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Just Life

We have forgotten
Posted:May 13, 2018 6:38 am
Last Updated:May 20, 2018 10:23 am

We have forgotten how we became the star of Earth's nations. We are reminded, however, in a book by Jacob Hackler and Paul Pierson titled "American Amnesia". One facet of the United States' rise to power was how we got rich. We got rich in large part by recognizing the value of science. A man named Vannevar Bush was the Director of the Office of Scientific Research and Development. This was the organization which spearheaded the Manhattan Project and helped inaugurate the National Science Foundation. In 1945 he wrote a report titled Science: The Endless Frontier. In the report, Bush advocated governmental involvement in the opening of new frontiers, not the least of which was the frontier of science. World War II has ushered in Sen. William Fulbright's " military-industrial-academic complex". America has forgotten this complex fostered the post war boom of both babies and production.

This post war boom was accomplished primarily because the government took an active role in both promoting and regulating commerce. Ronald Reagan came along and told us big government was the problem, not the solution. However, the solution is not necessarily smaller government, but more competent government. Government is in a position to perform jobs unable to be performed privately, thus assisting commerce where needed and allowing regulated commerce to proceed where most efficient privately. If you look at the east Asian nations which have grown exponentially you'll see the free market paradigm often failed. Successful nations used a mixed economic paradigm where government ensured stability, encouraged investment and regulated markets. However, once someone labelled them "socialist" because of the governmental intrusion into the ill-perceived domain of private industry and free markets, we here in the United States immediately abandoned success for free markets and Bernie Madoff. We aren't fighting a commercial and economic war against China because they are failing, we're fighting the war because we are failing.

Our economic failure is predicated on greed. At the upper levels of finance those we call leaders have forgone the basis of our success for the easy buck. The United States suffers from economic demise because we don't make anything, anymore. We pay people in other countries less to actually make things and then we sell them here so the upper levels of finance can turn a delightful profit. To these folks governmental regulation is an obscenity because they don't wish to share any portion of their largess with anyone, least of all the government. Thus, when one needs assistance with their computer, they speak with a person sporting an Indian accent.
Posted:May 6, 2018 3:06 pm
Last Updated:May 17, 2018 12:33 pm

As the stock market falls, the midwest farmers look for other customers for their soybeans, the Indiana Carrier workers seek new employment, roads disintegrate, bridges collapse, railroad cars keep falling off the tracks, we are lied to on a daily basis and the electorate wonders on a daily basis whether or not our elected president will be impeached, arrested or institutionalized, I remain full of hope well stated by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow:

So through the night rode Paul Revere;
And so through the night went his cry of alarm
To every Middlesex village and farm,—
A cry of defiance, and not of fear,
A voice in the darkness, a knock at the door,
And a word that shall echo for evermore!
For, borne on the night-wind of the Past,
Through all our history, to the last,
In the hour of darkness and peril and need,
The people will waken and listen to hear
The hurrying hoof-beats of that steed,
And the midnight message of Paul Revere.
More anti-government hypocrisy
Posted:Apr 28, 2018 4:53 pm
Last Updated:Apr 30, 2018 12:46 pm

The latest matter tying the honorable right wingers undies in a knot is the death of a child in England. They took that opportunity to condemn that socialist, evil, governmental entity called national health care. Judges making life or death decisions, people dying, even the Pope offered to help and yet the damned government overstepped its bounds and allowed the child to die. What happened to those good ole days when the house call making doctor made all the medical decisions?

Well, it has apparently slipped their minds the insurance companies ( you remember those hallowed job creators ) have had MBAs making medical decisions based on financial criteria since HMOs and managed care started making them more and more money back in the 80s and 90s. Not to mention the premier program for the Trump Administration was to do away with the ACA, which they finally did by including funding cuts in the tax bill, will remove health insurance from millions of Americans and, to date, no plan has been proposed to replace either the plan or the insurance for the Americans. At least judges have some experience making life and death decisions.

However, there's a bigger issue at stake here. The honorable right wing had made smaller government their mantra. Get the government out of our lives, we are adults and can make reasonable decisions. I won't get into some of the magnificent personnel decisions made by the Trump Administration, but I will remind our right honorable friends they use the government as a tool. It's a horrible intrusion in our lives right up to the point it becomes advantageous, and then it's perfectly acceptable to take advantage of it.

Whatever do you mean by this? Well, the vast majority of welfare payments, those dastardly entitlements which seem to be sending our prosperous nation to the poor house, are made in red states. Yes, they are. At the same time corporate welfare is perfectly acceptable because of the job creators (which they aren't ). Furthermore, entitlements in the agricultural field where farmers were paid not to grow crops was vociferously condemned up until it was noted several elected officials from the republican party in farming states were taking advantage of the program to the tune of millions of dollars annually.
Hey, anybody want a job?
Posted:Apr 24, 2018 1:27 pm
Last Updated:Apr 30, 2018 12:50 pm

I look to my right honorable friends on the right to assist me in understanding why the United States of America can't seem to find qualified individuals to fill the important positions essential for running a government. There has never a time since January 20, 2017 when all or even nearly all the essential government positions have been filled. Then, when someone finally emerges ostensibly qualified to run an important bureau of our government, suddenly we find the appointee has flaws which the vetting process should have revealed. I don't recall this volume of erroneous vetting in my lifetime.
Read my lips, "No Donald Trump"
Posted:Apr 23, 2018 10:55 am
Last Updated:Apr 27, 2018 3:38 pm

As all the Righties post their accolades of Melania Trump, there seems to be an avoidance of the 800 pound gorilla absent from the room. President Trump's absence from Barbara Bush's funeral was not predicated on a more burning desire to play golf, it was because he wasn't invited. In normal and civil diplomatic circles the fact the President of the United States wasn't invited to the funeral of a revered First Lady should be an embarrassment. Apparently, it's not. The fact it's not an embarrassment pretty much sums up the basis of the Trump election. They don't really care.

The pomp and circumstance accompanying high governmental offices is more than mere show, it's civility. It's a sign our elected officials can rise above the argumentative discussions and act in a civil manner. It's a sign of decorum which elevates their meetings from a few pals getting together over a few beers. This is but one of the acts of normalcy missing from the Trump Administration, yet it's an act revered by Trump supporters as the deviation they sought in his election.

So, as the British Parliament periodically discusses whether or not to allow the President of the United States into their country and as Angela Merkel sits stone faced through what appears to be the punishment of having to deal with Donald Trump, we are left with Emannuel Macron of France as a possible ally as long as he furnishes enough Freedom Fries.
No collusion
Posted:Apr 10, 2018 10:30 am
Last Updated:May 15, 2018 10:47 am

Every chance he gets President Trump tries to remind us there was no collusion with the Russians. I think he knows better.

First, we can use that old reliable Shakespearean line, "Methinks thou doth protest too much". The actual line from Hamlet is "The lady doth protest too much, methinks" . We can also use a line from the movie "A Few Good Me" where Lt. Weinberg "You also got it in the jury's head
that we're afraid of the doctor. You
object once so they can hear you say
he's not a criminologist. You keep
after it and it looks like this great
cross we did was just a bunch of
fancy lawyer tricks. It's the
difference between paper law and
trial --"

Now, I don't know as a fact whether there was collusion or not between the Trump Campaign and the Russians, but I have watched intensely as this case has proceeded and it appears Mr Mueller is on to something. I predicate this opinion on numerous indictments handed up by the special prosecutor, but President Trump's continual and unsolicited denials carry great weight as well. Furthermore, I have worked closely with the FBI in the past and and many of them are truly boy scouts who would never dream of doing anything wrong. In fact their own rules and regulations dictate disciplinary action for even getting a parking ticket.

Now, add to this the vividly apparent ignorance exhibited by President Trump regarding the law, the Constitution and the workings of government followed by an open disregard for the advice from his subordinates and logic tells me his constant cries of "no collusion" fit conveniently into the style of a pathological liar. I have resigned myself to the fact my logic does not follow the same path as the logic of the right wingers here who carry the sincere belief President Trump is a panacea for all of our nation's woes. Nonetheless, I shake my head in wonder whenever I read a post extolling the platitudes of our failing president.

Recent developments have solidified my opinion, however. Having applied for several search warrants, I can report the fact judges take the Fourth Amendment very seriously. Having to revise the applications several times drove that lesson home. I've never applied for a search warrant for an attorney, but I can readily see the increased scrutiny by the judiciary. As attorneys themselves, judges are intimately aware of the rues and regulations for the practice of law, and divulging anything having to do with clients is a sure way to get yourself before the grievance committee. Therefore, judges are adamant in protecting client's rights which means a search warrant for a lawyer's office would be considerably more difficult to obtain. The fact Attorney Cohen's files were the subject of a search warrant tells me a judge was firmly convinced a crime was committed and evidence of that crime could be found in an attorney's office or home.

I guess the Trump lawyers had better get plenty of the 30% on juries if they plan on winning any of the cases.
Good neighbor policy
Posted:Apr 5, 2018 6:02 pm
Last Updated:Apr 7, 2018 2:09 pm

MEXICO CITY (The Borowitz Report)—Hoping to resolve the seemingly intractable conflict over immigration, Mexico surprised the world on Thursday by agreeing to pay for Donald J. Trump’s psychiatric care.

Speaking to reporters, the Mexican President, Enrique Peña Nieto, said that he had authorized funding for the psychiatry and proclaimed, “Work on Donald Trump could begin tomorrow.”

Peña Nieto displayed several photographs showing prototypes of therapists, including a bearded Freudian analyst whom he said came highly recommended.

While some Mexican taxpayers argued that a full course of psychiatric treatment could prove more costly than a border wall, Peña Nieto warned against skimping on such a necessary expense.

“When the safety and security of the world is at stake, eight hundred dollars an hour is a bargain,” he said, but added that Mexico would try to find a therapist who takes insurance.
Anti-Panic medication now available
Posted:Mar 22, 2018 7:37 am
Last Updated:Mar 23, 2018 4:45 pm

The staunch right wing, unwilling to consider the ever growing body of evidentiary speculation, must be clearing the shelves of Ambien and similar sleep inducing products. Their posts seems to get more and more panicky as the Mueller investigation gathers steam, witnesses and information. It's a foregone conclusion Mr. Mueller has President Trump's income tax returns, the ones he was and is reluctant to share with his faithful following. Therefore, whatever information President Trump wants to keep from the United States electorate is in the hands of Mueller and his band of brothers. The President can't be pleased with that scenario.

After making deals to create state's witnesses through indictments and arrests, Mr. Mueller now has granted immunity to a potential witness. Prosecutors don't grant immunity frivolously. It's a cost/risk analysis which always leaves some room for error, however, Mr. Mueller is adept enough to reduce the risks sufficient to create a viable witness who, because of the cost of immunity, must be worthwhile.

President Trump has become noticeably more belligerent regarding the Russian affair according to his ill advised tweets. He apparently doesn't realize the tweets are like wiggling in quicksand, the more you do it the worse it gets. The President and his attorneys have, for some time, called to an end to the investigation, forgetting the Watergate matter took more than two (2) years to conclude and observers have noted this matter is far more complicated than Watergate.

Now, if all that weren't enough, the President's past has returned to bite him in the derriere. His lifetime of grabbed pussies has arrived at the point where the piper is demanding his due. The few lawsuits currently filed represent that small crack in the dam before the dam breaks and the flood waters begin their destructive journey. Just to add some color to the flood waters, the lawsuits are filed in state courts where the presidential pardon in invalid. That's why President Trump's attorneys have tried to move the porn star's case to federal court. I think he knows he's he has one foot out the door and that foot is standing on a banana peel.

Equally as interesting, however, is the co-joined panic we see in the blogs from the right wingers here in SFF. We've seen blogs with lists of questionable double standards trying desperately to transfer the panic to the left. We have blogs with outright whining criticism of the left trying desperately to demonstrate the right's position is stronger than it might appear. We even have a blog making the President look like a liberal the desperate hope some lefties will align themselves with the failing despot. The problem with sliding down the slippery slope is there's nothing to slow the descent, it's a free fall, especially when the sole bragging point for this administration is the appointment of a SCOTUS justice.

This is what it's like when the sky really is falling........
It isn't difficult
Posted:Mar 11, 2018 10:26 am
Last Updated:Mar 22, 2018 4:56 am

The Second Amendment is not sacrosanct. Justice Scalia as much as said so in the Heller Case when he allowed the government has the authority to regulate firearms. Regulating firearms is a necessity. It's a necessity because people are humans and humans are not perfect. Moreover, it's the people who hold the entirety of the responsibility of proper firearm handling, use and storage, not the guns. Contrary to the misleading policies of the pro-gun lobby, the legislation concerning gun control is directed toward people, not guns. The idea is to prevent irresponsible people, mentally ill people and people who have proven unworthy to have firearms to possess firearms. It's really just that simple.
There is another issue which is more firearm intense. Which firearms should be available to John Q. Citizen? Rifles are instruments of hunting, but would a hunter need a sniper rifle? How about a Howitzer cannon? How about any rifle specifically designed to incur maximum damage to the human body? As part of the duly recognized authority to regulate firearms, the government has the authority to regulate which firearms are available to the public. Machine guns, "Tommy" guns, cannons, various missiles and bombs have been restricted. The question now remains where, exactly, shoild that line of demarcation between acceptable and unacceptable weaponry be placed. Physicians who treated patients at both Sandy Hook and Parkland were astounded at the damage done by the AR-15 or similar weapons. That particular weapon is specifically designed to incur maximum damage to humans, since the weapon is designed as an instrument of war, not an instrument of rabbit hunting. The current movement is a general restriction on the AR-15 and similar weapons. The pro-gun lobby has yet to announce a viable reason for a private citizen to possess an AR-15, beyond their old standby that such possession and ownership is guaranteed by the Second Amendment. Unfortunately, for them, however, no such guarantee exists.
Pro-gun advocates lie in wait eagerly anticipating an opportunity to employ the well worn comparison between vehicles and guns. Personally, I believe treating guns like vehicles is a great idea. Register every one of them. Require those who carry or own them to have licenses to do so, and licenses issued after passing tests for competency. Issue severe fines for violating the responsibilities associated with gun possession and ownership. Require registrations fees for both guns and licensees with both being periodically renewed. If someone commits too may violations, revoke their license and revoke their guns. I get the distinct feeling the employment of any of these laws would meet with serious resistance.
The GOP and the Faustian conundrum
Posted:Feb 26, 2018 2:42 pm
Last Updated:Mar 5, 2018 6:25 am

We have a complicated governmental system. We elect representatives from 435 congressional districts nationwide to work toward legislation beneficial to the nation as a whole, while the representatives also protect the best interests of their respective districts. We elect two senators from each state and then send the 100 senators to work toward legislation beneficial to the nation as a whole, while the senators also protect the best interests of their respective states. Whether acting on behalf of the nation or their respective districts, the 535 representatives work for the citizenry.

At some point the GOP was lured by the power associated with the positions for which they were elected. Due to electoral issues the GOP found itself outside the power centers and decided to systematically go about reversing the scenario. A victory in the Citizens United Case, nationwide changes in voting requirements prejudicial to democratic voters and the nomination and subsequent election of a bully clearly racist and misogynist. The GOP wavered for a while, but has since rallied firmly behind the power monger to the detriment of national benefit. Pandering to the top 10% of Americans because money equals power and worshiping them as "job creators" when creating jobs is inconsequential when compared with increasing wealth.

In casting aside the national interests in favor of power, the GOP made a Faustian decision. Power is not the purpose of elected office, although it has become an ancillary benefit. The GOP unabashedly professes a desire for the power over the nations best interests. In this case power is the devil and the GOP has sold its soul to it. Typical of the GOP's inability to plan for the future, the time for the devil to get his due is fast approaching. Although I most assuredly do not know what Robert Mueller knows, from what I've seen predictions of an eight year presidency for Donald Trump seem less likely every day, despite the President's protestations to the contrary.

The recent CPAC convention was the new GOP coming out party.

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