voting

I started a post about going to the caucus last night. For those of you who are wondering, I live in Iowa at the moment and I decided to be a party of history that only happens every four to eight years. Iowa is one of the few states that hold caucuses for both the Republican and Democratic parties. Iowa is also one of the few states where indies have to register as one or the other, which I find wrong unless the Independent decides to vote for Republican or Democrat.

Being outside the Party system, I tend to be more of a socialist. Socialism, despite the propaganda, is not the same as Communism. Communism is the system where all business and property is owned by the government and is, theoretically, supposed to be shared by the population. In theory, profits, leadership, and property are free to be used by the population. Understand that I am speaking theoretical. Ideally, this system should be the best. But, with all Ideal systems, it only works on paper.

Socialism, on the other hand, looks at the needs of the population. Fairness is a key rule in socialism. Raised as a Christian, I took on a socialist view based on the teachings of Christ (at first) and became sort of an outcast. I came to realize that though Christianity is supposed to be based upon the very teachings that I had come to see as Socialist, it is not truly based upon those very ideals. This caused me to search for the best ideals from all faiths. Yes, I own a copy of nearly every “Holy” book. I can compare memes posted on Facebook with actual verses from the Quran, Bible, Essential Rumi, Bhagavad Gita, Tibetan Book Of The Dead, and Kabbalah. The only book I do not have is the Torah, which I have been told is similar to the Old Testament of the Bible, but with a few books not recognized by Christians.

Since the death of my father, I have also acquired a copy of the Apocrypha. The books that have been removed from the Bible, but were well known in the Middle Ages and oft quoted. But I veer away from my topic with this.

Returning to what I started with, Socialism is a deep concern for the welfare of the people. There is not the desire to take ownership of business away from those who own them. there is just a deep desire and drive to make all equal under the law and reform laws so that they benefit the masses, not just a handful. We see a need for change. A need for advancement, not remaining in the same old pattern that has brought us to our knees as a country. We believe in progress that benefits all. We believe in taking care of the people through ensuring reforms that give them fair treatment. We see a need to help the poor, the sick, the orphans, the elderly, and the stranger.

Sadly, no other group actually believes in this. Many within both parties are too concerned with the rich and the powerful. They allow themselves to compromise the principles they claim to believe in.They allow themselves to be bought and sold by those who would rather take rights away from people than to share in the wealth that their employees help them make. We believe in education for all, equally, without a high price. We believe in healthcare for all without a high price. We believe in equal representation, not inequality. We believe in rights for all, not just a select few. We believe in moving on past outdated and obsolete beliefs and social norms.

We believe that all can live in peace. We believe that war is largely unnecessary. We believe that all faiths can live peaceably side by side. History has even shown this, yet too many are so quick to jump in the war wagon when there is an ideological difference born from wars in the past that were less about what one believed than it was about who could benefit from the control of a piece of desert, region, and market. Greed is behind every war ever fought. It was behind the rise of the Third Reich, It was behind the Civil War (refusal to change one’s own market from simple plantation economy to enable one to make their own products, the refusal to mechanize because one has a ready free labor source, etc. is still forms of greed based on willful ignorance). It has been behind every war since WWI and WWII in one form or another.

For a Christian, it is supposed to be wrong (and this is taken straight from Christ’s own words) to refuse help to those in need. One is supposed to go to the “lost” and serve them. Serving does not mean preaching how wrong they are. It means giving of yourself unconditionally. If someone asks, then you can proclaim your faith. One is not supposed to desire earthly riches, power, or notoriety. In fact, they are to be willing to share all they have with others. Yes, they are supposed to love all (they are not to have even one ounce of hate in the heart, because where there is hate, Godly love cannot exist), show compassion toward all (even those they do not share views with), be generous, be kind, always tell the truth, be long suffering, be fair and unbiased. They are to remember that they, too, are sinners and not to raise any above another in preference.

Yet today, many who profess this do not live it. They hate because of color, creed, ethnicity, social status, sexual preference, and other differences. They thrive on greed and selfish motives. They refuse to see their social responsibility, preferring to see it as the responsibility of others. They deal with their own unfairly, paying unfair wages for hard work. They wage needless wars in the name of religion and profit. And yet, they want to call themselves Christian. They give all Christians a bad name. They are the reason other faiths tend to detest Christians. But they are so blinded by their own view of themselves that they cannot see.

Remember that I grew up “Christian”. I grew up in a cult that thought of themselves as the only ones—the elect. We were supposed to be the only true Christians. And when I was a child, I believed in the dogma. Then, as I grew, I began to question. And read. And study. And I realized just how wrong we, and the whole of Christendom were…and still are. We focus way too much on physical deeds, physical appearances, and selfish desires to “save” others.

I came to realize that we can’t “save” anyone, least of all ourselves.we are just as lost, without the illusive grace we are always taught about, as those we think need saving. Grace. Exactly what is it?

Grace, for a Christian, is the realization that through their belief in the sacrifice of Christ they are saved and that there is nothing they can do to further that salvation. It is the idea that we are unable to change human nature and it tendency to do all that is unnatural (things we are taught, not born with) without help. It is the realization that following Christ makes one reject the physicality that religion tends to emphasize so much. It tears away the veil, allowing us to realize that our struggle is not to save others from themselves, it is our struggle to allow ourselves to be worked with and through in order to cleanse our own souls of the evils we perceive in others.

In fact, grace is central to almost every form of faith, as is love and the ideas of being unselfish. It is the part that every militant “follower” ignores. It is the true fundamental that fundamentalists refuse to follow in their zeal to cleanse others of infidelity to religion. It is also the one thing that “conservatives” and “liberals” fail to grasp. It is the natural impulse of humanity, better known as humaneness. It drives us to do good rather than evil.

It is the driving rule that makes Socialism what it is. Social conscience, being conscious of the needs of all around you, rather than focusing on the desires of the self and the minority. It is having a true focus rather than having limited focus that falsifies universal truths to benefit a minority. It drives us to see that there is but one race, the human race, which is made diverse in color but alike in the path we all travel. It drives us to strive to build bridges, rather than dig ditches or draw boundaries, between all. It drives us to continue to learn and grow while others stagnate and die spiritually.

As I stated in the beginning of this post, I went to the Iowa Caucus. More accurately, I went to the Democratic caucus since there isn’t one held for Independent candidates. I went in support of the only Democratic Socialist on the Democratic ticket. I supported the only candidate I felt was right for the job. But, then, I have always been a visionary. I have always seen through the illusions of the popular candidates. I have always been able to tell when a candidate was not sincere and was just going with the crowd. Empty words mean no results. The same old same old. No change.

I know that I was a part of history. I know that I helped keep the candidate’s head above the water, so to speak. I kept him in the race. I can only hope that America can see the same vision soon and understand that thing need to change. We need to get back to our roots of being concerned for those less fortunate. We need to move beyond the color barrier that has been set before us by bygone generations. I hope that we can move beyond all other barriers they have set. If we don’t, then we-as a nation-are doomed.

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Wondering Allowed…

If one is really interested, My current book is about family. I know, you couldn’t tell by how it started. Or maybe you could. I don’t know.

Matt is the patriarch/brother of a family fractured by their past. This is not a romance. It is straight forward writing at its finest. No magic. No romantic fantasy.

It is simply a family’s journey. Matt, the brother, has saved his siblings from being a group of messed up drug addicted hippie-wannabes. One by one, he has rescued all his siblings from the twisted commune their mother was a part of…though the 70s will be more rescuing the children from the “swinger/swapper orgies that were post hippie and accompanied the disco drug/decadence decade. Being the oldest, Matt takes it on himself to raise them away from all that, even though he succumbs to the drugs and alcohol later. He puts them all through school. Teaches them all the beauty of music and being creative.

Yet, he fights demons all his own. His raising his brothers and sisters destroys his marriages, and his self esteem. His oldest sisters, both younger than him, take it upon themselves to redeem their brother. First from the drugs. then from the loveless relationships he finds himself in. Then, finally from the alcohol…and himself.

In some ways, this story mirrors the events of today. Today, we are dealing with the backlash-albeit forty years too late-from the sixties and seventies. Our leaders are more radical, in a totally different way, than their fathers and mothers who joined the love-ins and the communes of the sixties or took part in the swingers/swappers clubs and the drug infested discos of the seventies. Or they are the misguided children of the offspring of those who fought the war against war–or went to Vietnam because they felt it was their duty.

Don’t get me wrong. I am not for or against either side. I do realize, however, that there are, like Albert (Matt’s brother) observes, those who are reinstating a form of more radical McCarthyism all the while painting it as a religious movement and attacking those who are poor or black or Muslim or just plain different. (I know, a run on sentence without proper comma usage. sue me.) For those who do not know what McCarthyism is, or was, here is a small rundown.

Between 1950 and 1956, Senator Joseph McCarthy began what was to become one of the largest with hunts this country has ever seen. Until now. It was not against heretics or actual witches, but rather, against so-called communists. Many innocent Americans were banded Communist simply because they disagreed with him and his followers (sound familiar?). thousands of people lost their jobs and citizenship because they were either card carrying communists or they had “commie” friends. Or they were willing to stand up to the panel set up to judge them un-American.

Today, there is a minority who think themselves patriotic, who think in much the same way. Their targets, though, are no longer just communists. In fact, their list of “enemies” have grown to include anyone of color, any who are not “Christian”, any who are not white, and any who are “Sexually deviant” in their views. (Sounds a bit like the Nazi party, doesn’t it?)

In fact, it is this group that forces-in the story-Albert to quit politics altogether. He cannot stand the lies and hypocrisy they represent, nor the ignorance they spread in the place of actual fact. He is, in a lot of ways, like me. So is his brother Sam, who hates politics.

In a way, this story is about how one family remains close even when things seem the bleakest. It is about how the younger members strive to get their savior (in this case, their oldest brother) to see that he is worth more than he believes.

The flashbacks are pivotal moments, whether it is him removing a sibling from his mother’s care or a career high, in his life. Some will even be graduations and successes, and even traumas of other kinds, in his siblings lives…which ultimately are highs in his own life. It is also giving the views of each character.

There is no sex, other than what is mentioned in passing. No actual love scenes. No romance. After all, his marriages are all loveless. Those he marries, as I mentioned early on, marry him solely for what he has…be it fame or be it money. Or both. Or for what they think he is like. None will last very long, and none will even remember what he had done for them. But all will have children by him. None of which will be allowed to know their father.

Ah, but I am getting ahead of myself. Suffice it to say that the story is going to get very interesting. Especially once I am finished with his time travel/dream sequences.

Something’s Bugging Me…

First of all, let me say that we have a HUGE crop of idiots who think they are fit to run a country. I have never seen a dumber bunch of sheep in my life. It really is true: the greedier you become, the less smart you become. I am serious.

This is from a man who lives in a state that elected a seditious Pig de-nutter who borders on bestial in her behavior. (I am sorry, but unlike most of my fellow Iowans, I did pay attention to what remarks my vying candidates and anyone who threatens to shoot anyone who tries to disarm her is seditious. And anyone who brags about biting the nuts off a pig during castration is bordering on bragging about bestiality. Neither of which I find very attractive in a candidate) And I did not vote for the one who was elected.

Even more, it alarms me that our current crop of so-called leaders are attacking the elderly, handicapped, ill, widowed, and-most of all-the poor. But we must also toss the veterans into this mix, because, even though the Iowan who went to Washington was a fellow military putz, Congress refused to give the veterans they made with the last wars any compensation for the time and lives spent on their unneeded battlefield. (No, I do not think all in the military are putzes. just those who refuse to help their fellow service people who fought for THEM.)

Even worse, though, are these putzes who think they are worthy of the White House. Let’s run through them.

1. Romney: I am sorry, but someone who has been caught admitting to not paying taxes, being a part of an investment firm that cost millions their livelihood, and is so out of touch with reality that even his wife makes the mistake of thinking that canned tuna signifies poverty does not deserve the Presidency. Especially when he literally insults 47% of the population with a quip that they do not count. Who in their right mind tells anyone that they do not matter? I guess his children got it right when they distorted Romney into R-Money. Go crawl back under the rock you came out from under, Willard. We don’t need a delusional rich white boy who has no clue about life on the streets. And if you run this round? Tell your wife and kids to keep their mouths shut…and warn your oldest not to pull the stunt of trying to buy voting machines. Not that it will save you from defeat.

2. Ted Cruz. Why is he even running? wasn’t it proven that he was born in Canada? Just because someone is born in Canada does not, last I knew, make him a Natural US born citizen. It makes him just another immigrant. It also makes them a Canadian. Go back to Canada and spread your disease, Ted. We don’t need you here.

3. Rubio. Get a clue, dude. Just because you are of Cuban descent does not make you an expert on anything. Grow the Fuck up. I would Vote Arnie Schwarzenegger before I would Cruz or Rubio…and I know that he can’t legally run either. (said with a touch of sarcasm)

4. Huckabee. Michael Huckabee. I have only heard one who has uttered stoopider (misspelling intentional) things…OK, more than one, but the point is STFU. Nobody cares about your parenting advice. You didn’t do so hot with your own children, so you really shouldn’t be giving pointers. And Beyonce music? Really? I guess if it isn’t The Saints Came Marching In or whatever tripe the KKK uses as their anthem, it ain’t music. Sorry to tell you but all music is music, whether you like it or not. As a musician, I seriously doubt the abilities of anyone who has to hate on a musician just because of their color. Really? Did you realize that almost all her love songs are to her HUSBAND? She sure as hell ain’t singin’ to her secretary or even to her cabana boy.

5. Ricky Santorum. OK, so here is one just a tad dumber than Huckabee. If you haven’t noticed, Santorum, you lost relevance when defending Chick-Fil-A. Even the name sounds…twisted.

6. Rand Paul. Any man who mocks those who are disabled should have his nuts removed and his back broken…then any aid denied based on his comments about others in that position. He is not fit to lead this country.

7. Sarah Palin. While I have no problem with women in the Presidency, I am very opposed to this one. she has done nothing but made herself look like an idiot from day one. only two women in Congress was ever any dumber than her. Anne Coulter and Michelle Bachmann. Neither of which are fit for the Presidency. And the popular VP choice with this one: Ted Nugent? I am sorry, but I would vote Joe Walsh before I voted any ticket with Nugent.

8. Jeb Bush. Really? Do we really need another boring Shrub in the White House to mess things up even more? I mean papa lied and brother started a war that only benefited his VP’s corporation. Really. We do not need three. We are still cleaning up the messes left by the first two.

I am not sure I have touched on all the possible GOP candidates, but this is the list I know of…so far. And I wouldn’t vote for a single one, even if they were to be the only ones running. Hell no!

But our problems don’t stop there. We have a whole crop of “leaders” who would take us back to the Dark Ages both religiously and scientifically. They are so fearful of the truth that they have even ceased to read the Bible for fear they might actually learn something. Oh, sure, they wave it like there is no tomorrow in making all a convert to their madness, but they have ceased to LIVE it. Their sole reason for being is to hate everyone and everything that is different.

And it is spurred on by so called religious leaders.

1. Pat Robertson. He is in his eighties, far richer and prouder than any true man of God should be. Full of himself, he preaches riches and fame to any who will believe his falsehoods. He preaches hate toward all brothers not of his color or sexual preference. “He who says ‘I love God, but hates his brother is a liar. For how can you hate your brother whom you have seen, but love God Whom you have not?” (I John 4: 20)

Of course, there are many others who have followed this man’s path of preaching wealth, health, and happiness, then turning into bigots and oppressing the poor and destitute, but Pat Robertson has made a life of doing so.

For those who wonder:

No I am not a Republican. Nor am I a Democrat. Or anti-Christian. Their false leaders have already done more damage than I could ever do. They have built the perfect beast. One that only sees money, fame and power as its meal ticket. They are the ones who have destroyed the image of Christians world-wide through their hate and malice…very things they were supposed to rid themselves of a long time ago.

There is nothing conservative about Christianity. It demands that followers care about the people around them. Serving them, not preaching to them. We can declare our faith without preaching. Through our way of life, not our words. We are to be giving, kind and willing to help wherever necessary.

We are to lack judgment when it comes to those around us, not condemning the world for what they do. Rather, praying for them. We are to wish for no one’s death. For in doing so, we have condemned ourselves.

If I Were To Run for Office….

The problem with politics is that it is a messy, corrupt world. To clean it up, we would have to do a lot of reforming. And these reforms would reach all the way to the state levels. Maybe even the municipal levels.

Being from the very bottom, I have been able to see what needs to be fixed. I have noticed that it is too easy to become corrupt when a Congressman can run for unlimited terms. It is also rife with bribery in the form of “special Interest” monies. Big Business can talk themselves into all sorts of tax breaks and we, the little people, are the ones who pick up the tab.

The Koches were currently recorded in an interview as saying that they only want a balanced budget in Washington. OK, boys. That means you better stop asking for tax breaks and start towing the line. Every American, that has income from employment coming in, is responsible for helping balance the budget. That means that even companies, since they want individual status, are expected to pay their taxes just like the lower and middle class. Same with the ultra rich. No more special treatment.

Banks: We’ll be watching you. Since you want to act like individuals, you can follow the laws like individuals. Get caught in criminal activities, you are shut down and your people go to prison. Same with any big business. No more “too big to pay” crap. We, the people, are fed up with it.

Media: We passed “yellow press” laws back in the 1800s to end the political siding. Start following the law, or get your asses shut down or reorganized. No more lies. No more innuendo. No more passing the blame. Just the news. Nothing but the news.

Congress: You are hereby cut down to a two-term limit. If things can’t get done in two terms, then you are in the wrong business and I am amazed that your personal businesses have survived for as long as they have. Here is the other thing. This disruption you call working. Stop or be indicted for treason. That is exactly what it is. Plain and simple. No more anti-anything. No more warmongering. Back off from waging wars overseas. Time to focus on our own people.

Lobbyists: you are now banned from WDC. Get packing. If you belong to a corporation, go home. If you are veterans lobbyists, then you are still welcomed to stay. If you are lobbying for the rights of the little people, you are still welcome. But corporate and gun lobbyists, take a hike. Until you can come up with some useful legislation on any of the issues-and by useful, I mean something that benefits anyone other than yourselves-facing our country, stay out of Washington. We don’t need you.

Tea Party: You are a disgrace to America. Your sedition shall not go unpunished. Since you all want a country of your own, get the hell out of the US and go to some place like Antarctica and set up your country there. I hear they have wonderful skiing there. And no minorities. and no taxes. Of course, you can’t grow much there, so you would have to rely on a lot of imports. If there was any country willing to send you imports.

You try to equate yourselves with a group of people from our past that would be ashamed to call you Americans. You have soiled their memories by acting as if taxation of any kind is evil. They were poor men fighting against already high taxes. they weren’t successful men with thousands/hundreds of thousands/ millions who felt as if they were being unjustly taxed. They were farmers and business owners who were about to lose their livelihoods through the taxes imposed by a distant government that just did not care. And the Rich? They were on the side of the apathetic government. They were loyal to the crown.

So take your misinformation, your hate, your sedition, your need to be macho through carrying a gun (because you lack something else. Balls.), Your misguided ideals or purity, your lack of judgment in wanting “Biblical” law (which would be the end of even you), your hypocrisy, and your bully tactics and leave if you do not like it here. go set up your own government elsewhere, far far away from us. We do not need or want your kind here.

Education Reformers: The problem with public education is not the teachers. It is idiots like you who only weigh education in measurements of money earned or money spent. Education, though an investment, is not the investment you want to make it out to be. You cannot conceivably invest dollars into a school and expect an immediate dividend. No, the investment is seeing your child able to go and pursue whatever profession they desire. You don’t privatize them.

You cannot engineer out human frailty, either. No matter how you try, there will still be children who will be weak at math, or English, or science. You cannot engineer the perfect worker. Even if you cloned workers, you would still be limited by the weakness of the original. Quit trying to play God.

How do you fix the problems in education? Let me tell you. Combining schools is not the answer. Neither is closing schools. The best way to fix schools is to change view on how you fund them. Instead of punishing them for losing students, you should actually fund them even more to help them fix their inadequacies.

You don’t change how curriculum is taught or learned. Common Core? I call it Common Crap. It serves no purpose other than to frustrate the children and adults alike. And the constant testing? Nothing but a bunch of bull. An educator once admitted, back in the eighties, that all testing did was see how well children take tests and follow directions. It does not prove how well they are versed in any subject.

“No Child Left Behind” left all the children behind. It was just another excuse for legislators to toy with the schools. “Race To The Top”? Who is racing? Definitely not the children. You are delusional if you think any of your so-called reforms has done any bit of good. Education was doing fine, except that you constantly underfund it, until you started messing with it and began changing things that should have been left alone.

Yes, the only problem that educators ever really faced was that of being underfunded and undervalued. I had wonderful teachers when I went to school. innovative. Inspiring. The best they could be with as little as they were allowed to work with.

The things I would make off-limits:

1. Medicare/Medicaid. This is not something that is available for you, politicians, to mess with and try to take away.

2. Social Security. What did your parents ever do to you to make you hate the elderly so much?

3. SSI. What have the ill and handicapped done to piss you off? Is it because you have never suffered that you hate them so?

4. Welfare. Any country that is unwilling to help its own underemployed, unemployed, underpaid, and impoverished will not last long.

5. universal healthcare. Of course, if the health insurance companies had been doing their jobs, this would not have been needed. But since it has been introduced, many have benefitted from it. why take it away?

The things I will make a point in changing:

1. Congressional salaries, pensions, and health insurance. Seasonal work gets seasonal pay. Since you do not want to raise minimum wage and want to gut social security and Medicare, you will have a choice.
a. To take the lowest average Social Security monthly check amount, every month for your terms, with Medicare level healthcare
b. To take minimum wage, no health insurance, no possible pension. This is what seasonal labor gets. I know. I used to work at seasonal jobs.

No more salaries for life. No more mooching off the tax payers you seem so intent on screwing. You attack the poor, Ok, I would make you walk a mile in their shoes. Why? Because I am one of them. And I know how to make money stretch. We would find a way to freeze your million dollar bank accounts and make you live off the meager paychecks you seem intent on making those you attack live off of. We would see how quick we can affect a change of heart from you all.

2. Corporate subsidies. No more. Billion dollar businesses can sustain their own weight. Time o focus on the small business and give them the boost they need. While I am on this, Corporations that make over a billion dollars would be expected to pay their fair share in taxes. No more tax breaks. If you cannot pay your taxes like the rest of us, you do not deserve to be in business. If you cannot support yourself, you do not deserve to be in business.

3. Minimum wage would be raised. Veterans pensions and benefits will be raised.

4. Education “reform” would be stopped and reversed so that true reform can be made. What has been classed as reform is nothing more than “education for profit”. It is not real reform. Money managers, get the hell out of education. Corporate investors, hit the road. Education is no longer for sale.

5. Military. No more wars without justifiable cause. No more overspending for weapons of mass destruction. We pull out of every foreign country we have invaded. We reassess our priorities. And then, we train a home-guard.

We would still respect our treaties and our responsibilities to our allies. But no more meaningless invasions for capital gains.

6. No more sending our jobs overseas. No, No and No. No more. Any business with more than 25% of their company overseas would be classed as a foreign business and will face taxes and tariffs. Cheap labor would cost you more than simple recalls. It would cost you in taxation. Welcome to the real America.

7. Jobs. I would see that more get created. This means investing in new businesses. It means bringing back jobs sent overseas. It also means raising wages so that workers can actually afford to live and prosper. The war on poverty is not taking the welfare system away, it is creating the jobs so people have something to do. There will always be a minority among those in the system who will abuse it, but that is no reason to remove the system that benefits so many when things are the toughest for them.

8. No more class warfare. Enough is enough. Stop the blame game. Reunite. Become a country again.

9. SCOTUS would be reviewed every year of their terms and would be replaced if found to be incompetent or seditious. Our judges need to be the wisest, not the richest, of the land. We need a younger, more diverse panel of SCOTUS judges. Judges worthy of their jobs. Judges that will stand for the laws, not sit down and play passive with major corporations. They should also be independent of any political party and should not be allowed any vested interest in any corporation. They should remain impartial and fair.

10. Congressmen who refused to do their jobs, whether through filibustering or through all out defiance toward the POTUS, would be docked in pay every time they failed to do their job. they would only get three warnings, like any other job, then would be removed from office as incompetent and would be replaced by someone who wanted to do the work. In the real world, this is what happens when people do not do their jobs, It should be also how it is done in WDC.

11. Any spreading hate would be seen as a threat to national security. Why? Because those spreading hate destabilize governments, cause sedition, and destroy the countries they are in. Intolerance would not be tolerated.

Biased “news” agencies would have their licenses revoked. If they were owned by a foreign company, their owners would be forced to leave the country. Any false information would invoke heavy, heavy fines. Continual misinformation would result in closure, and the imprisonment of those who perpetrated the wrongs. As Joe Friday always said on Dragnet, “The facts, Ma’am, Just the facts.

12. Political ads. No more negative ads. Stick with the issues, not what the opponent has or has not done. Also. I would end the super PACs. I would remove the corporate-political connection. Fair playing field for all. Honesty would have to take precedence over playing dirty. No one could run on the backing of someone wanting to influence change for any selfish reasons. donations would be fine, but not the pooling of money for corporate agendas.

13. I would fight to overturn Citizens United. I was not invited to be a part because I am not classed by its creators as a citizen (I do not have billions/millions of dollars, therefore am not classified as a citizen in the traditional Roman* way. It is not in the best interest of any average US citizen, it does not fight to lessen the taxation on the lesser citizens, it is for corporate greed alone. It benefits no one.

14. I believe in fair taxation for all. This means that all, not just the majority, would be expected to pay their share. Want a balanced Federal Government? pay your taxes, rich people. (And corporations)

15. I would press for ethics reform, making it harder for corruption to take root in the hearts and minds of our leaders. any who have vested interests in any corporation would be banned from running for office. It is a conflict of interest.

Several laws would be changed as well. No more open carry. No concealed carry unless you had proper training. Anyone who feels they need to carry a gun when they leave home to go to the store has a problem. Maybe they need a shrink to work that fear out. No one should fear leaving home so much that they need to carry a gun. I don’t. If someone is going to shoot me, they won’t necessarily do it fair and square. Maybe fairly sudden and squarely in the back, but not face-to-face…or even at a range I will be able to see them from.

Gun control does not equal confiscation of all guns. It means enforcing responsible actions to ensure that there is a fair amount of safety whenever a gun is bought or sold. It means making sure the person that is buying the gun is mentally stable. It means ensuring that they don’t have a criminal record. And it also means ensuring that they are a responsible person.

I am all for others owning guns. I just don’t want to go to the store and see a semi-automatic strapped to another shopper’s back. I also do not want to go outside one morning and become target practice for my neighbor who just happened to slip a cog or go off the deep end. This is what gun control is to me. Common sense. Knowing that even if you are packing, you won’t always see the person who shoots you. Hell. Maybe they won’t shoot you. Maybe they decide to run you over.

Quit trying to relive the old west. Quit trying to be John Wayne. The old west is gone. John Wayne was the only one who could be John Wayne. Grow up. Get a life. Realize that carrying a gun actually makes you a target. It makes you just as bad as those you see as hoodlums or thugs. You have become the thug.

To the religious right. Enough already. It doesn’t take a brain surgeon to realize that the only reason you want Biblical Law is because you get off on forcing your views onto others. You are less concerned about Christian living and more concerned about appearance. Get over yourselves. If you were half as Christian as you try to make people believe, then you would not be so full of hate. You would not Judge. You would not condemn. You would not be preaching the death of anyone.

If you were as Christian as you claim, you would not be oppressing the poor. You would not be seeing the world in black or white. You would see all, even that gay man you love to hate, as your neighbor and brother. You would stop your hypocrisy and begin a life of humility. And your leaders would not be charlatans and shysters. They would be fine moral examples of Christian living, not rich, money-grubbing, media whores who will “pray” for anyone for the viewers’ hard earned money. And they definitely would not involve themselves in political doings.

I would, if ever put into an office, be tempted to fine any religious entity heavily for such foolishness as I have witnessed online. Yes, I would be going after the Pat Robertsons of the religious community and any other preaching hate or sedition toward the government.

Though I am a Christian myself, I do not see these hate mongers or seditious leaders as my equals, or even as my peers. They are not even close to being in the same league with me. Hate has no place in the heart of a Christian.

***

People, above you see the platform I would be running on if I were to run for a political office. Being an Independent, I would have to switch allegiance and go Democrat, even though I do not agree fully with their philosophy. Perhaps I am a bit radical, but I have only put what I see needs to be fixed. And I am not the only one who sees this as needed. Many others do too.

Do I want to run? No. Will I? If others want me to, yes. I hate politics. I hate the games they play. The corruption. The lies and innuendo. The utter stupidity that has gripped those we deign (but should refrain from) calling competent leaders.

Call me chicken, but I do not like being in a position of authority any higher than parent. Or business owner…if I ever make it that far. But at the same time, I also hate to see a whole population of citizens go about misinformed, underpaid, and turned against one another by those who would have you think that they are out for your common good.

I know my history. I know my law. I also know what the constitution does and does not say. And what some pass off as constitutional content is just not how it is written or meant.

I also know what isn’t working in business. The policy of greed is killing American business. Why else would successful car manufacturing businesses fail? (No, it had nothing to do with the consumer) With multi-million salaries at the top, and near slave wages at the bottom, and crappy turnout on products due to shipping everything overseas so that they could have cheaper labor, it is no wonder.

Traditional business ethics is failing. Why? because modern businesses have no ethics. I know that no person is worth 4.5 million a year. No one is worth 1 million a year. No, not even pro athletes. This means that all those CEOs and top management staffers making millions are overpaid and underqualified. Meanwhile, the labor is underpaid and overqualified. Sadly, though, business classes do not teach actual responsible business practices. If they did, all businesses would pay a flat salary for all.

I know. I have stated this before, but here is my reasoning. If you take a quarter of a business’s earnings and use that as a flat salary for all, giving all the same pay despite their age, gender, title, or ethnicity then you would be able to pour one fourth into research and development, one fourth as taxes and expenditures, and the final fourth would be applied to upkeep and updating. Keeping ahead in the business so to speak.

But, those at the top of the business seem to think that just because their company is making a HUGE profit, that gives them the right to raise their salaries to ungodly levels. Then, they wonder why their company is suffering a money drain. And they never look at themselves. Always at the bottom.

I would promote change in this area, if I was ever asked to take an office. I would try to reform business as much as I would try to reform politics.

A List Of My Actual Goals For The New Year

So this is 2015. Weird. Feels almost like last year. Same sense of urgency. Same sense of frustration. Just new number. But that is life.

Anyway, I thought you might actually enjoy my plan of action for this year, so here is.

1. I have a tone of stories to publish. Well, maybe not a ton, but you get the idea. This means I will be pretty busy publishing a story a month until everything is online. Of course, the shorts will be collected and put out as anthologies when I am done.

2. To get my business up and running, even if it means doing it one division at a time. I am so tired of this waiting. I am getting old just waiting.

3. To finish out all the serials I have going.

4. To finally get my girlfriend home.

5. to take over all the responsibilities for the house I live in.

6. To help as many people as possible in as short amount of time as possible.

7. To continue fighting against ignorance. Nothing bothers me more than a bunch of willfully ignorant people claiming that they have all the answers.

8. To finally know what success feels like. After thirteen years, or more, it is time. No more working for others or settling for what is available. Time to rise above the standing I was born at and show the world how it’s done.

9. To educate as many rich people on the realities of poverty and who is really responsible for it.

10. To prevent the religious right (I do not call them Christian, because how can you call those who do not live by Christian mandates “Christian”? They are religious, not Christian.) from enforcing Biblical law or a theocracy upon us. The last thing we need is our country to be reduced to the equivalent of Iran or Afghanistan just because we have a bunch of religious junkies who can’t seem to accept the reality that they aren’t what they claim.

***

OK, so maybe I won’t be able to actually do the last one on my own. I have nothing against religion, except that religion s manmade and does not take faith to believe in. Faith, on the other hand, makes you walk out on the limb (figuratively) and trust that something or someone greater is there to guide you. Call it chance, destiny, or God. Or even the Big Nothing.

I do have a few objections to theocracies, especially since every religious leader who gains power is as big a nepotist as any leader in any other form of government. And I do not believe in ethnic cleansings or religious slaughter in the name of any deity. I am sorry, but that is not what Christians are called to do. We aren’t called to be anyone’s conscience. We aren’t called to “save” anyone or convert anyone. We are called to set an example.

The only example that those calling themselves Christians have set is how to hate and mistreat those who are different. How is this exemplifying Christ? How is breaking the “love” commandments(Love your neighbor, Love your brother, Love your enemy) showing anyone that you believe in Christ? It doesn’t. It shows the world the exact opposite…that you don’t believe what you claim to. No wonder the world hates Christians! Because they see Christians hating everyone else!

Anyway, sorry about the rant. But we have to be vigilant. We have crazies going into office who want nothing more than to put this country on its knees. And we voted them all in. We are discouraged with the performance of Congress, but yet we do the exact opposite of what it takes to fix the problem. Congrats, people.

Biblical Law

The Talmud is the Law. For those who do not know, there is a small, yet growing (and very ignorant of) segment of population that is wanting to turn the US into something equal-if not worse than- such countries (which we condemned as totalitarian) as Afghanistan under the rule of the Taliban and Iran. They want a theocracy (intolerant of any difference) based on their vision of the Bible. Following is an open letter addressed to those in this camp.

Dear Bible waving American who is in favor of basing this country’s laws off the Talmudic law:

let us first go through the ten commandments.

1. “You may have no other god before me.” You might as well quit trying to become the richest son of a bitch on earth, because this also includes such things as riches, wealth, position, physical possessions, and anything else that can get in the way of pure worship of the one true God.

2. “You shall have no idols or graven images.” might as well take down all your icons of Christ and Mary…and whatever other statues you own and pray to. Also, refer to number 1. anything that gets in the way of worshipping God is an idol.

3. “You shall not take the Lord’s name in vain.” oops. already, I know a butt load of you who have already failed. You curse and yell and…take god’s name (in all its forms) in vain.

4. “Remember the Sabbath Day and keep it Holy.” Oops. Again, there is a butt load of you who ignore this rule as well. And many of you profess to be men and women of God. Really? well, back to the drawing board. (BTW: the Jewish Sabbath is Saturday, not Sunday. I know I once observed the “Sabbath” while the church I went to was considered a cult-and rightly so)

5. “Honor your father and mother.” Here, again, many have definitely failed. in traditional view, the children were to care for their aged parents. How many of you would give of yourself to care for another? I didn’t think so. Many who are wanting these rules enacted would rather stick their aged parent in a home and forget they even exist. I see it so often, it isn’t funny. And most times, it is simply because the child wants their inheritance early. Greedy pukes.

6. “You shall not murder.” this does not say you shall not murder whites, or you shall not murder Christians, it says plainly: YOU SHALL NOT MURDER. This means that you are not to kill period. End of discussion.

7. “You shall not commit adultery”. This takes in a LOT of territory. It takes in sleeping with your secretary, your mistress, any coworkers you aren’t married to and those you might rape. Married men and women, you really should keep your hands to yourself. And I know that not a single one of those who want “Biblical” law follow this.

8. “You shall not steal.” Hmmmm. I know a lot of “Christians” that brag about stealing office supplies. I also know “Christian neighbors who steal their neighbors’ yard equipment. And yes, keeping it when it is on loan to you is still stealing. It doesn’t belong to you, right?

9. “You shall not give false testimony.” YOU SHALL NOT LIE, people. I know a lot of witnesses and several in the profession of the law who would definitely already be in prison for this one…along with every politician going. And a lot of so-called ministers.

10. “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house, land, manservant, maidservant, ox, donkey or anything that belongs to your neighbor.” In other words, you shall not desire your neighbor’s belongings. That includes what little money he may have or his flat screen TV, or his children, or his wife. well, there just went a whole bunch more of those illustrious “Biblical” law supporters. I know way too many who envy their neighbor. They envy the black. They envy the Jew. They envy the Mexican, Native American, or the Asian American. Why? because they aren’t at all happy with the situation they bought themselves. Or they believe that everything ought to belong to them. This is basically a command not to be greedy, people. And we have ALL failed.

Let’s move on to those “rules” you love to point to. The Unlawful sexual practices section.

1. “No one is to approach any relative to have sexual relations.” OK, there went all of Congress and Most of the Southern Republicans. Seems those of you who point to homosexuality ignore this very law. Why? Why do you think that Homosexuality is wrong, yet incest (which is the act of sleeping with any of your close family members-daughter, sister, mother, brother, aunt, uncle, cousin grandma, grandpa- and having sex with them) is ok? What the fuck is wrong with you?

This law is broken on down: “Do not dishonor your father by having sexual relations with your mother. She is your mother. Do not have sexual relations with your sister, either your father’s daughter or mother’s daughter whether or not she was born in the same house or elsewhere. Do not have sexual relations with your son’s daughter or your daughter’s daughter. Do not have sexual relations with your father’s sister/mother’s sister. Your father’s brother’s wife. Do not have sexual relations with both a woman and her daughter or her son’s daughter or daughter’s daughter. Do not take your wife’s sister as a wife while she is still living. Do not approach a woman for sexual relations while she is on her period. Do not have sexual relations with your neighbor’s wife.”

All of these lead up to the ONE verse used to justify anti-gay hate, yet no one hates the incestuous or those who deviate from the se very laws. In fact there are a growing number of legislators who would count these as nonexistent because they do not see anything wrong with this, even though their desire to enforce “Biblical” law would force them to punish even these as crimes along with the following.

“Do not have sexual relations with an animal and defile yourself with it.” And yet, here again, there are many who want it both ways. They want “Biblical” law, and yet, they practice this as well. Where is the outrage for this practice?

And since we are on the “law” kick, we cannot forget to include the implementation of the Jewish feast and festivals. Holidays, if you will. And then rid ourselves of all the supposed “Christian” holidays that married pagan beliefs with Christian tradition. And we cannot forget laws such as:

“Clean and Unclean meat”: we would have to omit pork out of our diet along with rabbit, squirrel, and quite a few other meats that we tend to enjoy right now.

“Tithes”: one tithe would go toward feeding the poor, elderly, sick, widowed, and fatherless…not to mention those who are foreigners in the land. (Oh joy! just what the doctor ordered.)

“The year of cancelling debts”: won’t the banks and landlords just love you for adding this to the books? every seven years, all debts-great or small-were commanded to be forgiven whether they were paid or not. Creditors would just simply have to count their losses and start anew.

And what about the “Rebellious son” rule? If a son (or daughter) refuses to obey their parent, they would be stoned to death.

Of course, I could go on and list all the laws the ancient Israelites were given to follow, but I do not want a document of over a million words. What I am going to do is the following:

Fellow “Christians” who are blowing off about the Biblical law and wanting a theocracy remember one thing. Christ fulfilled the law and the prophets, We, as Christians, are saved by grace through our faith, not by physical deed. No amount of following the Law (and it is said many times in the New Testament that those who live in the Law are dead, but those who live In Christ are alive) will save our worthless asses. This, by no means, is a directive to stop following. It is merely shifting our focus from what we see to what we should be doing in our OWN lives. We should practice what we claim to, and not just claim to be something. Claiming and being are two very different things.

Also remember that the theocracy that was the Holy Roman Empire was brought to its knees by the fanatical hunt for heretics, when the greatest heretic of all is any man, woman or child who hates any of their fellow humans enough to kill without any defensive reason, then lie about why. Hate, fellow Christians, is anti-Christian. One of the first non-Jewish converts was not white. He was Ethiopian and a slave.

By the way. I would like to say that anyone who was caught breaking ANY of these commandments and laws were summarily taken outside the camp or tow/city they lived in and was stoned to death despite whether they were affluent or mere paupers. It had been commanded thus, and thus it was performed.

I am glad that Christ fulfilled the law through his sacrifice for my sins. I do not need to worry about a death penalty for breaking any law. No, this does not mean I should stop. It just means that my salvation is not weighed by the law. It is weighed by my faith in Him. And this faith is the willingness to walk in the spirit, rather than the flesh. For the flesh will die but the spirit lives on.

A Case Against Theocracy

Lately, there has been a lot of talk in the political arena about the desire to create a theocracy here in the United States. Yet, only those with little knowledge on the history of such governments would ever want such a thing. Being a student of history, and of current affairs and current government forms, I know that becoming a theocratic state is a bad idea. In the following expose, I shall show you why.
Although ancient history is riddled with theocratic states, only one stands out as a beginner’s look at how a theocracy runs. Ancient Egypt. Yes, Egypt was the land of the god-kings. Though it lasted for centuries, it did not remain unified. Nor did their religion remain singular. Each pharaoh raised his own deity.

In the end, this instability, and the constant infighting between contenders to the throne, destroyed Egypt. Ancient Persia was also theocratic. They also were guided by the worship of their deities. Though Persia rose to greatness, it collapsed after the failed attempt to conquer Greece.

Ancient Israel. Rome. Greece. To a certain extent, each were theocracies. They all failed.
Fast forward to Europe in the Middle Ages. Though Europe was headed by monarchies, the main leadership was the church. This standard had been started by Charlemagne and his “Holy Roman Empire”. Though a theocratic monarchy, the kings of these kingdoms were far from being the best examples for their subjects. Greed, envy, infidelity, and lust ran rampant.

Between 1232 and 1833, the notorious Inquisition took place. This, spurred by ethnic biases and greed, not to mention a few unscrupulous and very lecherous priests, killed millions of innocent people based solely upon their religious differences or their opposition to the corruption of some priest. But those were not the only people to die at the hands of the Inquisition. Rape victims, both male and female, were slaughtered to silence them from outing any priest who had seduced or forced themselves upon them. Those who were rich, if they refused to cede land to the church or the government, were executed as heretics simply to get their wealth and lands.

But the nightmare did not end there. Theocracy once again reared its ugly head in the American colonies. This time, people who had come across the ocean in search of religious freedom now restricted the very freedom they had south. None could disagree with the Puritan Church’s authority. To do so was to be branded an outcast.

By 1620, the Inquisition had spread to the colonies in the form of the fear of witches. Seizing upon this fear, a small group of young girls began acting out. They began acting as if they were having seizures, then accused innocent people of witchery. The clergy of the day, being as superstitious as they were, took the word of these girls and, by 1622 had imprisoned hundreds of people. Even thousands. Of these at least 100 were hung innocently of charges that were later revealed to be false.

This collapse of the social structure, then forced the hand of the British authority to take control of the colonies. For the 100 years that spanned between the witch hunts and the Revolution, England had slowly tightened its control until the colonists were basically impoverished through taxation. This, along with forced conscription into the British military, pushed the colonies to revolt.

Our forefathers, 100 years removed from the incidents of the 1620s, resolved that those events should never take place in this country again. Their vision for their states was one where both church and state could thrive, but separately. This separation was meant to deter those who would use political intrigue as a reason to effectively cause inquisitions or witch hunts simply to erase their rivals from the running.

Now. Let us look at a couple of theocracies that now exist. Most would agree that the Arab monarchies, for the most part are theocratic monarchies. In recent years, these have become much challenged by their subjects and laws demanded to be changed. Iran, once known as Persia, is also a theocracy. We have, since the seventies when the Ayatollah rose to power, vilified this government as being evil.
The terrorist organization ISIS (IS) is also a theocratic regime. So was the Taliban. So why would America want to join these so-called evil groups and countries and form its own theocracy? With the track record of failure, I am still left wondering.

Finally, the reason theocracy does not work. Much like communism, theocracy works wonderfully on paper. But the implementation and follow through is what causes it to be simply an “ideal” form of government rather than a “practical” form of governance. Ideally, one belief is a great and wonderful thing. Yet, from the practical standpoint, it defeats the very reason this country was formed: the freedom of religion, which is stated very succinctly in the bill of rights, along with speech, bearing arms, and several other points.

Theocracy only works when the leadership is pure of heart. This means no greed, no envy, no lust, no hate, and no desire for personal gain. Not one of those who are crying out for a theocracy have any of these qualities. Not even the mainstream “Christian Fundamentalists” who rail against blacks, gays, and the poor. Fundamentalism, you see, is actually fundamentally wrong. They focus on everything but what actually would show people what they believe: their examples.

Right now, the drive for a theocracy is born out of hate, fear and ignorance-not out of true concern for the peoples’ faith, belief or wellbeing. There is no common welfare in their desire to create a strict “religion” based government. Many who are clamoring for it do not realize that their ways of belief would also soon come under attack if they did not side with those in control. The instance they disagreed would be the instance they would be removed from society.

To claim that history has nothing to teach us is to close our ears to wisdom and to close our eyes to the lessons of those who came before. Ignorance is not bliss, and following the crowd is not always the best for all. Those who fail to learn are doomed to repeat past mistakes. Those who keep their eyes open and refuse to take someone’s word as truth until they have tested it beyond any doubt will always be the wisest. For once, America, open your eyes. The truth is being hidden from you. The truth is always within your reach, all you have to do is be willing to accept it as such.

***

I wrote the above article and sent it, as my resume, to a newspaper in hopes of securing my first reporter gig. I can do the best investigative-and in depth-articles I know. I search out every possible side, every possible source, and every possible tidbit of information. I can compare and contrast, though not with total perfection, anything.

Had I been given the job, I would have brought a knowledge of history that most journalists seem to lack. I also have a better knowledge of religion and faith than those currently ‘reporting’ the current propaganda of the day. I have a better handle on objective politics, meaning I am from neither party and can quickly point out the errors of thought on both sides.

But, apparently, you still need a journalism degree to become a reporter…even though many have fewer brains than I do and just tend to look really nice as an office ornament. Or maybe I threaten the current view that a twisted view of history is the best. I don’t know.