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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Is Unfair Media Coverage a Symptom or the Disease?

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is a brilliant legislator with a canny mind possessing shrewd political skill.  That statement no doubt elicited a fast response from you.

Depending on your political persuasion you either think I’m an idiot or a sage.  It does not matter if that statement is true because your perception of her is set and chances are not likely to change.  The Conservative media portrays her as an ignorant former bartender leaping higher hurdles of stupidity by the day.  Meanwhile, she is the darling of the Liberal media that can do no wrong. 

The truth is she is a 29-year-old person who draws on her life’s experience to date to determine her actions.

For those of us almost twice her age, we know she may be a bit naïve at how the world works and enamored with her new-found fame.  We also know she suffers from a mistaken belief of self-importance.  In short, a typical 29-year-old perso9n and definitely your average politician. And, we know she is headed for the stark realization that she is a drop of water in the ocean of Life.

But to the media, she is a story.  Not a person with feelings, fears, and aspirations.  She is a subject that gets clicks and people to read.  She is a punchline to some and inspiration to others. Rather than analyze her ideas, we comment on her style and actions. 

It seems to me President Trump has the same fate.  Only for him the Liberal and Conservative media have the opposite opinions than that of AOC.  And, his actions matter.

Both people are lightning rods because of their behaviors, actions and words. Both have earned the contempt and adoration from their supporters and detractors.  Regardless of what you think of each individual, the one thing that is true is they are both subject to unfair media coverage.

The Conservative media uses unflattering pictures depicting her as bug eyed or donkey-teethed.  The Liberal media go out of their way to use a picture of President Trump scowling or hair flapping in the wind.  Whatever happened to the staid headshot the media used in the past? You know; the good old days when they covered news and not opinion.

But is the unfair media coverage a news outlet searching for an audience or an audience searching for a news outlet? Does the American public want to watch a news broadcast that supports their political view or are they looking for the news?

By the same token, is following current events no longer a dialog?  It is bad enough the two political parties spend more time trying to destroy each other; now we have news outlets reporting on the competition’s missed facts. 

This is no way to advance a nation. I prefer news not be entertainment and want the politicians to manage the nation – not the next election cycle.  But it starts with us. We control what we watch and who we send to Washington.

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A Clear Choice Looms for 2020 Thanks to The Media and Democrats

The biggest boost to President Trump’s re-election chances are the Democrats and the media. Recent events highlight both groups continually make the same mistake in their quest to ensure he becomes a one-term president.

Namely; they inadvertently prove him right about their motives and that is becoming the story.  Democrats should be doing is showing the voters they have an alternative and clear plan to improve the nation.  The media should be reporting the news versus delivering biased coverage.

I’ve written this many times in the past.  The media should simply report the news and let the American voter decide President Trump’s fitness for office.  Instead, the media insults his base and infuriates independent voters by constantly trying to prove he is an illegitimate president.

It’s an old tune.  President Reagan was senile.  President George H Bush could not relate to the common man because he did not know how much it cost for a gallon of milk.  The Supreme Court stole the presidency from Al Gore and awarded it to President George W Bush.  Ever notice all the Republican presidents did not belong but President Clinton and Obama were saviors?

Note to the media: You can only cry wolf so often before no one believes you. 

The Democrats are no better. Their actions lend credence to President Trump’s claim of a witch hunt and position him as a clear choice against socialism and obstructionism.

It seems the Robert Mueller investigation will end without proof of any collusion by President Trump’s campaign.  However, watching this soap opera unfold there may be a compelling case that members of the Justice Department may have conspired to reverse the election results.  Think about that for a minute. 

The Democrats did not get the outcome they wanted from Mueller so Congressman Adam Schiff wants to investigate President Trump’s finances. He claims President Trump is making decisions based on his own financial interests versus doing what is best for the nation.   As the Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee he has every right to launch the investigation.

Will he find a smoking gun that proves President Trump made a decision that jeopardizes our national interests to make a buck?  The probability of that happening is extremely remote and most sane people will see right through the charade.  That will anger voters even more towards what they believe is an unfair attack.

People may not like President Trump’s style but they despise unfairness more.  The Democrats are appearing to be more concerned about obstructing his efforts than helping the nation and voters don’t like that optic. 

President Trump will continually beat the drum about another witch hunt on the campaign trail.  It will play well to his base and also resonate with uncommitted voter. 

Congresswoman Alexandria Ocascio-Cortez is the gift that keeps on giving.  Can President Trump have a better ad than the billboard in Times Squares that screams “Thanks for nothing, AOC?” It claims her socialist views cost New York City 25,000 jobs, $4 billion in lost wages, and $12 billion in lost economic impact for New York city?

Thanks to her Green New Deal resolution all 2020 Democratic hopefuls must sign onto the concept in order to get through the primary.  It’s one thing to play to the far-Left fringe in the primary, it’s quite another to attract moderate and independents to a socialist agenda in the general election.

 She is single-handedly giving President Trump the clearest reason to vote for him since he unveiled his list of Supreme Court nominees.  And speaking of which, he’ll have a field day painting his challenger as a socialist chomping at the bit to add a socialist supreme court justice.

Finally, we come to the wall.  President Trump will be able to forge a clear difference between him and his challengers.  Democrats will have a hard time explaining all those videos of them supporting a wall during President Obama’s administration and their about face during President Trump’s term.

It’s early in the process so anything can happen and change but it seems more likely by the day that 2020 will be another choice between the lesser of two evils.  Moderates and Independents will not support socialism and President Trump has a strong base. That’s a recipe for re-election.

If Democrats want to fulfill their dream of a one term Trump presidency they may want to find a moderate that can articulate why she or he is better for the nation than President Trump. 

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Is It Time For the Rise of the Independent Party?

On one side we have the extreme left wing of the Democratic party coming out of the woodwork to announce their intentions to run for president of the United States.  On the other side we have President Trump.

Once again, we’ll have to choose the lesser of two evils.  Based on statistics derived from polling, 40 percent of the country will support a hard-left candidate.  President Trump supporters comprise 45 percent of the electorate.  If these numbers are accurate that leaves 15 percent of the voters that encompass the mythical undecideds.

In some circles, they are known as independents.  The 2020 election is shaping up to be a brutal marathon between two diametrically opposed views on the best way to run the government.  I would love to see a real debate between the merits of both views but we all know it will devolve into a litany of lies, manipulations, and character assassinations.

I find the term “Character assassination to be an oxymoron because I have yet to find any politician with character.

Instead of a healthy debate on why a liberal approach to government is better than a conservative approach, we’ll get reasons why the other candidate is the wrong choice.  I want the candidates to tell me why their viewpoint is better for us not why their opponent is the evil incarnate of Beelzebub.

Howard Schultz, former CEO of Starbucks, is considering a presidential run as an independent.  At first blush he seems like a centrist.  Of course, anyone slightly right of Senator Bernie Sanders and his merry band of socialists, will look like a centrist.  I need to read more about his policies to see if he can be a legitimate third-party candidate.

He is a registered Democrat who is not fond of the hard left turn his party is taking and has openly questioned President Trump’s fitness to be president.  At this point, the only thing a third-party candidate will do is split the Democratic vote ensuring another four years of President Trump.

Most Democrats are not on the extreme and as the primaries unfold, they will become increasingly concerned about the viewpoints of baby socialists running around the capital. There is no way they will lever vote for President Trump so a centrist who happens to be a Democrat will be appealing.

Meanwhile, the never Trumpers will find a third-party candidate appealing.  But the Trump supporters, will not abandon the man that epitomizes their dreams.  It doesn’t help when those in the media insults them by calling them “rubes” like Dave Weigel, of the Washington Post, did this past weekend.  Or when candidates call them “deplorables.”

They will circle the wagons. 

However, I think it is time for a third-party to rise from the Phoenix and take advantage of a rare opportunity.  A middle-of-the-road candidate that is logical, calm, and fair with a professional demeanor may catch lightning in a bottle.

And that would be the best ever message to send Washington.  Get rid of the swamp in the best way possible…vote them out.

Both political parties have been hijacked by the respective extremes and none represent my views. I think the right third party candidate can garner enough support. I am hoping to have an actual choice in 2020 and not have to cast a vote against the lesser of evil of two extremes.

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The Power Game is Not About a Wall but the Composition of Congress

Ever watch a Super Bowl where you despise both teams?  You don’t really care who wins but your ecstatic that one of them lost.  It feels like that as we watch the budget standoff doesn’t it?

Even the most partisan supporter of either side must see the stupidity of the situation.  I’m hoping it wakes us up to the need for a whole new set of leaders.  Neither side cares about their stated position.  The Democrats had the same position as President Trump before President Trump had his position.  Conversely, President Trump has used illegal immigrants as laborers.

The reality is they are a bunch of lying, dishonorable people. Normal people care about being decent people but politicians are a different animal.  They are power drunk and morally challenged. The politicians are using the voters as pawns in a no winners game of chicken.

To politicians, the underlying danger is not the safety of Americans.  Nor is it the altruistic desire to help the downtrodden.  Those are all nice sound bites but nothing else.  No, the real reason is it’s strictly a power game.  Ironically, illegal immigrants are the power brokers in this game. 

On the surface, President Trump will gain more power among his supporters and base by building a wall and keeping his campaign promise. Likewise, preventing him from building a wall will swing the power pendulum to the Democrats. That’s on the surface.

Look deeper. The power is not preventing one from fulfilling a promise or proving you’re above the rest.  Nope.

It’s all about the population.  According to Article One of the US Constitution, the House of Representatives represent congressional districts that are allocated to each of the 50 states based on population as measured by the U.S. Census.  The total number of voting representatives is fixed by law at 435. 

Therefore, each representative must represent an equal number of residents.  As the population increases, the congressional districts becomes smaller in land mass in the most populous states and larger in the less populous states. 

As of the last Census (2010), each district is comprised of 711,000 residents so those states that grow get more representatives.  Guess what? Illegal immigrants will be counted in the next census thanks to a 2016 Supreme Court ruling that stated the “principle of one person, one vote doesn’t require localities to only count those who are actually eligible to vote when they are deciding how many people to put inside of each district.”

According to a Washington Times article on April 4, 2016, “Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, writing for the court, said even though only eligible voters are supposed to cast ballots, elected officials represent all people within their districts, and it is that act of representation, not the election itself, that the boundaries are drawn to.”

The more illegal immigrants that pour into a state – I don’t know, let’s say California – the more members of Congress it will have in the chamber.  Further, the more illegal immigrants voting the more likely the Democrats will win their districts.

Anyone that tells you there is no voter fraud is lying.  The best way to prevent voter fraud is to present valid ID at the polling booth s but we all know the Democrats insist requiring any form of ID to vote will disenfranchise minorities.

Two things on that: One, getting a fake ID is easier than climbing a wall so that really isn’t an obstacle for those set on voting illegally. Two, I do not see many minorities feeling disenfranchised when they have to prove their identity to download songs on iTunes!

But, I digress.  Back to my point. As states with sanctuary cities continue to grow, they will gain congressional representatives while states in the Midwest lose them.  The Electoral College, another target of the Democrats, will soon be rendered moot.

The 2020 census is around the corner.  The congressional map will shift.  Do you wonder why Democrats support illegal immigration? On the surface, I’ll enjoy the fact one of these two warring parties will lose this battle. Much like I liked the fact the Patriots lost to the Eagles in the 2018 Super Bowl despite the fact I despise the Eagles.

In reality, the winner of this battle will determine a lot more than the use of $5.7 billion.

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