Tag Archives: federal

Think Of Others

All my life I have tried to be compassionate toward others and think how I would feel if someone would do this or that toward me. There are people that feel the same way, however, there are those that think only of themselves and not of others until it concerns them or a member of their family. Normally, these people are affiliated with a sect or movement that have the same mind set.

I understand the demonstrations for reopening the cities and states that are closed because of the COVID-19 virus. I understand that businesses are hurting because they cannot operate. I understand that people want to work because they live from paycheck to paycheck and they have bills to pay and need food on the table. I also understand the local and state governments that have closed most facilities in order to attempt to stop the virus and deaths.

I am not going to try to explain what the federal government is doing because, as they have said, they do not believe the data or science and the states are on their own. I do not want to be too quick to take the chance of living or dying by getting back to normal too soon. I have fought in Viet Nam and a few other small conflicts and have survived. I have also been through isolation while performing my military duties and have survived. Some of the military duties were much worse than the stay-at-home rule that is in force today.

While researching the forces behind these demonstrations I have found they are funded and condoned by the GOP and their big money donors. Extreme illness or death is not a good tradeoff for financial gain. The push behind reopening everything is political. Good financial business gives the GOP a good standing for the upcoming elections, or so they think.

While watching the news on television I heard more than one interviewed demonstrator say they did not care about other people, they only wanted to go where they wanted to go and have fun. They even said that the other people had to take care of themselves because they will do whatever they wanted to do. They are not responsible for whatever will happen to others.

So, in a nutshell, we are all in this together. Not only the USA but the world. With the virus spreading, travel is out of the question. With the spreading virus, state-to-state travel is dangerous. With the spread of the virus everyone is still in danger of falling ill and dying. I was a city police officer and have seen people disregard a restriction because they wanted to have their way. They were the first one to call for help when things went wrong and wanted people to risk their life to save them.

I wonder what these demonstrators would say if they were denied care, when they fall ill from the virus, when they disregard the safe distance rule and the stay-at-home rule. They should not have their cake and eat it too. If they disregard all rules and do whatever they want to do, should a life be at risk to save them?

DO NOT INGEST ANY TYPE OF DISINFECTANT FOR ANY REASON. The life you save maybe your own!

 

Lessons Learned

I remember, years ago when my daughter was in high school, she was having a problem with her schoolwork. I sat down with her to help as much as I could. I soon realized she never applied what had been taught but was applying what is being taught at the present time. I instructed her to go back and study earlier lessons. She told me she would not see that again therefore it was a waste of time to rehash old lessons. She said it was better to move on and forget it.
I believe we are at the same mindset today. We have forgotten lessons of the past, lessons that were attempted to be taught but all is forgotten. Learning from the past seems to be a forgotten art and when the old scenario comes along again it’s like seeing something new. It’s not new, it’s just not remembered. Most things considered new is not new but is in a different format and not recognized.
Everything that the Obama administration, through hard work and struggles put together, the Trump administration have undone or is attempting to undo or have forgotten it was ever done. The Obama administration had run a couple of exercises to see how a pandemic is spread, with the focus on finding the holes in trying to stop such a thing and if the USA was ready for a pandemic. It was in the works to fix the holes and make sure we were ready for the next pandemic. The incoming Trump administration joined in the last exercise the Obama administration ran and valuable lessons were learned.
After the Trump administration began operating the government, President Trump began to take apart everything that the Obama administration put together, good or bad, it was dismantled. Later, the Trump administration members, that were a part of the last pandemic exercise ran by the Obama administration, were either eventually fired or resigned. Lessons learned were now gone. The people ousted either didn’t pass on past information or the information was disregarded.
Now, in the wake of the newest pandemic, we are told that the government did not know a pandemic could hit us like this. However, this was practiced during the previous exercises. The holes in the system were recognized but were never completely fixed. The department for the pandemic response was dismantled by President Trump. Lessons learned were forgotten. Response to a pandemic was a thing for Obama, not Trump.
We should never forget our past, good or bad. It may, someday, visit us again. If we don’t remember the lesson learned, we will waste time learning the lesson anew. Lying about not knowing does not do any good but to hamper and hurt what is attempting to be done. We should let the experts say what needs to be done without politics getting in the way. When there is a political agenda, there is chaos and misinformation. When there are briefings with very little information, it is better not to have the briefing.
As of now, the states are doing more for the people than the federal government. The states seem to have learned the lessons from the exercises and their pandemic teams stayed in place and have responded. They never forgot the lessons of the past and is applying those lessons to deal with the new problem, all politics aside
NO AMOUNT OF EVIDENCE WILL EVER CONVINCE AN IDIOT. – Mark Twain

Go Straight To Jail

The normal individual would expect the court, whether federal or civil, to send a person straight to jail upon being found guilty of a crime. I have been in the federal court system as well as all the others. I have seen people released after a ‘not guilty’ verdict. I have seen others, upon being found guilty, being led out of court, being taken straight to jail.

There seem to be a pattern of influential people, or people that had power, getting slapped on the wrist, a sentence of a few days to a few months or very few years in jail. The light sentence can even be spent in the city jail or in a federal minimum custody prison. Then there is, as it is now with our government, months of freedom before reporting to jail. I know for sure that I couldn’t get anything close to any deal like that.

I have said many times, most of the time I am making a joke, the richer you are or the higher you are on the so-called food chain, the more likely there is not any jail time. Most of the time the crime will never go to court. Court is for the common person. A lot of jail time is for the common person. Going hand-in-hand is jail overcrowding.

In the penal system there are areas in the prison or jail that they call ‘private use’. This is where, I assume, prisoners with influence are held, not only for their protection, but because they are who they are. Just like I am who I am. I also do not think they would do well in ‘general population’. However, if I were to go to prison, I would not be considered for any special consideration.

Just about everyone in the present government administration have some type of criminal history attached to them, including the President. I can’t begin to name all the individuals involved nor the number of charges that is or could be against them. The President have many things against him at the federal and state level. If any case become a guilty verdict in court, their sentence will be delayed, time given to arrange their affairs before any jail time, then the minimum sentence that can be given.

If any ordinary person, accused of a crime, get indicted by a grand jury, being poor or by not having an influential status, will wait in jail until the grand jury speaks and await in jail until the trial (maybe they can make bail). When the verdict is given, the ordinary person will not be given time to arrange their affairs and go straight to jail. The President, concerning federal charges, probably will be pardoned. We will have to see what will happen with the state charges because he cannot be pardoned for those except by the governor of that state.

It would be wonderful for the rich and influential people get treated as does the normal people. That may be asking too much.

 

Retirement Woes

Growing up, there was this unrealistic assumption that being retired was a goal to achieve in order to live the waning years of life in complete peace, tranquility and ease. Yet, as this age of life is finally here, the stark truth of retirement is realized and most of it is not entirely the way it was envisioned. Those that are not overly wealthy find daily worries, wondering about the amount left in an account after the last shopping trip and before another sum is credited into the account. With that, to some, not being enough worry, politics enter the picture. Most elderly people think politics does not overly concern elderly individuals because they have retirement money, social security money and other income, for some not all).

These monies are for housing (even if the house is paid there is maintenance, taxes and insurance), food and utilities (not counting clothing and mild entertainment). Then account for the insurance for any medical issue. Politics have a strong and lasting effect on all of this. As one catastrophic example, imagine a person depending on retirement money from a corporation. Then imagine politics forcing that corporation to declare bankruptcy. Now the corporation cease to exist and so goes the retirement money. And, in a domino effect, there goes the way of life for the retiree, that is if the retiree is not independently self sufficient. Also think about depending on work place health insurance. If you stop working, where does health insurance fit in?

As the political scene tease, change and outright stabs a person in their heart, the retiree, like me, wonders what will tomorrow bring. Will I have enough money for housing needs, food, medical care and, politicians don’t want to hear this, entertainment. Politicians have their way mapped out for them and they don’t worry about their future. We the people pay their way. People with money don’t worry because they have their life and they don’t worry or care about those without money. Sure, they give a little to this cause or that cause but for the most part it is only a drop of water in a very large bucket.

We all have to worry about our political scene as it is presented to us today not yesterday. We not only have to look at what is happening now but what will happen in the future when certain bills are passed and bestowed on us and our children. What hoops will our children have to jump thru to reach retirement (or will they be able to retire). The life of peace, tranquility and ease will be snatched away and replaced with doubt and angst.

I’ll throw one more wrench into the machinery and leave this train of thought alone for a while. Don’t believe being ex-federal (civilian or military) leaves you immune to all that is happening in politics. The politicians are attempting to not only put deep cuts into things non-federal but they are looking at the military (don’t believe everything that you have heard about the military), federal hospitals and everything else that is federal. It will be a little slower coming than the rest that is proposed but, if they have their way, it is coming. Everybody that does not have a large sum of money will be on shaky ground with no where to run. And remember one other thing, if you voted for the present administration, you either have what you wanted or you will get what you want. Oh well.

In closing, although this is not a woe, my wife and I, again, was able to enjoy an entertainment before cuts are made in my monies. Where did we go? The annual Hampton Jazz Festival in beautiful Hampton, Virginia. As usual, the artists this year were outstanding and, of course, I saw my favorite, Fantasia. The line-up look like this: (Friday Night) Jill Scott, Kem, Brian Culbertson, Gerald Albright & Jonathan Butler. (Saturday Night) The O’Jays, Fantasia, Anthony Hamilton, West Coast Jam featuring Richard Elliot, Norman Brown & Rick Braun. (Sunday Night) Maze featuring Frankie Beverly, Patti LaBelle, Ramsey Lewis, Bobby “Blackhat” Walters. All of this was performed in the Hampton Coliseum and it was the 50th Anniversary for the festival.

This fall, across the street from the coliseum at the Convention Center, will be the annual Hampton Jazz Legion. We will be there also because, like I have said before, I love jazz and want to attend live performances. Both programs are always sold out well in advance and so are hotel spaces. In fact, people usually get tickets and hotels a year in advance of the performance.

Try to stay safe and cool. Have a great summer and be kind to others. See ya!!!

Coco Cay, Bahamas

No Nation Is An Island

No man is an island,
Entire of itself,
Every man is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manor of thy friend’s
Or of thine own were:
Any man’s death diminishes me,
Because I am involved in mankind,
And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls;
It tolls for thee.

John Donne

I must have hit a nerve with my last posting because I did not get any comments nor did I get any likes although the posting was read by a few people. Therefore I am posting a more controversial topic…the Republican Convention/Donald Trump. I was slightly miffed when I didn’t get my usual reviews but this is not a job and I am not getting paid.

The Republican Convention is over, and, in my personal view, with nothing accomplished except for hate and discontent among everybody against everybody. Even the former ex-chief of the KKK is running for senator because of the rants and ravings of that convention. The KKK love what is going on and the ignorant party members bought these rash statements of a bigoted know nothing. David Duke and the KKK love hate and dissension and they see, finally, progress in their quest for regaining power.

Why am I being so harsh about this, you say? I am an American although my skin and thinking is not that of Donald Trump. He and the KKK want to corral me into the groupings of all the people they think should not be apart of this great nation. Make the nation great again…I never thought it wasn’t. I have served my country in peace and in war and retired from it to serve again as an employee at a federal facility. By doing this, I have found the nation greater than any nation I visited. I have had the opportunity to have a look into the workings of many other governments and then ask myself one simple question. Would I want to live under that type of government? The answer was always a huge “NO”. However, ask the Republican, the one that have never been in the service or never wanted to go, which country is the greatest and all you will hear is rhetoric, never a straight answer.

Mr. Trump say get out of NATO, USAFE, SEATO, etc. and all other defensive/offensive organizations that are designed to not only protect allied nations but, in the long run, protect us. How can a person that does not know what is in the Constitution or Declaration of independence say what we, as Americans, should and can believe in. His ranting words fell on my deaf ears as soon as he started talking around very pointed questions and then started talking nonsense. There was always raves about what he was going to do to fix things but never, ever about how this was to be accomplished. All I can say is the people that heard this and went along with it are just as stupid as he is. The USA is in trouble if he gets elected, in my humble opinion.

So far, most Republican members of Congress are not with him on most things. Good. But, I wonder how he expect to get what he wants, carte blanc, without the blessing of Congress. Then, many Republican Congressmen are up for re-election this year. Will they be re-elected to maintain that majority? We will see. If they are not re-elected and do not maintain the majority, what will happen.

It is almost over and now we will have the Democratic Convention. This should be a boring four days compared to the last four. Let us hope for the best and that saner minds prevail. Pray to God that the people will open their minds and think. I truly believe that anything is better than Trump, but, have it your way. And you will. This is a democracy and as a democracy the people will have it their way via a secret ballot. Let us pray they are right with whomever they choose. Remember, no nation is an island and the bell may be tolling for us. May God have mercy on us all.