When President Barack Obama was in Racine the other day, he had to face some unexpected questions about the success or lack of success with the so-called Recovery Act. As we know from previous experiences, President Obama does not do well when asked questions posed with an opposing viewpoint. Apparently he has gotten used to the notion that he will come into a city, make a speech, answer a couple of questions any long-winded fashion and leave with a higher approval rating.
When President, got asked about the success of the stimulus bill, his reply seemed a bit hostile. When looking for success, he had to point out that with out the $862 billion stimulus package, the recession would've been worse. How so? How can the "things could have been worse" basis be defended? Of course it can't be. There are no statistics for how bad things could've gotten. I'm sure there are just as many economists were saying that no difference at all has been made. The economy would've been exactly the same, only the money is gone. The portions that did not get wasted went to state governments so they could plug their huge deficits.
Taken for granted far too often are the men and women serving all of us in the military, whether in a foreign land or at home. No matter one's particular viewpoint on any national or international activity, these brave people are at the ready to serve the United States of America. I was a little kid who played on the grounds of a veterans hospital facility, and learned early-on about the thankless job that they do. Let us not forget them. Let us remember them 365 and 24/7. And similarly, let us not forget our vets.
As we reflect on the place in the world that the United States holds, let us remember to be good neighbors. Too often we forget that we are by far the main consumer of illegal drugs in the world. Without our insatiable desire to consume illegal drugs, many of today's international problems would go away. And just as we as Americans are so quick to judge others, let us look in the mirror. And just as we are so quick to see punishment as the only solution to our problems, let us see clearly that punishment of drug users is not working. Therapy and rehab work far, far better than prisons. I served as president of the board of directors of a drug-alcohol addiction program for offenders coming out of prison. I know first-hand the failure of prison, and the positive results of counseling and rehab.
Just a quick reminder that for one day, we can put all the cynicism aside and come together as a country united in the notion that we kicked some serious British hiney after writing one of the most revered kiss-off letters history has known.
We don't often see it, but there is far more that brings us together in this country than divides us, and we should we proud that we're so lucky to debate the finer points.
Happy July and what a beautiful weekend we had in Milwaukee! I hope everyone had a great 4th and enjoyed the parade, Klode and the fireworks.
On Friday we went to a new restaurant, The Horny Goat Hideaway, located at 2011 S. 1st Street, Milwaukee. You can travel there by car or boat and bring a volleyball because they have beautiful sand volleyball courts. On Friday, the wait was about an hour but the bar is open and airy so the hour passed quickly. Our group tried the pizza, wings, nachos and fries and all were excellent. We ran into another WFB group who traveled by boat, and they raved about the burgers served on pretzel buns. Horny Goat Beer was very good too!
I was born and raised in Milwaukee. Since then I have lived in Illinois, Michigan, Kansas, Missouri, and Virginia [Washtington, DC]. I've traveled extensively throughout Europe and North America, met heads of state, celebrities, sports figures, governors, mayors, authors, TV stars, Hall of Famers, ad infinitum. I've hosted two radio talk-interview programs. I've given speeches to as many as 10,000 people. However one thing never left me: the knowledge that my hometown of Milwaukee was a big city, but not truly "major league." It was not New York or Berlin or London or Paris or even Chicago.
When I moved to Kansas City I encountered some of the same inferiority complex. One of the first people I met walking around the Country Club Plaza in K.C. was a woman who recognized my "foreign" accent. She asked me if I were from Chicago. I told her I was from Milwaukee. Her mid-major metro inferiority immediately showed itself: "What do you think of Kansas City; kinda a cow town, huh?".
Some days it's just plain difficult to understand what is going on in America today. One thing we do know is that the United States is on the wrong track. Unfortunately, the government seems content to not only stay on this track, but to pick up speed.
The Arizona immigration law seem to have been a situation that could and should have been handled by the state of Arizona and backed up by the federal government. Instead it has turned into an us versus them situation. Consciously choosing not to enforce the immigration laws that are on the books, the federal government is not letting Arizona worked on solving their own problem. There are either too many Republicans in Arizona or not enough unions in Arizona. During the summer of 2008, immigration was a hot issue. The many candidates for president at the time all have plans on how to handle the immigration problem on the border with Mexico. Then, the economy tanked and the priority shifted. Immigration was shelved albeit promised to be handled in the first year of the Obama presidency. We now know that a year and a half later, things are getting worse.
Arizona carefully crafted a law that would complement the federal law to give itself some power and authority to handle what it viewed as a problem. Although I know where Arizona is, I don't know firsthand the extent of their problem. However, they should be able to address the problem as they see fit. No one is coming to the rescue. Unlike the auto companies, unions, teachers unions, and all the other Democrat special interest, no one is coming to the rescue.
More erroneous assumptions are going to be made of this suggestion in this blog than any I have written. This is a prime example of what we "know" to be true not being true at all. OK, let's get to the topic...
I have just finished watching the DVD recording titled "9/11: Press for Truth." It has again raised questions that have bothered me since the tragedy of 9/11 occured. Like you, I have been programmed to think that I know the facts about 9/11. Like a robot, I think questions about it now are simply the acts of kooks who see conspiracies everywhere. But this IS different. These are legitimate and serious questions. People closest to the investigation of 9/11 smell a rat at the hightest levels of government.
A few items of note:
First up, Whitefish Bay’s 4th of July was a huge success, albeit a sweaty one. Thousands packed Silver Spring for the parade & Klode for the festival. Hats off to the WFB Civic Foundation for donating hundreds of volunteer hours, giving up their time for what is Whitefish Bay’s biggest party. They do an amazing service for our community.
President Obama is looking forward to the summer. Congress will be in recess and he can make appointments without the consent and advice of the Senate. He can tour the country using Air Force One to avoid the day-to-day responsibilities of his office and do the one thing he does well-campaign. He will be putting forth his best effort to further divide the country politically and do it all on taxpayers dollars.
Having little or no success of his own in his first half of his term of office, Obama will be preaching the rhetoric of his well-worn grooves-blaming Bush for the failures of the Obama presidency. Yes, according to President Obama, George Bush screwed things up so bad that President Obama cannot do what he was elected to do; fix-it.
Allow me to state right off that these comments of mine here are opinions. As such they may not be exactly factual and historically accountable. But I am open about this, unlike too much media today. But a blog is a blog is a blog. I try my best.
[UNHINGED: The Trouble with Psychiatry by Dr. Daniel Carlat] A recently published book by a highly-respected psychiatrist clearly documents how the pharmaceutical industry not only "buys" psychiatrists, it writes books for them in which they only add the name of the doctor. It is a scam, pure and simple. The fact that so many drugs have been found to have serious or life-threatening side-effects, should not come as a shock. The entire field of medicine and accompanying corporations comprise a heavily-fraudulent business. We are duped in the U.S. constantly by physicians, drug corporations, hospitals, HMOs, PPOs, etc. Medicine in America is no longer "practiced," it is far too often a part of a scam. And you and I suffer because of it.
We've all known for years that the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel panders to the liberal and Democrat candidates no matter how bad they are. That's an assumption that we'll just have to live with. They are starting to come up with some so-called news stories comparing Senator Russ Feingold to candidate Ron Johnson. If we are aware of this bias, we sometimes have to remind ourselves that it exists in order to read these columns without having to be interrupted to run to the cabinet to get the Alka Seltzer.
In one article, we are led to believe that the deciding factor on who we should send to Washington for the next six years should be based solely on if the candidate owns any type of stock in BP. Well, Ron Johnson on some outright, and Russ Feingold old and some through a mutual fund. Gosh, Wally, this doesn't make the decision crystal-clear. But, let's think this over. Who in their right mind would invest in an oil stock for a company that would at some point in the future cause an environmental disaster? The only good news is, the wealth of these two candidates has also been diminished by the decrease in the stock price. That makes us all feel good, right?
The weather forecast for the next week is HOT! I like hot but not being stuck inside with the AC cranked all day! Around 7pm or so the weather cools off a little and everyone emerges from inside. Try this recipe for Margaritas for a refreshing cocktail and friends will be on your patio right away!
(I love this recipe because the result is not too sweet)
1/2 can frozen limeade
Scoop 1/2 of a can of frozen limeade into a blender. Add 1/2 cup beer, splash of triple sec, 3/4 cup tequila and a splash of lime juice. Add ice and blend. Serve.
The folly of partisan political perspective is truly amazing in light of devious and shady happenings on both the left and the right. This has been taking place since the founding of the United States. In the midst of the current polarization of political differences, the variety of vehicles to express opinions has allowed extreme elements to broadcast their viewpoints in a more virulent manner.
Compromise and a mature approach to cooperation have suffered. Each political group feeds off this polarization, thus more and more they feel pure and sacred. Seeing other possibilities, other opinions, other ideas have become impossible. The U.S. has suffered because of it.
Back in the Ronald Reagan era, I began to use the term "war capitalism" in speeches and writings. It became obvious to me that the Reagan administration, led around by the nose by corporations that made ungodly sums of money when they could manipulate the U.S. into a war. The democratically-elected government of Nicaragua was not a threat to anyone, but the Reagan administration found reason to finance an illegal war against that elected government. It began to support the Contras clandestinely. When Congres began to smell a rat, Reagan went underground and made secret deals for weaponry with the nation of Iran. It all was pushed by certain corporations that I called "war corporations."
This has continued since then. Both political parties have had candidates and office-holders who did the bidding for these war corporations. No longer was the government of the United States and its military under the control of the American people, but fell under the control of private corporatons that not only bought votes, not only paid the White House and Congress to start wars [e.g. Greneda, Panama, etc.], but profits were made in astronomical amounts from these wars that were previously unknown. Our nation was being run by corporations that made immense profits from managing to get the U.S. into wars. Democracy be damned.
Brutal night last night .. there's a report from a rain gauge in Shorewood that recorded 11.6 inches of rain.
Suffice it to say, we got an overwhelming amount of rain last night. If there's a dry basement in Whitefish Bay, I'd like to hear about it. My street (5400 block of Kent) was flooded in the middle, with water lapping up against our front steps, and across the street, a home's basement window was partially submerged. A neighbor busted out his canoe and floated down the street. Brutal.
Just a few updates..
First off, the Village Hall is mostly without power, as water ruined their electrical panel. Some phones and computers are running off a portable generator. 911 operations have been moved to Bayside.
It is easy to sit on the sidelines and be a hero from the bench. Experiencing the guts of war and having an objective mind to evaluate what you've experienced is quite another. I'm not refering to men like George W. Bush, who used his father's pull in Congress and the Pentagon, to avoid going to Vietnam ...he protected Texas from the Vietcong air force. Or Dick Cheney who several times found some contrived reason to be exempt from the draft. Those two men PLAYED soldier, and paraded around like a great hero, and got mavelous contracts to foster wars that made huge profits for their buddy corporations. I'm not talking about George W. Bush and Karl Rove debasing the actual facts about John Kerry's heroism in Vietnam. No, I AM refering to men with real battle courage, men who fought in actual wars, knew what war meant and what real war means. I'm talking about men who truly can wear the mantle of HERO. What do they have to say?
"War, like any other racket, pays high dividends to the very few . . . The cost of operations is always transferred to the people who do not profit." -General Smedley Butler, twice awarded the Medal of Honor
Tired of cleaning your basement?
Tomorrow, Sunday 7/25 the annual "Whitefish Bay Classic" bike race is running. The first race starts at 11:30 and more follow until 8:30pm. The "pro" race starts at 5:45. Website here.
Actually, the Obama administration admits to one mistake. I'm not going to take a lot of time to discuss the Shirley Sharrod episode, because that is an actual distraction of what is really going on in America.
During the so-called summer, the Obama administration is trying to propagandize their accomplishments with the economy. And having done, we need distractions so that there is not a lot of time to examine the actual facts.