Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Blind Justice. (Really Blind).

In today’s Dallas Morning News, Jacqueline Floyd sets up the premise that we can not let fringe element either in society on the street or rogue officers in the police departments warp our sense of right and respect for law and order.

My argument with this is simply the police are not the problem. Not in and of themselves. Crooks are not the problems. Crazies on the street aren’t either. We know all of these exists and the police are trained in how to handle them for the most part.  What is at question is the Justice system.

I believe the biggest support for the Ferguson families and for the man who was strangled in NYC by the officers, is not so much for the victims, but rather against a very misaligned justice system that seems to constantly let the police off the hook. I can see the conflicting reports in Ferguson creating doubt. (But now the DA has been put under new legal light in his handling of the case and it seems that there wasn’t even a fair Grand Jury hearing….that adds to my argument about the warped system) But take the case in NYC. Video shows the police taking down and choking the individual. Why?  He was selling cigarettes? We as a society killed a man over selling cigarettes? That is what the Grand Jury’s finding equates to. And that is what has people so outraged.

Hearsay evidence not listened to is one thing, but a video of the attack is something else. And it happened again the other day in Cleveland and in Milwaukee, as well. Both on video tape and again with grand juries looking the other way.

Now two twelve year olds, being taken into custody for carrying merchandise (by the owners request) out of a store are stopped and handcuffed. One, who is trying to tell his side of the story is manhandled and a cop who pulls up after the entire event has been going on, sucker punches the kid multiple times. The cop wasn’t even part of the original action. An assistant district attorney in NYC was quoted as saying, the video will not be enough to punish these guys. (It clearly shows all the action.) But the Chief of Police didn’t wait. Just as in the Milwaukee case, the officers have been removed from the force. Now the union is squealing because they want due process. And if it goes before a grand jury they will NOT get due process.  They will get a railroad job to a no bill.


I believe people are afraid to prosecute the police for the fear it will weaken our law and order. Nothing could be further from the truth. 

A rogue cop is just as dangerous as a wild felon. The difference is that one hides behind a badge and the other is looked down by society to begin with. And that is where the article in the Dallas Morning News stops. I think, it should go further. Our justice system is as much to blame in this as rogue cops. The grand Juries who have released these cops back to our streets are sending a message as biased as that of Al Sharpton and his demonstrators. The message is it is okay to kill on our streets as long as you have a badge. We are going to look the other way.

I think that is wrong and dangerous.

The grand juries in Saint Louis and on Staten Island did all of us (Justice included) a huge disservice. Cleveland and Milwaukee followed suit. They turned their back on the law. On Justice on reason.

I support the police. I have friends who are officers in the force and we speak of this all the time. And they are as divided on it as society in general is. But even they cannot look at the video of the choke hold and believe a Grand Jury turned its back on this.

“They got a get out of jail free card, today,” said on of them to me recently over breakfast referring to the NYC case. “Ferguson may have been different, I don’t know. But New York was a black and white/open and shut case. They just missed it.”

Not my words.  That is a cop speaking.

Justice not served. That is why people are anxious.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Ninety miles in fifty years.

Ever since my childhood in the 50’s, our nation has had a bone up its ass over Cuba. There are many who feel that Cuba, if not the country, then the concept of the policies led to John Kennedy’s assassination in Dallas.) Cuba. 90-miles off our cost. Cuba – once the vacation Mecca for the jet set on the East Coast, the gaming industry’s golden calf, That Cuba was closed down. Locked down. Shut off from America.

Thank goodness for Mexico and Canada. They at least left small portals open for people to see into the island nation. And what we saw, we didn’t always like Castro was an ass to his people. His “revolution” was a sham. It was a dictatorship for he and his buddies. Che’ would have hated what he did to the homeland.

But we’ve propped up far worse. We have had diplomatic relations with uglier regimes. We have traded with out right enemies. So why is Cuba such a thorn in our side?  Because they whipped our ass on the beaches of the Bay of Pigs.  Little ole Cuba embarrassed the big mean CIA and the US Army and Navy. And we have never gotten over that.

That was 50 years ago.  Give it up. Time to move on. Time to have diplomatic relations — time to have free trade — time to have tourism — time to have two countries 90 miles apart to come together again. I mean think of the cars we could sell there.

If you are one of the ones siding with Marco Rubio in Congress about Obama being a traitor over this, ask yourself this question — did Vietnam cause a domino affect in Asia? Did East Germany corrupt all of Western Europe?  Did Saddam Hussein conspire with Al Qaida in plotting our overthrow?  The answer to these and hundreds of other CIA lies is NO.

NO.  Look at the answer. NO…none of those things that we were scared into believing happened.  What did happen is that our support to regimes like the Saudi’s and the Mubarak in Egypt, as well as dozens of other dictators, have proven to be ineffectual in delivering human rights to the people of these puppet states. Again, the Cia has duped us. Now they are trying to tell America that the move to open Cuba is bad for us. They are working Congress to try and stop this “madness” as one of them said on a talk show last night.

Madness.  The definition of madness is doing something and it failing and then do it over and over and over again expecting different results.  That is the history of the US record toward Cuba.  President Obama is correct.  It is time for a change. It is time we look at Cuba differently.

The cold war is over.  It is time to warm our relations with Cuba. Let’s go have a rum and Coke (made with Cuban sugar) and smoke a Cuban stogie on pristine beaches. And let’s shut the CIA down until they can get on the same page as the rest of us.

Friday, October 17, 2014

The Wall Street Con Job

Today’s blog has a tad bit of math involved.  But don’t worry, I have provided the answers.  All you have to do is follow along.

The stock market took an October “correction” the other day. I like that word — correction.  What were they correcting and who was it that was doing the correcting? I’ll explain. But first a simple premise.  The stock market has NOTHING whatsoever to do with our economy. If you think it does, you’re investing your money in the wrong place.

Now the questions: Who is correcting the market and what are they correcting?  The answer is quite simple.  The Seven Large Investment Banks and the one hundred super large mutual funds correct the market.  And by that I mean they are not making enough commissions so they move money to cause the market to go up and down. While doing so individuals and institutions will buy and sell shares accordingly, creating commissionable or “load” revenue for the financial institutions.

Take for example two stocks. Stock A was trading for $56.25 a share on Tuesday when at 11:00 am the correction took place.  Wednesday morning it opened at $44.00.  This is a huge international company that makes and sells large equipment around the globe.  What did management in that company do between 11:00 am on Tuesday and 9:00 am on Wednesday to devalue their worth of their company by roughly 22%?  The answer is nothing.  In fact they probably didn’t even have time to react to the shift in stock prices, other than call the director of investment relations and tell him or her to get a memo ready for legal to sign off on.

Now here is another real world example.  World’s largest oil and gas company announces the highest earnings of any company in the history of recorded finances. Let that sink in for a moment. They made more money in one quarter than any company ever did. And the next day their stock dipped five (5) points.  Really?  I don’t remember the percentages but 5-point swing in less than 24 hours on the biggest, most positive financial news ever and your stock price takes a nosedive!

See where I am heading.  The market, over all, is not a good indicator of a company’s worth.  Period.  Not in today’s electronically traded, high volume market. Not by a long shot.  Today the market is its own poker game.  The chips happen to be called Hershey or ExxonMobil or GE or IBM or Apple…but the real players and the real money are the Wall Street investment banks that you and I propped up with our hard-earned dollars starting in 2008.

Now remember that an investment bank makes its money when you buy and when you sell a stock. Which means that the ebb and flow, the ups and downs of the market make it most profitable for an investment bank.  So you see Stock A at $44 and you think, “Hey that’s a good deal.” You shell out your cash and add some sweetener to the deal for the commission for the honor of buying the stock. The stock runs up to $105. You’ve made money like a bandit.  You sell.  You get your money back plus some and les some sweetener called commission for the bank. And you are as happy as a clam.

One problem. The real worth of that company didn’t really double in that time. Not unless it was truly a start up and they discovered the cure to cancer. The market itself causes the inflation in that stock price.  There are millions upon millions of Baby Boomers trying to force as much cash as they can into the market for their retirements.  Only now, they are getting near the end of their push and they are soon going to be pulling money out of the market.  They are going to take that money and go to Belize or Switzerland or to Palm Springs.  As they do, the market needs to constantly readjust itself to keep correcting its volume.  That is a euphemism for the investment banks to move it up and down to make money for themselves. As long as they can manipulate the pressure on the market like this, it will show growth.

But it is not real economic growth.

It is a game.

In some states they call it gambling. But for the most part we turn our back on it and shrug and say, well that’s just how the market is.

So the next time someone points to the stock market as an indicator of our economy, remember this: five analysts (average age was 32) thought that the world’s largest energy company had not made enough money when it claimed the largest quarterly earnings of all time. And they maneuvered the company into a sell position.  They brought the stock price down. The company is still doing fine and hasn’t changed a thing in the interim.

That’s how the game is really played. It’s a con job. And sooner or later it has to stop.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Fear the Fear Mongers

Little, weak minds are swayed by fear. And Texas has a lot of them.

Dan Patrick, the Republican candidate for Lt. Governor, is using fear to bait the voters of Texas.  He claims ISIS is about to invade across out borders and only he can stop them, because only he has the right fortitude to stand up to the wishy-washy Obama administration.

First, this is very typical of rhetoric from a radio talk show host, which is what Patrick is.

Second, it is not true. 

There is no credible threat from ISIS at our southern frontier. None, according to the CIA director who appeared on talk shows last weekend. And if memory serves me correctly, the reason Perry called up troops (without pay by the way) was to stop the flood of children across the Rio Grande. Unless ISIS has been indoctrinating four, five and six year-olds in Central America, I am afraid that Dan Patrick’s announcements are just hot air.

But that is the way Republicans campaign.  FEAR.  They talk to an older, whiter American voter who is afraid to death of change — afraid to death that the government is failing to protect them at every turn.  Ebola is in my neighborhood in Dallas, I don’t blame Obama, but I do blame Presbyterian Hospital for some very poor procedural issues. But my god, read the right wing sites and you would have thought Obama sprayed us with the virus from his own personal drones."He is trying to kill us off."  that was an actual quote from one of the leading voices on the far Right.


FDR said the only thing we have to fear is fear itself…and today we have to fear the radical politicians who practice FEAR MONGEERING as their means to enter public office.

I don’t know much about Mr. Patrick’s opponent in this race, but I do know that she has to be better than this hot air bag.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Contraception. The next battle ground agasint women.

The other day I ran my car through the local dealership to get the oil changed and a wash and wax. Apparently the guy in charge of moving the car from point A to point B changed my radio station, so that when I got back in the car it was on a Spanish station.  I reached over and began to roll the dial when I discovered it was on AM radio. 

AM radio is a vast land of all kind of strange elements.

Am radio has Vietnamese radio, Indian radio (the kind from Bombay not Navajo; although in some places the Navajo might well have their own stations.) there is all sports radio, cooking radio and even children’s radio. As I tuned my radio across the AM dial, I cam across a speaker who was making a very interesting claim.  It went something like this:

“We have defeated the abortion movement in America by making it harder and harder for women on a local level to find access to those services, which would kill the innocent fetus. We have done it step-by-step rather than in large chucks. It many cases it has gone unnoticed.” True enough, you can see their strategy played out across America.  Here in Texas they have done it with a quirky new law that closes abortion centers that are not equipped as an ambulatory surgery center. Most clinical procedures done in oral surgery, dermatological surgery and others are not done to this restrictive a standard.  So why abortions?  To limit women’s access to this service, pure and simple. And as the speaker cheered, “It is working.”

Now here is the truly scary part.  He went on to add, “And now we turn that same strategy onto the elimination of contraceptives in America.”

The bold is my emphasis, but I am sure the speaker on the scratchy AM station would be proud that his words are highlighted. 

So let’s think about this for a moment. As contraception has become more and more readily available for women in the United States, the number of abortions has actually gone down. (Again my emphasis) See the correlation?  So if these people were really trying to wipe out abortions, they would be trying to enlist the aid of contraception in their fight, not diminish its availability.

So the real truth is out now.  Ava Maria and Hobby Lobby, aren’t really after the protection of unborn fetuses.  Neither are the laws past by Rick Perry and  the Christian Right and the Catholic Church. They are after power over women.

If you tell me you are against abortion (except for those in cases of incest and rape where the mother’s like is at risk) then I can accept your position, so long as you also make contraceptives available to the public. When you say, ‘No to contraceptives’, then what you really are saying is that we want to control the women in our society by not allowing them choices in their family planning.

This is a very male-dominated, religious-driven chauvinistic worldview. It reeks of, “we don’t want people to have sex, unless they are going to make children.”  I am sorry…this will never happen.  Not now. Not tomorrow. Not in the year 2525. (Who remembers that song?)

But the battlefield has been laid out before you.  The ultra right religious fanatics want a woman totally under submission of a man and her body under the submission of their rules and regulations. Try studying Sharia Law and not find a very interesting parallel. We are scared to death of the Islamic control filtering into the USA, but it is coming from our own churches and temples.

So the next step in their battle is to turn away from national campaigns to stop contraceptives, and move into local and statewide attempts to limit women’s access to birth control.

Yes you can hear all kinds of very interesting things on AM radio. That day, I heard the future of the fight for women’s rights.

As a footnote to all of this, the other night I had a meal with a friend who is a devout something or other. I don’t care to mention his religion for it will only give them free publicity, but needless to say, he is a radical about this idea.  He is so frothing at the mouth that when the discussion came up that the restrictions placed on abortion clinics would actually endanger women’s health he actually said, “Who cares about the women? We are saving babies.”

I asked him what if a woman is raped or there is a case of incest…he waved me off.  “Doesn’t matter. God’s will.”  That’s what the Arabs say when they behead a westerner. “God’s will.”

What if the woman’s life is in danger or there is a horrible deformity with the fetus that could cause still birth?  Again…God’s will.

So when people tell me that ISIS is a threat to our freedoms and liberties and the American way of life, I also remember we have a sect of religious freaks here in America that are doing the same thing. Instead of swords, machine guns and bombs, they are using the state courts and legislatures to craft their cunning little exploits.

So what comes after contraception? White, male landowners are the only ones who get to vote?  Or an end to public education?  I guess I’ll have to keep my radio tuned to the AM dial. At least there, they are upfront with their strategy.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

I plead with you. I beg you. I implore you….give, give, give.

I have received countless letters begging for money from each political party. Perhaps it is because I have in the past supported both sides with contribution to individual candidates with whom I agree and like.

But the sheer volume of mail and email that is crossing my desk and computer screen is unbelievable.  And both sides are screaming the same thing.  THE OTHER SIDE IS OUTSENDING US.  THEY ARE GOING TO BEAT US IN NOVEMEMBER.  GIVE. GIVE. GIVE. OR AMERICA WILL FALL. 

I suppose this means the parties are running out of resources at an alarming rate because the races are so very tight. In Texas there is a real fight for the governor’s mansion as well as the Lt Governor’s seat at the head of the legislature. Even local district races are close.  And when races are close both sides pour money into them.  Win at all costs. 

In a recently poll, I saw that Wendy Davis had closed the margin to a very tight gap with her challenge to reining Attorney General of Texas, Greg Abbott.  And that is good. Because the two couldn’t be further apart on issues.  Finally the Democrats and Republicans have candidates (and both are quite articulate) able to identify and proclaim differences in their stances that are meaningful to voters. So don’t give me the old saw there is no difference in the two parties.  There is a world of difference between the Democratic Party and the GOP of today.  Huge differences.

The democrats represent the notion that every man and every woman are important and need a voice in today’s society. The Republican believe every corporation needs a voice in the government.  It really is quite that simple.

In Kentucky the polls are close for the U.S. Senate race between lifetime right-winger Mitch McConnell and his Democratic opponent, Alison Lundergan Grimes. This time last year, Old Mitch was a shoe-in for returning his turtle scowl to D.C. But  Grimes came along and sang the right notes to the right song and the numbers say she is actually in the lead in this close dance.  And that has cash pouring into the state.  This from USA Today:

            LOUISVILLE — In May about 40 executives of the Wall Street investment firm          Blackstone wrote checks totaling more than $170,000 for the re-election     campaign of Kentucky Republican U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell.
            And in late June, more than 100 trial lawyers with the firm Morgan & Morgan          gave at least   $106,000 to the campaign of McConnell's Democratic       opponent, Alison Lundergan Grimes, at a fundraiser near Orlando.
            Money is pouring into Kentucky from across the country in what some           experts predict will be the most expensive election in U.S. history for a U.S.        Senate seat.

The article calls out that Grimes gets more money from in-state than does Mitch.  Part of this is the fact that he has worked the NY-TX-CA fund raising circuit. It was like when Hillary was running for Senate in New York and she came to South Texas, a typically strong Democratic fund raising area, to get an infusion of cash for her charge to D.C.  I didn’t like that, either.  Who do Mitch and Hillary represent?  Who will Grimes represent?  If most of their funds come from outside the state to whom are they beholding?
 Not sure how I feel about all this cash from all over rolling into a state for political purposes. I like the money that is earmarked against McConnell, but even that doesn’t feel right when you consider it comes from other states. But then again, the argument may be made that the office of a U.S. Senator is more national than local when one considers the influence he or she wields in D.C. on all kinds of matters.

More from the USAToday article:

            A (Louisville, Ky.) Courier-Journal analysis of $37 million in identified    contributions supporting the two candidates so far in the race shows about 85% has come from out of state.

(bold my addition.)

So, money from New York, Texas and California, as well as PAC’s in D.C. is actually at war in the Commonwealth. Not right.  Citizen’s United needs to be overturned. (But that is for another article on another day. Perhaps the entire Supreme Court needs to be overturned…but again another topic for another day.)

With all of this spend-to-win mentality, the pleas and promises are flowing like beer after a Baylor Football victory: quietly in the background, but still at a great quantity.  In the time it has taken me to draft today’s blog, my email has gone off a dozen times from both the left and the right pleading that I open my American Express card and donate, donate, donate.

Instead, I am going to stay on the sidelines. My money is resting and waiting for the 2016 run for the White House. I don’t have a horse in that race yet. I have already given to the candidates I wish to see win in this mid-term election. And I am not giving any more.

And no, Mitch didn’t get one red cent from me. But then again, neither did Alison.

Unless we change the laws about campaign finance in this country, I might have to rethink this retirement thing.  It is getting too expensive fending off the Cock (sic) Brothers and their buddies.

There is too much money floating around the campaigns today.

France has the right idea.  Six weeks of campaigning for all offices. And the top offices are limited in their spending. That’s it.  Ready, set, go. There is only so much media you can buy in six weeks, and with limited and controlled funds, only so many hands in your pockets once you win.

The excessive money flow into elections has to come to a screeching halt.  Now. Mitch McConnell doesn’t like this. And neither does Greg Abbott or most Republicans who have deep, deep PAC pockets from which to draw funds.  But let them lose this election and watch them clamor for campaign reform. It always happens. 

I say, may the best party win.  Not the best funded party. I want the one with the best ideas for America. And you can’t buy creative thinking with your PAC money. It actually takes brainpower.

My new book comes out today.
The story of a tainted food supply
and a corrupt government. Sound familiar?

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

God be damned, it is time to end religious fanaticism.

The problems with ISIS and the rest of the Mideast is all about fanatical religion. And we've got our share of it here at home, too.

The next time someone tells you Islam is a religion of peace, remind them of this:

Quran (3:151) - "Soon shall We cast terror into the hearts of the Unbelievers, for that they joined companions with Allah, for which He had sent no authority".

And then add that in Christianity and Judaism, there are similar edicts:

Deuteronomy 3:  Fear the Lord your God, serve him only and take your oaths in his name. 14 Do not follow other gods, the gods of the peoples around you; 15 for the Lord your God, who is among you, is a jealous God and his anger will burn against you, and he will destroy you from the face of the land.”

Here is some more from the bible about God’s view of getting along with each other.  This too, is from Deuteronomy. “and when the Lord your God has delivered them over to you and you have defeated them, then you must destroy them totally. Make no treaty with them, and show them no mercy.”

Religion has a lot of killing and destroying on both sides. And even more so, about intolerance towards those who are different than you. Maybe religion itself is the evil.  Maybe that is why it so big in this world.  Its very foothold is at the dark side of mankind.  Remember, religion is big business. Huge business. And nothing works up a crowd like killing and destruction of one’s enemies.

The Koran teaches equally hate-filled notions such as, "Those who make war against God and his apostle . . . shall be put to death or crucified" (Koran 5.33).

So it seems there is very little ground for the “true” believers of either side to stand to work out solutions.

Thank God for the non-believers.  I know that sounds rather ironic, but it is true.

To be fare to both sides in this eternal argument, there is more than enough blame from both sects’ scriptures to seduce folk into believing just about anything. A fine study of this can be found in the 2009 Boston.com article by Phillip Jenkins “Dark Passages.” I would urge you to visit it and read it.  (http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/ideas/articles/2009/03/08/dark_passages/?page=full)

The great fear factor people find in religious intolerance is that it is fierce.  Strong enough to create radicals on each side: radicals that would kill and torture in order to uplift their image of their god (smaller case on purpose).  To die for one’s religion is one thing, but to kill and maim for it is quite an honor, for with those actions come sainthood. The Catholic Church is full of saints who lead armies against the infidels in the Mideast during the Crusades. The more one killed, the higher the calling from Rome one received.

Today there is a fierce reaction from “Christians” over the actions of radical Islamics. And, one can say vice versa. The more we interfere with their cultures, the more hatred they spew back at us, all in the name of Big Old Bad ass Allah. And carpet bombing doesn’t seem to help in the long run, nor does invasion. So, the key issue is how do moderates on both sides reach a common ground without letting the religious few destroy the entire world.  Secular rule is a key here.  Keep the church and the mosque out of the game.

Recently the Dallas Morning News ran a letter where by the writer stated that the conflict in the Mideast is not a religious conflict. I beg to differ.  It is totally religious.  Totally about “my beliefs” over yours. It is about an ancient and very narrow interpretation of the scriptures. (Both sides are wantonly guilty of this.) Even with Islam itself, the two main branches are now so at odds with each other that they would just as soon kill their fellow Muslims then look at them. Why? Religious intolerance.  My way of the hi-way.

This is why religion, of any kind, cannot have a foothold in the government. Secularism is the answer. Shia Law in Mideastern countries or the Rebirth of Puritanical Law in U.S. government must be halted. It is bad medicine for what ails us.

It is not my goal here to tell folks that they can’t believe in their flavor of the God Myth.  They are welcome to.

But keep it out of the halls of lawmakers and courts.  It has no business there. The founding fathers were at best Deist.  Some were even less than that.  What they believed in their heart of hearts was that all men are created equal and that everyone should have a chance to live his or her life in happiness and peace, without the interference of a state religion with guidelines for what we should believe or pray to. We should return to that adamantly.

I hear people say that the founding fathers wanted a Christian nation.  Not true.  It is never written about in our national papers.  In fact, many feared the church and its wealth and power. In America, they saw the opportunity for a land for freedom…free thinkers who could believe as they saw fit without persecution.

The entire world could do well to adopt that character.  But before we stand and act, remember, it is not our job to force that down others’ throats. That is what has gotten us into the shape we are in, in the Islamic world as it is. Our boots on the ground has not won us friends, but has radicalized our enemies and grown their numbers of supporters and troops.

What this world needs now, is the moderate voices everywhere to arise and say ‘that’s it.’  No more religious fanaticism running our lives. We demand the rule of law as passed down by men and women elected from at large, not translated from ancient scripts we call the Bible or the Koran.

The problem in the Mideast is all about religion. Don’t kid yourself. Your God versus their God. And it is about time it stops.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Omaha. Omaha. Hut. Hut.

Football is a violent sport. (Basketball is catching up fast, but more on that another day...) I played football.  Had a knee operation because of it.  But today the game is far rougher...today's athletes are bigger, stronger, faster and better trained at hitting and hurting.

There is a mentality in the NFL (and some colleges) to "waste your opponent at all cost." Knock them out of the game. Get rid of them. Football is about hard knocks and hard hits. Brutal hits.  And the people who have been paid to play it are our modern day gladiators.

It is not your grandfather's game. Hell, it's not even the game I played.

The game moves at speed I can't even image.  It is played by players who are huge.  They are beyond strong, they are mountains. They are, as one TV sportscaster called them, "freaks."And now more and more of these "freaks" are also becoming criminals.  Some of this is due to the fact that a lot of colleges have gone into the inner city to recruit street kids to come and play for the ole alma mater. ESPN ran a documentary about the problems some college coaches were having in building the "team" concept because of rival gang members on their squads. Really? And you expected something different because they weren't wearing the Hoods or Bloods colors but rather the Blue and White or Orange and White of your school? And when these guys have served their four years at State U, they move on the big paying jobs of the NFL.  But with them comes all their street habits. Killers. Rapists. Abusers. DUI'ers...the list goes on. Hell in Dallas we even have an owner who in under investigation for sexual harassment. And he wants to add a man convicted of manslaughter back onto the team. The Cowboys should change thier name to the Outlaws.

So here is the deal. You want to change football.  You don't do it in courts.  You don't do it protesting outside the stadium. To change the game, you must tune out.

Turn the TV off.  Quit buying paraphernalia of your favorite team. Quit supporting their functions. In short, turn in your fan credentials. Now if ten people do this, the NFL will not notice.  But if ten thousand do it, they will begin to look around.  Ten million...and you will change the system.  And not from the NFL...but from the networks that fund them.

If football is too violent for you, if the people playing it are too ugly and too sleazy, then pick up the remote and switch the channel. It is one sure vote against what is going on.

The other night I tried to watch Monday Night Football on ESPN. But every other sentence was about this player or that player and the crimes they had committed. When the players introduce themselves and tell what college they are from, I think they instead should have their arrest record up. I got sick and tired of watching this horseshit, so I switched to PBS and watched the Roosevelts.

Try this. Next weekend, don't watch a single NFL game.  No Cowboys. No Eagles. No Giants or 49's or whomever your team of choice may be.  Just turn the set to something else.  Or better yet, turn it off and read a book. (Go to Lulu.com and buy one of mine and we will be on the way to solving more than one problem in America. LOL).
I watch very little baseball anymore.  The drug scandal ruined me on it.  (That and the fact that the guy running the Texas Rangers is a nincompoop and has totally ruined the team with silly ass trades.)

Change the sport. Walk away from it. If enough of you do this, they will notice.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Food supply in trouble

I read yesterday about a movement on by scientists and nutritionists concerning the food chain in the United States.  They were concerned at how quickly it was being tainted with chemicals that were and are being used as pesticides and antibiotics with little or no oversight by the FDA.

One was quotes as saying. "Unless we get this under control, our entire food system could be tainted.  And we are just not sure what the outcome of these chemicals will be."

EU countries have already taken measures to secure their food chain against GMO's and in-grown pesticides. France, Belgium, Poland, Germany and the Netherlands to name a few have refused grains and feed stocks from America, becuase they can not be sure the grains and feeds are free from the chemicals that scientists are most worried about.

I say this to give as background for my new novel coming out October 1, 2014: The Perfect Food.

The Perfect Food is here, John Crawley’s 14th novel and it is no diet book.

Thousands of Americans are dying from an unknown, unseen killer.  Young, old, active, sedentary, north, south, east and west, they are succumbing to a disorder that has scientists and doctors baffled.  Then a whistle blower at a huge chemical company lets loose a memo that brings the problem into perfect focus and an administration down to its knees.  America’s food has been poisoned.  And the men responsible for it are two of the wealthiest men in the country.  So powerful are they, that their immunity has been all but sealed by Congress through years of payoffs and slush funds. They even have their tentacles deep inside the White House.

It takes the audacity of reporter, Scott Keen, to delve inside the twisted tale to bring light to the darkness. To give a country a glimmer of hope while facing this dreaded disorder.

Look for The Perfect Food at Lulu.com and your favorite ebook retailer October 1. And watch what you eat.


Tuesday, July 1, 2014

How wrong can five “smart” men be?

 Randy Carlson is a long time friend of mine. He just happens to be a lawyer and a devout Southern Baptist. He may even be a deacon, but I’m not sure about that. His views on Constitutional law and on the Bible —as the inspired word of God —overlap mine about one, one-hundredth of the time. But we have remained friends despite his ignorance. (He will laugh out loud when he reads that.)

After reading yesterday’s blog, Randy wrote me a personal note.  At first I didn’t even want to open it, knowing I was going to be scolded for being such a leftist and radical. But I was surprised.  Randy not only agreed with me, he went beyond my own sentiments about the Hobby Lobby case.

I wish I had written this.

            “We have come to a point in our society where everyone’s little bitty inkling of what they think to be true, supersedes reality. It started a long time ago on the left, but I must say, and it pains me so to do, that as it grew into a cause for the Christian Right, it has taken on a fervor unlike anything I have ever seen.
            Regardless of what is true, what is right and what is based on science and fact, the Right has come up with a system of belief that if it (whatever it is) goes against ‘my FAITH’, then it is wrong and must be destroyed.
            That includes long held values of fair play, equal rights and liberty and justice for all. That obsession to Faith also now stands up against the Law of the Land itself.
            God help America at this time.
            Why do I say that?  Because our most high court, the Supreme Court, who should know better, has bent to the Right and made this argument a political issue inside a court of law — the highest court of law at that. It should not be a political issue, it is a legal issue, a constitutional issue, an issue of long-standing principle: An issue of rights. And those rights should be considered as facts given to and received from the Constitution of the United States: NOT THE BIBLE. I fear instead, the arguments have come from right-wing zealots and Christian do-gooders who have undone centuries of progressive law and advancement in the USA.
            When my personal faith trumps the law of the land we are in trouble.  When it is a corporation trumping it is down right scary.
            As you (John) wrote yesterday, that is, in deed, a slippery slope. But we are on it. And I fear it. As an officer of the court and one who stands before the bar on a daily basis, I fear it to no end. As a born again Christian, I fear it even more.  I fear the ultimate backlash that awaits us on the other side of this issue.
            I trust in God. I trust in my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. But I am sworn to uphold the laws of this land. And religion cannot be allowed to trump them. When they do, we have sunk to a form of Sharia Law; and under such, all freedoms are subject to the will and whim of a few “enlightened ones” whose faith is placed on a pedestal above all others.
            I fear the door the Supreme Court has opened, has let loose on our land a poison we have tried, since the founding of the Union, to keep at bay: that poison is religion running our state. 
            As strange as this may sound, God help us.”

Another attorney buddy of mine, Brad Echols penned: “One more step along the path of corporations having more rights than people.”

Under this court that is what is happening. It is so true it hurts.

Brad and I tend to view the world very similarly. And like I have said, Randy and I over the years have disagreed more often than we have agreed. But on this ruling, by this politicized court, we have come to a common ground.

This case was never about contraception.  After all, Hobby Lobby already provided insurance before the AHA, which provided contraception. And their retirement program invests deeply in companies who manufacture contraceptive drugs and devices. So their “life-value” argument is filled with problems and logic holes that five members of the Supreme Court failed to consider. Facts that dispute their statements of “faith.”

No. This court case was launched to usurp logic and law with the “word of God.” And that, as my friend Randy and I agree on, is very, very dangerous.

The lawyers keep weighing in William Price, Jr. said this:

"The Supreme Court depresses me. How can they rule that Corporations have "religious rights?" or that restricting Corporations' ability to donate to political campaigns is an infringement on the Corporation's freedom of speech?
Show me a corporation that bleeds in a war and maybe I will change my mind.
American are you listening? The court may have spoken but I think the people are about the speak real loudly.

Monday, June 30, 2014

My faith trumps your rights. Get over it.

Let me tell you what I believe. I believe women should be kept locked inside the house. I believe they can only come outside with their husband.  I believe blacks and whites have no right to marry.  I believe in slavery.  I believe if you wear the wrong clothes or eat the wrong food or say the wrong prayers, you should be stoned to death. (Trials optional.) I believe that my rights of Faith supersedes any right of the government and its laws and its citizens.

Now take that person who believes all that and let him or her start a business.  Better make it a him— she isn’t allowed outside.  A company is started.  Under the supreme court’s ruling in the Hobby Lobby case, all of those religious beliefs conflict with the state.  They all go against the constitutional rights of citizen of the United States of America; yet, you are going to have to let that crazy person in the first paragraph have his way.  Because it is his FAITH.

Well, the real me, says Bull Shit.

The Supreme Court in a narrow 5-4 vote just opened the floodgates to all manner of lawsuits and litigation.  Bring out the Bible. Bring out the Koran. Get the quotations of Buddha and god knows who else and you’ve got a leg to stand on when opposing the state and its laws.  And not just the U.S., but any state.

No governmental laws or rulings can now stand in your way of enforcing your narrow-minded religious convictions on those who work for you; and in a sense on all of us, as well.

The Court has missed the mark again.  Citizen United said the rich can buy the government and now Hobby Lobby says the religious can disobey the laws of land because they want to— their FAITH gives them that right.

To the five morons who continue to push a right-wing agenda in the Court, you have placed us on a very slippery slope. I hope you are prepared for the tumble.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

This guy makes a lot of sense.

The Dallas Morning News columnist, Steve Blow has some excellent words for us all to read today. I am reprinting this without permission, but I am giving all the credit to the man who write it.Very smart words.


Steve Blow: Looking on the bright side feels lonely these days

Steve Blow
  • Published:
  • Updated:
I have a bias. I recognize it and wrestle with it, which is good, I suppose.

But right now, the bias leaves me feeling particularly at odds with the world around me.
In brief, I’m bent toward optimism.

It’s not the worst bias to have. In fact, I’m grateful for whatever random acts of nature or caring acts of nurture left me with this tendency to see things in a positive and hopeful way.

I got light duty in life compared to those burdened with a constant apprehension of doom and decline.
I’m grateful for their vigilance — and glad not to live that way.

But more and more, it’s the cataclysmic view of life that seems to hold sway. I think it explains so much of our politics today.

Until last week, it was unimaginable that a U.S. House majority leader could lose office to a barely funded political newcomer. Did you see Newt Gingrich’s explanation?

“There’s a large element of America that wants a fight,” he said. “If you’re a conservative, you think Barack Obama is literally destroying the country you love.”
Now, Gingrich is a man smart about words. He’s not misusing “literally” in the way people will say “It literally killed me.”

When he says “literally,” he means actually, factually so. He means the belief is widespread that the president of our nation is willfully, successfully killing the country.

What nonsense. But that sort of explains everything, doesn’t it? The tenor of the times, I mean. Desperate times call for desperate measures and all that.

I was on a conservative website last week and an ad popped up. “Barack Obama’s Plan to Destroy the United States!” it said. “Enter your email here to get free report.”

If politics seems irrational right now, it’s because it’s based on irrational beliefs. Love him or hate him, the president is not destroying our country.

And I don’t think that’s just my optimism bias talking. Or is it?

See, that’s the thing I wrestle with right now. Who is deluded here?

In a letter to the editor on Friday, a Plano resident said he’s “alarmed at how rogue this president has become.”

“Rogue”? Really? The word to me suggests reckless, out of control, outside the law.
If anything, I’m amazed at how quiescent Obama seems these days — especially for a guy painted by his opponents as a leftist radical.

I see more Ward Cleaver than Eldridge Cleaver right now.

At the Texas Republican Convention in Fort Worth last weekend, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz stoked the crowd with fiery rhetoric, including this statement: “Today, liberty is under assault like never before.”
Wow, that’s alarming. And those are definitely fighting words. But are they true? Could they possibly be true?

I don’t have degrees from Princeton and Harvard like Cruz does. But this humble graduate of Tyler Junior College and the University of North Texas can quickly think of a dozen times in our history when liberty seemed under far greater threat than today.

You encounter claims of calamity everywhere you turn these days. I get emails from frantic readers on a regular basis.

The Mexicans are taking over. The Muslims are taking over. The Chinese are taking over. The atheists are taking over. The “takers” are taking over.

The national debt is killing us. Government regulation is killing us. Taxes are killing us. The Federal Reserve is killing us. U.N. Agenda 21 is killing us.

If anything is taking over, it’s a kind of political hysteria. If anything is killing us, it’s our inability to deal with problems in a calm, common-sense way.

I’m biased toward optimism, but not so much right now.

Follow Steve Blow on Twitter at @DMNSteveBlow and on Facebook at facebook.com/DMNSteveBlow.


I would like to thank Steve for these words. In the hysteria of the right wing media swirling about, it is nice to hear a calm, sane, sensible person who understands, we've got it damn good in the USA.  And we are not coming apart at the seams.

Friday, June 13, 2014

This time it IS Obama's fault.

Just to prove that I am an independent thinker, not tied to party affiliation (although admittedly liberal in point of view) I am taking on the White House today and most specifically President Obama.

As many of you know I have supported many of the President's actions, especially The Affordable Health Care Act, which seems to get under the panties of many in the GOP. But I've been down that road often enough, today is a new fight with a new enemy of the state: the current administration and the President himself. Oh how I wish it were the Kock Brothers or the Heritage Foundation or Partners against Gay Marriage, or the Baptist church. That would be fun.  I would even love to just with Karl Rove.  No, this isn’t fun. Because I trusted you and you let me down, Mr. President.

So what's the fuss? The Obama administration has told law enforcement agencies not to discuss or disclose even to courts the technology that is allowing them to use to sweep electronically entire neighborhoods for cell location signals. Let's say it another way. Don't tell anyone you are spying on Americans.

Obama — You are no better than Nixon in my book now.  This trumps all the good you've tried to do.  You are George W. Bush in sheep's clothing.  Worse — you are Dick "the dick" Chaney personified on the left.

Forget that this week alone two separate appeals courts have ruled against unwarranted surveillance by police departments using NSA technology, Obama says keep quiet about it and keep doing it.  Even threatening the courts themselves in their rulings because they were public.  Hey, this is fucking America, Dick Wad Obama. (How’s that for showing a lack of respect for you.  And remember, I was one of your most ardent supporters.) This isn’t your little play sandbox.  It is the fucking USA and we have a say in how we live. 


Is that clear enough? Sorry for the language being so rough today, but I for one (and there are many, many like me from both sides of the proverbial aisle) who hate this secrecy shit going on in our country.  You want to investigate me.  Show a court probably cause, get a search warrant and go to it. Otherwise, keep your god damn listening devise and spying to your self.

I am fed up with this.  And Dear, Barack, I am getting fed up with your smug attitude toward this. Edward Snowden was right. There is a cancer growing in America and soon we will not be able to talk about it at all.  Thank god he did what he did. You don't like him, because he pointed a finger right at you and called you what you are. The head spy on American people.

We didn't elect you to do that.  We had better and higher hopes for you.  But you failed us.

Turn this crusade around Obama. Turn it around now.  Americans don’t want to be spied on by the NSA, CIA, IRS, FBI or even a bunch of policy nerds at the White House. And we sure as hell don’t want our police canvassing our neighborhood with technology to see who is home in their beds at night.

I no longer support you, Barack. You’ve gone too far. And this is too important to look the other way.

Stop the spying.  Stop it today.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

A sad day to be an American. An even sadder day to be a Republican.

The senate just stopped college finance refom in its tracks. 

It has effectively said it is okay for big (they can't fail) banks to borrow at unheard of low rates...2-3% while forcing college students to carry debt in some cases in excess of 20% on student loans.  Who voted against this?

The fucking GOP.

My two senators from Texas did.  Cruz and the other dip shit.  So when you get ready to pull a lever for senate come Novemember, remember that Cronyn voted against giving people affordable college education. So too, did all his Republican buddies.  They sided with big banks.  Even the Federal Reserve thought this was a good bill, but the GOP in its brown nose way coud not see it through, because it was an agenda item of President Obama. Oh yeah, the Cock Brothers were against this bill.  Said it would hurt the country.  Like they would know.

I am ashamed to be an American today.

But I am not as ashamed as those of you who are Republicans...not as ashamed as you should be of your party.