Your Money of Your Life

Your Money of Your Life

Ted Folkert

August 21, 2019

Some who are my age may remember the Jack Benny Show in the early days of television. Part of his stage image was as a tightwad or skinflint. On one of his shows he posed as an individual confronted by a robber with a gun who stated: “your money or your life.” Benny hesitated in replying, so the robber repeated: “I said your money or your life,” to which Benny said: “I’m thinking about it.”

As we deal with life’s everyday issues, the myriad of daily concerns, such as – health, jobs, family, living conditions, religion, safety, retirement, recreation, etc., etc. – it is easy to lose sight of the big picture, the future of the planet for supporting human habitation. In fact, such a concern rarely occupies a large portion of mind-consumption for most of us, and naturally so. The reason being that it is long range compared to our other daily concerns and perhaps because we feel we can do little to placate such a travesty as individuals anyway.

It’s kind of like “your money of your life,” and it’s kind of like, “I’m thinking about it”.

Our climate scientists who focus on the impacts on the air and the ocean which are created by weather conditions concern themselves with the big picture, the projected lifespan of the necessary conditions to support human habitation of Planet Earth.

The big question is whether there is anyway of lessening such a travesty caused by global warming and how soon we may realize any life-threatening impacts from this festering and fatalistic reality.

One of the evidentiary measures that our scientists follow in analyzing, projecting, and predicting an ultimate demise for humankind is glacial ice melting, which is seen as troubling of late, particularly over the last few decades.

Seth Gorenstein of the Associated Press has published an article “Earth’s future being written in fast melting Greenland.” He follows the tracking of conditions by David Holland, New York University air and ocean scientist.

Some facts they share with us:

“Summer this year is hitting Greenland hard with record-shattering heat and extreme melt. By the end of the summer, about 440 billion tons of ice – maybe more – will have melted or calved off Greenland’s giant ice sheet, scientists estimate. That’s enough water to flood Pennsylvania or the country of Greece about a foot deep.

In just the five days from July 31 to Aug. 3, more than 58 billion tons melted from the surface. That’s over 40 billion tons more than the average for this time of year. And that 58 billion tons doesn’t even count the huge calving events or the warm water eating away at the glaciers from below, which may be a huge factor.

Helheim, one of Greenland’s fastest-retreating glaciers, has shrunk about 6 miles since scientists came here in 2005.

Summit Station, a research camp nearly 2 miles high and far north, warmed to above freezing twice this year for a record total of 16.5 hours. Before this year, that station was above zero for only 6.5 hours in 2012, once in 1889, also in the Middle Ages.

This year is coming near but not quite passing the extreme summer of 2012 – Greenland’s worst year in modern history for melting, scientists report.

A NASA satellite found that Greenland’s ice sheet lost about 255 billion metric tons of ice a year between 2003 and 2016, with the loss rate generally getting worse over that period. Nearly all of the 28 Greenland glaciers that Danish climate scientist Ruth Mottram measured are retreating, especially Helheim.

“It takes a really long time to grow an ice sheet, thousands and thousands of years, but they can be broken up or destroyed quite rapidly,” Holland said.”

Greenland particularly takes notice today since our ignorant and arrogant president decided that we should buy Greenland even though it isn’t for sale. He must see personal financial benefits in such an acquisition. Otherwise. It wouldn’t interest him whatsoever. And then he calls a Danish spokesman rude for refusing his ridiculous indication of interest.

The Danish spokesman didn’t even say: “I’m thinking about it.”

No Where to go. No Where to Hide.

No Where to go. No Where to Hide.

Ted Folkert – August 5, 2019

We can’t describe it because we haven’t lived it. We read about it. We see it on the tube. But we haven’t lived it. We haven’t walked for hundreds of miles with our loved ones in tow, carrying whatever few personal items we can carry. We haven’t stood in line for hours and days waiting for our turn to beg for a chance for food, shelter, clothing, employment, education, healthcare, community, and all the other necessities and elements of human life. We haven’t felt so desperate for basic survival that we would consider such uncertainty, such discomfort, such pain and suffering. We can talk about it and think we understand it, but we haven’t lived it. We have no realization of the empty feeling that must occupy the minds of these thousands of would-be immigrants. We have no sympathy or feeling of responsibility in making room for those who have no comfortable life, no assurance of decent living standards, no hope for survival and opportunity for their children and other loved ones.

What evil thoughts must control the mindset of anyone who would just open fire and murder these helpless people seeking refuge? What evil thoughts must control the mindset of someone to open fire and murder innocent people because of the color of their skin or their status in life? How do they get so overwhelmed with the idea that there is a threat imposed upon those of us who have all these basic standards of living?

The reasons that drive these asylum seekers come under the heading of what I call the big three – helplessness, hopelessness, and despair. One of these conditions would be more than most of us could endure, but all three at once is what these desperate people must endure. They are not thieves, murderers, and rapists as our president declares. They are not seeking asylum so they can steal, rob, plunder, murder, or rape. They are just hungry, scared, and seeking a life worth living for themselves and their loved ones.

And our president, whose name I hate to mention, encourages racism, encourages violence against immigrants, uses any means available to deter or eliminate immigration. And his family members were immigrants, as were mine, and as were all our family members. We are a country of immigrants seeking a better life. It seems we have a responsibility to accept as many as possible instead of turning them away at the border without even the effort to determine if they are worthy of entry into our country.

As Pete Buttigieg stated recently, our president has some culpability and responsibility for these disastrous actions against asylum seekers. The frequency has increased significantly due to his careless banter which instills criminal acts on the part of his brain-washed supporters.

And now, as a result of our unprotective policies and the blasphemous statements of our pathetic president, and with the support of the right-wing conservatives who follow his protectionist traits and actions through their vociferous and misguided messages, he incites violence on the part of, mostly-young, misguided, ignorant, and/or mentally deranged provocateurs to murder and maim innocent people in mass-murder episodes, making all of us feel it unsafe to go anywhere. These sad events used to come about per decade – then, per year – then, per month – and now we get them daily – and, why? In just recent years we have had disasters at Charleston, San Diego, Pittsburg, Las Vegas, El Paso, and Dayton. It seems unsafe to go to a mall or to any entertainment venue. Any mother or father must be afraid for their children to leave the house. What a way to live – and primarily due to an ignorant, self-absorbed, narcissistic, uneducated, misguided, misinformed, racist president, a president who was elected, although he did not receive more votes in favor of his election than against. And, therein lies our undemocratic system.

The widespread dissemination of erroneous information is obvious to most of us as the biggest culprit of these sad episodes, but an even bigger culprit is guns, guns, and more guns – pistols, rifles, assault rifles, shot guns, and automatic weapons – weapons with multiple rounds and devices to enable rapid fire with one pull of the trigger. We are the only country in the world with more guns than people. We are the only country with weapons of mass destruction available for anyone to buy regardless of intent or mental condition. They can be bought online legally. Why does anyone need a gun with rapid fire, with a magazine holding dozens of rounds of ammunition? Obvious answer – to kill people. Automatic weapons are not made for hunting. They are made for killing people.

And, why do our laws render us unprotected from the harm of deranged or angry people? The answer is obvious – the National Rifle Association – the NRA. They buy many of our politicians who, although they will deny it to their death, are available to the highest bidder. And that highest bidder is the NRA, which organization is funded by most of the avid gun owners in America. Most of their members are game hunters who join because they feel associated with the gun mindset. The NRA is funded, not only by the hunting community, but to a large scale by the gun and ammunition manufacturers, who also provide campaign finance for our legislators. So, how can we expect protection from harm when we are outbid by those who make and distribute the weapons which fall into the hands of those who wish to harm us?

Now, there is an oxymoron for you.

Apparently, our craving for murderous weapons must have been exacerbated by the wild-west movies we watched all our lives from childhood on up. These gunslingers are portrayed as heroic, brave, good guys and bad guys. They are made out to be heroic and admired by all the viewers. As kids we walked around with our toy six guns on our belts. Apparently, this trend continues for some deranged people among us. We see it now every time we go to the movies or turn on the TV. We see explosions, guns firing – bam, bam, bam, bam, bam. Single shots are no longer satisfactory, we need rapid fire and huge explosions, otherwise it doesn’t trip our trigger. We see people being killed with every type of weapon imaginable and for every cause imaginable – the bad guys getting killed and sometimes the good guys getting killed. If we don’t see enough gunfire and murder, we feel the urge to switch to another channel.

How do we stop this?

Well, we can’t.

But what we can do is start stopping it. We can ban assault weapons and make them unlawful to buy or to own. We can require all owners of such to turn them in and be reimbursed for the cost. We can require stringent background checks prior to gun sales. We can ban the sale of guns by anyone except authorized dealers who must comply with stringent rules enacted and who face loss of authorization to sell upon any violation of the law.

Other methods which could alleviate such episodes could include more concern for those who seem bullied, outcast, emotionally upset, or expressing tendencies to harm others. This would require family cooperation and neighborhood cooperation, as well as observance and acknowledgement by educational administrators who may have awareness of such mental states.

We must deal with the big three – helplessness, hopelessness, and despair. These conditions can occur with the bad guys, but they can also exist with those who need a helping hand, the immigrants. These conditions are not uncommon, and they are recognizable and treatable. They should be acknowledged for the benefit of the afflicted and for the benefit of any possible victim from the results of unmanageable frustration.

And if you don’t buy all this hyperbole, I’ll meet you at the OK corral and we can just shoot it out.

A Future of Clichés

A Future of Clichés

Ted Folkert – July 23, 2019

Remember what we used to call the Golden Rule? It used to be: “Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.” Now this name seems to be defined more correctly with a different saying such as: “The owners of the gold make the rules.”

It is difficult to downplay the reality of such a cliché. We allowed it to happen. We encouraged it, we cherished it, we stimulated it, we rewarded it, we set it into place and declared it the path to democracy.

We didn’t all do it. It was done by those who we allowed to wrest control of our future by writing our constitution and thereby wresting control of government. The constitution was written by those with prominence, those who had wealth and power, some of whom were slave owners. They created a government with fluidity, to enable advantage to those with wealth and power and to enable alteration of its framework to assure continuity of control. It’s like my mother used to say. “The proof is in the pudding.” Just read it. The truth is hiding in plain sight.

The enabling factors which assured control by the rich and powerful included the lack of campaign finance laws, the electoral college system which eliminated any possibility of democratic elections, and the laws regulating removal of leaders from office.

And the sad part of all this is that we are unable to change this system because of the above factors. It’s like my father used to say: “It would be like shutting the barn door after the horses are gone.”

To effect any significant change we would have to amend the Constitution. This would require submission by two-thirds of the states or by two-thirds of both the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate and ratification by three-fourths of the states. Where would the funding for such a campaign come from? How would 50 states, many controlled by those now in power, be convinced to ratify such change which may alter their power in the legislature? Why would they? What would be their advantage? It would be like a friend used to say: “Like shooting yourself in the foot.”

With the complexity and improbability involved, the only bright light for effecting change would have to be like the cliché: “Like a light at the end of the tunnel.”

Perhaps the only positive culmination of these negative clichés could come about by the painful and undesirable culmination of the path of our distribution of income and wealth. Many of our leading economists now say that the distribution of income and wealth is reaching dangerous levels in maintaining a sustainable healthy economy. Those of us on the unfortunate side of these disparities have been forced into a burden of debt the likes of which we have never experienced. If these disparities continue and exacerbate, the insolvency which could prevail may bring the economy, which enables the rich and powerful to prevail, down with a crash defined by the old revolutionary war cliché: “Like the shot heard round the world.”

Well, the chance of amending the constitution are like the old cliché: “We have two chances, slim and none.”

The only thing we can do soon, is to change our would-be-monarch and change control in the U.S. Senate. We can do both in the next election and it is imperative that we do so to assure a more responsible government. We must ignore the old cliché: “Vote early and often,” and convince all the voters that: “Every vote, counts.”

Perhaps It’s Later Than We Think

Perhaps It’s Later Than We Think

Ted Folkert – June 17, 2019

“High Likelihood of Human Civilization Coming to an End Starting in 2050.” a report published by the Breakthrough National Centre for Climate Restoration, a think-tank in Melbourne, Australia, describes climate change as – “a near- to mid-term existential threat to human civilization” – and sets out a plausible scenario of where ignoring the warnings could lead over the next several decades.

The paper argues that the potentially “extremely serious outcomes” of climate-related security threats are often far more probable than many assume, but difficult to verify because they are beyond human experience of the last thousand years.

The report warns that on our current path, “planetary and human systems are reaching a point of no return by mid-century, which increases the prospect of a largely uninhabitable planet. It warns that our current trajectory will likely lock in at least 3 degrees Celsius of global heating, which in turn could trigger the unleashing of further warming.”

“The results would be devastating. Some one billion people would be forced to attempt to relocate from unlivable conditions, and two billion would face scarcity of water supplies. Agriculture would collapse in the sub-tropics, and food production would suffer dramatically worldwide.”

Admiral Chris Barrie, former Chief of the Australian Defence Force, calls it the unvarnished truth about the desperate situation humans, and our planet, are in, with a disturbing picture of the real possibility that human life on Earth may be on the way to extinction.

A new report commissioned by a group of scientists appointed by the UN Secretary-General states that “capitalism as we know it is over. The main reason? We’re transitioning rapidly to a radically different global economy, due to our increasingly unsustainable exploitation of the planet’s environmental resources. And that economies have used up the capacity of planetary ecosystems to handle the waste generated by energy and material use.”

Words to which all of us should take heed, predicting likely threats which could be devastating for sustainability of human life on Planet Earth within the next few generations.

Kind of reminds one of the old song – “Enjoy Yourself, It’s Later Than You Think.”

 

The Ultimate Debacle?

The Ultimate Debacle?

Ted Folkert – May 17, 2019

Consider this series of events and functions of society:

Prosperity for all of Earth’s inhabitants requires a thriving economy everywhere continuously. Without such, the provision of food, shelter and clothing for 7.7 billion people would not be possible. It would not be feasible or possible for every man, woman and child on the planet to grow their own food and provide the other necessities of life.

A functioning economy requires continuous production of goods and services and continuous consumption of Earth’s finite resources of raw materials and the continuous generation of energy to sustain the production required.

Our primary method of providing the required energy is the burning of fossil fuels which envelops the planet in a layer of carbon dioxide which alters the atmosphere and interferes with natural weather patterns, causing continuous warming of the planet. This warming further exacerbates weather patterns which will continue to limit the ability to provide adequate production of food and shelter for our 7.7 billion people. Furthermore, this carbon dioxide envelope, if not controlled, as many of our leading scientists tell us, will eventually render the planet unable to support human life.

Some of our leading economists tell us that capitalism, the system by which such resources are currently distributed, requires continuous growth to function properly. This requires continuous and increasing consumption of our finite resources, which causes a continuous and increasing impact on Earth’s ability to support human life.

Consequently, to provide food, shelter and clothing for 7.7 billion people it seems that we must eventually destroy the ability of the planet to support human life.

So, the question is, can we invent, discover, create, or engineer our way through this debacle? Or does every potential solution seem impossible to achieve?

What are the obvious considerations?

  • We now have 1.2 billion automobiles on the planet
  • Most of them burn fossil fuels, emitting carbon dioxide into the atmosphere
  • It took 200,000 years for the population of the planet to reach 1 billion
  • It then took only 200 hundred years to reach 7 billion
  • The population is now 7.7 billion
  • The population is projected to be between 8 billion and 17 billion by 2100
  • There is said to be 333 cubic miles of water on Earth, of which only 2.5% is fresh water and only .3% is on the surface and available for consumption. Desalination is a possible solution but the cost is enormous and it would require an additional impact on the consumption of natural resources and the pollution of the atmosphere.
  • If everyone on Earth were to adopt the average diet of the United States, we would need to convert all our habitable land to agriculture, and we’d still be 38 percent short. For a New Zealand diet, we’d need almost twice as much habitable land as we now have.

These statements of fact are perhaps disputable, however, if they prove to be true, what does the ultimate ability of the planet to support life look like for future generations?

Could this be the ultimate debacle?

 

Save the Planet

George Monbiot, writing in the Guardian, shares this compelling article with us. It should be a must read for all of our climate scientists and officials who can help to placate the eventual dilemma for all Earth inhabitants.

Excerpts from:

Rewild the World

By George Monbiot, published in the Guardian 3rd April 2019

https://www.monbiot.com/2019/04/07/rewild-the-world/solutions.

Natural climate solutions draw carbon from the air through the restoration of living systems. They could help to solve two existential problems at once: climate breakdown and ecological breakdown. Their likely contribution is enormous – bigger than almost anyone guessed a few years ago – and it is still scarcely explored.

The greatest potential identified so far – as so much land can be used this way – is in protecting and restoring natural forests and allowing native trees to repopulate deforested land. The greatest drawdown potential per hectare (though the total area is smaller) is the restoration of coastal habitats such as mangroves, saltmarsh and seagrass beds. They stash carbon 40 times faster than tropical forests can. Peaty soils are also vital carbon stores. They’re currently being oxidised by deforestation, drainage, drying, burning, farming and mining for gardening and fuel. Restoring peat, by blocking drainage channels and allowing natural vegetation to recover, can suck back much of what has been lost.

These are the best-studied natural climate solutions. Others have scarcely been explored. For example, we currently have little idea of what the impact of industrial fishing might be on the seabed’s vast carbon store. By disturbing the sediments and lifting the carbon they contain into the water column, trawlers and dredgers are likely to expose it to oxygen, turning it into carbon dioxide. One study suggests that repeated trawling in the north-western Mediterranean has caused a reduction in carbon storage in the top 10 centimetres of sediments of up to 52%. Given the vast area trawled every year (most of the seabed on the world’s continental shelves), the climate impact could be enormous. Closing large parts of the seas to trawling could turn out to be a crucial climate strategy.

Scientists have only recently begun to explore how the recovery of certain animal populations could radically change the carbon balance. For example, forest elephants and rhinos in Africa and Asia and tapirs in Brazil are natural foresters, maintaining and extending their habitats as they swallow the seeds of trees and spread them, sometimes across many miles, in their dung. White rhinos can play a major role in preventing runaway wildfires in African savannahs. If wolves were allowed to reach their natural populations in North America, one paper suggests, their suppression of herbivore populations would store as much carbon every year as between 30 and 70 million cars produce. Healthy populations of predatory crabs and fish protect the carbon in salt marshes, as they prevent herbivorous crabs and snails from wiping out the plants that hold the marshes together.

What I love about natural climate solutions is that we should be doing all these things anyway. Instead of making painful choices and deploying miserable means to a desirable end, we can defend ourselves from disaster by enhancing our world of wonders. However, nothing should be done without the involvement and consent of indigenous people and other local communities. Nor should damaging projects, such as monocultural plantations, be passed off as natural climate

Read the entire article: https://www.monbiot.com/2019/04/07/rewild-the-world/solutions.

 

Donny and Daddy

Donny and Daddy

Ted Folkert, February 22, 2019

It is always hard to understand why some people seem to thrive on controversy while most of us find it unpleasant and try to avoid it if possible. Our president brings this to mind since it seems that everything he says or does is related either directly or indirectly to controversy. If it isn’t controversial, he seems to make it so. Perhaps he is addicted to controversy. Perhaps it is his negotiating strategy. Perhaps he makes it controversial so he can relent of unimportant issues and press the big ones. Strategic negotiation can employ many elements, some of which can be emotional, such as anger or fear – or controversy.

It is easier to inject controversy if you are a bully like Trump. He probably would not be able to sustain physical threats if he was on his own, however, he surrounds himself with bodyguards when in public. Not just as president, he always did. If the truth were known, he is probably a coward. Of course, while growing up he had his daddy to protect him. He probably had body guards then. If you step on people and defraud people like Trump does you have to have bodyguards. Either that or you must be very brave and very tough. He had bodyguards.

If you spend any time in courts of law, you will recognize controversy as a technique used by some attorneys to entice people into anger or defensiveness as a ploy to induce damaging statements or distract attention from the heart of the matter. Controversy can be used to gain a small advantage by yielding on unimportant or unrelated controversial issues which distract or divert the thought process regarding the outcome of a negotiation.

Just consider Trump’s mode of operation. He starts out with people by lauding about how great they are and embellishes their character and ability. Then if things don’t go so well, he criticizes them harshly and publicly. Then if he doesn’t get his way, he blasts them with slander by criticizing their looks, their integrity, or their capability. The next step is calling them derogatory names, like kids on the playground. His daddy probably protected him on the playground as well. He wouldn’t have wanted little Donny to get hurt by big bullies.

And his daddy’s role of protector didn’t end with adulthood. He was always available to sign a bank loan or kick in a few million to cover Donny’s bad business decisions. His daddy contributed more that $500 million to the cause of making Donny rich and famous, maybe much more. And the funny part of it all is that he is unable to show us how much wealth he now has. Some light may be shone on the subject soon, since Donny has $340 million in loans coming due at Deutsche Bank. His son tells us that the Trump empire is one of the least leveraged companies around. He also tells us that most of their loans come from Russian connections, a situation that Donny has vehemently denied on many occasions.

Perhaps his properties are comfortably under leveraged by loan balances, but, is so, why does Donny find it necessary to play footsies with murderous dictators like Vladimir Putin, Kim Jon Un and Mohamed bin Salmon? Any of these guys would have him disappear if he ever crossed them, regardless of how many bodyguards he has, and his daddy isn’t around now to bail him out.

This could be fun to watch, or I guess we should say that we are “proud” to watch the outcome – you know, like he was “proud” to shut down the government and withhold paychecks of 800,000 loyal government employees – just because he didn’t get his way in building a worthless wall for $50 billion, so he could placate his base of ultra-conservative voters. This strategy was an effort to enhance his chances of reelection to enable him to continue to violate the emoluments clause of the Constitution and fill his pockets with money inspired by his actions as president.

Controversy prevails as a business strategy and integrity can’t seem to find its way into the equation. Who says that crime doesn’t pay? It always has for Donny.

Comments of Jordan Smirl

Jordan Smirl
19 hrs ·

I don’t care how high a person has climbed on the corporate ladder to earn the 7+ figure salary that they’ve got now. Not a single millionaire or billionaire works as hard as those of us who are stuck in the lower and middle classes, busting our asses for 40+ hours a week, sometimes working multiple jobs, just to earn a negligible fraction of what they earn. Nobody deserves that much money. Nobody. Hardly anybody can even spend that much money in a lifetime, let alone multiple billions of dollars. We have these human dragons like Donald Trump, Bill Gates, and Jeff Bezos, sitting on massive hoards of gold while there are people right here in the United States dying because they can’t afford food or medicine or a simple roof over their heads. You have to be an absolutely abhorrent human being to absorb so much wealth and not feel like you owe anyone else a dime, when that wealth is being produced for you by the mininum wage employees miles below. You have to be incorrigibly immoral to watch your countrymen struggle just to stay alive and say, “well that’s just too bad, isn’t it?” when you absolutely have the means to end that suffering. I don’t think a single one of the lower or middle class people I know would be so stingy with their money if someone they knew was so desperately in need. Yet our government right now is being run by people who are owned by multi-billion dollar companies, who are only interested in what makes them richer and satisfies us enough to keep us quiet–not what actually solves the problems of our everyday lives, or the greater issues of our species’ fate and our planet’s longevity. Our system in this country is completely broken. We are living in a nation that is no longer for the people, but for the rich, thanks to the rest of us. There are enormous and dramatic changes that need to happen if we have any hope of surviving this century, let alone sustaining humanity for the forseeable future.

Responsibility Shirked – Disaster Delivered

Responsibility Shirked – Disaster Delivered

Ted Folkert – February 4, 2019

“Don’t blame me – I didn’t vote for him, or her, or it” – blah, blah, blah, blah! How often do we hear all this from disgruntled citizens with 20-20 hindsight?

Not many of us participate in the electoral process as much as we could or as much as we should feel compelled to if we wish to fulfill our responsibility to attract, support and elect responsible and qualified candidates for public office who exude integrity and competence. If there is ever a time when we need to get involved in the electoral process in a big way, this is it. Although we probably cannot undo much of the damage done in the last couple of years, we can at least end it with a favorable election of competent leaders in upcoming elections.

It isn’t necessary to reiterate all the missteps we have encountered by the current administration, such as: dishonesty, ignorance of the law, misunderstanding of governmental processes, incompetence, impracticality, inappropriate appointments, dismal leadership, abusive interactions with national leaders, abusive interactions with world leaders, bungling of programs, narcissism, sex discrimination, racial discrimination and last but not least personal dealing with foreign governments for financial gain. This administration gives the term “emoluments clause” a whole new meaning.

We all have excuses which we believe relieves us of our responsibility to get involved in the electoral process and can reel them off in a flash: I was too busy at work, I had to take care of my family, I didn’t have transportation, my vote would just have been cancelled by someone else, I was out of town, I thought all the candidates were just as bad, I didn’t have a candidate that I wished to support, I had to work that day and couldn’t make it to the polls, I forgot to register, I moved and didn’t receive the notice to vote. If we did research for the reasons incompetent governments get control, one would think that all these reasons would be repeated throughout the dialogue explaining why we ended up with corrupt leaders in office. It wasn’t my fault. It was someone else’s fault.
Did this work out well? Does having an excuse make the damage done any less painful? Does it change anything? Do we get a do over? Can we cancel the election outcome and take a revote? The answers are no, no, no, no, and no. We are stuck with it. We can just sit by in disgust and take it right in the chops. We just blame those who voted for the corrupt and incompetent leader, not admitting the fact that we didn’t vote, or didn’t express an adverse opinion, or didn’t get involved in the selection process.

This must be a wake up call if there ever was one. We have no other sane choice now. We must educate ourselves more thoroughly about government process, government programs, observe government hearings, review the positions of our leaders and the fallacies of our leaders. We must get active in selection and support for qualified candidates who have the interests of all the American people in mind, candidates who understand the ramifications of there actions, candidates who have backgrounds and credentials to support their qualification for holding elective office.

The result of our decisions or perhaps indecisions of the past should be evidence enough that lack of involvement is not acceptable if we wish a representative government elected from responsible leaders with integrity, intelligence, and who exhibit dedication to the common good of all the people.

Selecting and electing competent leaders isn’t the end-all responsibility, it is just for starters. We must show interest. We must let our voices be heard. We must make our leaders aware of how we feel about their decisions. Government should involve everyone, not just those we elect. If we don’t let them know how we feel, how can they represent us? After all, they are not supposed to represent themselves, they are supposed to represent us – we the people. That’s what a representative government is supposed to be – leaders who represent the people, not according to what the elected leader wants, but what the people that she or he represents want.
So, like some of those who offer their sage advice are telling us, “fasten your seat belts, this ride isn’t over yet.”

Unfortunately, we won’t be able to recover from the damage done and being done to our economy, our respect among world leaders, the welfare of the workers in this country, the equality of opportunity which all the would-be leaders talk about, the educational system, the healthcare system, and last but possibly worst, the protection of our environment in the face of climate change and the planet’s ability to support human life for future generations.

Has anybody here seen my old friend Martin

Has anybody here seen my old friend Martin,
Can you tell me where he’s gone?

Abraham, Martin and John

Has anybody here seen my old friend Abraham,
Can you tell me where he’s gone?

He freed a lotta people, but it seems the good die young

But I just looked around and he’s gone.

Has anybody here seen my old friend John,

Can you tell me where he’s gone?

He freed a lotta people, but it seems the good die young

But I just looked around and he’s gone.

Has anybody here seen my old friend Martin,

Can you tell me where he’s gone?

He freed a lotta people, but it seems the good die young

But I just looked around and he’s gone.

Didn’t you love the things they stood for?

Didn’t they try to find some good for you and me?

And we’ll be free,

Someday soon it’s gonna be one day.

Has anybody here seen my old friend Bobby,

Can you tell me where he’s gone?

I thought I saw him walkin’ up over the hill

With Abraham, Martin and John.

We may have democracy, or we may have wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can’t have both. Louis Brandeis