Wednesday, January 18, 2017

drama

I've mentioned how it all depends on where we get our news as to how we feel about things. That's not absolutely true, of course. We base what we believe on a combination of experience, learning, and then temper it with new input (some of us avoid new input). For those in total misery over Trump as President, words of comfort aren't possible right now. They don't want to think he might do a good job as his ideas are not their ideas. IF he is successful, it will overturn much of what they believe is important in the world. An article like


provides no comfort if you aren't afraid he's a nutcase but rather that he will succeed in undoing what you like. That is what this piece is saying regarding Biden.


Biden isn't seeing Trump as unbalanced or insane. He sees him with a very different agenda--one that challenges all that Biden has worked for his whole life. He's not the only one fearing this as the leader of the World Monetary Fund expresses--


For those who are concerned that an existing stable system *cough cough* will be overturned around the world, this is a time of great concern both environmentally, economically, and regarding physical safety. Their upset is logical and based on feeling they have done well with how it's been and do we really want to upset the apple cart? That's where discussions about the US health care system head-- from overthrowing it all to gentle tweaks-- depending a lot on how you've been doing with it. 

I wrote on depression for my other blog, Rainy Day Thoughts, because I understand how difficult this is for some, and they aren't faking it. They are living with rage, depression, and fear. Some of that depends on from where they get their information. If it's a variety of sources, I think they will find themselves less upset by who is taking over (for the moment) than if it all comes from one side-- either side.

There are, of course, some who are drama queens/kings and they relish feeling upset. If it wasn't Trump, it'd be something else. If someone gets off on being miserable, hey, who am I to try and say it doesn't work. For them it does. The big thing is I don't get drawn into their drama ;).

Friday, January 13, 2017

a week to go

With a week to go before we have a new United States president, I thought this was an interesting article about the far left and Putin.


What an election we had with Putin playing one side and the United States media pretty much united in playing the other. The problem with Americans is how unaware they generally are. Most of us live in bubbles where we listen to our own viewpoint parroted back to us and think we are getting information. How many Americans listen to both viewpoints and decide for themselves? I'd wager to say not many as the other side infuriates them and we tend to avoid what makes us angry-- unless it's being stoked by our own side to get us to do something.

One group of Americans has profited much for the rage on the left over November 8th. They managed to avoid thinking much about why the side they abhorred won. They concentrate instead on feeling wronged. That does suit someone-- but who?

As long as the propagandists can continue to make Americans  (on both sides of the partisan divide) not think about what's really at stake, some will profit. Generally speaking that's the hedge fund guys who bet on disruption-- although I read Soros (major hedge fund guy) lost big by betting the stock market would collapse after Trump won. He has enough billions he can afford that.

Stein was something else, as that article pointed out. She stayed in a race that she had no chance of winning, which was certainly her right as was Johnson as the libertarian. But then she comes out and demands a recount-- oh, and by the way would like a few million to be donated to pay for it. She kept her name in the press, got more leftie interviews than she had during the campaign, and hits all the sanctimonious buttons. 

The article though implies if she'd dropped out, Hillary would have won. That's not nearly as clear cut as it was with Al Gore and Nader in 2000. There were those who voted for Stein, who never would have voted for Clinton for assorted reasons. They might've gone to the Libertarian or stayed home. Nobody can know for sure what her staying in impacted-- maybe nothing.

So Trump is doing all the things he said he'd do while the left implies he's insane and should be impeached before he even gets in office-- their demand with control of House and Senate in Republican hands. Anything goes as a method of getting rid of someone who is despised-- except, of course, making the case for why your ideas are better. Can't do that. It would take away from the satisfying rage.  

The thing is-- only making the case for ideas that matter, for why the left's direction for the country is the right direction, only that will have a chance of dealing with what is coming from the far right. If someone values the direction Obama has taken the country, in terms of globalization, they better be ready to work for it. It's what he said in his farewell address as president (I doubt it'll be the last speech we hear from him in the coming months and years). 

The groups who plan to go to DC to disrupt the Inauguration are not going to make the case for the left. Violent disruptions make the case for the right. The women's march the day after the Inauguration has a better chance of making a point-- if it stays peaceful, many attendees, and has strong speakers. That's a big if. 

Unfortunately, it is possible that we are at risk of becoming a culture, which moves toward whatever is most exciting. Our entertainment encourages shallow thinking and voting with emotions. Will that impact who we choose for leaders? 

Thursday, January 05, 2017

more politics

When we have an election in the US, there is usually a time where the losing party holds fire to see what the other one will do. When GW Bush won with a minority of the vote, 2 electoral college majority, and a Supreme Court intervention, still we saw a time of waiting to see-- but then along came 911 and all bets were off for a few years. 

Now, here we are in 2017 and half the country ready to rebel at anything the winner won (who won a lot of states but lost the popular vote thanks to California giving the loser a big plurality). We have populations in one state angry at another state. There is political philosophy against political philosophy with no real idea how half the country even thinks since out of the voting age population of 229.1 million, only 129.1 million bothered to vote.  Why did they stay home? Who did they favor? Did they even know there was an election?

With the aftermath so bitter-- and it is still very bitter if you read comments or have friends who are not all of one side of the partisan divide-- how can anyone govern? The left is trying to make Trump a failed president before he gets in office. They want to make him even more seen as a failed human being-- often using tidbits of what he said as ammunition with no idea what he really wants to do.

Well, a leader can govern, as Obama often had to do using executive orders, by fiat and that appears to be where we are heading. In the end though, how does that work for a country working for common goals? Can there even be any? Will this end up with revolution of one sort or another? some do believe that and it's interesting to see how they come up with our future.



Other than total panic, where does that lead? The where is where it gets interesting as there is a lot of disagreement on that. If you read only one of the links, make it be the one from Salon on Turchin's theories and how he got to his theory (and a book on it). 

The irony is that right now the left is alternating between raging and chuckling over Trump voters, and how upset they will be when they realize what he is going to do. If that means chaos, it's fine with them. They want back the country they thought they had before November. 

We heard the same thing from the right when Obama won and McConnell said he'd do all he could to make his a failed presidency. Obviously, it didn't matter what that cost the country. It doesn't now from the left either. They want their philosophies to succeed and who cares what happens to the people who are hurt by it. 

There is some irony to listen to Senator Schumer say he'll block any Supreme Court nominee. In the summer, he said it was horrible for the Republicans to do the same thing to Obama's pick. The country needs a Supreme court... *cough cough* Apparently, not anymore.

This isn't really a rant as I don't feel angry about any of it. I am interested in what comes next and how we personally can deal with it in a positive way. I am one of those-- glass is half full, let's fill it back up, kind of persons. I am not into my way or the highway thinking although I don't like losing important civil rights due to a religious agenda of someone else. Anyway I'll be writing more about this and how it might play out. :)

Sunday, January 01, 2017

politics

Politics are part of life in pretty much every avenue. Humans belong to groups that make them comfortable and help them to get work or market their skills. Groups have political aspects, which can be good or bad.

When my husband wants to tell me about the techie aspects of what he does, I find my mind glazing over. But when he wants to tell me about the political angles, who is trying to do what, I am all ears. Politics fascinate me. It probably goes with the writer game.

Politics are an important aspect of publishing. Most people know that I write romance novels and have been bringing them out since 2011 when the option of doing eBooks became a reasonable option for writers who didn't want to go the corporate route. It's not only possible now to be an indie, but it can be rewarding-- even financially. There is though, in a corporation or not, no escaping the political aspect of it. This week several articles were brought up in some of the author groups. I thought it'd be good to share them as illustrating how politics impacts marketing a book.

The thing that triggered my interest was someone speaking about how they'd been told a writer had a better chance of winning the lottery than getting a book contract from a big publishing house or agent. What I commented was:
What some don't understand is that many indie writers don't want that kind of contract. I know that irks those who have one, those like the Huffington Post writer, who put down indie writers; but some of us want to have the freedom to bring out our own books. The last time I sent off query letters was in the '90s. I got far enough to have the manuscripts read and get back reasons why they were not accepted. Their needed changes weren't ones I wanted to make. When the option of eBooks came up, I knew it was what I wanted and have never looked back. I don't want someone else dictating my covers, demanding changes to my characters. Indie writers rise or fall on their own and a lot of us like it that way. The only ones controlling how our books do are readers. That seems fair to me.
There are those saying if a writer doesn't have a publishing house, which that person was saying was unlikely, they should not bring out their books.


What the writer is trying to create an agenda, a political atmosphere, where respectable writers need agents and publishers. What happens next to the writer who believes that you're nothing without a corporate publisher? 

You don't publish your books out of shame. Or you change your book to suit the corporate needs... or you find a smaller publishing house with less rules, which is where they can lose the right to their own books or end up caught into the web of a deceitful business

Check out the following article for what has happened to some authors and readers who trusted that a professional publishing house must be safe. There are two articles. The link is to the second. Follow it to the first if that is of interest (and if you are writing books and haven't published them yet, it should be).

It might seem these things are not really political, but they are. Politics leads people to do what they must to succeed. We see it most obviously in government offices, but it's everywhere. Unless someone has made it clear to themselves, what they are willing to do to succeed, the traps are out there.

For writers, who need networks, it can be very interesting to explore the politics of the publishing game and that is true whether an indie or in a corporate stable. Politics are at the essence of the tribe and the tribe is at the essence of all human communal connections. 



 

Friday, December 30, 2016

the forgotten ones

Having heard left wingers continue to rant not only against Trump but those who voted for him, I thought this piece by Peggy Noonan was good to read, especially for someone who thinks that way. It is about the ones who did vote for Trump. The media is portraying them one way. This photographer went out and met them, and Noonan writes about what he found.


I do not have much to say politically these days. I am very tired of those who do and keep bombarding everyone else with their angst. I hope it gets better but not sure I have much hope it will. The elites are working to make sure it does not-- many of whom have no real idea who actually wanted Trump. The fear talk from some of the commentators is aimed at keeping a rage boiling and fear alive.

What if Trump succeeds in his main goals, and brings back jobs while he also changes certain social norms? Would economic prosperity for more people at the bottom be any consolation for those who wanted to see a total revamping of how Americans regarded many things? Does not seem likely to me. The left feels abused, justified in being angry-- and sound a lot like the right had sounded for years during the Obama administration. Maybe the goals of one side never can be brought together with the goals of the other side...

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

so now what?

So, finally the 2016 election is over, as the left plots grounds for impeachment next or maybe charges of treason. Never mind the reason as they did not have one for a recount nor for thinking partisan Electors would go against the vote of one state instead of their own. Well, a few did in Washington but they were irked that their state's Electors had been sown up for Hillary before the primary. 

Trump will be the next President, whether that's a lump of coal in your stocking or a surprising gift

The accusations have run heavily that he's choosing awful people for his Cabinet-- accusations from the left and the neocons on the right. Here's how I see his Cabinet picks, not that someone like Bill Maher will ever think about it. He's choosing those who will and are capable, in his view, of carrying out his agenda. Yes, lefties didn't want that agenda, but it was what Trump ran on. One after another he's picked what he claimed he would-- sharks who he believes know how to win. 

Now will they know how to win in a political swamp, which few of them, including him, have swum in? That's the question. A lot of what might come next, even the more moderate righties didn't want. With a Republican Congress, Trump has a window to make huge changes in many programs. How many righties really wanted Social Security gutted? Some but probably not the majority, not when raising the income on what the tax is paid would solve the problem or when repaying the loan... or was that actually a gift from the Trust Fund, not that recipients had a say in that


 So many right wingers in Congress want to make Social Security some kind of voluntary program where citizens can invest the money how they wish. That worked well for those in 2008-- wait, it didn't work out well at all. If we want to face impoverished elderly, then that's  a possibility, as if they lose their money, what happens next? Well, the stock market and hedge funds did well with the last crash. Is that a consolation?

Then there is the problem of the debt, which is just under $20 trillion and rising. That money is owed to the Trust Fund but also other nations. No nation can forever keep borrowing, but the US has implied it can because it's so powerful. Maybe not anymore with world money now as an option. 


So conspiracy types have us panicked to get into gold as a hedge against what's about to happen to our investments. It might be it'll happen, but who will be able to afford to buy gold if the whole thing hits the fan? Better would be trade items, growing your own food, knowing who you can barter with, but none of that is as good as keeping the country growing and healthy.

Despite what many on the left believe, that's what the right hopes they have with Trump. I don't know if they do, but we could not keep going as we were with unregulated immigration and a constantly rising debt that we aren't paying off. Think about it as a practical sense, just regarding your own life. I keep hearing economists say that global strategies aren't like ours for our own lives-- really? And who says!

Here's where I am, rather than bemoaning what happened with the election, but instead figuring out what I want to see, support groups who work for that cause, and finding others to make our voices heard. I don't expect to like a lot of what Trump is going to try to do. I hope that Americans will pay attention, see who profits, protect the disadvantaged and weak, and demand that what is done benefits the middle class. When it doesn't, speak out. This is no time for a rabbit hole.

Saturday, December 10, 2016

the process goes on

 This week I listened to an Elector from Texas who says he will not vote for Trump. He wrote an op-ed piece to encourage other Electors to deny the will of their state's voters and instead vote their own opinion, as to what makes a good President. This Elector favored John Kasich. Kasich has said he doesn't want this kind of vote. It is clearly intended to destroy the system we have in place as the most it would do is send it to the House of Representatives, which is controlled by the Republicans. It is hard to see any situation where they would not give it to Trump. But what it does is keep the chaos going.

There is a lot of argument against the Electoral College since it now has twice in recent years given the Presidency to someone who did not win the popular vote. In the case of Bush though, he got it with a very slim Electoral College vote and Gore did not challenge it. Clinton is. Many now want to go to a system where it's purely who wins the most votes. They see this as fairest.

The Electoral College encourages candidates to campaign in all the states and in small communities. It gives diverse ideas and ways of thinking weight in determining who should lead.  States could divide their Electoral votes which is an option that only two have taken. I think most states like the power of the block vote to give them more seeming weight for their issues-- like California with its 55. 

If in the future, it goes to a simple majority, someone like Trump, who campaigned all around the country, would then limit his campaigning to the big population centers. I don't see that as a good thing. What a big city wants may not be good for rural America. The majority of voters does not mean it's the right thing which is why the Supreme Court has sometimes overruled the will of the majority, as with Civil Rights.

In nine days we will see whether there are enough frightened, rogue or faithless Electors to stop the election in its tracks. If this happens, I could see more states mandating by law that Electors vote the will of their state. Or some could opt to divide their Electors; so a state like Wisconsin, which is narrowly won, will more accurately reflect the voters. I kind of liked it when the talk election night was of the states as reflective of this being the united states. That's something we don't think often about.