and sick day demands as well as demands for decent working conditions. Please, do not kid yourself, corporations are not in the social welfare business, they are in the profit generating business.

In fact, as a minor aside, one of the stated advantages for these trade agreements (TPP being the best example) is that they require higher standards than many third world nations have thus far seen as necessary. These environmental and labor improvements, therefore, make life a little better for that nation’s workers. But that does not do the average Joe in Kankakee a hoot’s worth of good.

Here’s the harsh reality for the world’s only super power; many people in the rest of the world think we are spoiled over-fed brats; that’s why they want to come here. Our poorest areas are considered middle class by most third world standards.

I understand that we have been brought up to expect certain basic goods and services. When we hit the light switch, we want the lights to go on. When we flush the toilet…well, most of us don’t want to know what happens then; just make it go away and not stink up the joint. When we go to a grocery store we expect there to be stocked shelves, with multiple alternatives. A car is not a luxury, and the only time one needs to build a fire is when we barbeque. Billions and billions of folks don’t live this way.

What’s my point? The world is getting a lot smaller, information is much more plentiful and moves much more rapidly, and outside of most western economies, things look pretty damn sweet in the US. Building walls and constructing trade barriers might seem like a good way to protect ourselves from the starving masses seeking a decent life for their families, but just maybe there are other ways to keep us a little less fat, yet happy.

We absolutely need to find ways to help our fellow neighbors who just had the economic rug pulled out from under their well-being, while simultaneously assisting nations within our sphere of influence to better serve the needs of their citizens. It is a whole lot better if we work to find ways to help them where they live now. It’s that, or we spend huge sums defending our borders from people who themselves just want a shot at a better life. We must work to be more things to more people within our own borders, but just maybe we can help leaders of other nations better meet the needs of their people within their borders too.

The question now playing itself out in the US is can our educational system train its youth to compete in an ever changing world. A world wherein we make the products that meet the needs of the 21st Century, and in so doing retrain those people who had no reason to see their layoff coming and feel abandon or sold down the river by their company and their government (see Trade Adjustment Assistance)?

My bias goes like this…yes; of course we can meet those needs if we are prepared to make the right kinds of investments that support the needs of our present and future workers. Will corporations make those kinds of investments? Hell no, those are short-term expenses to corporations; they don’t care, because they don’t have to care. Will taxpayers pick up the tab for these investments? Well, it depends on your view of the role of government. Republicans see this as the responsibility of the individual; and I strongly disagree. This is exactly why we need an adequately funded governmental system. The individual didn’t ask to be displaced by a machine, a Mexican, or a new labor-saving invention. As a civilized society I see education, at all levels, as investments in the nation’s people and our collective future. Oppositely, I see investments in weapon systems and “very big and beautiful” walls at our borders as asinine and counterproductive expenditures.

Throwing out NAFTA and voting down TPP is short-term thinking. Depending on where you are in the economic food chain, however, it may be ones only hope for survival. I get that, and I have great empathy for those who see their government frozen and incapable (or unwilling for political/philosophical reasons) to help them in this time of rapid change.

Therefore, if we hole up and take a protectionist stance against the rest of the world, TPP and other international trade agreements are not for you. Just understand that the price for this is that America will increasingly become the next empire to fall into disrepair (becoming more vulnerable) and fade into becoming a once great nation. We don’t live and survive on this planet in isolation any longer.

If, however, you believe we can support our citizens with the highest quality education, re-education, and re-training and economic displacement benefits, we will do this knowing it will be better for our nation going forward. These investment programs and benefits are only met, however, if the electorate insists upon them. It will take a strong and profitable private sector paying their fair share of the tax burden as well as an actively engaged public sector.

It really is up to us, and this presidential election provides us with as clear a choice as one will see in a lifetime. Choice one: a smaller government and lower taxes leaving every man, woman and child to fend for themselves. Choice two: an actively engaged, publicly funded system of supports and services for Americans that help us turn the corner to lead the world in the 21st Century. I know where I stand.

VOTE!

Oh by the way President Obama, if you and your allies (especially those on the other side of the aisle), who are in favor of TPP, want the support of a majority of Americans, show us that you are serious about taking care of present and future generations of workers. Otherwise, this thing is going down; and that in my mind would be a real shame.

J W-Bee
August 11, 2016

IT IS NOT EVEN CLOSE

THERE’S NO COMPARISON BETWEEN CANDIDATES
But the media is only served by a horse race

 

If a person does not like Hillary Clinton, fine, dislike her and vote your conscience, as Ted Cruz would say. If a person does not care for Donald Trump’s incessant bullshitting (as Fareed Zakaria would say) and bullying, then as Ted said, vote your conscience. But don’t kid yourself or me, I am sick and tired of hearing knuckleheads say these are equally bad choices. At no time has Ann Richard’s quote been more apt when it comes to watching a woman and a man run against one another for president. “After all, Ginger Rogers did everything that Fred Astaire did. She just did it backwards and in high heels.”

Hillary speaks in full sentences (Basic to any language is the sentence, which expresses a complete thought and consists of a subject and a predicate.), whereas Donald speaks in self-promoting, hyperbolic, dunce-speak. He claims to be a smart college educated person, but his inability to present clear ideas in full sentences belies that claim.

dunce.cap  Little Donny Trump

 

Hillary is being taken to the media cleaners for having misrepresented 3 to 7 emails out of 30,000 as Secretary of State. Donald Trump, however, is the four-Pinocchio-pants-on-fire bullshit artist who cannot put two days together back-to-back without clearly abusing provable facts.

Hillary Clinton is the most qualified human being ever (based upon raw intelligence, ability to take a political punch and get right back into the fight, and a resume unparalleled in American politics) to run for the Presidency of the United States. Donald Trump has demonstrated he has no…none…zero…skills to empathize or appreciate another human beings circumstances (and apparently could care less), and indeed, he is running strictly on his skills to con others by seeking to uncover weaknesses and exploit them to his own advantage. He has proven he is a thin-skinned bully with absolutely no idea how government runs, no less what America’s role is as the only remaining super power. To say he is dangerous is an understatement.

Hillary Clinton represents a party that has been the champion of the little guy and the middle class (which they need to get back to by shedding the imagery of running a high end whore house made legal by Citizens United). Donald Trump does not represent the Republican Party because Republicans allowed this self-serving carnival barker to steal anything decent which they may have thought they represented. “The Donald” is their karma being put into reverse to backup over their dogma.

I will be proud as hell to watch the American public elect our first woman president on the heels of Americans electing our first African-American president. America is witnessing history as we are growing up and maturing as the only true multicultural democratic republic on the planet. The only thing that scares me silly is that Hillary will remain under the searing spot light of a misogynistic angst which our red-meat media will go out of its way to cook up and serve female barbeque at a time when we need to talk with one another; not at one another. Thank goodness she has demonstrated time and again that she has a level of grit no man would want to match.

My only hope for “The Donald” is that because he never-ever thought he would get this far, he has shown the world who he really is and that will melt the only thing of value he has, his brand name.

J W-Bee
August 9, 2016

TRUMPISM

(The suffix “ism”: a belief, attitude, style, etc., that is referred to by a word that ends in the suffix – ism.)

I keep mulling over, if not fixating, on the emergence and obvious staying power of Donald Trump. I have never met the man, I don’t know any of his family, I have never read “The Art of the Deal” (written by Tony Schwartz) or watched his reality TV program; nothing. So where exactly do I get off using descriptors like buffoon, racist, narcissist, homophobe, xenophobe, and neo-fascist? As my train of thought traveled down this track, I realized I needed another way of looking at, and more fully understanding, this bedeviling phenomenon.

I don’t deeply dislike, distrust, and have disgust for Donald J. Trump per se; my great concern is the philosophy empowering Trumpism.

The concept of Trumpism resolved two problems for me. First, when I hear someone say they “hate Hillary”, I flinch. How can anyone hate someone they don’t personally know? Secondly, “The Donald” has produced and puts on display a persona which emerges from a script; the way a skilled actor must do after reading an intriguing screenplay. As we have seen, Donald has had many personas over these past many years. He has been a pro-choice Democrat, a shrewd and cut-throat businessman, a mean boss who appears to love saying, “You’re Fired!”, and now he is playing the role of Donald J. Trump, Republican Party nominee for the presidency of the United States of America. He is polishing and perfecting this new persona because this persona needs beliefs, attitudes, and a unique style so he can embody Trumpism. (As an actor he has just one major flaw, he has the attention span of a nine year old on a post-Halloween sugar high…but I digress.)

Now I don’t know how much of this new character truly reflects whoever the real Donald Trump is, heck, I question who the real me is sometimes. But one thing is for sure, this constitutes for me a whole new way of approaching this 2016 campaign, and these final 100 days. I am going to try to forget the character actor Donald J. Trump as much as possible. I am still puzzling over whether Trumpism and Republicanism are the same because it seems the better share of those who embrace Trumpism are incredibly skeptical of Republicanism; and vice versa. It is just that their sulfur-like smells have a distinct similarity.

With this as my newest approach to understanding this bizarrely novel campaign, the task then is to separate out, as much as possible, the character actor from the beliefs that go into making up Trumpism.

Trumpism is first and foremost nationalistic (having strong patriotic feelings, especially a belief in the superiority of one’s own country over others).

“My foreign policy will always put the interests of the American people, and American security, above all else. That will be the foundation of every decision that I will make. America First will be the major and overriding theme of my administration.”

“It is extremely unfortunate that in his speech Wednesday [April 27, 2016] outlining his foreign policy goals, Donald Trump chose to brand his foreign policy with the noxious slogan “America First,” the name of the isolationist, defeatist, anti-Semitic national organization that urged the United States to appease Adolf Hitler.”

Frankly, I trust most people who believe in Trumpism have no idea what the historical roots of America First are. They are likely more familiar with the concept of globalism; and Trumpism is diametrically opposed to globalism. Trumpism intends to create trade barriers that protect American businesses and the American worker. The idea that we are going to divvy up our economic pie is tantamount to giving certain industries away to a foreign “trading partner”, and in Trumpism that is economic suicide. Businesses can move to cheaper labor markets, but the workers can’t. Therefore, under the philosophy of Trumpism, physical and trading walls need to be built high and strong, and just as an individual is on their own in this world, America must stand on its own two feet. If other nations starve and their people become hopeless, that’s not America’s problem. Trumpism makes it clear that we are being used and abused by lesser nations, and that’s a sign of weakness and is anti-American-first.

Secondly, in Trumpism, there is clear admonition for the idea of political correctness (the avoidance, often considered as taken to extremes, of forms of expression or action that are perceived to exclude, marginalize, or insult groups of people who are socially disadvantaged or discriminated against).

“Donald Trump’s excuse for his latest offensive idea, to ban all Muslims from the country, is the same one he used when he insulted Mexican immigrants, women, and prisoners of war: People are just being too ‘politically correct.’”

Trumpism seems to attract those who want to reinstitute a day when Caucasians were the heart and soul of this nation, and people of other races, ethnicities, and religious beliefs other than Christianity were “the other.” In the world according to Trumpism, being of “the other” was not necessarily a bad thing; it was just that “they” knew their place in the natural pecking order of our Christian nation.

Putting down political correctness gives tacit approval for saying what is really on one’s mind. After all, if the speaker knows they are better than the person they are talking about, the rightness of their comment should not be ridiculed simply because they were honest enough to say it out loud.

Thirdly, Trumpism is anti-government and anti-collectivism. When one man stands before his supporters and says; “I alone can fix it”, this demonstrates that somebody is finally willing to step up and run the show. All of this talk about building consensus, and we are “stronger together” is horse pucky. Trumpism acknowledges the basic fact that we come into this world alone and that’s how we will go out. The individual, therefore, is responsible for themselves, and whatever they have, and whatever they have accomplished is due to their work ethic. Therefore, if someone outside of government has proven themselves to be a strong and successful person, that’s someone we can look up to. All of this talk about checks and balances, and this nonsense about working together to make a better country are antithetical to nature. The idea of a rising tide lifting all boats is an act of God; human beings on the other hand get what they deserve because they were willing to work for it.

Therefore, because Donald Trump has acquired the trappings of success, and has proven his grit by climbing the ladder of success to the top of Trump Tower, he is to be admired and he has earned our respect. Conclusion…why shouldn’t he have the country’s top job? In fact, when a hardcore Trumpist thinks about it, that’s why we begrudgingly owe respect to great men like Vladimir Putin or that terrorist killing machine Saddam Hussein. These are real men, not a compromising pussy like Obama.

Another interesting aspect of Trumpism is the idea that facts are a relatively unimportant nuisance. “Trump makes Four-Pinocchio statements over and over again, even though fact checkers have demonstrated them to be false. He appears to care little about the facts.”

I remain curious, however, that this aspect of Trumpism could well be misunderstood. What I mean by that is the issue may be a lack of trust for the source of these claims of falsehoods (i.e. lying). These so-called “fact checkers” can easily come across as intellectual jackasses; my dad often used the phrase, “over-educated idiots.” At the heart of this skepticism is the concern that just because someone has a degree from an institution of higher education, does not make them any smarter than the average hardworking man. They might know a bunch of information about a specific subject, but it must be amusing to Trumpets to watch this “smart” person mishandle a problem the average Joe deals with all of the time and fall on his “pointy little head.”

Truthfulness is always a critical aspect of a trustworthy person, but that trust has to be earned. But once it is earned, and that person shows the good sense to agree with my opinion, it almost does not matter who shows them to be incorrect, especially if they come across as a “smarty pants.” People almost always give the one they trust the benefit of the doubt, and the new Trump persona demonstrates a self-confidence that makes facts inconsequential.

The final aspect of Trumpism I have witnessed relates to the whole question of the glass being half-full or half-empty. If the Trumpism glass is half-full, that means the people and ideas they hold sacred have worked. When the glass is half-empty, however, that is because the forces in which the Trumpet has no confidence are flawed.

Trumpism has taken on the saying “Make America Great Again.” Clearly this is a statement aimed at the glass being half-empty. From this perspective America has been great, but the people who have been running the show have blown it and it is going to take a strong leader to make her great once again.

Here are just a few examples of this half-empty-half-full concept at work.

We have all seen the situation of President Obama coming out with an idea or an approach, but by definition, it is immediately suspect to the perspective of a Trumpist. Heck, according to Trumpism, Obama isn’t even a real American. Take the Affordable Care Act as a good example. It started out in the mid-90s as the Republican’s response to the Clinton health care plan. Then Republican Governor Mitt Romney adopted those ideas into his plan for Massachusetts, and the experts that helped him put their successful plan into effect were many of the same people President Obama turned to for designing and implementing the Affordable Care Act. To this day, people who do not trust Obama want to repeal or replace the ACA, irrespective of whose idea it was.

Another example is the idea of cutting carbon emissions through a plan referred to as cap and trade. The idea essentially came out of several Republican administrations. However, when the Obama Administration wanted to implement it in order to reduce greenhouse gases, it became seen as a plan to injure business and job growth, and it was defeated by Senate Republicans. In fact, climate change does not even exist anymore according to the 2016 Platform of Trump’s Republican Party.

One more example of this aspect of Trumpism; the Obama Administration, especially that nasty woman running the State Department (2009-2012) was personally responsible for the death of the Ambassador to Libya, Christopher Stevens, and three other brave Americans. According to the Republicans and Trumpets, the ambassador asked for more protection for their outpost in Benghazi, but because Secretary of State Clinton was, according to them, so incompetent, those poor people died…lock her up! Under the George W. Bush Administration, however, there were 13 attacks on embassies resulting in the death of 60 people; but Congress worked with the Bush Administration to improve the situation. Apparently, the glass was half-full under Bush.

The hypocrisy and the politics here seem a bit obvious, and I only raise these examples to make my point that Trumpism seems particularly harsh and fear inspiring on a whim. One cannot listen to or read Mr. Trump’s acceptance speech at their Cleveland convention and not be scared flaming silly that America is now a hell hole. Trumpism has gone passed suggesting that America’s glass is half-empty, indeed, it is bone dry.

Trumpism, therefore, is the belief system, and Donald Trump is the lead actor and rapscallion in this political reality-like production. Does he really believe everything that comes out of his mouth? I have gotten to the point where I don’t know, and I could care less. Much more importantly, Trumpism is a political odyssey that has captured the attention and votes of about 9% of the American electorate, but its various aspects have the potential to transform our founder’s creation of a democratic republic into a dystopian nightmare (an imagined place or state in which everything is unpleasant or bad, typically a totalitarian or environmentally degraded one) from which only one man can save us from total annihilation.

At its heart, Trumpism rejects the idea of a global community and reinstitutes a walled off and isolationist America. Trade agreements that don’t exclusively, or at least primarily, serve our interests are discarded. The idea that we have win-win agreements is considered to be a weakness. Military agreements that don’t properly recognize our superiority and reimburse us for our greatness, irrespective of the role others play, will be ignored. If the world falls into disrepair and increased warfare is the result, maybe next time they will find the money we demand if they want our protection. (Al Capone would love this shit.)

Trumpism will also reinstitute the respect and admiration we expect for the true master race. People from around the world will respect us for our dominance, and those of more colorful races will either; come to America knowing White Christians run this show, or they will be sent back to the hell holes from which they came, or they will be locked up. It’s all quite simple in Trumplandia.

Next, Trumpism is not about the collective good. That pansy-assed concept makes us weak and servile. After all, we don’t elect our leaders to make life as comfortable as possible for slugs and deadbeats, we elect our leaders to lead and build great things that showcase our greatness.

Trumpisms are always the truth. We sure as hell don’t need any snobby intellectuals explaining their latest theories to us. We will know the truth when our leadership tells us what it is. Heck, just a few hundred years ago these eggheads were telling us the world was flat, or more recently, that there were 9 planets in our solar system. Worse yet, these know-nothings are trying to peddle the idea that the Earth is billions of years old; ridiculous! Science evolves; the Bible, however, is the permanent word of God.

Finally, since that Kenyan-born Muslim and that horrible witch, Hillary, have been in charge of our once great nation, according to Trumpism, America has become hell on Earth. Internationally, no one respects us, and we are getting our throats cut and have had our balls cut off by Muslim terrorists. We have sold the middle class down a Chinese made toilet, and crime is on every street. That’s why Americans have to protect themselves and buy all of those guns and ammo. The race problem has gotten out of control, and Trumpism shows we need some God-damn law and order again.

We need to make America great again!

No sir, Donald J. Trump is just another guy trying to make a buck. You see, Donald will come and go, but Trumpism is a reality production that lives in the minds of its followers now, and that problem will not go away after Election Day.

J W-Bee
August 2, 2016

AN OPEN LETTER TO BERNIE SANDERS SUPPORTERS

KENNER, LA - JULY 26:  Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) (C) speaks to guests at the Louisiana Rally with Bernie Sanders at Ponchartain Center on July 26, 2015 in Kenner, Louisiana.  (Photo by Josh Brasted/Getty Images)

KENNER, LA – JULY 26: Democratic presidential candidate Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) (C) speaks to guests at the Louisiana Rally with Bernie Sanders at Ponchartain Center on July 26, 2015 in Kenner, Louisiana. (Photo by Josh Brasted/Getty Images)

You joined something that is so much bigger than you, and now it is time to kick it into the gear that generic Democrats have stopped using. Presidential campaigns are about the short game; who’s up and who’s down, who won and who lost today. But if I am reading you good people correctly, you are smart enough to know that political change is a long game. Republicans have known this for decades, but those of us who call ourselves Democrats over these past many decades, have lost that perspective. We only seem to show up every four years.

Please show some empathy for that fact. Most Democrats have complex and often difficult lives which have needed tending. There were house payments to make, children to raise, bills that require immediate attention, friendships to maintain, and because these priorities have eclipsed our politics, most Democrats only show up when that next major election comes along. In fact, Democrats have almost forgotten there are other elections of equal importance.

Republicans, on the other hand, have all of those same issues, but as George Lakoff has pointed out (if you don’t know who George Lakoff is you will want to invest the time to take-in what he has learned), they come from what he calls the “strict father family.” These are the dog-eat-dog, survival of the fittest, father (also The Holy Father) knows best, you-are-on-your-own-out-here-in-the-jungle survivalists. They are often times the people who have clawed their way to success (or believe they can or at least admire those who have), and their success demonstrates the power of the individual. When it comes to government they have also learned a few things. Might makes right, those who pay are the only ones who have earned the right to play, which means money talks and bullshit walks.

The problem, therefore, is that generic Democrats seem to be too busy surviving to play the long game, and the generic Republican has convinced themselves the only reason they have succeeded is that they are smarter and worked harder, and the rest of us have gotten what we deserve, the scraps (also known as trickle down).

The result of this contest is that Democrats (who should be representing the 99%) seem to be able to muster enough strength every presidential election cycle to have won the popular vote the last 5 out of 6 times up at the presidential level, and the Republicans have had the long view, the capital and the ego to control the rest of the game board.

Bernie has taught us what only a party outsider can teach. In a democratic republic (or a social democracy), the average citizen can rule the day if they have the strength to play. The glaring difference now on full display; both parties are under disassemblage.

In the case of all of you, you have shown that the citizens of our emerging society (those under 45 years young) know the whole system is rigged, if not broken. Democrats, in order to be competitive, can compete momentarily when they use their might to make things right, but they lack the staying power to see their hopes become realities.

Those unhinged folks over in the “strict father Republican-family” have a bigger problem on their hands right now because they too have just learned the system is rigged, but their vocal minority just broke their party.

I know many of the Bernie supporters wished they could have broken the Democratic Party too. It almost feels like you believe you have failed because the generic Democrats managed to hold it together. You seem so disappointed you might even jump off the cliff into political Neverland with Jill Stein, James C. Mitchell, Jr., or Gary Johnson.

STOP! Hang in there with me just a little longer before throwing away the major gains you have just made…in the long game. Don’t be a dumb generic Democrat who think they have won the big prize should they win again in November. Many of them will go back to their problems at hand and let their leadership change as little as they can get away with, and the system will remain rigged again in 2020. And for heaven’s sake, please stay away from the suicide pact that has shattered the Republican Party by their embracing their political Jim Jones. With any luck, they will get their asses handed to them in November, and the only people they have left to rebuild their “strict daddy family”, are a group of old guys, religious extremists, armed-to-the-teeth survivalists, and capitalism’s sharks. Lordy lordy, they are so screwed.

Please, stay engaged. As your first lady, Jane Sanders, has said in a recent article; “Bernie lit the flame — now we’ll hold their feet to the fire.”
Jane SandersJane Sanders. (photo: AP)

The only reality left for this next 100 days is please keep in mind just how incredibly screwed all of America will be if we let this modern day Jim Jones win; we will all be drinking the Kool-Aid after that. And the only way Mr. Trump can possibly win is if we take his neo-fascism (a political movement arising in Europe after World War II and characterized by policies designed to incorporate the basic principles of fascism [as nationalism and opposition to democracy] into existing political systems) as some kind of joke, and we stay home, or we make the mistake some in my generation made in 2000 by giving the election to George W. Bush. A solid enough minority of good folks voted for good old “what’s his name?” (Of course, I am talking about Ralph Nader; a smart and nice guy who drained enough votes away from Al “Climate Change is Real” Gore, to give the election to Bush (stupid, stupid, stupid).

Then believing that will not happen, the real work begins. Many of you have got to run for local office. Some of you, who have the brass and class, need to run for higher office. Then the rest of us have got to make sure that as much of Bernie’s platform as possible gets implemented. That will require a lot of grassroots organizing, writing, marching, and insisting that the political status quo is no longer functional. You are the change this election requires, but just remember politics is a marathon not a sprint, and your future depends on your never forgetting that, which my generation did. We got caught up in the consuming, and owning, and buying more than we really needed or could afford, and we lived in the moment for ourselves and our immediate family. Please don’t make the same mistakes. Remember, you are rich when you live below your means, you know how to save, and you have enough money to weather an emergency.

Thank you for your passion; now comes the hard part, keep it Berning.

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., speaks at the Iowa Democratic Wing Ding at the Surf Ballroom Friday, Aug. 14, 2015, in Clear Lake, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., speaks at the Iowa Democratic Wing Ding at the Surf Ballroom Friday, Aug. 14, 2015, in Clear Lake, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

J W-Bee
July 30, 2016

AMERICA MADE GREAT AGAIN

obama_dnc_2016

Wednesday evening, July 27th, 2016 saw an occasionally sleepy and often boring (when it comes to governing) Democratic Party pick up the flag of Old Glory and advance that red, white and blue star spangled banner into America’s prideful new century. I realize we are already 16 years into this next 100 years, but as the LGBT community will tell you; better late than latent.

From Leon Panetta, former everything, to Joe Biden, America’s Cheerleader and Vice President, to Michael Bloomberg, genuine billionaire and true-blue Independent, to the finest president of at least my lifetime, Barack Hussein Obama, Americans were treated to a show of American pride that signifies the reawakening of the most powerful and decent nation on Earth. Historically, it has been the Republicans that have waved the flag and advanced the idea of America’s greatness. They sometimes call themselves the party of Lincoln; which lately comes across as the height of hypocrisy. Democrats on the other hand have been caricatured by their insistence upon improving as a nation and have, therefore, been painted with the brittle-brush of negativists. That all changed on July 27th.

This moment was made even more ultra-high-definition vivid thanks to a Republican Party that is running frightened and forlorn from the greatness of an ever-changing America. Their bout with temporary insanity provides us with contrasting belief systems, so that only the most cynical and lost souls of our times are developmentally delayed from seeing the promise of this magnificent nation as it reasserts itself. The proof of this reality can be seen written all over the face of their biggest mistake in decades…

Donald Trump 1984

Our political system has been, and continues to be, a war zone promoted by those who wish to divide, conquer, and enslave us to a future of income inequality. That income inequality and their “just say no” to any legislation that serves the middle class has been advanced by Republican wordsmiths who have labeled this trickledown economics. The only thing trickling down on the vast majority of Americans has been their rein of divisiveness. Their re-education classes begin November 9, 2016.

I feel badly for those who can’t grasp the concept of our citizens being stronger together and who wish to wallow in the mud of distrust and hatred toward those Americans who have embraced an all-inclusive American dream. I can only hope they awaken from their nightmare sooner than later and enjoy this incredible American Century; the best is yet to come.

Now, onto the main event; electing the most qualified and experienced candidate to have ever run for the presidency, and the first female President of the United States of America.

J W-Bee

HERE’S THE REAL SCANDAL

A couple kisses in front of graffiti depicting Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, on the walls of a bar in the old town in Vilnius, Lithuania,  Saturday, May 14, 2016. (AP Photo/Mindaugas Kulbis)

A couple kisses in front of graffiti depicting Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, on the walls of a bar in the old town in Vilnius, Lithuania, Saturday, May 14, 2016. (AP Photo/Mindaugas Kulbis)

(If you are interested in the backstory behind this mural, follow this link.)

I am now going to quote from a piece written by Fareed Zakaria, one of our nation’s finest journalists.

“In a breathtaking interview with the New York Times, Trump announced that he might not honor NATO’s guarantee of security to the United States’ European allies, practically inviting Vladimir Putin to destabilize Eastern Europe. That is a break not just with seven decades of Republican foreign policy but also with a core American commitment that has kept the peace since 1945. It is the most reckless statement made by a presidential candidate in modern times.”

Then we need look no further than Vladimir Putin’s tip-of-the-hat in return.

DNC email leaks, explained
The email trove contains some embarrassing revelations but no bombshells
There’s significant evidence linking the attacks to the Russian government

“The Russian government was responsible for the recent attacks on the DNC, according to security firms that spoke to the Washington Post. And Franklin Foer, a fellow at the New America Foundation, has drawn a dramatic conclusion from this evidence.

Foer is suggesting here that the Russian government leaked the emails to WikiLeaks as part of a broader scheme to get Donald Trump elected president. Trump has been curiously pro-Putin throughout the presidential campaign. And his campaign manager, Paul Manafort, once advised Viktor Yanukovych, the pro-Putin former leader of Ukraine. Under Manafort’s leadership, the Trump campaign helped ensure that the Republican Party’s platform would not take a hard line against Russia’s activities in Ukraine.

Still, it’s worth being clear that there’s zero evidence that Trump or Manafort has direct ties to the Russian government.

On the other hand, there is significant circumstantial evidence that the attacks on the DNC were closely linked to Russian intelligence agencies. Multiple security researchers have looked at forensic evidence from the attacks and concluded that the attackers used the same kind of techniques that Russian intelligence agencies have used against other targets around the world.”

Is Donald Trump the real Manchurian Candidate (a candidate running for office who publicly supports one group to win election, but uses his executive or legislative powers to assist an opposing group; it should not be confused with a sleeper agent who has been brainwashed into working for a political party)?

To listen to the talking heads on the Republican side of life, one might expect this kind of commie-sympathizing behavior from a Kenyan-born Muslim, but not a self-serving billionaire Republican-wannabe.

Let the hypocritical times roll…

J W-Bee

July 26, 2016