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Vote

MAY 26, 2022


Vote

05/24/22 12:54 PM

It's Tuesday May 24th as I write although this will be published on Thursday May 26th and it will be old news by then. It's still worth a mention.

Patty and I had a list of items that required us getting out. On that list was stopping by the library to cast our vote in the Republican primary. We love to watch the voter returns on voting night, even if they are just for a primary.

With all that is going on locally, not to mention all that is taking place nationally with Biden and Trump, Russia and Ukraine, Elon Musk and Twitter, China and Taiwan, and a whole host of other interesting stories, it should be an interesting season for the voters.




Political Leaders

MAY 21, 2022


Leaders

05/19/22 03:57 PM

I've got to admit that what's going on with the Biden administration has me scratching my head. I honestly don't understand how someone can break the law, as he is apparently doing with immigration, and continue to get away with it unchallenged.

The democrats went after Trump for what appears to me at least to be much more than he was ever guilty of, and yet we can't do anything about evident abuses of the law and all that is going on with the border crisis on our southern border?

I fail to understand how so many things seem to be going unchallenged, or if we are pursuing any of it, we seem to be doing it at turtle speed. It's beyond my understanding.

From what I've seen so far, and who knows who to trust these days for anything having to do with the news, it seems to me that a great deal of damage is being done and we're still half a year from being able to go to the polls and make some much needed changes to do anything about it.

I know this is a bit mean to say, but I honestly hope those who voted for Biden got what they wanted because I haven't seen anything from him that would have ever led me to vote for him. My vote for Trump was at first a defensive measure against Hillary. Admittedly, it took a lot of soul-searching to pull the lever in Trump's favor. However, and like so many others, I was pleasantly surprised at all he accomplished despite his antics. This list of all that he managed to get done was long and positive as far as I'm concerned. It was a far easier task to pull a lever in his favor the second time around.

I suppose I'm part of a large crowd that would like to see him finish cleaning up the swamp. Enough with the polite political rhetoric from so many others. We've gotten a dose from far too many Republicans and a double dose from the Democrats. Let's get some tough talk and a whole lot more action from folks like Desantis and Trump (and even our Governor, Kay Ivey, here is Alabama!) and see if we can get this country back on a good road toward much needed change!

Alabama votes this coming Tuesday!




Politics

MARCH 09, 2022


Politics

Big in the news these days is the war between Russia and Ukraine, and the threat of engagement between China and Tiawan. And, big in my news bucket is a U.S. president who clearly has some form and degree of dementia.

In addition, I'm still concerned about the Snowden thing and the Wikileaks issues, and I'm even concerned about all that is taking place with Trump, whether you like him or not. Many in powerful places clearly have a vendetta against him and it troubles me when I see all that is being brought against him with similar issues lacking attention on the other side of aisle.

One thing that has been very interesting to me is the number of people who have taken on the news outlets with stories of their own on YouTube channels of their own. I've subscribed to Johnny Harris and he represents a long list of people who are making a career out of doing their homework and bringing new light to current issues.

This is a cultural trend that I didn't anticipate and wouldn't have expected, but it's right there in front of us and the value being offered is impressive. I'll tolerate YouTube ads for the kind of quality I'm receiving from these up-and-coming news agents.




Mikaela Shiffrin

FEBRUARY 09, 2022


Mikaela

Remember those institutions that I mentioned yesterday? The ones that bring us our news? Well, it's bad enough when they get liberal on this conservative, but it's quite another thing when the values they are espousing cut across mine.

Such has been the case with NBC's coverage of the Olympics. To be honest, it's not just NBC. It's most every news organization out there and their need to get ahead no matter the cost to whatever or whomever is being covered.

All too often, our news organizations love to create a good story and when the story doesn't play out the way they thought it would, they love to cover the downsides. And I guess news consumers get caught up in it to the point that these news organizations are left with no alternative but to play up those downsides.

It's been interesting to get on Twitter and see what people think and are saying at a grassroots level. There's a large segment of the audience that thrives on both sides of the story. There are those who are eating up the critical coverage and those who are screaming out against it.

I'd ask how we got here, but its possible I may already know the answer to that question.




Institutions

FEBRUARY 08, 2022


Institutions

Not long ago, I heard a man speaking on television and he was talking about the importance of institutions. I found myself immediately reacting to what he was saying and I had to stop and process my thoughts.

I've suffered spiritual abuse at the hands of spiritual institutions and find it difficult now to trust them. In fact, I don't mind admitting that the kind of abuse I have suffered makes it difficult for me to trust certain types of institutions, including many of the companies I worked for. After all, those institutions are made up of people and people are capable of terrible things.

On the other hand, I recognize that some institutions can be incredibly beneficial and, to me, are worth the potential problems that might be inherent in them. The institution of family comes to mind. However, I don't tend to view family in an institutional sense, but more a spiritual sense, and that may explain why I'm able to function well in that arena and why I place such importance upon it.

Perhaps my disdain for institutions explains why I liked President Trump. He fought political institutions and the institutions that provide our news. He didn't like them and they didn't like him. I relate well with all of that.

In fact, our social media outlets were useful until their institutional nature showed its ugly head in banning our president and other conservatives from 'using' them to get past the news media.

What about Covid-19 and our governmental medical institutions? I'm not talking about hospitals and doctor's offices but rather the government's supposed need to get involved in our decision making process. I guess that's the anti-institutional Libertarian coming out in me. My handyman friend said it best when he told me that he feels essential.




MLK/FBI

JANUARY 14, 2022


MLK/FBI

I've always been interested in the civil rights era. And, I've always found it interesting when I lived in Albany, Georgia that so much of what happened, actually occurred in our little town not that many years before we moved there.

Even when I was working on my MBA at Georgia State University, we had marches going on right outside of our classroom windows. It was quite interesting, but I have to admit it was also a bit frightening to witness the anger and the associated violence.

iTunes often runs 99 cent rentals on some of their films and yesterday they were running such a special on a documentary entitled MLK/FBI. I rented it and started watching it last night late and hope to finish it up today.

Common to so many other stories I've seen lately, I am quite amazed at the level of corruption that is present in our government and in the governments of so many other countries. I'm also amazed at the threat that MLK's power presented to some of the leaders of our country, especially in the early years of his rise to power.

I keep thinking that we live in very different times from anything that anyone has ever seen before. But I don't have to look back much further than the civil rights era to realize just how many back then must have felt the same way.




Still More on Bad Blood

DECEMBER 28, 2021


Bad Blood 3

Well, I made it through the rest of the audiobook and had to pause to reflect on the real situation upon which the trial is based. Of all the terrible things that went on in this story, the trial is solely focused upon the alleged defrauding of investors. After all, lawsuits are not usually based on things like one person not being nice to another.

Many employees were fired in this story and some lawsuits may still be on the horizon for illegal termination of employment. However, those areas are much more difficult to address (in my personal opinion anyway) and as a result those lawsuits may never materialize.

Because investors are often so willing to take on great risks for great returns, it's not far-fetched to ask why investors were so anxious and willing to assume such risks without visual confirmation of what the technology was supposed to be able to accomplish.

As was mentioned in the book, it's the FoMO factor or Fear of Missing Out that might have been the true cause for so many of the investments that were being made as opposed to visual verification of how the technology was expected to perform and confirmation of when such performance was supposed to happen.

It is with all of that in mind that I can see the real (but still unlikely) possibility of a not guilty verdict. As the jury enters the 5th day of deliberations, one thing is for sure. The longer they take to deliberate, the greater the chance of a not guilty verdict or even perhaps a hung jury.




More on Bad Blood

DECEMBER 27, 2021


Bad Blood 2

Last night, I found an audio copy of the Bad Blood book on Youtube and started listening to all 11+ hours. I had already put a hold on one at the local library but it doesn't look like I'll need it after all.

Listening to this audiobook only takes me on a deeper dive into the story. It's interesting to hear more of the back story on the players and some of the facts that I haven't come across elsewhere.

Even though I'm not far into the audiobook, what I've listened to so far has only reinforced the conclusions I've already drawn about her guilt. In fact, not only her guilt, but I'm getting a clear picture of her apparent narcissistic behaviors and hyper-attentiveness to her personal image.

The jury just entered day four of deliberations about half an hour ago. It will be interesting to see what verdict they bring back to the courtroom and how long it takes them to reach it.

SIDE NOTE

We're moving into the evening hours and I'm half way through the audiobook, Bad Blood, that I mentioned above. I had to jump online and add an addendum to my previous post after considering all that I've heard and am hearing in the audiobook.

Oh my! The enormity of the deception perpetrated by Elizabeth Holmes and Sunny Balwani is unbelievable. After all that I've now been exposed to via the book, I will be absolutely shocked if the verdict is anything except guilty. Of course, there's always the question as to what the judge is going to allow. I hope the attorneys for the prosecution have not had their hands tied!




Bad Blood

DECEMBER 26, 2021


Bad Blood

I had an opportunity to watch a Youtube video featuring Wallstreet columnist and author John Carreyrou as he shared with an audience some of the points of interest behind his book Bad Blood. The book was published in May of 2018 and provides a behind the scenes view into the highly interesting and multifaceted Elizabeth Holmes story that I've been blogging about recently.

Mr. Carreyrou provided an in-depth view of things to the crowd and then shifted to a highly interesting Q&A. Having heard him speak about his book, I'm even more amazed at the wide-reaching effects that Elizabeth Holmes and her company, Theranos, had on so many people. It's an amazing tale with layer upon layer of a story that comes across like a thrilling high tech novel.

Theranos is now defunct and Miss Holmes faces a number of fraud charges based on the alleged operations of the company. The jury is out for deliberations in her trial and the more I learn about her story, the more convinced I've become that the Jury will find Miss Holmes guilty of fraud. I can't imagine how a jury might see and hear all that I have seen and heard and come back with anything other than a guilty verdict.

I feel bad for Miss Holmes, but I feel much, much worse for her victims - especially those whose lives might have depended upon her failed blood testing technology.




More on the Elizabeth Holmes Trial

DECEMBER 23, 2021


EH 2

It's always interesting to look beyond an online article and read the comments in the comment section of the article to see what the thoughts are out in the public space. I know the primary perspective will not necessarily reflect the general population (since it's a specific breed that writes comments in the comment section of an article) but those comments often make for interesting discussion and may introduce worthy ideas I had not considered.

In reading the many comments of a recent article about the Elizabeth Homes trial, it appears I have a lot of company in my perspective that the jury will (and should) come back with a guilty verdict. Of course, I'm operating on limited information and the jury has all of the details and is likely in a better place to make an informed decision.

Still, if this decision is the mystery that I make it out to be (in other words, there is no clear and easy answer) then there may be no such thing as an informed decision. If that is the case, and I fear it may be, then it's anybody's guess as to what the final verdict may be.

The thing that concerns me about this case is the precedent that will be generated should the jury come back with a not guilty verdict. Of equal concern is that the jury is not suppose to consider that possibility in reaching a verdict. This means that the jury could come back with a not guilty verdict and be wrong. And, this could provide a lot of unintended damage in terms of the outcomes of future cases that may lean heavily on this one.




Elizabeth Holmes

DECEMBER 19, 2021


Inventor

I really enjoy good movies and particularly enjoy good documentaries as well. My favorite documentarian is Alex Gibney and I own several of his documentaries. Last night I also purchased The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley.

I remember coming across the story of Elizabeth Holmes and her proposed blood testing machine a few years ago. It was quite a perplexing story and I noticed that her trial is going on now. The jury just went out on Friday to begin deliberations.

Even through the documentary was published a couple of years ago, Alex always does a great job of digging deep and presenting a lot of new material. I can't wait to see it and also to see what the jury decides.

Elizabeth Holmes looks pretty guilty from my perspective, but I can also imagine that her optimism could have blinded her to what she was communicating versus what she might have intended to communicate.

From all I have read, this could be a tough one for the jury. There may be enough doubt to come back with a not guilty verdict despite whatever might be the real truth. On the other hand, a guilty verdict would suggest in my mind that there was enough evidence presented to the jury to compel them beyond any shadow of a doubt, and thus suggest she very likely was guilty.

Her efforts to dress like Steve Jobs is troublesome to me. On one hand it could suggest that she was very image-aware which, in turn, might also suggest that she was too savvy to be innocent of misleading so many. On the other hand, it might suggest that she is incredibly naive which, inn turn, might cast doubt on her ability to operate with malicious intent.

Like I said, this could be a tough one for the jury.

SIDE NOTE

Inventor 3

Well, I just finished watching the aforementioned documentary. All I can say is, wow! And, as for my take on things, I would have to offer a guilty verdict with what I have since learned from the documentary.

The verdict doesn't come from the strong evidence of her guilt as much as it comes from her being in charge of, and responsible for, everything whether she liked it or not. Too much damage has occurred on her watch for her not to be held responsible and accountable. She was playing the fake it 'till you make it game, and she got caught!

I guess we'll see soon enough whether or not the jury agrees with my verdict on this one.


TWITTER

JUNE 06, 2021



On June 5, 2021 the Nigerian government officially put an indefinite ban on Twitter restricting it from operating in Nigeria after the social media platform deleted incendiary tweets made by the Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari threatening the south eastern people of Nigeria predominantly occupied by the Igbo people... (source: Wikipedia)

Twitter responded:

Tweet 2

The people responded:

Tweets

A-10's OVERHEAD

MAY 18, 2021



A10's Overhead

Yesterday was an incredibly active day overhead for Air Force exercises. We had a low pass overhead in both directions and it rattled the house! We had another pass a few minutes later and I scrambled out to the back deck to catch a third pass, again in both directions.

I grabbed my phone camera and they did make another pass, but they were far enough out over the water on this one that the image was not clear.

From what I saw off the back deck, and from the very rough images I captured with my phone camera, I was able to identify the planes as A-10's, also known as the A-10 Warthog and more formally as the A-10 'Warthog' Thunderbolt II.

On the first pass, I could see one of the pilots very clearly and he made a 90 degree roll in my direction which was very interesting.

I hope to get our good camera out where I can get my hands on it much faster to capture interesting things like this in the future.


ROUND 2 DAY 3

FEBRUARY 21, 2021



Corona6

Well, we received our injections Friday about 11:30 AM and it's now Sunday about 10:00 AM. I'm amazed at how much my appetite stayed with me throughout the course of events. And our splurge with the take-out pizzas on Friday night didn't help much with the weight maintenance, but they sure went down good as we prepared for whatever was going to come our way.

I had a low grade fever Friday night which hit 99.1 and once again on Saturday evening where it hit 99.6. I suppose the Tylenol all day Saturday was the main thing holding back a fever and a more serious case of the blah's. Fortunately, no muscle soreness and no sore arm this time at the injection sight.

The low grade fever broke last night after I went to bed and I'm feeling pretty much back to normal today. I took several days off from running just to keep up a healthy immune system and in order to prevent further complications from the injections. Today will be day four without a run, but I plan to start back tomorrow.

I suspect that our new normal won't look much different from our current routine. I would imagine any eat-outs will probably lean more toward take-outs and I'm guessing that masks will still be in the picture when we feel it's necessary

Most of all, and as the picture above indicates, I'm quite grateful for all that has been made available to us in order to fight this pandemic. The medical staff that managed both injections here in Crawfordville, Florida were very kind, professional, and amazingly well organized. Our thanks also go out to the companies that brought us the vaccines. And most importantly, I'm grateful to God for His hand in protecting us from the Covid-19 pandemic and in minimizing our reactions to the injections.

What a strange season of life we've had with this pandemic. I could have never imagined it.


ROUND TWO RESULTS

FEBRUARY 20, 2021



Corona 15

Well, we received our second injection yesterday around 11:30 AM and after 23 hours I'm encouraged with the results. Of course that takes into account three rounds of Tylenol so far but I'm okay with that considering everything else.

We had no side effects until last night around 8:30 PM, about nine hours after we received our injections. Our body temperatures dropped and so we decided to take two extra strength Tylenol each, get under the covers, get warm, and call it an early night. It wasn't a real case of chills or anything like that, it was just an overall sense of being cold.

We got up in the middle of the night for another round of extra strength Tylenol due to return of unstable body temperatures, and then had a third round of Tylenol about 8:00 AM this morning when we decided to get up. And, after a long night of being locked up, the cat was certainly glad to see us.

I was pleased that we were both well enough to have an appetite and opted for bagels and hot tea. I even made a trip out into the cold to check the mail. If this turns out to be the as bad as it gets, I would be delighted.

As I've said before, we'll see...


COVID-19 VACCINE

FEBRUARY 19, 2021



Covid-19

On January 23rd, Patty and I were injected with our first round of the Covid-19 vaccine. Today, at 11:30 AM, we're scheduled for our second round.

We got a call this week that our appointment had been moved from 8:45 AM to 11:30 AM and the location had been changed from the health department to the community center.

On the first round, we both had a sore arm for just a couple of days and no other reaction. We're told that there's a real possibility that today's injection will potentially bring additional and more serious side effects.

I was on one of my ham radio club nets this week and, from others who have already had both rounds, there was mention of flu like symptoms including fever, chills, nausea, and achy muscles. Different people described different symptoms and some folks had no reaction at all.

Like others we've heard about, Patty and I have the Tylenol and chicken noodle soup out with a few other grab and go things to eat should either or both of us wind up in the bed for a day or two.

I'm also told that the typical symptoms last about 36 hours but I'm not totally clear on when that will all begin. I think there was mention that most people started having symptoms on the day after the injection and about mid-day on the second day after they were already getting back to normal.

I guess we'll see.


THE TRUMP I SAW

FEBRUARY 17, 2021



Author Unknown

I still love my democrat friends and family, but you see it your way and I see it mine. You saw Trump’s arrogance, I saw Trump’s confidence. You saw Trump’s nationalism, I saw Trump’s patriotism.

You heard Trump’s unsophisticated words, I heard Trump’s honesty. You saw Trump’s racism, I saw Trump’s words being misconstrued and twisted by the media daily to fit their narrative.

You saw Trump as a Republican, I saw Trump as a Patriot. You saw Trump as a dictator, I saw Trump as a leader. You saw Trump as an Authoritarian, I saw Trump as the only one willing to fight for our freedoms.

You saw Trump as childish, I saw Trump as a fighter, unwilling to cave to lies. You saw Trump as an unpolished politician, I saw Trump as a breath of fresh air.

You believe Trump hates immigrants, I know Trump married an immigrant. You saw Trump putting an end to immigration in America, I saw Trump welcoming immigrants to America LEGALLY. You saw Trump’s cages at the border, I saw Obama’s cages at the border.

You saw Trump with a struggling economy, I saw Trump with an amazing economy until Democrats shut it down. You saw violence in the streets and called it “Trump’s America”, I saw violence in the streets of Democrat-run cities who refused Trump’s help and who called the violence “Liberal America.”

You wanted someone more "Presidential", I’m happy we had someone who finally didn’t just talk the talk but actually walked the walk.

You and I? We see things very differently.

Author unknown.


COVID-19 VARIANTS

FEBRUARY 15, 2021



Covid-19 Variants

It's Monday morning the 15th as I'm typing. This coming Friday the 19th, Patty and I are scheduled to head over to the Crawfordville Health Center first thing in the morning to receive our second dose of the Covid-19 vaccine.

We've heard the stories that the second dose is more likely to bring with it some undesirable side-effects. As such, we are fully prepared with extra strength Tylenol, some easy to grab food, and an empty calendar to allow for sleeping it off if necessary.

We're told that we need to allow for another two weeks after the second dose before we reach the full 95% level of defense against Corona. That's not going to be a problem either since we've been pretty much staying to ourselves throughout the pandemic.

I remember last spring and into the summer that there was mention of a more risky season as fall rolled in and it does seem that was the case. However, I didn't hear any mention of Covid-19 strains or variants as is now the case. Apparently, we're now dealing with three variants.

I'm reading that there are actually many tiny changes in the genetic sequence of the virus, but the three main strains or variants are circulating more quickly and bring greater cause for concern. Apparently, we're now facing the Brazilian variant, the UK variant, and the South African variant.

And, if I remember correctly what I heard or read last night, the current vaccine has generally proven to be effective against the new strains of the virus. That would be good news if it does indeed play out in the coming weeks and months. My history with respiratory battles has not been very good so I hope to avoid this entire mess.


COVID-19 SHOTS

JANUARY 23, 2021



Covid-19 Shots

Yesterday Patty and I got up early and made our way to the Crawfordville, Florida Health Clinic to get round number one of our Covid-19 vaccine shots. We got to the clinic about 8:30 AM.

We were assigned #16 and #17 of what we were told would be a day with 150 shots provided for senior citizens. I guess old age (or as we I prefer to call it - seniority) does indeed have its advantages in some instances.

We walked into a small room where two ladies were situated. One was filling syringes from a bottle containing the vaccine and the other was doing the dirty work, providing us with the shots. To be honest, I've had bug bites that hurt more than the prick from that tiny needle. And in a moment, it was all over.

The health clinic was very clean and the staff was very well organized. After our shots were applied, we were escorted to a waiting area where we had to spend 15 minutes before we could leave, just to ensure there was no unexpected reaction to the shot. Everyone was required to wear a mask, and one of the members of the staff was wiping down the chairs as folks departed the waiting area. I was impressed.

Neither of us had any ill effects from the shot yesterday, but I did wake up with a bit of tenderness right at the location where the shot was applied. In the grand scheme of things, I would say that was a good result!

Speaking of organized, we were handed a card with the date for our second shot (to be applied in just under a month) and asked to arrive at the same time as today's appointment. Patty also was informed that the first dose would provide 50% effectiveness after ten days. It's good to be getting this done and finding out what the new normal is going to look like.


TRUMP CARD

JANUARY 16, 2021



Trump Card

I'm so glad that I went on the record in yesterday's blog post by continuing to support Trump, and that I did so before receiving and watching the new Dinesh D'Souza documentary, Trump Card. I received the DVD in yesterday afternoon's mail and watched it late last night. I wouldn't want to look back on yesterday's blog post and persuade myself that the documentary had anything to do with what I wrote.

The story of Donald J. Trump reminds me so much of the Braveheart story. It seems especially true when considering the similarities between Trump's opposition and the Braveheart nobles and even the similarities between Trump and William Wallace.

Like William Wallace, Trump marches to his own drum and works quite independently or the influences in the political arena. And similar to the Braveheart story, Trump's power and the loyalty from his base is a threat to friend and foe alike.

While the nobles bicker among themselves, William Wallace opts for action over more talk. He realizes the wasted time and effort that would be required and the likelihood that no solution would come about as a result of all the talk. He also realizes that the nobles serve no real benefit to anyone except themselves as they contend for power and the crumbs from Longshanks table. Sound familiar?

From my perspective, the Democrats have become cynics. They have lied and cheated for so long that they believe everyone involved is lying and cheating and is in it for what they can get, no matter what it costs to anyone and everyone around them.

I give President Trump, Dinesh D'Souza, and many of the Trump supporters more credit than that. I believe they are all human and subject to their own personal challenges or weaknesses, but I also believe their actions and sacrifices suggest that they have far better intentions toward the common good of all.

As such, I'd rather take a naive stand, put my faith in the ones I believe to be true to the cause, and become a victim, than to become a cynic and another thief in the crowd, there purely for my own personal and selfish gain. I willingly admit that William Wallace took the same approach and paid a dear price for it. Still, I believe it was the right thing to do and the only thing he could do.


TRUMP

JANUARY 15, 2021



Trump

I'm going to go on the record and say that I still support Donald Trump and am still proud to call him my President. He called 'em like he saw 'em and for that he found himself sucked into dirty fights with the press, his opposing party, and even with the power centers in the technology sector and with social media, not to mention some in his own party.

But despite all of that, I'm willing to stand behind him purely on the basis of all that he accomplished. And, he accomplished a lot that is well beyond dispute, even if the press has remained silent on most of it.

When I consider a president who is five days from the end of his term in office, and I see the press and an opposing party anxious to squeeze in an impeachment that has no basis in anything other than politics, I believe I have become a witness to the real and unspoken agenda of Trump's opposition. I'm disgusted to see the titans of business use their ill gotten power to effectively silence the president and other key conservatives.

These things should concern us all.


POLITICAL STUFF

JANUARY 08, 2021



Political Stuff

I took a stab at writing about the state of things here in America and was not at all comfortable with the results. What I wrote didn't even come close to representing what I feel. It's probably a topic I should avoid, but I'm going to go ahead and give it one more try.

Voting for a president because he or she looks and acts more Presidential would not even occur to me. I honestly cannot understand how anyone can cast their vote in that direction. I'm voting solely for a party platform irrespective of the person who has been nominated to serve at the helm. That's why I voted twice for Donald Trump.

Like others, I had some serious doubts about his political abilities. And like others, I was pleasantly surprised to see him defy expectations and actually accomplish what I thought were some very positive achievements for our country, despite his otherwise highly questionable behavior, especially on Twitter.

Did I think he had to fight the press on the entire journey? Absolutely! Did I think he had to fight a very angry base for the opposing party? If he didn't, he certainly had to fight a very angry radical element for the opposing party. However, the attack on the capital proves that our radical element is just as problematic for us as theirs is for them, so I find it difficult to address any radical behavior on either side of the aisle.

Do I think the nomination and ultimate election of Trump was somewhat a knee-jerk reaction to the then current behavior of politicians on both sides of the aisle? Yes! Do I think he was qualified to make good business decisions for our country? Yes! Do I think he was a strong communicator and qualified to handle himself well on the nation's (and world's) political stage? No! And, I believe that was the thing that led to his ultimate political demise.

Do I think voter fraud occurred in the 2020 election? Yes, but I have not seen any data that would lead me to believe it was significant or widespread enough to affect the ultimate outcome. Of course we'll never know on that one, but I would be hard-pressed to defend against the same claim being made by the opposition with respect to earlier presidential elections.

One thing is for sure, I do not envy Biden and the Democrats for what they face in the next four years. And neither do I envy the rest of us for the potential political, economic, and cultural changes that are likely to result.


A NATION DIVIDED

DECEMBER 15, 2020



Division

I'm not sure if I'm more stumped by our divided nation or the process in which we reached this level of division. With the Social Media Wars, and those in particular on Twitter, we've been introduced to scenes that seem to paint a very dismal picture of the state of things.

History will likely take a dim view of all that has transpired including efforts to defund the police, ongoing revolution with violence often at its core, the freedom for a citizen to break laws with no fear of consequences, biased reporting and fake news, election fraud, and political correctness run amuck.

Even with all of the aforementioned having taken place, I'm find myself more alarmed by the speed at which it has happened. And now we find ourselves living at a time where the likes of an ill-equipped and completely unqualified Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez can campaign and even get elected.

For those who wonder how a Donald Trump could win the presidency back in 2016, I would ask the same thing about a Joe Biden here in 2020. There's a lot of anger out there, and more than a few power grabs at the center of it all. There are a lot of smart people on each side of the aisle, but I fear there are even more useful idiots.


WORTH MY TIME

NOVEMBER 9, 2020





SLIPPERY SLOPE

NOVEMBER 8, 2020

Twitter Censorship

Twitter has jumped on a slippery slope! They've entered the censorship business and proven themselves pretenders when it comes to being fair and just in their approach.

It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see Twitter's liberal agenda in their one-sided online actions. Is it possible that Twitter is seeking to become a power center capable of swinging presidential election results and other matters in their preferred direction?

Just askin'...

TWITTER


THE DAY AFTER

NOVEMBER 4, 2020

The Day After

Wow! I'm almost speechless when I think about the way the presidential election results evolved last night, and into the wee hours of the morning. I hope things settle and resolve quickly, although I have my real doubts about that.

There's a fine line between ensuring all legitimate votes are counted and represented, and allowing illegitimate ballots to make their way into the mix. I have no idea what is going on in that respect, but I find it challenging not to be a bit suspicious of the whole thing - especially when I heard one of the state election officials on NPR yesterday saying that his state planned to count all votes received for up to seven days past the deadline. He alluded to the idea that he would leave it up to the courts to force him to do otherwise.

It things continue in their present direction, it looks to me that there is a path to 280 electoral votes for either candidate. I'm not in favor of closing down the counting process until every vote has been counted, but I suspect I would also have my suspicions were I in Trump's shoes and especially if the left is truly determined to do anything and everything to secure a Biden victory.

Most of us who reside in our country's rank and file have no idea what is going on in the centers of political power. I'm sure there's plenty of propaganda on both sides and it's quite difficult these days to separate fact from fiction, truth from lies, and real news from fake news.

God help us all to see things as they really are and to make wise choices.


TODAY'S THE BIG DAY!

NOVEMBER 3, 2020

Vote

Well, today's the big day. It's finally here. And, more than a few haters of Trump have been anxiously awaiting it for four years. Who could have possibly imagined such a divided nation as the one with which we now find ourselves?

Even with eight years of Obama, I don't think we've ever witnessed such divisive action as we have recently. I suspect there was some, but with the press on his side, a very outspoken base, and an insufficient radical element in the conservative camp, the political dominance of the Obama era was evident.

We sure haven't seen that kind of political dominance in the past four years. Besides owning the press, the left has a larger, more outspoken, and more risk taking radical element. And, based on the evidence, perhaps I should include violent somewhere in the mix.

To the level that the violence has been taken recently, it seems there's no guarantee that a Biden victory would even quell the radical left's revolution. In my mind, that's sort of hard to imagine. If Biden wins, I hope I'm wrong.


POLLING DATA

NOVEMBER 2, 2020

Poll Data

In 2016, the polls misled everyone! And, that idea doesn't even begin to scratch the surface of the severity of the misinformation.

The New York Times had Clinton with an 85% chance of winning. FiveThirtyEight had Hillary at 71.4%. And, on the day before the election, CNN bumped their projection up from 78% to 91% - just one percent higher than the Reuters prediction.

And now there are countless articles out on the internet, all seeking to explain the 2016 polling anomaly and all expressing confidence that the problem has been corrected here in 2020. If that is true, then the numbers seem to indicate that Biden will be our next president.

However, even it that is true, what the polls suggest and the reality of the situation may still differ. If the polls provide the right answer but get there with the wrong data, then the pollsters would have some more explaining to do.

As I've said before, it will be interesting to see how it all unfolds!


ALL HANDS ON DECK

NOVEMBER 1, 2020

All Hands on Deck

I would imagine that Tuesday is going to be a busy day at the U.S. Post Offices. The scramble to sort out the ballots and ensure they arrive at the counting locations on time will probably require an all hands on deck scenario.

You can say or think what you will about voter suppression, but I suspect both mail-in ballots and early onsite voting have greatly reduced, if not taken away, any legitimate claim to it. Speaking of claims, I recognize that's a pretty large claim to make, but I suspect it's also a claim that would be difficult to disprove in today's highly watched and carefully guarded environment.

On Friday night one of the talking heads on a liberally slanted political TV special was asked about voter suppression. The only think she could come up with to respond to the question was completely theoretical and had no basis in fact or reality. To her credit she did not refer to the distant past, but she also had no modern-day real-life examples to offer as evidence of any documented wrong-doing.

Of course that didn't slow down the show's producers from covering the idea and she was awarded quiet a bit of time to offer her highly speculative comments. With all of the checks and balances in place, not to mention the massive community of liberal watchdogs and the number of eyes fixed on every political process in this highly divided nation of ours, I find it hard to imagine even the most effective voter suppression techniques getting past today's guards at the gates.


INTERESTING TIMES

OCTOBER 31, 2020

Interesting Times

I was first introduced to the saying, May you live in interesting times, by Donald Sutherland in the 1994 film, Disclosure. Like many others since, I thought it was a positive statement meant to express blessings or kindness. I never imagined it might have its roots in something much more sinister.

Wikipedia suggests it's an English expression that is claimed to be a translation of a traditional Chinese curse. A curse? How could that be?

Wikipedia goes on to say that no Chinese source has ever been produced and that the nearest related Chinese expression translates as Better to be a dog in times of tranquility than a human in times of chaos.

Well, I suspect everyone would agree that we do indeed live in interesting times, especially with the upcoming presidential election and all of the unusual events that have led up to it. The political landscape, shifts in culture, and unexpected centers of power are indeed providing us with something new, unusual, and perhaps even interesting.

Now, whether you consider these interesting times to be an expression of modern blessings or the product of a traditional Chinese curse may in fact depend upon whether or not your choice for president wins the upcoming election.


LOOK OUT BELOW

OCTOBER 30, 2020

Look Out Below

Look out below! That should have been the mantra for this week's Dow Jones Industrial Average.

However, I just saw an article on the market and the writer basically indicates that the market doesn't see a presidential election result that it doesn't like. In other words, the market thinks that either result look good.

I find that hard to believe when considering the drop in the Dow over the past week. It's an usually big drop (close to 2,000 points) in a market that was trending up for the first half of October. I have to believe folks are retreating ahead of the election.

Some market pundits point to a resurgence in Covid-19 as the cause for the drop, but I'm going with a fear of election results and particularly the fear of an inconclusive presidential election result next Tuesday evening.

As any market investor knows, the market does not respond well to the unknown. It's hard to imagine, but a swift Biden election could prove to have a more positive impact on the market than an unknown result. Is it possible that the market is anticipating an unknown result? It would not surprise me if that were true.

I still have my doubts about the effects of a Biden election on the market, but if what my gut is telling me is correct we may not have an opportunity to see that one. Still, if Trump is elected, the market may then turn it's attention back to the state of the pandemic and that could result in additional declines, unlike what happened after his election four years ago.


DON'T LOOK NOW BUT...

OCTOBER 29, 2020

Don't Look Now But

The debate rages on between proponents of the popular vote and the electoral college.

I noticed in the news on the Real Clear Politics website that one of my dad's favorite politicians made an interesting comment. Newt Gingrich mentioned a presidential poll that was showing Trump with 326 electoral college votes and suggested that it seems right to him. He also indicated that he believes the left is going to be "terribly shocked" as he put it.

I googled 326 electoral college votes to find the poll he was referencing, but found instead a multitude of websites forecasting that exact number of electoral college votes for Hillary Clinton back in 2016. Interesting! I added Clinton's name to my Google search and found even more sites forecasting the same thing.

Could we see the repeat of a similar surprise, and one that defies the pollsters, here in 2020? Is it possible that Newt Gingrich is right about what would have to be considered a potential landslide victory for Trump?

The problem with polls is that they are taken from smaller samples in an attempt to determine the potential result for a much larger population. And the other problem (and a very significant one) is a question of the similarities and differences between the demographics of the sample and that of the voting population. I have to believe that is where the real problem lies in most of the conflicting instances.

I hate to even mention the possibility of a built-in bias for the organization collecting the sample, but the incredibly skewed results of far too many polls in the 2016 presidential election leaves me little or no choice.

Of one thing I'm sure. It will be very interesting to watch this unfold.


POLITICAL PLATFORM

OCTOBER 28, 2020

Candidate or PlatformWhen it comes to the 2020 presidential election, I must admit I'm voting less for a candidate and more against a platform. The irony is that since my wife and I are retired and fit in the senior category, we would probably experience a far greater personal benefit (in the short-term anyway) if we voted for the other candidate, who has made so many promises to the seniors. If he only fulfilled a few of those promises, we would probably come out ahead.

But, it's the long-term that worries me. Who will pick up the tab for all of those promises? As has been said before, the problem with socialism (or in this case a shift in the direction of socialism) is that you will ultimately run out of other people's money.

More worrisome are all of the things that come with the opposition's platform. And, I'm concerned that a majority of our population now prefers a nanny state or a government that will look after them. If you had told me, not that long ago, that we would find ourselves in this position, I would have laughed at the notion.

Remember the nobles in Braveheart? As long as they received land and title they were pretty much happy to pass along the requirements for such gain to the common people. In my opinion, that's the exact situation we face if we vote in the opposition. They will prove to be the richer (and more powerful) for it and the rest of us will prove to be the useful fools!

God help us if the polls are correct this time around. And God help the pollsters if they are not!


ONE WEEK TO GO!

OCTOBER 27, 2020

Early Voting

As is sometimes the case, I'm writing this a day ahead of the date it will be posted. The futures are down 315 points and the financial pundits are blaming it on the resurgence of Covid-19 in the US and Europe.

I'm tempted to believe it's more a matter of the market's uncertainty about the results of the upcoming presidential election and even more likely the market's anticipation of a Biden win. But, who really knows?

One week remains until those who didn't vote early will cast their ballots and we discover who our president will be for the next four years. There's talk of a drawn out process to determine who actually will win the election, but all of that still remains to be seen.

In many ways this presidential election may prove to be a lose/lose proposition. Either we face a dramatic and far less than positive shift in our culture with a potential turn toward socialism (not to mention a myriad of other undesirable surprises) or we face four more years of a highly divided nation and a continued presidential witch hunt by the press and other haters of president Donald J. Trump.

Hope I'm wrong!


BIDEN OR TRUMP?

OCTOBER 14, 2020

President

If all goes well, in three weeks we should know the answer.

I'll go on the record and admit it up front. If Trump does not win the election and continue to be our president for another four years, I will be the most surprised person in the country. There, I've said it and I'm on the record.

I know, the polls say something very different. And I'm by no means ignoring them just because of what happened four years ago. On the other hand, I'm not ready to say that the current polling numbers represent reality either. I've lost all faith in the pollsters and their interest in seeking an honest and accurate result.

The truth is, no matter how a person feels about Trump, I just can't bring myself to believe that a majority thinks Biden is a better choice and that people will vote in a president who represents a party that has participated in violent acts all across our nation and that wants to defund our police forces. How on earth did we get to this place in our country?

I live in a county in Florida that voted for Trump in 2016 by more than a two thirds majority. No matter the over-all results, it will be interesting to see how our small county's numbers compare in 2020. I recognize that there were a lot of close state races in 2016 and that Trump's commanding win in the electoral college was not reflective of what happened with the popular vote. However, I also believe that Hillary provided more competition to Trump than Biden. I suppose that really sets me up for a jolting shock if Biden wins.

I do have one question, however. If the Democratic Party truly believes they will defeat Trump here in 2020, why do they have Nancy Pelosi preparing a bill in reference to the use of the 25th amendment? Why is she, on behalf of the party, assuming such a risky proposition when considering who it might anger and push across the aisle to vote for Trump? And, isn't this just another unfounded attempt to remove a legitimately elected president from office?


COVID-19

OCTOBER 13, 2020

Covid-19

In my old blog, I started writing about Covid-19 about the time it showed up on the nation's radar. I'm confident that my strong Libertarian leanings were apparent in the things I chose to write. But to assume I towed the Libertarian line would be to incorrectly assume that I did not struggle with the topic. I struggled!

Opinions varied widely and I don't think there were many well established and agreed upon facts surrounding much of the controversy as it evolved and continues to evolve. It seemed that the perceived reality of Covid-19 was continually changing and at the speed of light.

Even now the debate over whether or not we should each be wearing a mask seems to thrive. And when you take the medical perspective and introduce the political perspective, the fireworks are sure to follow.

There's one thing I remain sure of in my own mind. There should not be (and should not have been) any federal (or local) mandates for businesses (private enterprise) to shut down. Announce the medical risks, as they are understood at the time, and then allow buyers and sellers to make their own decisions. Business owners are used to evaluating risk/reward decisions and the associated impact on each side of the equation.

Oh, and by the way, most all business owners are going to feel essential in the nature of what they offer, if not for their own survival. And guess what? Most consumers will also have their own opinions about what they consider to be essential. So, who in the government sector (or for that matter, any sector) is well enough informed to take away the rights of consumers or producers and providers to buy and sell goods and services? My answer? No one!


Copyright © 2022 Hutch DeLoach









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