To my Irish cousin (somewhere in Europe)

(Another reply to my cousin.  My side only, as I haven’t asked his permission to repint his email.)

That’s a lot to think about.

First impressions though:

1.  Looks to me like Muslims are the new Jews for the 21st Century.  An easy target for mass discrimination given the action of splinter groups like al Qaeda, Hamas, ISIS and other Muslim-centric terrorist groups and individual terrorists that people like The Donald and Nigel can point their fingers at.

2.  The minimum wage issue and shrinking middle class has been a big issue here in the states.  For quite some time we have known that the rich (in America at least) are getting richer, and at the expense of the middle class.  We personally lost much of our retirement savings due to the 2008 Great Recession and near demise of the company AIG (which was bailed-out by Obama and The Fed).  Plus, the U.S. housing market bust reduced the property value of our house to below what we owed on our mortgage.

On the dimly bright side, however, just doing a little research…  4 states recently voted to increase their state minimum wage in the 2016 elections:

  • Arizona  $8.08 now to $12 by 2020
  • Colorado  $8.31 now to $12 by 2020
  • Maine  $7.51 now to $12 by 2020
  • Washington (my state)  $9.47 now to $13.50 by 2020

I think the trend to increase the minimum wage was started in cities of Federal Way and Seattle (Washington) with their initiatives to raise it to $15.00 an hour.  That’s spread from city to city, and now to the states, at least with 4 of them compromising at $12.00.  The U.S. federal minimum wage remains at $7.25 per hour, and will probably not change as long as Republicans are in control of The Fed.

It’s a bit surprising that of those states at least Arizona cast its Electoral Votes for Trump and Maine split giving at least one of its Electoral Votes to Trump.  So it was 24 electoral votes to Clinton (Washington state 12, Colorado 9, and Maine 3) and 12 electoral votes to Trump ( Arizona 11 and Maine 1).

Only 4 states out of 50 raising the minimum wage doesn’t really seem that encouraging though, but at least it’s better than none.

I’ll have to give this all a lot more thought and your latest email a few more reads.  There’s a lot going on in the world and not much of it good.  I have been kind of comparing it to pre-World War II but don’t see many clear parallels quite yet.  Neither Nigel nor The Donald have the dynamism to be a new Adolf, but there very well could be one sitting in a jail somewhere in the world, writing his book and waiting for his time to emerge on the world stage.  Who knows?

As you say  “Not a very cheery picture I’m afraid!!!”

 

This could well be the darkness before the dawn, or possibly just the dark before the greater darkness.

 

As regards your comment:  “I just hope Donald surprises us all!!”

I am sure The Donald will surprise us all, but I’m not sure it will be the way we want him too.  He is scattershot and unpredictable.  Writer Aaron Sorkin might have had someone like Trump in mind when he wrote the script for The West Wing (TV show) with President Bartlet (Martin Sheen) describing Republican presidential candidate Robert Ritchie (James Brolin) as a “.22 caliber mind in a .357 Magnum world.”  Trump is not a totally stupid man, as he’s proven with amassing his wealth and winning the election, but when it comes to what the world needs versus his personal needs I believe he will put himself and his personal needs ahead of any and all others.

I wish we (Americans) would have had a chance to vote for someone more like the fictional president Josiah “Jed” Bartlet rather than being limited to the reality of Clinton versus Trump.  But, as the old saying goes…

“Wish in one hand and shit it the other, then see which hand fills up first.”

(That may only be an old saying in America, so may not be familiar to you, but I’m sure you get the gist.  We ended up with a handful of….)

With my apologies to Mr. Eric Idle of Monty Python Fame… an altered (parody) version of his song lyrics to fit the current times (and 2016 election results).

(The following is sung to the tune of “Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life” from the Monty Python movie “The Life of Brian”.  If you’re not familiar with the tune then here’s a link to a YouTube of the original song…  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SJUhlRoBL8M  that you may want to watch before your read the new lyrics.)

  •      Cheer up, AMERICA. You know what they say.
  •      Some things in life are bad,
  •      They can really make you mad.
  •      Other things just make you swear and curse.

When you’re chewing on life’s gristle,

Don’t grumble, give a whistle!

And this’ll help things turn out for the best

And

Always look on the bright side of life!

Always look on the light side of life.

If life seems jolly rotten,

There’s something you’ve forgotten!

And that’s to laugh and smile and dance and sing,

When you’re COUNTRY ELECTS TRUMP,

Don’t be A silly CHUMP,

Just purse your lips and whistle — that’s the thing!

And always look on the bright side of life!

  • Come on!

Always look on the light side of life.

POLITICS is quite absurd,

THE ELECTORAL COLLEGE IS A TURD.

You must always face the POLLSTERS with a “HOW?”

Forget about your VOTE — AND HOW THE TRUMPSTERS GLOAT,

Enjoy it, it’s the last chance anyhow!

So always look on the bright side of death!

Just before you draw your terminal breath.

Life’s a piece of shit,

When you look at it.

Life’s a laugh and death’s a joke, it’s true,

You’ll see it’s all a show,

Keep ’em laughing as you go.

Just remember that the last laugh is on you!

And always look on the bright side of life!

Always look on the right side of life!

  • Come on guys, cheer up!

Always look on the bright side of life!

Always look on the bright side of life!

  • Worse CAN happen THAN BIG “T”  (THE GUY WHO SAID “BIGLY!”)

Always look on the bright side of life!

  • LIKE HE SAID, “What have you got to lose?”
  • You know, you come from nothing.
  • You’re going back to nothing.
  • What have you lost? Nothing!

Always look on the right side of life!

Original lyrics written by Eric Idle, and only slightly altered (WORDS IN ALL CAPS) to fit the 2016 Presidential Election.

Darkness in America

In answer to another email from my Irish cousin I replied thusly…

Your big question about Obama is understandable.  It does seem like he should have built-up a great following among the people if he was such a good president.  And that may have happened in another country, other than America, but America and Americans are different.  In our country it is routine that during mid-term elections the party opposite the president’s usually gains seats in congress and in the states.  It seems that a vast majority of Americans think and believe that if the president is a Democrat then the congress should be Republican in order to balance things out.  They see it as some sort of check and balance.

However Obama’s terms were different.  He came in with a very slim majority in the House and Senate in 2008, but at his first mid-term election (2 years into his first 4 year term) he lost the majority of The House of Representative in 2010.   While the Democrats still had the majority in The Senate, Democrat Majority Leader Harry Reid and the president had to deal with Republican obstructionists whose main goal was to keep Obama from making any progress on anything.  Then in the 2014 mid term elections, 2 years into his second term, Obama lost control of The Senate to Mitch McConnell and the Republican Obstructionists.  Yet, even though politically Obama was not able to inspire voters to vote for more Democrats, he is still among the most liked presidents of all time, given his “favorables” as they are statistically counted.  Barack Obama is a very popular president even though his party is not.  Obama was able to accomplish much even though he was constantly obstructed.

Now we have this election.  An election in which our only two choices were the two most distrusted and disliked candidates in the modern history of U.S. politics.  It was a Lose-Lose election.  Even if Hillary would have won, we the people would still have lost, because we were only allowed to choose one poisoned-pill over the other.

How did Trump win?

Well, in the first place Obama beat Hillary for the nomination in 2008.  That was a rancorous Democratic Primary.  People remembered that, so it could be that it looked like some of his support for Hillary might have been faked.  Then Bernie Sanders made Hillary look bad, but she still won the nomination, because the Democratic Primary Super-Delegates rigged it for her to win.

As the presidential campaign wore on it was obvious she was getting desperate, as she pulled out all the stops getting Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, The Obamas, Joe Biden, and even Al Gore to campaign for her.  Hillary even got Bruce Springsteen, Katy Perry, Barbra Streisand, Morgan Freeman and so many more big music and Hollywood stars to campaign for and with her.  All that star power still was not enough.  Her biggest problem may have been that she stayed “on message”.  She was consistent.  She said things about what she would do that were the same each time she spoke.

Trump didn’t seem to care if he really won or lost.  He didn’t seem to give a crap who was with or against him.  He seemed more concerned about making the little people like him, and savaging anyone notable who spoke out against him.  “Low-energy Jeb”, “Little Marco”, “Liar Ted” and “Crooked Hillary”.  Trump said anything and everything.  He was on every side of the issues and could attack anyone just as easily as he could compliment them.  The people who voted for Trump only heard what they wanted to hear and they blocked out the rest.

Abraham Lincoln is credited as saying:  “You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time.”

Trump has fooled a lot of people, and they are fools whether they know it or not.

W.C. Fields (comedic actor) is quoted as saying: “You can fool some of the people some of the time — and that’s enough to make a decent living.”

Trump has fooled a lot of people throughout his life.  From that he has made a decent living that turned into what he claims is a massive fortune.  But, I believe he will eventually be caught.  His campaign promises will go unfulfilled.  His stands on the various issues will be pinned down.  He will be exposed as the liar he is and always has been.  The fools will realize they were tricked and only fooled themselves, and they may demand his impeachment.

That’s how I see it, but, then again, I have been wrong before and may well be wrong again about this.  After all, Americans did re-elect George W. Bush to a second term and we all know how well that worked out!

Americans, the majority of them anyway, seem to be easily fooled.  That’s really the only way I can explain what just happened.

As you say “It a new dawn, its a new day, its a new life … I hope we will all be feeling good !!”

I hope we all will be feeling good as well, but right now a lot of us are not feeling good at all.  We are sad, disappointed and even angry about what just went down.  It will take some time to deal with those feelings.  Something needs to change so this can be corrected and this crap doesn’t happen to us again.  

As you also say “As I said earlier ..  lets wait and see what tomorrow may bring. Trump is a business man and hopefully he will pick the right team, so that when they get down to doing the business it might be better than we think.”

Which reminds me of the old saying, “It’s always darkest before the dawn.”  Or put another way as in 1858 by Samuel Lover who attributed the notion to the Irish, in Songs and Ballads:

There is a beautiful saying amongst the Irish peasantry to inspire hope under adverse circumstances:- “Remember,” they say, “that the darkest hour of all, is the hour before day.”

It’s pretty damn dark in America right now!

Slainte!

Looks like I was WRONG again!

As far as our election goes…  (or went)

I know I wrote “When Hillary wins, and she will win,”  Looks I was wrong again.  I admitted to being wrong about ScExit and BrExit, and now it seems I am wrong yet again with AmExitOfBasicCommonSense.  Perhaps I give too much credit to the American people for having basic intelligence.  They sure screwed-the-pooch on this one!  (Or, maybe it’s just a fact that I would not or could not accept the fact that in this country we ‘common sense people’ are vastly outnumbered by the others who surround us.)

I was right about one thing, and that was Bernie Sanders.  I truly believe Bernie would have whipped Trump’s butt if he had been given a fair chance, but the Democratic nomination process was RIGGED to make sure Hillary got it, and now see what has happened.  What did they tell us when we were kids, that: “Cheaters never win!”  Maybe they were right after all.  Maybe that’s the real reason she lost.  (And the fact is SHE LOST a lot more than he won.  It was always a choice between the lessor of two evils.  This election was a Lose-Lose deal when Clinton and Trump became the nominees.)

Things will REALLY CHANGE now!  You can count on that.  But, I fear, not change that we can believe in or even find acceptable.

However, I can rationalize all this by stating the fact that America survived 8 long dismal years and two wars of George W. Bush, so it can surely survive however long Trump has before he is impeached.  (I only hope the rest of the Free World manages to survive as well.)

I have to end this essay now however, hence it is very short.  I have a lot of much needed research to do on what it will take for me to become a Canadian.  Eh?

Cheerio!  What?  What?

My Irish cousin asked: “Change is really needed .. big change , but how will this happen?”

Change is needed.  That is true.

How will it come?  Good question.  We won’t know the answer to that until it happens, but one thing is for sure: changes will come.

Part of the change in the American Two Party System has already taken place.  Bernie Sanders called-out the Democrats for rigging the primary election process.  He was right.  So-called “Super-Delegates” gave the nomination to Hillary even though Bernie had greater support from the real voters.  And, the rigging done by the DNC was caught and exposed by Bernie, which is why Debbie Wassermann Schultz had to quit as head of the DNC (Democratic National Committee).  Hillary then hired her into her own presidential campaign organization, which was clearly a reward from Hillary to Debbie for guaranteeing Hillary the nomination.  Bernie could have won and should have won, but the Democratic Primary was pre-wired and rigged to make sure Hillary won no matter what.

All that being true still left us with only the choice of Hillary versus Trump.  Not much of a choice, but exactly what Hillary wanted and needed.

Hillary could never beat a real GOP/Republican politician.  Not even Ted Cruz.  She had to run against someone so repulsive that even a large number of his own people, Republicans, would not support him.  Cruz would have garnered Republican support and with that alone could have won The White House, but Trump has divided it and will lose.

There were really only two scenarios that would insure a win for Hillary.

The first, is what we have now:  Trump as the Republican candidate.

The second was what I believe they originally planned:  Trump running as a 3rd Party candidate so he could take votes away from the Republican nominee.  Just like in 1992 when Ross Perot took enough votes away from George H.W. Bush to allow Bill Clinton to win the election with only 43% of the vote (Bush had 37.4% and Perot had 18.9%).

The second scenario is what I believe Bill Clinton and Donald Trump talked about and agreed to in the phone calls before Trump announced.  They hoped and planned to recreate the same situation that allowed Bill to become president in 1992, for Hillary to repeat in 2016.  Nobody could have ever predicted that Trump would win the Republican nomination.  When he did win the Republican nomination then a new strategy had to be created, one that would insure Trump would lose so Hillary could win.  So what did Trump do, but anger as many groups of American voters as he could: women, blacks, Hispanics, Muslims, all other immigrants, etc…  And, the side benefit to this strategy is that all the time he is angering various Americans, including fellow Republicans, he is making Hillary look better and better to those who dislike Trump.  People who once considered casting a protest vote for a 3rd party candidate (who could not possibly win), or just not voting at all, now chose to vote FOR Hillary out of FEAR that if Hillary was not elected then Trump could and would win.  A Trump Win is a fate WORSE than Hillary.  (Kind of like those in England who voted FOR BrExit, because they thought it could never win.  Then when it did win they regretted their vote.  Americans might have done the same had they not seen what happened in England.)

By the way “the American Two Party System” is what needs to change.  It is not an official system.  It is a corruption of the American Constitutionally proscribed Electoral Process that the Democrats and Republicans have been using since the days of Lincoln, in order to keep every other party and candidate from ever having a serious chance to win in that concocted 2-party process.  (Even a former U.S. President, Teddy Roosevelt, could not break that fake 2-party scam.)

When Hillary wins, and she will win, IF the Democrats take over a majority of seats in the U.S. House of Representatives AND the U.S. Senate, THEN that may spell the END of the Republican Party.  (But the Dems must win all 3: The White House, The House and The Senate.)  If the Republican Party loses its power in congress it loses its political power elsewhere, then a political vacuum may be created and some other party may be able to take over their role to fill that vacuum.  OR, even better, a coalition of other parties may be able to join together to fill that vacuum and hopefully weaken the grip that the Democrats have on the phoney-baloney Two Party System.  (But, I don’t see that happening anytime soon, if at all.)

Change comes in small steps, rather than huge leaps.  Perhaps the Democrats will get rid of the “Super-Delegate” process for the next primary season, which will allow a candidate like Bernie Sanders to win the nomination next time.  Perhaps the Republicans will be replaced by the Libertarians, like the Republicans replaced the Whigs in Lincoln’s time.  Who knows what is going to change?  We only know that something will change, even if that change is relatively small and obscure rather than huge and obvious.

Change happens!

About FBI Director James Comey…  He should be fired, then tried for illegal use of FBI resources in his attempt to elect Donald Trump.  He is quite obviously a partisan Republican attempting to sabotage the Democratic candidate.  The problem is, as the media has explained to us, that the Director of The FBI has a 10 year term in his job, which is practically a job security guarantee.  Even though he works under The U.S. Attorney General, who “serves at the pleasure of The President”, the AG can’t just fire the FBI Director.  The FBI Director would have to voluntarily resign or be formally charged with a crime.  Comey is safe, for now, but he is an ass!

Now, maybe you can answer a basic question I have had for awhile…

We are told, mostly by partisan Republicans and other Obama detractors, that Obama and America are looked down upon by the rest of the world, that Obama has lost the respect of the world for himself and our country during his two terms in office.

I never have believed that.  In fact, I have always felt that if the world ever looked down upon America during my lifetime it was during the two terms of George W. Bush.  Bush lied to the American people and the world in order to start the war in Iraq.  George Bush and his administration made it possible for the major economies of the world to collapse and result in the Great Recession(s) of 2008.  In my personal view, George W, Bush is the WORST president our country has EVER had.  In my opinion it is mostly because of Barack Obama that the American economy has been able to rebound and that American respect around the world has been regained from all that was lost during the Bush years.  In my opinion Barack Obama did give us change that we could believe in, even though it had to come at such a slow pace mostly because of the Republican OBSTRUCTIONISTS in congress who fought him at every turn, including now refusing to act on his Supreme Court Nominee, Merrick Garland, a judge many Republicans once highly praised.

What do YOU think?  Is America more respected now during the Obama years, or was it more respected during the Bush years?

Then comes the next obvious question…

How will America be viewed by the world if it elects Hillary, or if it elects Trump?

Awaiting your thoughts,