When Doing the Wrong Thing Creates The Right Thing

Physics is cool.  I was never good at it in high school – and still aren’t – but I do remember the basic tenet.  Every action has an opposite and equal reaction.  That’s politics in a microcosm.

Freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is not donating to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) in protest of a policy to “blacklist” organizations that back Democratic candidates running against incumbents.  In response, there are rumors that her democratic colleagues will eliminate her congressional seat during redistricting after the 2020 census.

Most politicians pay dues to their respective national committee who, in turn, work to ensure their members get elected or re-elected.  AOC ran afoul of the DCCC when she decided to take her ball and go home.  After bursting onto the scene two years ago, AOC wanted a seat at the adult table.  The only problem is she didn’t earn it.

In typical Millennial fashion. she believes it’s her right to automatically get what others have spent years cultivating.  Politics, like life, doesn’t work that way.  What she needs to understand is she will eventually get the seat with the adults– but she has to earn it.  Having millions of Instagram followers does not give anyone a right of entry to the plum committee seats.

AOC also got upset that no one in Congress listened to her and viewed her Green New Deal as the naïve joke that it is. So, she did what any spoiled brat child does and only played with those who catered to her.  She also decided if the institution wouldn’t support her, she wouldn’t support the institution.

And I’m OK with that.  Good for her.

There is something to be said for being a good soldier, paying your dues (literally in her case) and biding your time.  In fact, 90 percent of the time I am a believer of that very sentiment.  Every once in a while, however, especially when dealing with elitists – you have to stick it to them.

AOC is proving to be a formidable fund raiser and is good at monetizing her Instagram base.  I can do without her live streams because it does her more of a disservice than anything else – but it’s working for her so what the heck.  The Democratic elitists look down on her and she is returning the favor. According to publish reports, AOC has donated more than $300,000 to candidates who will challenge incumbent Democrats for their seats come November.

That move may not make her popular among her peers but AOC is not interested in getting legislation done.  She is only interested in building her brand.

But what was the first action that created this reaction?  Was it AOC’s initial prima donna behavior that left her colleagues exasperated by her audacity?  Or was it her colleagues’ smugness that she doesn’t know the ropes that made her act out?

It really doesn’t matter which action created the reaction because they were wrong to not take her seriously and she was wrong for wanting to be respected without doing anything to warrant admiration.  You can make the case she was right for taking an alternative path to build a coalition and they would be right to take her seat.

Every action has an opposite and equal reaction

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The Dichotomy of Voting for President Trump

My previous post was November 18, 2019. I purposely waited to write another post until after President Trump was acquitted from his impeachment.  Although that has not yet happened it seems as inevitable as the sun rising.

As my previous post predicted, the Congress would impeach President Trump on hyperbolic charges and the Senate would acquit without considering evidence.  It seems the Democrats in Congress made it easy for the Senate by not having any real verifiable evidence.  Spare me the over-the-top diatribe that evidence existed.

There were no eye witnesses.  There was no corroborating evidence beyond the shadow of a doubt.  The whistleblower remained under wraps due to credibility issues. Do I believe President Trump tried to gain a political advantage by using money as a negotiating ploy?  Yep.  Did I see any evidence proving it?  Nope. 

Has every other president used similar tactics in the past?  Yep. Does it make what President Trump did right? Nope.

As I mentioned before.  The bottom line is President Trump did not act appropriately but nothing he did rose to the level of high crimes and misdemeanors.  The Democrats despise him so much that they allow themselves to be the foils once again by not ensuring absolute proof existed before launching an impeachment trial.  The press hates President Trump even more and continually play the fools by jumping to conclusions and not having the fabled three sources before publishing negative stories about him.

The bottom line is the Democrats in Congress led an unfair impeachment inquiry and never allowed the opposition a legitimate chance to refute any of the allegations.  The Republicans in the Senate returned the favor.  Other than members of the mainstream media and the far left (basically the same thing) is anyone surprised by this outcome?

Democrats get what they wanted by addling an asterisk to President Trump’s name for the history books and the president gets his acquittal.  They are happy while the rest of us are miserable and wasted roughly four months on stupidity when our leaders should have been working to improve our nation.

President Trump is not my ideal choice to be the president of the United States.  I wish there were some statesperson out there who can show the idiots in Washington, DC what a real president acts and sounds like. There isn’t such a man or woman.  They are all despicable excuses for human beings.

Americans are left to choose the lesser of two evils.  And, given that choice, they will always choose the person that most resembles what they find important.  For me, I love President Trump’s Supreme Court nominations.  I like his policies on immigration. I like the fact he signed a new trade agreement with Mexico and Canada. I like the First Step act that reforms the federal prison system.  I am excited by the Second Step act that will focus on easing employment barriers for formerly incarcerated people. This legislation would feature a $88 million funding request for prisoner social reentry programs.

From a purely nationalist perspective I like the fact he forced NATO countries to pay an additional $69 billion versus the US being burdened with that cost. I like that he is not a doormat to foreign leaders and responds quickly with force when required..  And, yes, I like the fact he kills terrorists who threaten us.

I do not like him or like the way he acts but I despise the media and the elitists who occupy the swamp more.  He’s the lesser of two evils.

The Trump supporters will never abandon him regardless of what inappropriate behavior he displays.  The Trump detractors will never give him any credit regardless of what he accomplishes. Those of us in the middle – the ones who will decide the next president – are looking for an alternative.

From my perspective, the Democrats have a more underwhelming lineup than T-Ballers going up against a high school baseball team. There is no one in that group of lying misfits that can convince me to not cast a vote for President Trump.

He does not fit my ideal of who a president should be or how a president should act.  But, so far, for me he’s gotten the job done on those issues that matter to me.  And that is the dichotomy of President Trump.  You wish thee was someone better to vote for but at least he is getting something done.

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High Clowns and Misdemeanors Is More Accurate

I dislike wasting time.  I dislike people who waste time even more.

Spoiler alert: Congress will vote to impeach President Trump regardless of the facts.  A few Democrats in swing districts will break ranks because they care about their re-election chances more than finding the truth.

Spoiler Alert: The Sequel:  The Senate will acquit President Trump and he will not be removed from office regardless of the facts. We know some Senate Republicans who despise Trump like Senator Mitt Romney will join their Democratic counterparts because hating President Trump is more important than finding the truth.

Here’s another spoiler alert.  We will never know the truth.  We all have our opinions.  We are all sure he heavy implied a quid pro quo or it was a “perfect” call. We make these assessments not based on the facts or reasonable doubt or anything remotely close to objectiveness.

No.  We make our assessment based on how much we like or dislike him.  We make our decision based on how much we like or dislike the political elite who believe they are entitled to run this country.  We even make our choice based on how much we despise the media and their propagandist ways.

Since we know all this now, why can’t we just skip to the end and get it over with? This way maybe…maybe the political leaders will actually do their jobs

The facts of this case are few. We know there was a phone call between President Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on July 25.  After that we are treated to hearsay and second-hand information based on supposed overheard conversations.  Within that framework, those who hate President Trump are convinced he threatened to withhold money unless President Zelensky investigate former vice president Joe Biden.

Supporters of President Trump immediately point to instances where former President Obama withheld money from other nations unless they acted a certain way.  OK.  So what? Two wrongs do not make a right.

Further, Constitutional lawyers say a quid pro quo is not an impeachable offense while others say it is.  Guess what party each group belongs to?

It appears that Democrats are hoping the Impeachment inquiry damages President Trump’s re-election chances and I bet these proceedings will come to a screeching halt and end if the polls show the opposite. There are some who will tell you that Republicans want the impeachment trials so it hurts the Democrats re-election chances. 

The bottom line is we cannot prove anything without facts and this circus will end with one house impeaching the president and another house exonerating him.  They need to stop wasting time and get to work for the American people.  And voters will have their say next November and I hope the message sent is loud and clear that we want elected officials who work for the people…not themselves.

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Political Leaders Need to Focus on Legislation and Not Destroying Each Other

The juxtaposition of what we believe to be true and what is actually true lies mostly on a struggle between logic and emotion.  Pragmatism and idealism.  Likes and dislikes.  We view life through the prism of what we believe to be reality which is driven by our own biased world view.

It used to be when I disagreed with a friend or colleague or even stranger, we could leave the discussion with the understanding that we disagreed.  Now, I must hate the one who disagrees with me and rather than battle in the arena of ideas, I must destroy him by rallying like-minded individuals to boycott.

How did we come to this?

The easy answer is to blame President Trump for this new approach to discourse. There is some truth to that statement since he deploys schoolyard tactics in the way he deals with those who disagree with him.  He is the quintessential bully.  By the same token, the political and media elites actually started the fight by mocking him the minute he announced his candidacy. 

Of course, he is a joke so that may explain why they mocked him.  Then again, the elites are no better than him and have outright contempt for the American voter whenever we dare not elect their chosen candidate.

There is no end to this crazy wheel. 

The problem is we have moved away from discussing issues to destroying people.  Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh knows that game.  So does Merrick Garland who was denied an opportunity to be a supreme court justice because the Republicans, the majority party at the time President Obama nominated Garland, decided they didn’t want to have a hearing in the last year of President Obama’s second term.

It seems the only thing our political leaders know how to do well is weaponize legislative maneuvers.  But this is nothing new in the halls of Congress and the Senate.

Throughout history the minority party has always tried to displace the majority party whenever it could.  The most obvious event is Watergate.  President Nixon carried nearly every state but that did not stop the Democrats from using impeachment as a weapon.  The connection between the burglary of the Democratic National Committee and President Nixon’s campaign led special prosecutor Leon Jaworski to name President Nixon an “unindicted co-conspirator.” And that began the downward spiral to his resignation.

Not to be outdone, the Republicans returned the favor when they appointed Special Prosecutor Kenneth Starr to look into the Whitewater controversy that embroiled President Clinton. Starr never indicted President Clinton for their role in Whitewater, but he followed a thread of allegations about sexual misconduct by the president.

His affair with Monica Lewinsky and subsequent efforts to deny the accusations became a case of perjury and obstruction of justice – leading to his impeachment by the House of Representatives in late 1998. Another ridiculous waste of time and money.  His actions may not have been moral but having an affair does not rise to the level of high crimes and misdemeanor.

In short, the Republicans wanted to overturn an election much like the Democrats tried to do in 1973 and seem eager to do in 2019.  A brief look at all the impeachment proceedings throughout history bear out the same pattern.  The elitists didn’t like the fact us voters picked someone they didn’t want.

I think it’s time all political leaders stop the stupidity and get to work. Here’s what is missing but sorely needed.  Legislators who debate issues based on the ideas and the philosophies.  Tell me why the Green New Deal is better for America and not that I’m evil if I oppose it.  Inform me why Socialism is better than Capitalism without resorting to emotional tugs at the heart using those less fortunate as pawns.  How will providing for them help the society as a whole?

Instead of practicing the art of destruction, our leaders need to start leading.  But then again, I’m a naïve cynic.  I believe people inherently want to do the right thing but I know inevitably that is not true.

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The Weight of Self-Importance with the Avarice and Gluttony of Power Is Driving Us to Our End

It’s been a few months since my last post.  Back in June I decided to stop writing about the duplicity of the press, the lawlessness of politicians, and the culpability of the American voter.  It seemed to me that I was not providing no value – just whining.

So.  I decided to focus and write on the policies and legislation.  After about three months there is still no legislation or policies to write about.  This congress must be setting records for getting the least done in any legislative session.

For some, the daily drama show passing off as our elected bodies is exactly what they want.  Continuous attacks on the opposition party and grasping at straws in hopes of finding the silver bullet that will rid the nation of President Trump.

And therein lies the problem. The electoral process is designed to determine who gets to lead our nation, Senate and Congress.  A handful of bureaucrats and party operatives living in the shadows do not get to speak for 327 million people.

As far back as I can consciously remember, Presidents have been attacked by the opposing party and the press.  I do not ever recall a president so maligned by the press and opposing party as President Trump but his bombastic personality paves the way for the attacks. 

That still doesn’t make it right.

I can understand the Democrats attacking but, in the past, there was always some modicum of policy differentiator at the root of the attacks.  Today, we have attacks borne of disdain for the president.  Congressman Adam Schiff, from California, blatantly lied on the record in Congress about the telephone conversation President Trump had with the Ukraine President.  Afterwards he claimed it was merely a parody.

No.  It was a strategic decision to mislead the public.  It’s the same exaggerated tactic President Trump uses to mislead us when attacking his detractors or promoting his successes.  The unfortunate thing is no one can believe anything anyone says in politics.  We can all tell a politician is lying every time his lips move.

That’s a given.  What was never a given – just a suspicion – is the inability of the press to be objective in its coverage.  The selective perception shared by most reporters is frightening.  The press is outraged that President Trump may have pressured the Ukrainian President to investigate Joe Biden for illegalities.  The only evidence comes from an unidentified whistleblower that filed a complaint 18 days after-the-fact and only after the person met with Congressman Schiff. Meanwhile, there is video of Biden admitting he actually did pressure the Ukrainian government to ease off an investigation into his son but that is unnoticed by the press.

The press laments President Trump purportedly asking a foreign government to interfere with our elections but gives Hillary Clinton a pass.  There is evidence that Clinton actually paid a foreign government to get dirt on President Trump. Again, no coverage in the press.

We can no longer trust the press and we never trusted politicians.  The downstream affect is we simply listen to the people that agree with us and vilify the rest.  That is not a sustainable model.

I am now convinced we need term limits for Congressman and Senators.  We can no longer afford to have career politicians.  In addition, their staffs need to turnover.  I do not think we will lose anything in production.  How can we? The only thing the staffs are doing now is sabotaging each other.

And this is where we have come to….a system that is crumbling under the weight of self-importance with the avarice and gluttony of power.  Isn’t that what led to the Roman Empire’s fall?

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Whoever Remembers the Forgotten Voter Has the Best Chance to Win in 2020

I am the Forgotten Voter.  It’s mostly my fault because I do not live on the extreme of either party and I am not a diehard groupie of any of the presidential candidates or president for that matter.

In fact, as my wife will attest, I am quite boring.  I have this quaint notion that our elected leaders should actually govern the nation and not focus on gamesmanship or obsess about destroying or obstructing the other party.

The Republicans game plan during President Obama’s reign was to obstruct him and the Democrats are returning the favor during President Trump’s term.  Although turnabout is considered fair play in some games, it pretty much stinks when you expect elected leaders to actually do something.

I have my opinions but they are only my opinions and I know it’s impossible to change the mind of a person that is emotionally invested in a belief.  This is common sense, or in my view, uncommon sense in today’s world where if we do not agree on a topic we must be enemies. 

That is just stupid. I do not agree with a lot of people at my job but that does not mean I try to undermine my colleagues.  It means I need to figure out a way to get the job done so the business can advance.

I expect our elected leaders to do whatever needs to be done to advance our nation forward not tirelessly work to undermine their colleagues.  I enjoy a good debate of ideas and policies but not a character assassination solely based on being in the other party. 

President Trump has changed the dynamic of politicking.  He plays to his base.  If he can get his base to turnout in the “right” states than he wins re-election.  That means he is immune to the typical political tricks of his opponents who have tried every trick in their arsenal and still can’t figure out why he has not succumbed to the pressure.

Likewise, the Democrats are only interested in motivating their base to turnout for the election.  And that’s why I am a forgotten voter.  I’m not President’s Trump base.  I’m not an extreme Left Wing zealot.  I’m one of those independent voters that likes to think I’m moderate.  Spoiler alert:  Neither party cares about the moderate voter. 

It seems that President Trump is betting on the moderate voter preferring his success on the economy over the extreme views of the Democrats like the Green New Deal, Medicare for all, and any other socialist program they can conjure.  He figures most swing voters will see through the charade of impeachment and vote for him.

My vote will go to the candidate I feel will get things done.  Right now I see Democrats getting nothing done other than attacking this president because they don’t like him.  And they call him the bully.

I do not like him and am hoping the Democrats can find a moderate candidate that can convince me they can do a better job than President Trump.  At this point, I doubt there is anyone in the group of 20 plus Democratic hopefuls that can convince me of anything other than they are not Trump.  It didn’t work for Hillary Clinton and it will not work again.

They need to remember the Forgotten Voter if they have any prayer of success in 2020.

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If Millennials are Failures, What Does That Make Their Parents?

I managed a travel youth baseball team for more than 10 years.  Anyone who has ever managed any youth sport team for an extended period of time has witnessed the slow fade of dedication. 

A lot of the older coaches disliked me when I started because they felt I was part of the problem. In a sense they were right but I like to think I was adjusting to the situation much like we taught our players to make adjustments in their game.

You see I did not have mandatory practices. At first, I thought it was silly to have mandatory practices for eight-year-old players whose attention span rivaled that of a flea.  Plus, parents had other children in other activities they had to taxi so I felt it was the best solution all the way around.

I didn’t like the idea but it was practical.  When I played high school baseball if you missed a practice, you didn’t play in the next game.  Some find that approach harsh but it taught players to dedicate to an activity.  I miss the diehard players.  The ones who always asked for one more ground ball or one more pitch during batting practice.

Sadly, as the years went by the players had so many choices; so many other activities and so many other priorities that baseball was something to do, not a passion. So, I adjusted.  I did not insist players attend practice and those who did got the benefit of extra reps and those who did not attend never improved beyond their talent.

And that is the saddest aspect of all. People who do not improve past their talent level because they do not hone their skill.  They are missing out on an important aspect of life.  Self-improvement.  Talk about the ultimate FOMO.

I think Millennials fall into this category.  They have floated through their early years going as far as their talent will take them without having to develop that skill.  Their parents told them they were special.  Their friends fawned over their ability.  They got their participation trophy and life was good.

But as everyone knows, you have to grow up.  And the world is not a kind place to people who expect things handed to them because they are “special.”

I heard clips of an interview with Le’Veon Bell, a football player who held out an entire year because he wanted more money.  He whined the Pittsburgh Steelers, his former employer, did not treat him “like a human” because they dared to insist that he focus on football. He wanted to play video games and cut a rap album.  The poor baby was making millions of dollars to play a game yet he feels he was not treated fairly.

And whose fault is that?

Charlotte Alter, is a writer for Time Magazine.  She recently published an article on Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.  To promote the article, she Tweeted “AOC and I were born the same year. She was a Dunkaroos kid—I liked fruit roll-ups. People our age have never experienced American prosperity in our adult lives— which is why so many millennials are embracing Democratic socialism,”

Really?  We have a woman who was a bartender one day and a Congresswoman the next that enjoys a number of donors throwing money at her. Alter’s father is a former editor at Newsweek and the New York Time and her mother is a TV executive producer.  She graduated from Harvard.   Tell me again how they are not enjoying prosperity?

The world outside of the cocoon we parents try to make for our children is harsh.  Did we do our children any favors by making life so easy they now expect the government and society to continue the breast feeding?

An incident that stands out for me during my managing days epitomizes the crossroads we face.  A player was close to scoring on a close play at the plate.  He decided not to slide because there was a bat in the way.  He was thrown out.  I asked him why he did not slide and he said “I’m not going to hurt myself for this team.”

A fair statement and belief.  Two innings later a similar situation was at hand but this time it was a hardcore player who slid over the bat and scored.  He had a bruise but didn’t care.  The first player overheard me tell my coach “That’s the kind of players we need.”

After the game his mother proceeded to scream at me for making the comment.  I allowed her to vent and told her I did not expect her son to slide if he does not want to slide.  I then said “However, I look for players who are willing to play hard so after this year I will not be asking your son to return to the team.”

To this day she still considers me an evil person.  That may be true but I’m pretty sure a hiring manager will hire a person dedicated to doing a good job and willing to do what it takes to succeed versus a person getting by on talent alone.

It’s a harsh world and us parents that created the millennials are to blame for a generation of people that want the government to do everything for them while they play their videogames.

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