Saturday, September 22, 2012

What to say?

   I sometimes stare at this blank screen and think about what to say?  Or wonder whether I should say anything at all?  There is no end to topics in the news, always lots of politics going on, lots to do and Congress doing nothing, pretty much given up until November.  Another well deserved vacation, they work so hard, don't they?
   Romney is having a tough time, mostly because it is being discovered that he doesn't really believe in anything.  He has the passion of an accountant and people are wondering why is it that this was the best the Republicans could come up with?  What has happened to the Republican Party?  What a dismal group they had to choose from.  Looking back it is making Nixon look like a pretty darned good President!  He opened doors to China and it was Nixon that began the EPA! Environmental Protection Agency.
   I get discouraged when we are satisfied with sound bites.  I hate 30 second "news" stories, "around the World in 80 seconds" is just plain nuts.  Fox News is like the "Enquirer", hyping on emotion and careless with the facts.   I actually watched it for three full hours the other night and thought I was in
"The Twilight Zone"!  At least I discovered why some people don't like Obama!  He is a boogie man, from Kenya, a Muslim, a socialist with a secret agenda!  Fox News says that every twenty seconds, often enough that people become to believe it.  Much like repeated advertisements, it is how we  become fat and docile and have our desires manipulated.  Discovering any kind of real truth requires work on our part and we have no time for that.
   The Republican Party has become bitter and afraid and nostalgic for a badly remembered past.  They are scary too.  Too many similarities with the Germans between WWI and WWII, that time in History
when they wanted to retrieve their greatness and thought that hatred towards the Jews, the Gypsies, the Gays, the Old and Infirm would be the binding ties that would return their glory days.  We never learn nothing, huh?
    We are slow to wake up at least.  The Republicans are now distancing themselves from Romney.
Senate Seats are at stake.  Just five months ago the Republicans were expected to gain a majority in the Senate and now it is not so sure.  Like rats deserting a sinking ship.
   There will be no quick fixes no matter who wins.  Eight years of /Republican Deregulation took us to the brink and we will have to claw our way out, gaining in inches what was thrown over the cliff.  It will be years from now that books will be written and we will realize how close to crashing we really were.
   On a separate note I have been really busy!  Welding everyday, one job after another, one not quite finished and another one begun!  No doubt better than it was but really, I couldn't tell you why?  It is just the nature of what I do, feast or famine.  A lot of it was the Art Show I did in July, my first show in over three years, since my cancer and voodoo cure and regaining my strength.  Networking, they call it, huh?  Meeting people who know people and my card gets passed around and the phone begins to ring again!  That is the way it works.  You can't make much money when you are hiding.
   Hope you all have a great weekend!

Friday, September 14, 2012


Really, I would be a very bad President.  My response too often would be bellicose, full of fury or, maybe worse just a total retreat, a leave us alone in isolation from the world.  The problem with leaving an area, which is my reaction, is that someone else would step in and clearly the problems would escalate.
   Obama is cool headed and clearer thinking about all of this than I would be and I am thankful for that.  These new "Arab Spring" governments are just months old and not established.  There are still militias with armed trucks patrolling the streets and often causing trouble.  They don't have a national police force established and certainly no kind of law and order.
   Yes, it is good that I am not President and that more rational heads prevail. It is a difficult situation to say the least.  Although my inclination might be to blast my way in there like the "Lone Ranger" I suspect that is not realistic.  Iran is a formidable force without atomic bombs and if we or Israel just bombed their weapon factories it would ignite a huge area war not unlike World War II. Not only would gasoline go to $20 a gallon, millions of people would die.  The best fight is always the one you can talk your way out of.
   Obama is sane and sensible, cool, hardworking and pretty darned tough.  He is no peanut farmer!
He has taken our military into the 21st Century and in his four years in office has killed more "bad guys" than Bush did in eight years!  Letting the wars wind down while keeping American influence in the area is a better plan than the retreat my inclination would want.
   Being President has to be the toughest job in the world.  My decisions and mistakes have very little consequence and no one blames me when I can't make everything all right.  The guy goes to bed at one o'clock in the morning and is up by seven.  Bush went to bed at 8 o'clock, pretty much like I do, and didn't go to work until ten!  I don't want a President like me!  If you are President it is not a good idea to blast out emotional reactions to world situations and then spend time eating your words.  That is what Romney did and I probably would also, but it is not the best way to be, especially if you are President!
   It is a strange world and people and governments are different.  The Chinese Government went to Corvallis Oregon, 40 miles from here, to look at a mural on the wall of a local business!  Can you believe that?  Seems it was too sympathetic to Taiwan and they wanted it removed!  So we had to explain "free speech" and our Constitution to them!  I hope they learned something, and, of course, the mural is still there.  At least no body got shot.
   I think our President is more the "walk softy and carry a big stick" kind of guy.  He got Osama, something Bush could not do in eight years.  I suspect the 20 guys who destroyed our Embassy and killed the four Americans are on the radar also.  It is difficult to hide from the drones once you are on the list and Obama is not afraid to use them.
   I might make a good dictator but I would be a lousy President.  I like the one we have.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Attacking Our Embassies

Wow,  it is good that I am not President!  My tolerance level would be just about zero.  I am wondering if Muslims ever laugh?  Pretty sensitive bunch to get riled up over a b- third rate satirical film.  Thirteen minutes of it is available on YouTube and really, it will put a normal person to sleep.
   We have different cultures, that is for sure.  We might have more in common if we found life on Mars.  We laugh in a sometimes cautious way about the Christian Religion, show slightly disrespectful Broadway Plays on the Mormon Religion.  We even have Jesus Christ, Super Star!  If we put a quarter in a jar every time we cussed we would have our retirement paid for right there!
   We are in debt for fighting for their freedom.  We supported them in getting rid of their dictators.
They are killing us every day in gratitude. It is a culture that kills their daughters and straps suicide bombs on its children.  It is a culture that respects power and brutality and sees our kind of freedom as a weakness.  I think Sadam had it right:  rule with an iron fist, terror is what they understand.
   It is good that I am not President.  I would not give a nickle for their oil or their freedom.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Conflict is Good!

The elections, the conventions, all of this political debate is certainly good for the economy!  Newspapers, Radio and Television must be getting a bounty in advertising revenue; literally, billions of dollars are being spent.  Whoever wins, he will be the best President that we can afford.  No country on Earth spends on elections like we do.  It has to be good for the economy!
   Personally I like elections.  My normal day is not unlike yours.  I get up, find something to do and get tired doing it, then go to bed.  Just routine.  Elections make me think of the world around me, get out of myself and think of others, and yes, even fantasize about an "ideal world" and then laugh  at the comedy of it all.  It seems that we screwed up when Eve offered Adam the Apple and this can never be Heaven on Earth!  We have to wait for that pie in the sky when we die.  That is always the problem.  It is later, if only and under conditions that things will get better.  I don't know why it is so difficult to make a plan, stick to it, and make things a little better all along the way?
   Now is when we want it.  We don't see things in increments, no longer listen to arguments.  We make our own bleak world, close the drapes and get comfortable in the darkness and always blame others for everything that is wrong.  With us and with the world.
   If we could have unlimited coal and tar sands oil then everything would be all right!  One more apple, Eve, please!  That tree may be beneath the Arctic and we will destroy that last pristine place to get it.
Humans have a hunger and believe that the Earth should be used UP.
   Tell me three nice things about Obama and I will tell you three nice things about Romney!  Really I would.  I read both sides, conflicting editorials and diverse opinions.  I like some elements of each and each have elements that I dislike.
   I think the elections will boil down to two issues for me and this may be selfish because they would effect me personally.  The issue of Medicare won't harm me either way but I know the math.  A voluntary and competing program with Medicare will destroy it.  Health issue, National Health will not affect me.  I am one of the 1% there for sure and history has proved over the years that we really do not feel another's pain!  National Health Care would be less expensive than our present system, but that is pretty simple math and if you want to you can work that out yourself.  Gay rights mean nothing to me personally although according to the math, we all know someone who this issue is important to and I think I should cast my ballet in their favor.  Voting for the benefit of others! What a novel idea and this one would not cost me a dime.  Women's issues mean a lot to me.  I like women!  And I have two daughters so for very selfish reasons I would vote for their rights and equal benefits.
   There are two issues that will determine my vote.  The Republican Platform does not even mention
our wars, not a single word about Afghanistan and the 31 American Soldiers who die there every single month.  One Dead Every Day.  These are our youth, America's best and we have forgotten them already.  In the months and years to come we will spend trillions on those returning soldiers, for their care and support.  It is a debt we will try to weasel out of as we have in the past.  We already have homeless veterans begging on street corners, young ones now, next to the Vietnam vets, struggling for position.  I will think long and hard about which political party will recognize our obligations.
   We are tired of war and can not afford it.  I am thankful there were no troops on the ground in lybia and we are not in Syria.  I will think long and hard about which party can keep us out of future battles.
   There is one single issue that comes down to belief that will determine my vote.  One Issue that I use to believe in that I no longer do.  I believe in the American Worker.  I do not believe in Trickle Down.
For over a hundred years the Chief Executive Officer of a corporation made six times the wages of the average worker and that money stayed here at home, in our neighborhoods, supporting our communities.  These were attainable jobs and through education, hard work and discipline, average people  could get there.  I graduated from the University of Oregon and paid $96 dollars per term for the classes.  I received no grants or free money.  I did it with a part time job and student loans totaling only $1,500 for five years of education.  Something has changed.  This is impossible now.
    Trickle Down doesn't work.  CEO's can make MILLIONS of times the pay of their average workers!  And the money doesn't stay here.  It goes to China along with our jobs.  It is safe in off shore accounts with clever accounting avoiding taxes.  Four years ago Google and Amazon Stocks were selling at less than $200 and now they are over $700!  Corporations have never been richer and never invested less in their local communities.  They don't even bank here.
   I believe in Henry Ford who didn't have a dime invested in China, who rightfully became wealthy investing in American workers and paid them enough so they could buy the cars they were making.
   It is greed that will get us in the end.  Greed and the idea that there are simple solutions, that we could drill our way out of this, like a lottery ticket is awaiting us under the arctic ice.
   I believe in hard working Americans.  I believe in the Middle Class.  The more the better, that center bulge on the graph that goes to work every day, banks locally, supports their schools, their community.
That is who I will vote for.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Serious BLT

I found some really good bacon!  Buying bacon is pretty much like anything else, find the most  expensive in the store and it will probably be the best.  Three times the cost of the cheapest but worth it.  I have lots of tomatoes now, plenty to eat and give a few to neighbors but not enough to get the dryer out.  My plants never recovered from the harsh June cold spring weather.  There are nice ones out in the garden and easy enough to find ten or so on any given day, some weighing over a pound and even bigger!  The really dark varieties are ready now, ripe and juicy and full of flavor.  Time for a BLT, the sandwich of Kings and want to be politicians!