Tuesday, 30 April 2019

Smart Story

I noticed in car news today....that Smart (the sub-brand off Mercedes) was ending sales in the US at the end of 2019. 

Chief reason? Well....when they started US sales in 2008....they sold a fair number of the vehicles (in the 25k range). It'd been drifting downward for five or six years, and last year.....they went with only the battery version.  That was a total failure....barely selling 1,200 Smarts.  The range of that battery Smart?  108 miles on one charge.....dismal.

I owned a Smart for three years....all of 51 hp. 

It was a death-trap.  No spare-tire.  Hot as heck in the summer with the marginal AC unit, and the glass roof.  The thing had no real suspension.  If you pumped the gas hard, you might get up to around 65 mph.  The gas tank barely held four gallons of fuel.

The list went on and on.  I think at one point toward the end, I had forty issues with the car.  Just changing a lightbulb on the front.....I required the services of a 8-year old kid with small hands.  Changing the oil was next to impossible because it had to be 'sucked' out (there was no drain plug). 

It made sense if you were just living in a small town, and wanted something to haul groceries, or get your dog to the vet.  Oh, and the mpg situation was terrific, but since you had only room for four gallons, you still had to refuel about every five days. 

Fumbling Around on Sundays

With all this church shooting business from the last couple of years (especially recently).....folks are now reaching the point of talking over the idea of taking a gun into a Sunday service.  I sat and pondered over this, and remember the Baptist church environment as a kid in rural Alabama.

Typically, that long hour on Sundays (11 AM to noon)....was the most unbelievably boring period that you could imagine.  This was before the smart-phone era, and you could gaze around the rear of the church, and note at least two or three of the older guys nodding off to sleep. 

Some kids would have pens and would be doodling around or doing artistic pieces.  You'd occasionally notice some women fumbling their pursues (perhaps counting change). 

If the current environment continued on and guys started to tote a pistol into service.....I could imagine some guy sitting there and removing the magazine to the PPK pistol, or tripling-checking (every five minutes) the safety....to make sure it was absolutely safe.  Some would quietly be pulling their pistol out to show their associate, and gun trades might even occur in the midst of a minister chat about Japheth (son of Noah) and how he didn't get much attention because he was a 'slacker'.

In simple terms, all of this would lead to poor gun handling practices, and one day.....some idiot would flip it accidentally off safety, and let loose one round.  Someone would interpret this as the first shot of some terrorist, and then a dozen rounds would be fired toward the backdoor of the church.  It'd be one of those events that would kinda end services for the day, and be talked over for months.

What's Done?

Since January, and the arrival of all these House Democrats....what's the achievement tally?

Well....it's short.

They did have some impeachment stuff discussed in January, but ever since Mueller turned in his report.....that seemed to just go away.

They did fight off Trump's budget discussion, but that really didn't get any public interest.

AOC?  There's not a single day that some network or news media group hasn't hyped up her chatter or political discussion.  But is that something that you'd consider an achievement?

We are around 90 days from summer vacation for Congress, and unless something really arrive soon.....we will be in the October period, with zero accomplishments for 2019.

If we arrive at this same time period in 2020.....with zero accomplishments, what does that do for the House election cycle in the fall of 2020?  In blunt terms, something of some public significance really needs to be put on the board, and accomplished this year....or a hundred of these guys disappear toward the end of 2020. 

Monday, 29 April 2019

Just a Moment of Discussion Over Indians

I often view college students (and even professors) in some video dialog where they want to talk about the great evil where Europeans settling America.....did a something terrible, and owe the land back to 'THE' Indians.

There's a historical problem when you go and discuss 'THE' Indians....because they split off into not just dozens of tribes but literally hundreds of tribes (if you consider Canada, Mexico, the US, and Central America).  At various times.....x-tribes had control of x-land, and later, a y-tribe came along to conquer that group, and then later, a z-tribe came along to conquer that group.

Does it sound somewhat like African tribal warfare?  Yes, it's identical.

Does it sound somewhat like Asian tribal warfare?  Yes, it's identical.

Does it sound like European tribal warfare?  Yes, it's identical. 

You can go over to the Creek Indians and find that they had various wars with other tribes, and killed a fair sum of non-Creek Indians over the past couple hundred years. 

Sunday, 28 April 2019

Mock Stuff

I noticed this in the news today....that Oxford University (the big-boy's university, for hefty intellectual types).... has discovered that young naive kids attending their college are a bit worried (filled with anxiety) over tests (who would figure that).

So, they found this remedy.  The month prior to the real test.....they intend to stage a practice-test (a mock test).  A full three hours....of fake-testing, to get you around to the point where you won't worry.

I sat and debated this idea. 

If this is such a good idea, why don't we have two practice-elections during presidential election years, say in the month of October, and just get everyone up to the level of accepting that their presidential candidate (maybe Hillary).....might lose.  Then maybe after the second practice-election....you'd reach a point where you realize it's best to just accept this situation, and just not get all freaked-out.

In fact, we could do the same way with employees being fired, by having a mock-firing the day prior....to get you around to the level of just accepting this. 

We could even go and have mock NCAA football games.....where a practice game was played between team A and B, and the loss in the practice game would get you to the point of accepting that as being 'OK'. 

Beto's Idea

At some point in the last couple of days, during a campaign stop....Beto O'Rourke (the Mexican-Irishman) spoke up and made a political promise to push for the 'establishment of farm-to-table restaurants in every community to combat poor nutrition'.

I sat and pondered over this.

First, is he actually saying that the government needs to get into the business of running their own brand of restaurants?  You know....like in each county, there would be two or three public restaurants, with government guys in charge, and they'd be serving you food which only comes from local farms, and this would be in some format of great nutrition? 

So the cost of this nutritional dinner?  I know what it costs for a plate of catfish at the Catfish Cabin in Athens, Alabama (figure around $14 for the three fish plate).  For a Beto-plate special, with only local stuff and nutritional?  Maybe $20?  Maybe $24?

Second, if you hired up marginal cooks, and they just served ten people a day....would they shut down (like a normal bad restaurant would), or would they just get more government funding to stay open as a bad restaurant?

Third, what if people just won't eat a nutritional dinner?  What if you went up to a guy and offered up this low-calorie dinner, with high-salad use, and marginal taste?  Would a normal guy eat this nutritional dinner?  If he had the choice of a ribs-plate (thick on the sauce), with french fries (with a special dip), and a 32-ounce sugar drink?

Maybe Beto had good intentions, but this government-run type restaurant, based on only good nutrition....sounds like a pretty bad idea. 

Saturday, 27 April 2019

Value of Yahoo News and Mother Jones

I noticed this got brought up today.....when the pee-dosier business needed to be broadcast out in mid-2016, where the business originally started was Yahoo News and Mother Jones.  Why those two, and not WaPo or NY Times?  Well....no one has really said or talked to that issue.

I would speculate that both looked at the pee dosier story, the credibility of the sources, and then said....right now, we can't touch it because it looks so fake. So Yahoo News and Mother Jones did the big pick-up.

So you sit and ponder about this.  If the whole idea was to get voters turned OFF on Trump....with this pee dosier business being your five-star 'thug'.....would those two sources of news have value?

If you asked a normal guy over the age of thirty about reading Mother Jones, the only ones that ever touch it are typically environmentally-friendly leftists.  Republican guys don't read it....ever. 

If you asked most folks over the age of thirty if they read Yahoo News....they might see an occasional headline, but it's mostly just click-bait, and they pass. 

Then you look at how the pee-dossier was constructed....even if you got the idiot to read the first page....none of this really read like some professional document. It's like a third-world 30-page James Bond piece by a marginal 2nd year college student.

So the value of this whole pee dosier, with Yahoo News and Mother Jones carrying it? Worthless.  You could have gone to a research group, and in less than fifteen minutes....they would have laughed you out of the room with the dosier, and the two news sources.

This was all a big waste?  Yes.  That's the comical side of this now. 


I have a humble view of snowflake 'kids'.....that they've basically signed up to a mental state of being a loser.  So I'd like to offer some humble ways of recovering or de-snowflaking:

1.  Go spend thirty days in some national park in Montana, in the midst of winter....without the comforts of home.

2.  Go walk from the far west end of Memphis to the far east end....from 11 PM at night and 5 AM in the morning.

3.  Go haul hay for an entire month in Alabama, in the midst of July.

4.  Go to Wyoming ranch and be a cattle-hand for six months.

5.  Hike from the Canadian border to the Mexican border.

6.  Sit in a room...handcuffed...for four hours with fairly different people who see life different than you do, and repeat this practice every Sunday until the handcuffs are no longer required.

No one states numbers, but I would take a wild guess that at least 300,000 snowflake kids exist in America today, and pose a serious threat to the stability of the nation because of their inability to handle pressure or conflict of any type.

If You Admit that the Russians are a Threat to the 2020 Election

Here's the thing....if you are the FBI, CIA, some Senator, or big-name journalist who hypes the threat of the 2020 election and the Russians....it means you have to go and do something that threatens democracy (well, it gets special Americans all disturbed).

You have to open up all fifty state poll listings, and look for people listed in dual voting situations.

You'd have to go and look at college students who are deemed 'out-of-state' but apparently listed to vote in the college district they are attending.

You'd have to create a national ID card and force everyone to show it....before registering to vote. 

You'd have to disqualify every single non-American who is listed as registered to vote. 

For some reason, I just don't believe your enthusiasm or 'gotta-get-serious' charm.  You can't make some serious allegation about the Russian threat to the 2020 election, unless you are willing to act.  And that just isn't going to happen.

The Truth About Oligarchs

For a long time, if you uttered 'oligarchy', it was a key phrase or a catch expression for Russian billionaires who interfered in the stock market, world politics, and stability of nations.  It only worked with RUSSIANs.

So, in the past month, if you follow the Trump pee dosier business, and the fake news tuff....oligarchy got brought up....with the Ukraine.  Yes, Ukrainian oligarchs. 

If you asked around about this....most journalists (at least in Europe) will say that this group of Ukrainian oligarchs have run the Ukraine since 1991 (when they exited Russia).  In fact, around twelve years ago, there was this number thrown around....that the total wealth of the top fifty Ukrainian oligarchs, was between 80 and 90 percent of the total GDP of the Ukraine.

But this funny thing happened in 2015, as the Ukraine fell apart (with around 20-percent of the country forming up a Russian-relationship, after the EU business fell apart).  The GDP dropped by 12-percent in one single year. 

In 2016 (the election year for the US), the GDP bumped up and down, from zero-percent growth on GDP, to 2-percent.

All of these Ukrainian oligarchs are looking for the 'angle' on getting business deals and trade situations, and if you have to hire up some Ukrainian Hollywood-script writer to create some fake Trump pee-stories, well, it's all part of the deal. 

The odds that some Hillary high player got his sources in the Ukraine to help out, and write some scripts to convince the news people to follow along?  That's the problem you have to focus upon.  If you had suggested this back twenty years ago.....people would have laughed and said it was physically impossible for something like this to happen. Today, it's bad enough that the CIA could linger on this story for months....thinking it has potential, and then come to realize how badly they'd been fooled, and simply didn't want to admit this in public.

But let's ask another curious question.  Are there oligarchs out of Serbia, Albania, Slovakia, Greece, Lebanon, and Turkey?  Well....yes. If you approached any of them and asked them to produce a pee dossier on Hillary Clinton and some Canadian cattle rancher from 1978.....they'd eagerly do it for some import license into the US.  Or if you need a pee-dossier on Bernie Sanders and some 1988 TV star....they'd eagerly do it for some import license. 

If you ask me....we've got a five star mess on our hands, and the CIA folks might need forty different oligarch research divisions. 

Friday, 26 April 2019

The Dementia Mayor

After watching the search warrant business of Baltimore mayor Catherine Pugh, and her disappearance in the past two or three days.....I've come to this odd question.  You see, her lawyer says she's out of the public view because she's not lucid enough to handle the situation.


Well....down south, when you say someone isn't lucid enough....it typically means that they are pretty much lost in terms of mental competence.

I sat and watched a speech she gave in 2016, when running (thus winning) the city mayor election that year.  My observation from that one speech.....she was not functioning that well.  Her age?  This year, she turned 69. 

My humble guess is that she's suffering (maybe for the past three to four years) from dementia. 

Can she be dragged into court for charges, if having dementia?  No.  My guess is that folks knew this already in 2015, and figured she could win by just showing up and making a few public appearances. Those who benefited?  They ought to be up for charges, but I doubt that this will occur.

Just an odd way for things to turn out. 

Wednesday, 24 April 2019

Bernie and the Prison Vote?

Whoever gave Bernie the idea of a platform stand, this prison vote idea, where all Americans in prisons (county, state, federal) would have the right to vote....has hit some rough acceptance, even with Democrats.

Logistically, it has problems that you can't really imagine.

An example: Say you live in Texas (own a house, and registered to vote there), and you did some stupid stuff in Oregon on a trip, got arrested....charged-up....convicted....and will be in the Oregon prison for twelve years.  Are you still registered via Texas, or is your new residence Oregon?  Who will decide your residence, and thus your vote?

Another example: Lets say you did some stupid stuff, and got yourself into a Venezuelan prison (overseas).  Just how much effort will the US government have to attend to.....to get the Texas ballot to you, and guarantee your vote?

Another example: You are on death-row, and the election is three months past your execution date.  You go to the judge and demand the right to either vote early, or extend your execution date till the day after the election.   

I don't see the problem in handing back the right to vote to a guy after he has served his full sentence and exited the prison or jail.  But if you insist that this right is something to fight over, why couldn't you allow the same guy to have the right to bear arms (own a gun)? 

Bernie opened up a can of worms, and I suspect that fifty percent of Democrats won't buy into the vote idea, and it might well cancel out the half of 2016 states that he won in the primary. 

Tuesday, 23 April 2019

President-Mayor Pete?

In the past month, I've watched probably a dozen news pieces which 'fawned-over' "Mayor-Pete” Buttigieg.  The thing that gets me is the resume.

He's 37 years old.  After college ended in 2007, he went to work for a consulting company (McKinsey and Company), and stayed there until 2010.  During recent years, he had a couple of deployments as part of the Naval Reserve.

His chief resume block is Mayor of South Bend since 2011, a town of 102,000. 

For the record, South Bend hit absolute maximum on population around 1960, and every decade since then....lost a fair number of residents.  Some say around 2010 (fifty years into this spiral), they finally hit rock bottom with 101,000, and today are near 103,000.

The fact that Chicago is 50 miles away?  In some ways, I think the past two decades have been a plus-up because if you worked in Chicago.....you could live in the shadow of South Bend, and be happy with the limited crime and troubles that Chicago has. 

So what 'Mayor-Pete has is an six year period of education, some years in the Naval Reserve, one commercial company, and eight years as a mayor.  That's it.  It's a basic eight-line resume. 

The thing is....people in Iowa like this kind of stuff.  So 'Mayor-Pete' could roll into Iowa....shock Bernie and Joe, and suddenly get some 'lift'. 

The claim to being the first gay President?  Well....no.  James Buchanan comes up, and probably qualifies along that line. 

If 'Mayor-Pete' had another dozen years, to be a state governor, and a Cabinet Secretary?  I think it'd help.  If you were looking for someone with a shorter resume than Bernie, then 'Mayor-Pete' is the guy. 

Monday, 22 April 2019

Warren's Save America Fund

This Senator Warren plan on student loan debt?

Well, here's the simplicity of the deal.  As long as you make under $100,000 (even if unemployed today)....her deal would cancel out $50,000 of the debt.  If you had $120,000 at age 22?  Well....it'd only resolve part of your issue....you'd still owe $70k. 

Amount that it'd add up to?  Well....she says $640 billion.  I have my doubts and an audit might suggest it closer to $1-trillion.

Where would the $640 billion come from?  Taxes. So you folks who never went to college, or made it debt-free through college?  Well....you'd pay for the debt folks.

The more that this gets brought up.....the more frustrated non-debt folks would get over this free deal.  If this were me, and I were debt free....even at age 60...I'd do the paperwork for college loan, borrow the money, and blow it on Vegas gambling, a around-the-world cruise, or an RV camper. 

Debt Chatter

I sat and watched a YouTube video documentary over the weekend entitled 'What Killed The American Middle Class'.

It's a 30-minute piece which is kinda curious and interesting.

Basically, they lay out this downfall of the American middle-class, and the economic woes that they've suffered through.

Some folks have had to declare bankruptcy.  Some have gone to two jobs.  Some have gone to depression stages.

At the end of this....I sat there and did a fair amount of pondering.

What happened, if you didn't really notice the past three decades....people were building mountains of debt...either because of bad decisions on home-purchases, or via credit cards, or buying cars beyond their lifestyle, or via college loans. That meant that they were gradually going paycheck to paycheck, and that only increased in the past decade. The people who avoided the debt-bomb....have survived, and are doing quite well. It's not capitalism that bankrupted these people....it's the failure to recognize the problem of debt and how much you can legitimately carry on your back.

I worked with a guy in DC, whose combined household income (him and his wife) was near $200,000.  Both nearing 45 years old....had mountains of debt.  They'd bought a half-million-dollar house.  They'd bought high-cost cars (one a BMW and the other a Infiniti).  One still owed $20k on college debt.  I never asked about credit cards, but I'd assume that they had that issue existing as well.  Luckily, no kids.  But the guy admitted....they were reaching a stage where debt was consuming one-third of their total income (on top of taxes, social security, etc).

I give some credit to the documentary folks for the style and quality of the video, but the truth of the matter is that the middle-class folks who missed the 'debt-bomb', are doing very well, and still enjoying life.  The other folks?  They screwed up, and just never got that lesson on spending and saving.

Friday, 19 April 2019

The Militia Story

If you go and read through New Mexico news today, there was a detention episode that occurred where a militia (yes, a group of regular civilians) who found and held 300 illegals who entered the country, and handed the illegals over to the Border Patrol.

The governor?  She's all peeved (a Democrat), and the Border Patrol basically said they don't encourage this type of behavior. 

If you read through other statements in the press, the same militia folks are talking about road-blocks and asking for an ID.  The governor was peeved over that suggestion as well.  Illegal?  Well, if the county sheriff were to deputize and use the militia folks in conjunction with a group of deputies, it would be legal.  My humble guess is that the governor will go and try to throw up some law that says road-blocks can only be authorized by some judge or state authority, but getting it passed at this point?  I have doubts. 

All of this is leading to other states and militia groups looking at what can or cannot be done.  If you were to have sixty roadblocks over a Saturday afternoon in ten states?  You might actually create an apprehended group of 2,000 people.  It's hard to say what the Border Patrol would say or do, in this matter.  It would throw up a fear factor for those in the US, and probably push them into settling only for sanctuary states (something that mayors/city council members don't want to hear).

Outlawing the militias?  Constitutionally?  The federal and state governments would have a rough time.  If you thought gun control could be impacted.....go try to outlaw militia groups. 

It just seems like the bigger you blow the illegal or border control business.....the more massive the overall problem becomes. 

My View on the National Enquirer Demise

Somewhere along the 2008 economic episode, a lot of working-class people had to go and make decisions about purchase priorities, and magazines-in-general....all saw a drop in purchases at the grocery shelves. 

A year down the line, when some better economic numbers begin to appear, it didn't matter because people had gotten 'out' of the habit of buying things at the check-out line. 

It wasn't just the Enquirer that went 'south'....most all of these gossip magazines suffered the same fate. 

So it doesn't surprise me this week, when the National Enquirer sold for roughly $100 million.  The odds of the magazine going to an anti-Trump slant?  One might go and suggest that it'll happen, and readers/subscriptions will drop another third over the next two years.  Someone might have the pockets to waste the publication, and just go for broke.  But the thing is....who now reads it?  It's lost it's thrills, and it might be worthless in four years. 

I Tried to Make Sense Out of This

Apparently, some kind of dinner or reception occurred at the White House.  A couple of reporters were in the attendee group.  There in the background....the WH staff were playing the song "Edelweiss".  The New York Times WH reporter....Maggie Haberman....went into some type of reactionary state, then blazed away on Twitter that the WH was playing Nazi songs. 

Did the song Edelweiss even exist in the 1930s and 1940s?  No.  It came around in 1959. 

Did the song come out of Germany?  No.  It was a piece from Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein, from their musical production....'The Sound of Music'.

Was the song sung by Nazis in the movie?  No.  On the evening when the von Trapp family are about to leave Austria because of the Nazis.....dad (Captain von Trapp) plays out the tune.  So it's kinda a anti-Nazi song in the midst of a anti-Nazi musical. 

This brings me back to Haberman and the New York Times.  I tried to imagine how Haberman would be this weak on entertainment history, or just plain regular history.....but that pondering came up empty.  I tried to imagine if Haberman had ever even watched The Sound of Music, but I have serious doubts that she has ever done so.  In fact, I have doubts that she's watched or attended any Rodgers and Hammerstein production. 

So here  we are, in some meltdown stage with marginal reporters interpreting things with the eyes and understanding of a 12-year-old kid.  We deserve better.

Thursday, 18 April 2019

Cost Versus Reality

It costs (between fees, tuition, room, board, meals, beer money, gas money, clothing, etc) around $32,000 a year to attend the University of Tennessee.  So you look at the kid, at age 18, and even if you were devoted to your son/daughter.....the idea of funding them for $130,000 over four years?  It'd drive you nuts.

If there came any hint of boozing up, missing classes, or some whacked-out relationship ruining their attitude about school, most folks would blow-up and get highly frustrated over the situation.

This is one of the little issues that never get discussed.

What if the kid wasn't all that enthusiastic over their degree choice, or felt 'lost' after twelve months of college?  What if the kid was consuming two cases of beer weekly by the end of the first semester?  What if the kid had picked a class with some nutcase professor, and almost a thousand dollars was wasted on knowledge material that was worthless?  What if the kid went through some dramatic break-up with some honky-tonk gal, and lost all desire to finish up the degree?

A lot has changed since the 1970s, and this one issue....the current cost of a college degree, has reached the level where you have to stand there with 'Junior' and ask forty questions over their choice of a college, and sixty questions over their choice of a degree, then every month you have to ask about partying, boozing, and attendance in class.  It's become like buying a $90,000 BMW sports car, or spending $30,000 for a championship horse. 

The Marginalized Time

I don't read Time magazine anymore.  It's been fifteen years since I last picked it up (at an airport), and if you go back over 25 years....I've read less than six editions.  As a kid, I probably picked it up at least once or twice a month.  My take is that it basically ran out of 'value' somewhere in the late 1990s, and people started to quote or talk about their articles....less and less.  Part of this problem was the arrival of CNN, and part of it due to articles being written in a way to 'bait' you.

I would take a guess that you could go into a small southern town of 2,000 folks, and find fewer than twenty subscriptions today from the residents.  It's virtually guaranteed that the doctor or dentist of the town will subscribe, and the local high school will be getting a copy.  Beyond that, it's of limited value.

I noted some news source from today quoted up the newest Time 'article'....they'd gone and selected their one-hundred folks from around the globe who are the most influential.  Curiously,Justice Kavanaugh made it on the list, and the gal who accused him of rape/sexual assault, Christine Blasey Ford, also made it on the list.

You could throw the picture of Kavaugh and Ford up on the wall with 98 others, and ask folks to identify it.  I doubt if you could get more than 5-percent of people who identify both of them.  If you asked folks if they were 'influential'?  I suspect the vast majority would start laughing and question how you'd make up such a list.  In the minds of most, their local pharmacy guy, or car-mechanic guy are more influential than Ford or Kavanaugh. 

Was the 'deck' stacked when this influential list was cranked out?  One might suspect that.  But does it even matter?  Are there even any readers consumed with knowing the influential hundred, or for that matter reading Time on a regular basis?  I have my doubts.  Maybe it is still the number one magazine for dental waiting rooms, or tire shops....but beyond that, does anyone quote them anymore?

Tuesday, 16 April 2019

Did President Obama's Team Spying on Trump Matter?

No.  This is the sad and simple truth. 

There is no doubt that various wiretap warrants were accomplished and hundreds of man-hours spent on collection of information.  And in the end, it really didn't matter....they couldn't figure out how to rig the system, with the data collected.

This is the comical side of President Obama's team....so much capability, and nothing to hinder voters in the end.   Even the idea of using this to take him down in 2017 or 2018?  That was a joke. 

If you sit and think about this long enough, it really demonstrates the junior league capability of the team around President Obama, and their willingness to do stupid things, that had no value in the end.  You'd almost equate them as being at the same level as some Bolivian secret-spy ring....spying on Chile. 

On Victimhood

Victimhood came up yesterday....mostly because of a reaction by my brother over the various ways that victims are counted today.

I sat and pondered upon victimhood.  When I was a kid (1976), I viewed victimhood as version 1.0.  This meant I knew of four versions.  The first was anybody who'd been in a car accident and toted-off to the hospital (if you limped away, it wasn't real victimhood).  The second was any family who'd allow their nephew or cousin to do electrical wiring, and their house had burned down.  The third was any gal who'd married off to Army guy in the 1969-to-1972 period, and he didn't make it back from Nam.  The final category was any guy who'd fallen off the loft of a barn and broke up some ribs or bones from the impact, or been chased down by a bull and been stomped upon.

I came to version 2.0 of victimhood after a decade in the Air Force.  Here, I found more versions.  The first was any guy or gal who'd spouse had gone off 'whoring', and gotten divorced.  The second was any individual who'd bought a Chrysler K-Car (which was worthless from the minute you drove it off the lot).  The third was folks who'd gotten in serious alcohol consumption, and couldn't make it more than eight hours without a drink.  The fourth included folks who'd been encouraged to get an operation, and found that it made their health situation worse than when they started out.

Along about 2005, I came to version 3.0 of victimhood.  This included four groups.  The first was guys who'd gotten tick-bit, and spent months in some recovery phase.  The second was women I worked with who'd gone and lost 75 pounds to please their husband....then found that the husband left them for a hefty new girlfriend.  The third included guys who'd spent $75k for a degree that was utterly worthless. The fourth included folks who'd financially gotten themselves into some $200,000 debt situation.

Around 2012, I came to version 4.0 of victimhood.  The new victims were any black (successful or otherwise), any Latino (successful or otherwise), any trans-person (successful or otherwise), any fat person (successful or otherwise), anyone who suffered from the 2016 election, any college kid having a panic attack or anxiety event, etc.

Potentially, after 2012...one out of every six people that I bumped into while walking around America, was a victim.  Some people didn't even know they were victims, and even if you told them they were victims....they just didn't portray the correct behavior.

The best way of resolving this?  Make everyone a victim....farmers, Mennonites, used-car salesmen, professional wrestlers, shrimp fishermen, mailmen, magicians, meth-addicted folks, millionaires, etc.

Somewhere out there today....is the victim-President-to-be, waiting for his or her chance....to assume the post of President-of-the-victims.

Sunday, 14 April 2019

Signing Up to be a Sanctuary City

At some point around 1985, San Francisco became the first city in America to 'sign up' and transform itself into a Sanctuary City.  Basically, it was like a contract situation....they more or less promised....to stand by and protect asylum seekers and migrants.  It was a proud brand situation....at least in the minds of the city officials.  Cost?  Well....that's the curious thing.  You can go back to 1985 and between the signs, the public advertisements, and I doubt that the city spent more than $100,000 for the privilege of being a Sanctuary City.

Today, if you go and view the landscape, there are at least one-hundred cities, counties, or regions....which identify with the brand....Sanctuary City.

Average cost?  It's fairly cheap because you aren't doing that much to convey the message.  Yes, it's mostly talk. 

Sanctuary Cities in the south?  I don't think there are more than four in the general dozen southern states....the most widely identified city is Austin, TX.

So, you need to ask yourself....if Trump's team did go and dump 3,000 illegals into San Francisco, 8,000 illegals into Austin, or 1,500 illegals into Seattle....would the cost factor then change?  The simple and short answer?  Yes.  They'd have to react, and police over-time pay, along with creating temporary residences....would all start to get into the $10-million per quarter range or more.  The lack of new jobs to support the illegals?  That would very quickly become a discussed topic.  You really do need welders, carpenters, and HVAC technicians.....but these folks coming in....are mostly burger-flipper types. 

This whole thing has become like a poker game where some guy has not just doubled down on faking people out....but actually tripled or quadrupled-down. Those other folks at the table (the Sanctuary City folks) just never thought about the end-result to their game. 

What this does for 2019?  Well, if you were living in these cities affected and suddenly realized the stupidity of your leadership.....how would you react in the election period of 2020?  Would you fire your mayor or city council? 

For the past four decades, no one ever asked the right questions about branding yourself a Sanctuary City.  They just felt it sounded really bold and 'strong'.  Now?  Well, it's not so bold, and you actually create a false reality by accepting this brand. 

Saturday, 13 April 2019

Discussing 'Dumping'

This past week, it came out that the Trump team had discussed this idea of releasing illegals who'd entered the country.....into San Francisco (a sanctuary city). Who released it?  Unknown.  Had they discussed the idea?  Yes, apparently so.  So seven observations over this:

1.  It's not illegal.  You can dump them into virtually any state or city.  Maybe some Democrats would like to write a law to prevent that, but I'm guessing they'd prefer this story disappear rather quickly.

2.  What if you did dump 300 illegals every other day into San Francisco?  Who says that the city isn't already, without Trump's help....receiving 4,500 illegals every month? 

3.  As long as they were Latinos, does anyone care?  What if the tendency changed, and 3,000 Nigerians found their way to Honduras, and crossed the border weekly, and they were shipped into west coast sanctuary cities?  Would folks get upset or peeved?  What if 200 Libyans wanted to move weekly into Mobile, Alabama? 

4.  How would you 'dump' them?  Buy and give them Greyhound tickets (the $49 one-way special)? 

5.  Can CNN even discuss this matter, without triggering a backlash from Democrats from west coast? 

6.  Once these people got to San Francisco.....then what?  Is there even housing or jobs there for them? 

7.  What if we dig into this and find that President Obama's team did this into Alabama or Georgia?  Is admitting this type of discussion takes place.....a bigger problem, and we need a law to state controls over migrants and immigrants? 

Explaining Assange's Rape Episode

If you notice, virtually no news outlet has gone back to tell this story, and it's probably worth understanding.

Back in the early part of 2010....Julian Assange labeled himself as a target of the US government, and felt that he was going to get grabbed 'sooner or later', and sent to the US to face charges.  So Julian started this 'secret-agent' game....traveling around Europe (beyond the UK), and staying hidden.

For the most part, a number of pro-WikiLeaks groups were finding accomodations for Julian, and he was moving every couple of days.  So in the June/July timeframe of 2010, he ended up in Sweden.  There, the pro-WikiLeaks crowd advertised around and found a Swedish gal who was supportive, and Julian moved in with her for several days and nights.

No one says if there was wine or some cannabis in the mix, but somehow....this first gal slept with Julian.  No, Julian apparently didn't use condoms. 

Then Julian moves onto the next hiding place, the apartment of another Swedish woman.  The same thing repeats with Julian sleeping with her.  Again, you can't be sure of the entire story. 

After Julian leaves house number two.....somehow, these two women find each other, and discuss the matter.  For the record, the two believed after the episode....that they were used by Julian.  They went to the cops.

What the two wanted was to force Julian to go in and take a test for sexually transmitted diseases.  Cops were open about this....the law didn't give them that ability to force him to these tests.  So the ladies went the next step....saying that they did not give their consent for sex.  Well, that's different....the cops could write up that report, and the prosecution could handle that.

Julian now woke up to realize that this could be a rape case in a Swedish court.  So he ran back to the UK, and hid for roughy eight years in a embassy.

The rape charges?  They eventually got dropped, but in the last couple of days....it's been discussed that they might be brought back.  The max of jail-time if convicted?  If there had been violence or threats?  You could be talking over several years in prison.  But just plain rape, without any violence or threat?  Less than two years. 

The two women involved?  My impression is that they felt used after the episode, and that Julian's 'game' was mostly theatrical in nature.  They might have been naive to be volunteers to house Julian, but both were over the age of 21. 

It is a legit case, and I suspect that he deserves some type of punishment, but he's been in some embassy hiding 'hole' for more than eight years.  That might be viewed as prison in some way. 

Thursday, 11 April 2019


If you add up the numbers, there are 18 Democrats now running for President.  In fact, you can go and ask most of the legitimate Democratic voters, and at best....they can list out six of the names (most all will remember Bernie, Joe, and the Indian gal from Massachusetts).  Yes, it's reached a stage where secondary figures are in the mix and generally unknown.  Does it matter?  No one really knew that Obama guy back in 2007....did they?

Maybe there are a couple of odd characters in this mix, and it really doesn't help or matter.  For example....in 2016, your real choice as a Democrat was Hillary or Bernie (forget the other two guys).  What if you'd deducted Hillary from this equation?  What if this had been a 2016 race with Bernie, Senator Booker, Joe Biden, and the two other guys?  Is it possible that Bernie would have been forgotten after the first four primary states, and Joe had duked it out with Booker for the most part?  That's what I think.

I noticed this morning that Gillibrand's 'town-hall' meeting....via CNN....had dismal numbers.  Of the eighteen in the running, I tend to think she's in the group of three that will do so badly in Iowa....that their participation will mostly end there. 

So this group of 18 will whittle down pretty drastically by the 10th primary?  I think at that point, it'll be five or six still left, and most of them will be on shaky ground.  Maybe if Trump had serious contenders in the Republican primary, this would all mean something, but that doesn't appear to be the game being played.

Monday, 8 April 2019

Stress Story

It came out in an interview from Chelsea Handler (a comedian of sorts) that as the election in 2016 occurred, she became 'unhinged'.

What she meant by that?  Well....she had to go and pay some mental health expert to listen to her talk about the election.  Basically, she couldn't it.

Then all of this eventually led to her smoking a bit of marijuana, to chill out and reach a state of consciousness necessary.

After watching the piece, I sat and pondered upon this.

What she's saying is that she really can't handle stress.

If she had a flat tire, or a septic tank problem, or a muffler fall off the car, or a tree fall in her yard after a storm, or some dog crap on her sidewalk....well, that's way too much stress.

Then flipping over to use marijuana?  It's basically admitting that you'd have to use it almost daily to reach some level of 'chill-out'.  Some NPR report on Trump while driving to work?  Gotta stop on the side of the road to smoke a blunt.  Got some CNN report on with the office TV on Trump?  Slip out to the smokers area and do a joint with your buddy, until you are both 'burnt'. 

All of this means that the 420-industry (our marijuana friends) are selling a ton of drugs to the unhinged, and business for the next six years will be great.

It's sad to admit that we've slipped to the point where half the population can't handle stress of anytype.

Friday, 5 April 2019

The Potential for 2020?

Twelve states have undone the normal rules for the Electoral College, and their 'gimmick' is set for the highest national winner....to get their votes, whether the voters of that state voted that way or not.

Challenges in court?  Some people are suggesting that no matter what happens....judges will be attempting to get into the mix of things, delay the Electoral College vote in December of 2020 (after the election) and thus throw this to the House to determine the President. 

Will the House reset back toward the GOP, and prevent this gimmick?  Well, it won't matter.

You see, how the House votes in this no-Electoral College episode, is state by state.  Presently, Trump still has a GOP lead on the states, meaning more than 25.  With that scenario in their favor, unless some freak of nature occurs, and another 20 seats flip to the Democrats in critical states.....this challenge idea really doesn't work. 

Wednesday, 3 April 2019

The White House and Security Clearances

A lot of hype has come up over the past ten days over the handling of security clearances for the White House, and the normal security folks being 'out-ranked' to pass a clearance onto some folks, who weren't getting anywhere with the normal process.  So, some individuals are suggesting mismanagement, or White House blunders. 

Having been through the 'game' of security clearances in my life, an observation might be offered here.

At some point in the 1990s, the emphasis of the security clearance investigation business changed.  Where before, the big hype was relationships (with foreigners), travel (especially overseas), and your spouse's relatives.....the new hardline direction was your money-flow and explaining money-details (on top of the previous three I mentioned).

So I worked with this guy who'd been a contractor, and gotten stock with company 'X'.  At the conclusion of that employment situation, he left, and he sold the stock back to the company.  He made somewhere in the $75,000 range off that sale, and sent the check to the bank to deposit.  Two years pass, and it's time to do a 5-year renewal on his investigation (this being in the 1990s).  About four months into this renewal process.....the audit people come back.

They want to know about this one deposit at the bank.  Remembering it was not an issue.  They wanted to know the path....where did the money come from.  Well....this took an entire Saturday morning with his filing system, to find the old company 'slip' and the letter to explain the sale and profit.  Prior to this period?  No one would have ever noted the deposit, or had to do detail efforts to explain sources of income.

So I noticed over the next decade after that.....another guy, with two events that proved to be troublesome.  First, he'd inherited a property and held it for around fifteen years......then sold it (making in the range of $100k to $150k).  That deposit experience was split into two episodes (one was the downpayment and then the rest that came a month later).  Yes, the audit folks doing the renewal of the clearance wanted to know about that.

This guy spent a good long day looking over his records.  He finally found a will-statement to show how he acquired the property.  But this deposit business occurred four years prior to the audit, and it proved difficult to show on paper how it was related to that property.  They eventually believed enough of the story to let that go.

But he had this second inheritance episode to deal with (another relative).  This involved an odd collection of items that had in the range of $100k to $200k (coins, guns, etc).  The will in this case was real clear on the items.  One sentence simply said the 'coin collection' in a bank box.  Another sentence had 'gun collection in a basement room'.  The collection was split up and sold over a two-year period, and while there were sales statements, they weren't that clear. 

All of this made for a miserable experience with the audit folks, and added at least six weeks onto the experience. 

Looking at these White House folks....most having a business background, I suspect that the audit folks want clear statements on how property was acquired, and sold at such-and-such profit.  These folks really don't want a lot of knowledge on their private dealings to be written down or released to the public.  I can understand how the White House leadership views this clearance business in a different light.

Another problem which rarely gets brought up.....if you were a business man who'd traveled a good bit of the past five years (say sixty trips outside of the US), then putting together a listing, and who/what details would be intense (maybe taking 20 man-hours to get all the info for a sixty-trip form).  Why did you make four trips to London in April of 2014?  Who did you meet?  Did you develop a close personal relationship with any British citizens?  These type of questions just lead onto more questions. 

The end of this topic?  I doubt it. 

Getting Rid of the Electoral College

First, is it actually possible?  You'd have to write an amendment out, and get it passed via one of two methods: (1) Getting a two-thirds vote via BOTH the House and Senate or (2) getting the legislation passed by three-quarters of the state legislatures.  The odds of either agreeing and passing the end of the Electoral College?  Pretty much zero. The Democrats may have 235 members in the House, but way short on the two-thirds number required.  The odds that all 235 would agree to dump the Electoral College?  If you were a southern Democrat, you'd find some voters who question the value of this idea.

Second, lets say you got the vote and accomplished this.....dumping the Electoral College.  What really happens over the next three election cycles after that? 

My humble belief is that people would begin to realize that it's the population centers of five states (California, Texas, Florida, Illinois, and New York) that matter.  So people in lesser states (like Oregon or Tennessee) would see reasons to skip voting.  It wouldn't matter if you were Republican or Democrat.....you'd just see this as a wasted cause.  This in turn, would affect local and state offices. You could actually have a state election in Mississippi where only 35-percent of the registered voters showed up, and the bulk of the state's voters simply skipped the election.

Somewhere down the line....maybe in a dozen years, you'd find that maybe a quarter of the normal voters simply refused to participate, and the President's election was mostly considered a 'joke'.  Then, the most unlikely scenario would occur....you'd have a comedian who'd run as an independent, and shock both himself and the political establishment....by winning. You can view this scenario underway in the Ukraine (yes, the comedian is actually considered a prime candidate to win now).

Opening up a bigger mess?  In the end, if we got to this termination of the Electoral College, it'd be brought back within twenty years, to resolve and fix things.