Showing posts with label The United States. Show all posts
Showing posts with label The United States. Show all posts

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Put 2020 Into Perspective

Prior to our current times, let’s say pre-1990, life had a lot of problems. It got worse the further you went back. Disease, famine, war etc...people still got on with their lives. And their capacity to deal with that misery also was greater the farther you go back.

Today, people have better lives. They still do despite the pandemic. But we aren’t used to dealing with any real strife like previous generations. Think about what someone in 1880 or 1935 had to deal with. Most people didn’t live past 50. No one had money except a few people. People starved all the time.

Yes, crappy things are happening. Individuals have it really bad compared to society as a whole. But overall, I’ll take 2020 any day over previous eras in terms of a better world. I just wish we had the gumption that those past generations had. I know I don’t

Monday, July 13, 2020

My Dream Last Night

Last night I dreamt that I lived in a country where people still had to deal with the pandemic but it was quite different.

They had leaders who were scientists that relied on facts and evidence, not anecdotes and online gossip. The people admired their intelligence and weren’t antagonistic about their knowledge and accomplishments in a contrarian and adolescent way.

The people were disciplined in their pursuit of solutions and weren’t distracted by irrational nonsense. They helped each other out instead of engaging in petty arguments and pointless debates on social media. They encouraged and supported each other, valuing logic above all else.

They were rational but passionate.

They asked the right questions like:

-How many people have had the virus?
-How many people have it?
-How much of the virus is required to transmit it?

They followed through in pursuit of answers to these questions with comprehensive strategies and gave their energy to goals that actually solved problems.

They were curious in the best possible of ways, wanting clear, positive outcomes for society as a whole while dealing with actual facts and evidence.

And then I woke up and realized what country I actually lived in:


What the fuck, people? Can we turn this around?

Saturday, January 25, 2020

Saturday, August 24, 2019

A Tough Week For the United States

Donald Trump's presidency has always been marred by his erratic personality. Each week brings some crazy pile of nonsense that chips away at his support. This time around it was attacks on the Fed chairman, trying and failing to buy Greenland for the oil reserves, and calling himself the "chosen one" while looking up to the heavens. The cherry on top was the latest round of tariffs coupled with an adolescent outburst towards US firms doing business with China.

All of this is perfectly in line with Trump's role as a Russian asset. Their goal is to erode our hegemony in the world and they are doing a good job of it. The stock market is all over the place, everyday people are taking financial hits as a result of the tariffs, and some of Trump's own supporters are beginning to question him.

“I voted for Trump in 2016 because I thought he was saying what everyone was thinking. But I’m disappointed,” says Debbie Dymek, an estate sale manager, as she pushes her cart through the aisles of a Meijer grocery store in Sterling Heights. “The bashing of everything and everyone, is that necessary? I’m an outspoken person, so when he says things that bother me, I know it must bother others.”

What Ms. Dymek likely doesn't understand is the army of trolls out there that love all of this. Most right-wing bloggers and commenters are rooting for the country to fall apart. They sooooo want this because of their emotional issues with authority figures. Trump has brought all these assholes out of their slimy holes and this is their time in the sun. The crazier Trump gets, the more they love it.

But average folks like these Iowa farmers aren't loving it anymore.

But fellow farmer Mike Holden, standing nearby, respectfully begs to differ. Though he has historically voted Republican 80% of the time, he doesn’t support Mr. Trump. He points out that farmers have no control over the weather, the cost of inputs like seed or machinery, or the price of grain, so they can’t pass on the cost of something like tariffs, which have driven the price of soybeans down by roughly 20%.

“We have enough uncontrollables,” says Mr. Holden, who raises beef and grows corn and soybeans. “We don’t need another one in the government.”

Mr. Ulch, who for years ran a fertilizer company on top of farming, had always wanted a businessperson to be president, so that he or she would understand “what goes on out here.”But he would have preferred someone like Mitt Romney. “To be honest with you, my vote [in 2016] was more against Hillary than it was for Trump,” he says – and that was before the trade wars hit. 

 “I’ll have a hard time voting for Trump again,” says Mr. Ulch.

So who will they vote for? Ms. Dymek gives us a clue.

“Warren?” she says, confirming that she named the Massachusetts senator correctly. “I like her because she’s forceful in a good way. I think she believes what she says.”

I'd ROTFLMFAO if Warren out populists Donald Trump and wins.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Supporting Our New Presdient

As I listened to the testimony of Donald Trump's nominees for his cabinet this week, it struck me how opposite they are in terms of policy from the man that is hiring them. Trump tweeted that he likes people that disagree with him and challenge his ideas. Well, Mr. Future President, that's going to be me as well.

There are many liberals out there who are hiding their heads in the sand and pretending this isn't going to be real. Others have started support groups and the like on social media. Hey, whatever folks need. Me? I don't need any of that because, while I think the next four years are going to be a disaster, we still have to figure out a way to work together and here's the main reason why.

Russia has carried out the best propaganda campaign and psi-op in the history of the world. They have installed a man who they have dirt on in the White House. Donald Trump is going to start off, anyway, as their pawn. The Russians have also successfully used conservatives, especially right wing bloggers and commenters, as conduits in their propaganda campaign. They knew full well that these folks hated liberals more than anything and would easily allow their irrational feelings consume them to the point of voting for a man who is immensely unqualified to be president on a myriad of levels.

Yet, the Russians also knew that our country would be pissed about this. They knew that if they were successful, we'd be split and angry at each other. Considering they are already going to erode our power in the world with what they have done so far, why help them anymore?

I'm not saying we have to support everything that Trump does. Nor am I saying we can't be critical. What I am saying is that we can't give up and hide. We have to hold him and the GOP in Congress accountable. There are still many good people on both sides of the aisle that are going to fight hard for our country's place in the world. Let's help them do it!

The Russians are counting on us being fractured. Let's dispel that shit right now. One of the best things about this county is that we evolve out of our disagreements and thrive on our antagonism towards one another. Let's use that positively by, say, getting more people to the ballot box in 2017 as well as 2018. Pissed of at Trump? Go vote. And then get your representatives on a local, state and federal level to offer something better.

All indications are that Trump's presidency may not even last the whole four years. The investigations into Russian hacking and connections to the Trump campaign will continue. If he is booted out, Mike Pence would at least be a more qualified and experienced leader. Pence definitely has a better temperament and I say this disagreeing with him ideologically in just about every way. Until that time, however, we have to figure out a way to be more united. We have to figure out ways to help out our future president.

The Russians may have won this round but we can't let them win the next.

Monday, July 04, 2016

Good (Happy Birthday, United States) Words

For me, freedom means the ability to live free of fear, free of intimidation and free from gun violence. Freedom in America, as set out in the Declaration of Independence, is meant to be life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Yet, there is a vocal minority who believe these fundamental rights are pre-empted by the right to unrestricted access to deadly weapons.

---Jane Doughetry, sister of Sandy Hook victim

Thursday, May 26, 2016

The Real America

A fascinating look into the Real

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Turning the Lens on the Gun Culture

I have noticed a trend occurring of late that I find most heartening. Researchers are turning their lens towards gun violence and gun culture. There are many reasons why they are doing this but the recent news that UT researcher Haril Shapira is going to examine gun culture and the future of American democracy is extremely interesting.

Shapira’s work investigates what drives people to join gun-owning communities and what this means for democracy. The communities, Shapira observes, not only shape and transform individuals drawn to gun culture but also society at large. 

“We are seeing individuals taking on the roles of government when it comes to self-defense and issues of enforcement of the law,” Shapira said. “What might this mean for democracy and democratic institutions? What does an armed society hold for the future of America’s democracy?”


I'm not sure what his research questions will be or even what form his research will take but I'm hoping he gets into the issue of empowerment. I've been asking friends of mine who are gun owners why exactly they own them and one thing I've noticed about nearly all of them is they have something in their lives that makes them feel insecure and weak. Whether they have some sort of long term health issue or have been bullied in their lives, having a gun makes them feel better.

I can't wait for Professor Shapira's book to be released.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Moving Left

The main reason why the Right are so out of their minds right now is this.

Why America Is Moving Left

It means that on domestic policy—foreign policy is following a different trajectory, as it often does—the terms of the national debate will continue tilting to the left. The next Democratic president will be more liberal than Barack Obama. The next Republican president will be more liberal than George W. Bush.


Sunday, August 10, 2014

Good Words

From a question on Quora...

Have you read the bible? There's some great inspiration and thought provoking ideas, but if you've read it in it's entirety, you can't really deny it's full of some things that are really terrible ideas, including a man marrying his daughter to her rapist and justification of slavery. We hear talk in this country of living my Biblical principles, but that is dangerously vague. Which ones? Which sects interpretation?

In fact, many aspects of the bible are in direct opposition to the Constitution. I think if the founders of this country wanted or intended us to follow biblical law, they'd have clearly stated so by quoting and referring chapters and verse. Since they clearly did not, then I think it's safe to say that they did not intend for the U.S. to be a Christian theocracy .