Saturday, August 13, 2016

Turning it around

My father died in 1980, but we used to talk politics. One of the things he said would come to pass someday was a war between the have and have-nots. He believed people would shoot strangers just because they were enraged at what they regarded as unfairness. We have seen a lot of that come to pass-- sometimes using religion or race as an excuse. He had lived through the Great Depression and understood tough times, but the problem he saw was an unfairness gap.

We are currently seeing an odd time where we have political candidates that so divide people that they end friendships. Not that this has never happened before but with an ever-present media, we know so much more and maybe too much. Is there such a thing as an unbiased media? I don't personally think so. Facts always are interpreted and there is where bias comes in.

This article by Peggy Noonan described what I also believe we are seeing, but it's not just wealth as another kind of elitism. She describes a situation of elites who have no loyalty to country but only to class.


We hear it in this current political campaign in the US where Trump calls out for nationalism and the media tears him apart for being a selfish racist and Hillary talks up globalism and she's praised as sensitive to reality. Which is reality? She says she won't support Obama's TPP but who believes that once she gets in office?

Elites don't have to be wealthy. They can be intellectual elites. They are those isolated from different ideas and those who aren't from their 'class' with the end result a widening gulf. 

In any interview program, before someone opens their mouth, we know what side they will be on and their ability to explore problems in their own side ain't happenin'. Last night I watched a cable news channel where the host tried to get one of the partisan defenders to discuss a problem their candidate had. At every attempt, the defender turned it around-- everybody does it or that other candidate is worse. Never once did they explore their own candidate's problem. I still don't know if they recognized it but refused to discuss it or simply didn't see it.

If there is no way to turn this around, with elites running things and having zero compassion for those who disagree, where do we end up? Can we have a nation without borders or rules? If we have rules, who makes them?

Yes, this is a rant and it's worse for having no idea how to fix this as I see both candidates for the US Presidency to be flawed-- and not one worse than the other. Both in different ways. The more I learn, the worse I see this all as being. Whoever wins in November, I think the American people are screwed and along with them a lot of the world. What is happening here, as the example of Germany makes, is happening elsewhere-- sometimes with not just emotional but physical violence.

Wednesday, August 03, 2016

on the other side

Currently we have at least two and maybe more Americas. Where you get your news is a lot of how you see whatever might've happened. I think that the cultural divide is even greater than the partisan one.

An example is what I read last night: 
 

The Obama administration says this is all coincidence, as it was part of $2 billion owed for downing the Iranian airliner by mistake-- That might even be true... but the timing looks like it's not and you can bet the right doesn't see it as coincidence since it was hidden.

Shouldn't the Obama administration have been a little careful at how things look given the hate and distrust that is spinning around? And if it's only reparations, why do it so secretively (read the article)? Don't they know by now that nothing stays secret forever-- especially not that big??? 
 
The right considers this revelation one way (Obama is a sneaky dictator and lies all the time) and the left the opposite (coincidence or he did it that way because of the nasty right, who would never understand), and so the divide grows. 
 
Frankly, I don't see how either, of the two major candidates for the Presidency, will be changing this. If Trump really got immediately impeached, unlikely but who knows, and Pence got the office, it wouldn't be better since he is an extreme rightie with very fundamentalist views on our laws.
 
When you see no hope for a solution, that is depressing.

Monday, August 01, 2016

lesser of evils

I have a question and would appreciate any answers. I am no fan of Donald Trump, but the latest kerfuffle involves parents who claimed that where it came to immigration Trump was going against the Constitution. The father waved the pocket Constitution as evidence of this. Where does the Constitution have a section that claims there cannot be standards for allowing immigration? I went looking and must have missed it.

This father has gotten more publicity for his claims because of Trump's attacks on him. His judgment in such situations is lousy. Some think, on the right and the left that it will be the one thing to bring Trump down. Now I might want to see Trump lose, but doesn't it seem there should be truth on both sides to do it?

If you only read the left wing side on sites like Huffington, you get one view. If you are on right wing sites like The Hill, you get another-- smearing Donald Trump. The thing is, from the beginning, Trump did not say all Muslims. He said the ban would last until we could assess which ones had ties to terrorist organizations. Who objects to that? 

It turns out, after some research, that Mr. Khan is in favor of calling out those with terrorist ties. When he says he and his family would not have been allowed in, he's not being honest-- since I assume they had no such ties given what I've heard him to say.


 My frustration is, as I see it, we have two ethically challenged people running for the Presidency. Even Hillary's own side knows she lies and pathologically like when in the recent Sunday morning show she claimed the FBI cleared her on the emails. That was not the truth. Is she, like Trump, unable to discern truth??? Is she a pathological liar or does she just assume her followers actually won't check facts?

She was right when she said you can't trust the nuclear codes to someone who is unable to control his need for revenge whenever someone attacks him. He shows his immaturity over and over, and just did it again; but she's not a lot better. She is some, but not a lot. Voting though for a third party, even if one of them is ethically better, just guarantees it's going to be Trump or Clinton.

Some who read here are thrilled with one of these candidates. I wish I was. It'd make the next months a lot easier to take. As it stands, I'll have to vote for Clinton, but I won't be happy about it and don't believe she will stick to what she says she'll do, or not milk being President for all the money she can get as she has before. Sorry, but she is not a woman of the people. She's just the less bad. I'll be interested in seeing if anyone who reads here has something to say that might make me feel better about my vote.

Saturday, July 30, 2016

convention thoughts

I do not watch political conventions although it's impossible not to get a few clips from them. I see them as all about manipulation, propaganda and stirring up emotions. 

For those who just watched the two political conventions, excited over American power and might, over how exceptional we are, this is a link worth reading.


America loves to toot its own horn, remind itself how great it is, but how does that play elsewhere? Do most Americans care-- since anyone who sees us other than we promote ourselves is obviously an ingrate...

I wish I could walk along the Yellowstone River right now. Need a little of the peace I have found there even in troubled times. This photo was from 2008.

 

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

heartburn

Anyone with any interest in the current political race for Presidency in the United States has already read all the articles they care to about why Hillary Clinton skated on a charge that would've and has led to others being prosecuted. She got off because she is Hillary Clinton. She is doubtless jubilant about now. She should not be. She should be ashamed, but I have a feeling, as much as Donald Trump is a pathological narcissist, as some claim, so is Hillary. 

For those who like her, she can do no wrong and accusations regarding a private, secretive email server and lying about what she had on it is just a right wing conspiracy. For those like me, who can barely stand to hear her talk on anything, it's seen differently. 


When someone posts a piece by the extreme rightie, Allan West (no, I am not linking to that one), and I agree with him, there is no joy in Mudville. Pretty much any analysis by someone unbiased says the same thing. She walked on a technicality that didn't exist in the law. Maybe she will win the presidency that way. Maybe.

The bad part for me is I cannot possibly vote for this woman now. I used to think I could but no way. I get phone calls from anonymous and hear Clinton's strident voice as she asks for money. Excuse me but don't you have any pride in it being you? How dare you try to trick people into picking up the phone? Anybody honorable, business or person, has their name show up with caller ID. Not her.

But I can't vote for Trump either. So that leaves me one choice. Since I began voting at 21 (that was back in the dark ages), I've voted for one of the two major parties. This year, it looks like I'll be voting for Gary Johnson, the Libertarian (a social liberal and fiscal conservative based on his stand on the issues). He can't win. I am equivalently avoiding responsibility, but I won't vote for Clinton and have no idea what Trump would do if he got in. To be honest, right now, I'd worry less about that than her. 

It also leaves me uncertain how to support Senate candidates. If she gets it and she has the Senate behind her, what kind of damage could she do? If Trump got it with the Senate behind him, what kind of damage could he do? I guess there are a couple of Senate candidates I can trust but if I don't know them or I do know them (that means you Ron Wyden) I am giving no dollars out. 

As an old woman, I've seen a lot of elections and always voted. I have never seen one as disappointing as this one. 

Friday, June 24, 2016

Brexit

Going against so much of the conventional wisdom, not unusual for me, I can kind of understand why the UK and particularly England and Wales, went for leaving the EU. When in it, someone else calls their shots, and that kind of control can be upsetting when you don't know that it's for your benefit but for someone else's.

I read that in England, the middle class wanted to remain and the lower economic levels to leave. They are the ones most hurt by workers coming from elsewhere who will work for lower wages, while the better off likely benefit from that. I suspect the US sees some of that same division here-- other than many believe our middle class is disappearing.

My main thought is don't let the media stir this into more of a frenzy than it has to be. They tend to do that with fear talk about stocks falling. Mostly when they fall, they also rise, unless a particular company goes bust. Hold on and don't panic. The panic profits the venture capitalists who love to see people sell off in fear; so they can buy low.

We will see some of this in the fall if Trump should win. Again, wait for disaster before going into a frenzy. Anticipating it doesn't do much good-- except cause ulcers. And same if Hillary wins. Wait to see what happens, don't let the media create a firestorm that doesn't exist if they weren't there feeding it.

I would like to hear what readers here feel about what happened. I've followed the story but honestly haven't known what to think other than I am leery of concentrated power.


Tuesday, June 21, 2016

frustrating and it ain't getting better

Right now, I watch some of the news and feel almost sick, like the MP murdered in England because her political views didn't agree with the mentally ill, conservative, where voting is not enough. Then the young man who tried to get hold of a gun to kill Trump. This is a very scary season politically and actually for all of us. It's not new to win your political point by killing someone. Just didn't we think we were past that. 

I've been mostly engaged in the next of the Hemstreet Witches books. The first one isn't doing well as far as sales, but I committed myself to writing about these five women and by golly I will do it. The shorter books help some and it's fun to imagine magic could solve problems, deal with evil in a way the rest of us find impossible-- those of us who even admit evil exists.

I am still very disillusioned by our two potential nominees and it worries me if either get the presidency. What a year is all I can say.


This squirrel was frustrated too. He's looking at the long thin bird feeder and he can't get at it. I know just how he feels.