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Learning to Say No
August 2, 2022

We all need to say no when we feel "no." It helps simplify life and makes us feel better. Thank you Kansas, for teaching the rest of us how to say no.





AAUP Facts
August 2, 2022

I'm proud to say, AAUP is the standard at the community college where I teach!

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Visit the AAUP to learn more about the standards of higher education.





Senator Warren on MSNBC Prime
July 27, 2022

Anchor Mehdi Hasan interviewed Senator Elizabeth Warren (MA) and asked her what she thought about the 2024 election. Here is her replay:

"We've got to stop the catnip about 2024. We are a hundred days out from a midterm. What happens in 2022: two more Democratic Senators and we can get rid of the filibuster and we can actually protect voting rights. We can make Roe vs Wade the law of the land. We can do even more on the climate crisis."

[Mehdi Hasan interrupts Senator Warren with Biden's bad poll numbers.]

"What we have to do right now is fight the fight that is in front of us. The fight that is in front of us is the 2022 fight. If we hold onto the House and we expand our lead in the Senate by two, we can get rid of the filibuster, we can do enormous good for the American people, and that puts us in the position in 2024 where we have more opportunities to win. . . ."





Rep. Jim Clyburn (SC) on Politics Nation
July 24, 2022

"I've been reminding people - vote for Democrats.

"If you don't get everything this year, go to the polls in November. Give us the votes we need, and we'll get the rest of it next year.

"The glass is more than half full. We win these elections in November, the glass will become full."





Fourth of July 2022 Review
July 8, 2022

On June 27, exactly a week before the 4th of July, police chased and assassinated Jayland Walker. The Akron Police reported it as a traffic stop.

Then on 4th of July an angry young white man got up on a roof in Highland Park and killed people at their 4th of July parade. Police took the gunman into custody like he was some delicate creature they didn't want to upset.

Because of the racial overtones of both events, I empathize with my black friends who observe these hostilities and hypocrisy. I also think of my other multicultural friends. Unless you "pass" for straight / white, you are as much a target as black Americans.

Another problem is the gaslighting the white supremacist insurrectionists add to increase the pain. Such loss, such obvious racial violence, and the perpetrators go around calling everything fake. Highland Park was a false flag shooting to make people turn against guns. Example of her proof: nothing happened during Pride month, but as soon as it's "MAGA month" (???) there's a big shooting on 4th of July. This proves it' was all set up by Democrats. The person who put this theory forward also called the Parkland shooting fake. Just to rub it in, she followed Parkland survivor David Hogg around harassing him.

People like her are heartless and arrogant, and don't deserve the power they have. It would be one thing if they were a drunk uncle at your Thanksgiving get-together.

Good news has been confirming my vision of America, a place where people work together for the good of all. Although the mainstream media won't report it, inflation is slowing, gas prices are slowly going down, unemployment is down, the federal deficit is down. The TV channel I watch showed President Biden encouraging union workers, awarding good people the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and today signing an Executive Order to protect what's left of women's rights to abortion. If the anti-abortion people were really against abortion, they would support contraception and sex education.

Then last night I turn on the TV and find out someone assassinated former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at a campaign event. Thanks to gun violence, the world is asking a lot of people to feel empathy. Lately I've thought, why bother trying to be happy? Happy moments come as they will, but the rest of the time I remain open to real people's distress. Once in a while it's good to cry, and okay to remember difficult times.





Opinion
What's Holding America Together?
by Nori Muster
June 30, 2022

Lately I've been thinking, because Americans are friendly people, I think that friendly kind of love is holding the country together.

Sure there's lots of fighting going on, but think about your personal life. We all have a couple of stray hairs we don't get along with, but most people have an inner circle of friends and relatives they love, or get along with reasonably well and count as friends. Permanent Mental Furniture (PMF) is my preferred word for close friends.

Within our PMF we all have a few people on the polar opposite side of the political world. However, we know if we want to keep the friendship, we don't bring up politics. That's smart. There's a time to talk about politics and a time to not talk about politics.

Why do I say this is smart? I compare it to health. When we meet people in the grocery store, when we call customer support, when we talk to people online, or in person, Americans are generally friendly. Like if you see someone and offer a cheerful hello, they will usually hello back.

It would be impolite to stop and ask how their health is doing if we don't know them, or we know them and we've never talked about their health. So why force someone to talk about their health? It's really better to just accept the person whatever's going on in there. Same for a person's politics.

Another good comparison is religion. We don't stop strangers on the street, or PFM to report to us what their religious beliefs may be. What if they're an atheist? Do we then condemn them and try to humiliate them? Heavens no. Same with politics.

Really, only get into politics with someone you would feel comfortable with talking about any subject. We all have a few friends like that. But it's better not to strike up political discussion with people on the polar opposite side. It usually doesn't work out well. Why rock people's boat? Why open ourselves up for the backlash?

We have appropriate places to express our political views. We can join groups of like minded people, such as Indivisible, or attend local party meetings, or whatever. We can also post a blog and express ideas. Our own website is a great place to do it because it's not in anybody's face. People who are interested will find it, and people who would be offended can just close their browser window and not return!

There may come a time to discuss politics with our polarized PMF, but it's not yet. If and when that time comes, I'll certainly post my thoughts about it on this blog.





Assembly for a Blue Wave
June 24, 2022

Hexagram 45 - Assembly
I Ching reading on how we will vote this year

The first line (yin) shows a person who is confused and feels defeated. Nevertheless, this person comes to the ritual and participates.

The second line (yin) shows someone who goes forward with gratitude, and with the assistance of a mentor. Although this person can only manage a small offering, he or she is welcome.

The third line (yin) shows someone who is tired, confused, and depressed about what's going on. Still the person comes forward to participate.

The fourth line (yang) shows a leader who is sincere and the ritual invokes peace. The fifth line (yang) shows how the people who have come to take part can contact their own sincerity, along with the leader, while the ceremony is taking place.

The sixth line (yin) shows a humble person who feels a sense of regret after the ceremony. This is a person who listens to their conscience, and the sense of regret shows evidence of cleansing. For this person, the ritual marks the beginning of their determination to bring peace inside and outside, into the world. In this case, humility and regret are good attitudes that will propel some of us forth to make the changes we need to make.

To read the article, click here: Sedona Journal.





January 6 Hearings
June 16, 2022

I've been watching the hearings and I'm glad I didn't know everything about this when it was happening. November 2020 was frightening enough, and January 6, 2021 was even more frightening. I didn't need more trauma at the time. However, I'm grateful the depth and truth of it are coming out now.

The hearings helped me understand why Trump and his MAGA hats thought they could get away with this, and why this happened. Usually things happen for a reason and the reason is usually because we didn't learn the first time. That's the case here. We've never had hearings like this before. We've never wanted the truth like we do now.

In 1863 President Lincoln issued a 'Proclamation of Amnesty and Reconstruction,' offering pardons to Confederates who would take an oath of allegiance to the United States. Then at the end of the Civil War, April 9th, 1865, President Lincoln accepted General Lee's surrender. He gave the Confederate soldiers back their land, horses, and guns, and told them get on with their lives.

Then on April 14, 1865, Confederate sympathizer John Wilkes Booth assassinated Lincoln. There's a fine debate over what motivated him, but it would be parallel to a MAGA hat killing Mike Pence, a federal judge, or other elected officials.

So although people have long claimed we won the Civil War, that's not necessarily true. Confederates came back soon after Lincoln's death and declared the South won the war. We've had more than a hundred and fifty years to learn the lessons of the Civil War, but magnamous American leaders have carried on President Lincoln's forgive and forget policy to dismiss consequences for any domestic violence against the American government. But now it looks as though things might change. However, because we've waited so long, we find ourselves on a precipice where we could succeed, or we could fall into hell and lose our democracy. There's not much time to our judgment days.





Un mensaje especial para mis amigas de habla espanol
May 31, 2022

Mantén la esperanza. Las cosas están mal ahora, pero un hermoso futuro crecerá de esta miseria. Tienes la oportunidad de hacer que este país sea mejor. Usted pertenece aquí, de hecho, en su mayor parte, esta tierra perteneció a sus antepasados de habla hispana. Eso está claro.

Me gustaría hablar con usted acerca de por qué apoyo a los demócratas y por qué usted también puede abrazar al partido demócrata. En un momento, los republicanos fueron los que llevaron al Norte a ganar la American Guerra Civil para el Norte, luego aprobaron la Ley de Derechos Civiles y tres enmiendas constitucionales llamadas Enmiendas de la Guerra Civil. Estas nuevas leyes juntas liberaron a todas las personas en Estados Unidos de la servidumbre por contrato y dieron a todos los hombres el derecho a votar. Todo eso sucedió bajo el liderazgo (o recuerdos) del presidente Lincoln.

Luego, en la década de 1960, la antorcha de la igualdad pro-racial pasó a los demócratas. Sucedió poco después del asesinato del presidente John F. Kennedy. Cuando el vicepresidente Lyndon Baines Johnson asumió el cargo de presidente de Kennedy, logró que el Congreso aprobara legislación adicional sobre derechos civiles, incluida la Ley de Vivienda Justa. En ese momento, el presidente Johnson reconoció públicamente que perdería el voto de todos los demócratas del sur. Tenía razón, los demócratas del sur se marcharon y se unieron al partido republicano.

Los roles han cambiado de un lado a otro durante los últimos cien años, pero les puedo asegurar que los demócratas son su partido. La mayoría de los demócratas quieren lo mejor para todos los estadounidenses. Los demócratas ven los problemas que enfrentamos en este mundo. Los demócratas realmente abrazan la sociedad multicultural y quieren crear juntos un futuro mejor para nosotros.

Nunca he sido republicano y muchos republicanos comunes son buenas personas. Quizás estés agradecido por algo que te ofreció la Iniciativa LIBRE. Sin embargo, LIBRE es un grupo político, financiado por los multimillonarios conservadores que promueven el uso interminable del petróleo. También presionan al Congreso regularmente, especialmente para que nunca suba el salario mínimo. Solo quieren tus votos, no quieren ayudarte.

Las cosas se han puesto mal y este país podría estar al borde del desastre. El motín del 6 de enero de 2021 sucedió porque el expresidente no podía aceptar que perdió las elecciones. Ahora el partido republicano quiere más poder para detener la investigación de lo sucedido el 6 de enero de 2021.

Si los ayuda, tienen muchas posibilidades de anular las elecciones de 2020 y destruir todos estos años de progreso hacia una unión más perfecta. Por favor, apoye a los demócratas. Aunque es bueno ser una persona fuerte que se sale con la suya, también debemos dar un buen ejemplo a los demás, y que sea amable con todos aquellos que nos encontremos en el camino. Adiós por ahora mis queridos amigos. Por favor quédese con los demócratas y trabaje con nosotros.





Thoughts, Prayers, and Vote
May 25, 2022

The shooting yesterday at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, has got the country reeling - again. When will America ban assault rifles? We've done it before. In 1994 (during President Bill Clinton) we passed the Public Safety and Recreational Firearms Act, which was part of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act. Then during the George W. Bush years, Republicans let the law expire on September 13, 2004. As soon as it expired, mass shootings spiked and now happen so frequently, mass shootings are practically normalized now.

The problem is the guns and we need people in the US House and Senate to ban assault guns.

Republicans celebrate gun violence in their election advertisements - they shoot the paperwork representing legislation they don't like, they fry bacon on their gun, they pose for photos holding big guns, they pose for photos with their big guns displayed on the mantel or on the wall behind them, they put cross hairs over their Democratic opponents, they stage skits where they shoot at elected Democratic officials.

Republicans love the National Rifle Association (NRA), and they are true to the cause of arming every American. Republicans vote against any laws to regulate guns, even background checks. There are still too many Republicans in elected office, which is why we've been frozen in place since the last assault rifle ban expired. We must vote in more Democrats if we want to get assault guns banned again. Republicans are what's standing in the way.





Government Spending vs Government Investing
May 21, 2022

People are tired of government wasting money. For example, giving big tax cuts to billionaires. That's a waste of money because those people do just fine without additional tax cuts. So that's a waste of money.

Now let's think about government investing. After World War II, the government sent veterans of the war to college. It cost money, but it was a great investment. We got lots of educated people who went on to benefit America. The government also used to support public colleges so tuition was low and everybody who wanted to go to college could afford to go to college. Over the years, legislators have cut back on support of public schools to the point that public colleges cost almost as much as private colleges.

We could use more public funding of colleges and all public schools, because it's an investment that would pay us back and more.

At one time there were no interstate highways or railways, so it was difficult to travel around the United States. Then some presidents and legislators came along and invested money in building - and maintaining - our travel infrastructure. This was a great investment that made America more prosperous. When the government makes investments like this, it comes back when people do better and pay income tax.

We need to continue to invest in American infrastructure.

Another way the government wastes money is to start useless wars, such as the War in Iraq. We spent billions on that war and many people died or were left with injuries that will be with them the rest of their lives. America started the War in Iraq in 2003 and continued fighting until 2011, and it was a big waste of money. We have to choose our battles. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

America supports Ukraine to protect our freedom. We need to help Ukraine because Russia has been biting off bits of the free countries in Eastern Europe.

In general, oversight is a good investment. For example, cutting back the budget for auditors at the Internal Revenue Service means people can more easily get away with cheating on their taxes. If there are not enough agents to audit everyone's taxes, they tend to do the easy work (lower income taxes) and ignore the complicated tax returns (billionaires). So we lose a lot of money! If we could audit better, it would more than pay for the cost of hiring extra agents.

Funding government agencies in general is a good investment. For example, when is the last time you called a government agency? Did you wait on the phone for a half hour or more? That's due to lack of funding. If you want them to hire more people to answer the phones, you might consider that a welcome investment.

The government also invests in the welfare of the people. It's less expensive to take care of people than to have to jail them. It's very expensive, and that's on way the government wastes money. If we could help people stay out of jail through education, good jobs, etc., then we wouldn't have to spend so much on prisons. It costs an average of $20,000 to $60,000 a year for each prisoner. Plus, investing in education and jobs to keep people out of prison cuts down on law enforcement expenses, insurance claims, unnecessary deaths and injuries, and makes America a safter, better place.

If the government can effectively help people, it's a good investment. A good rule of thumb for government investing is right there in the U.S. Constitution Preamble:

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.





What is Right and Wrong?
May 20, 2022

With all the propaganda flying around, we here at Surrealist.org News want to offer a few pointers. If something is abusive or illegal, it might be wrong. If something benefits others, does not break any laws, it might be right. I'm leaving room for the ethical dilemma where people disagree with a law. For example, people used to always be breaking marijuana laws if they used it. Now it's legal, so some people might empathize with why someone would knowingly break marijuana laws. Or someone might think it's okay to steal if your family is starving to death, or steal medicine if it would save someone's life.

To continue the ethical dilemma scenario about breaking laws, suppose you belong to a religion and the religion thinks one of their enemies should be dead. Maybe god told them. So as a religious soul, you accept that. If God wants this guy dead, then it doesn't matter if I kill for my cult leader. God's laws are higher than man's. Anyways, there's also an ethical dilemma about politics. Everyone acknowledges there is a push and pull in politics. Sometimes bullies believe the best way to make a true friend is to hassle them to no end, then come out of it as best friends. Maybe Senator Mitch McConnell plays by those rules. Like, I'll stop you from having a say on filling a vacant Supreme Court seat. Haha, just imagine a few years from now when we are all laughing about it!

Anyways, most liberal people don't think that's the best way to make a friend. In my opinion, the way you make good strong friendships is to maybe start out going through a hassle (the boss has gone insane so we all support each other to get through it) or travel together (we all helped each other get through it when we ended up sitting on that bus for four hours when it got four flat tires in the middle of Australia. Maybe sometimes you can make a friend you hated at first, but if they continue to be mean, the friendship wouldn't last long. You lose respect for someone like that pretty quickly.

After that brief explanation I would like to list a couple of scandals that are fake. Republicans like Mitch McConnell and the Fox News crew made these scandals up out of whole cloth. Okay, so maybe there were loose ends, but the Republicans yanked relentlessly on loose ends to try to prove a crime.

For example, with Hillary Clinton. First, Benghazi. Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State, and therefore responsible for all of America's outposts around the world. A riot broke out in September 2012 due to an anti-Moslem pornographic video circulated on social media. I watched the video at the time and it showed oral sex in relation to their prophet and messenger of God Muhammad. Whoever circulated that video may have been purposely trying to provoke a riot. Crowds with guns and hand grenades gathered around the American embassy. This led to the deaths of four people.

I was traveling in Indiana at the time and remember watching the part where Secretary Clinton was at Andrews Air Force Base with President Obama to receive the remains of those who died. Then a couple hours later I watched the part where Republicans criticized Clinton and say she was responsible for the deaths. Technically she is responsible but that isn't the same as causing something. They could have investigated her to find out if she did anything that caused this, either because of ignoring warnings, or whatever. But instead of looking into that, they set out with a whole bunch of suspicions they never ultimately proved. They never even told us what they were suspicious of. Also, Democrats in Congress had tried to get more funding for embassies worldwide but the Republicans in the Senate killed that.

So what did Clinton do that deserved all that rage and excitement?

Another example is Hillary's emails. We never saw the end of that! What is the gigantic crime she committed with her emails? What about her server?

Now a couple stories about likely breaking the law: First, in regards to confidential documents. The Republicans tried to prove Hillary was trafficking in stolen documents. But they didn't find much - a couple of things that were classified after she sent them, or they were part of the email chain she didn't write.

This has turned into an ethical dilemma about hypocrisy. While Hillary may have made a mistake, Trump took a pick-up truck's worth of boxes full of classified documents when he left. So who's wrong? Is there such thing as being a little bit wrong compared to the big lie size wrong? Here's another example of what is against a law - a good law we all support. We have laws that elections must be fair so the American people can choose their leaders. It's like sports. You want a game to be honest, but sometimes a team or a sports hero might throw a game for money, blackmail, as a favor, or whatever. However battered and beaten our election system is, or has been at times in the past, Americans still believe in an honest election. Just as we believe in an honest game.

So suppose someone contacts election officials and tells them to change the results of the election. First of all, what if it's a drunk in a bar? Would be illegal, and could they get into legal trouble? What if someone with lots of power did it? Like, what if the president, the president's attorney, the wife of one of the Supreme Court justices, or really anybody that high up made calls like that? Would it be a crime? Would they ever get in trouble for it?

There's an ethical dilemma here. For one thing, maybe these people truly believed their candidate won. But did they grow up living under a rock? You don't overthrow an election. If anything you take the matter to court, and go along with what the courts decide. Living by the rule of law helps prevent violence from breaking out because one side thinks they got cheated.

This is America and if we work hard, we can get our country back toward the top of the list of healthy democracies around the world. We can do it.





Make Yor Own Baby Formula
May 13, 2022

Here's the solution to the baby formula shortage. The formula is made of milk, unhealthy oils, protein powder, and vitamin supplements. (To find the ingredients list you need to search the name of the baby formula plus keywords "ingredients" and "label." They seem to be very careful to not give away the ingredients online.)

To make your own baby formula, use milk, a good baby vitamin supplement, and a little protein powder. You can find milk at the grocery store and liquid baby vitamins and protein powder at the health food store or online. If you want to add oil to fatten up your baby, use light oils like grape seed oil, avocado oil, hemp oil, or olive oil.

Even though I'm not a doctor, you have my permission to skip the unhealthy oils all together in your home recipe - not necessary. Do not feed your baby palm oil, etc., which can lead to the beginnings of clogged arteries, setting the stage for obesity, etc. As mentioned before, use grape seed oil, avocado oil, hemp oil, or olive oil. Get your oil fresh and store it in the refrigerator or cool place.

Further details if you want to try this: The best protein powders are made from peas or hemp. Garden of Life makes protein powder out of sprouted beans. Don't get stuck on soy and avoid whey because you've already got milk protein because you're using milk. A few more words about milk: if you use dairy milk, buy non-fat or low-fat and add light plant oil if you need more oil, as noted above. If you use non-dairy milk, check what vitamins are on the ingredient list (some brands have a lot of vitamins and calcium) and do not duplicate the vitamins you add. Also, alternate between types of non-dairy and don't get stuck on soy.

Here are the ingredients in one popular baby formula (not that healthy if you ask me):

NONFAT MILK, LACTOSE, HIGH OLEIC SAFFLOWER OIL, WHEY PROTEIN CONCENTRATE, SOY OIL, COCONUT OIL, GALACTOOLIGOSACCHARIDES*; LESS THAN 2% OF: C. COHNII OIL, M. ALPINA OIL, BETA-CAROTENE, LUTEIN, POTASSIUM CITRATE, CALCIUM CARBONATE, ASCORBIC ACID, SOY LECITHIN, POTASSIUM CHLORIDE, MAGNESIUM CHLORIDE, FERROUS SULFATE, CHOLINE BITARTRATE, CHOLINE CHLORIDE, ASCORBYL PALMITATE, SALT, TAURINE, INOSITOL, ZINC SULFATE, MIXED TOCOPHEROLS, d-ALPHA-TOCOPHERYL ACETATE, NIACINAMIDE, CALCIUM PANTOTHENATE, L-CARNITINE, VITAMIN A PALMITATE, COPPER SULFATE, THIAMINE HYDROCHLORIDE, RIBOFLAVIN, PYRIDOXINE HYDROCHLORIDE, FOLIC ACID, MANGANESE SULFATE, PHYLLOQUINONE, BIOTIN, SODIUM SELENATE, VITAMIN D3, VITAMIN B12, CALCIUM PHOSPHATE, POTASSIUM PHOSPHATE, POTASSIUM IODIDE, POTASSIUM HYDROXIDE, AND NUCLEOTIDES (ADENOSINE 5'-MONOPHOSPHATE, CYTIDINE 5-MONOPHOSPHATE, DISODIUM GUANOSINE 5'-MONOPHOSPHATE, DISODIUM URIDINE 5'-MONOSPHOSPHATE). CONTAINS MILK AND SOY INGREDIENTS.





A Word to the Young People
May 7, 2022

I would like to speak to the young people. I'm still young at sixty-six, so anybody younger than me is young. We're going to talk about politics and I would like to tell you what I've learned about it in my sixty-plus years.

From my observations, I've learned there are two types of people in politics. It's not a generalization, but would make a good bell curve. First, there are the people who want equality for all. They believe if we work together we can accomplish miracles. They recognize that when everyone is included, everyone does better. They work to establish people's rights.

On the other hand, we have politicians who are tyrants. They think only their race and social class deserve rights. They may pretend to represent everyone's rights, but they also don't mind lying to get their way. Their covert goal is to dominate and suppress the masses of people because they think there's only enough for some, not enough for all.

This scenario has been playing out since the beginning of time. If you look back in history you will find many, many, many tyrants. You will also find an occasional kind person who came to power. Jesus was born between 6 and 4 BCE. He rallied his followers with a message of love but the tyrants saw him as a threat and killed him. Gautama Buddha was born in in 623 BCE. When he saw the power struggles of the world, he left home to meditate in the forest.

In present day politics, we see the same scenario playing out. We have three major parties here: the Democrats, Republicans, and Independents. The Republicans started out with President Abraham Lincoln as the progressive party. But the Democratic party changed under LBJ (Lyndon Baines Johnson), who became president after the assassination of JFK (President John F. Kennedy). LBJ went on to enact the Civil Rights laws that JFK envisioned. This made all the anti-equality Southern Democrats move to the Republican party. So beginning in the 1960s, the Democratic party became the more progressive party.

It's important young people get the picture. Things don't come easy. It's not like a progressive Democrat can just snap their fingers or wave a magic wand, and everything will be fixed. We are up against the forces of history. This world is not necessarily a "good" place where everyone is considered equal. There's a lot of suffering here, and a lot of it is unnecessary. The tyranical individuals love only money and will do anything to get it. They do not want equality.

If you're a kind, progressive person, it's hard to grasp the darkness that goes on inside the mind of a tyrant. The reverse is also true. If you're a tyrant, you can't imagine why you would want to help other people. What's the point in that?

If you're a kind person who wants everyone to have a chance at life, then support the Democratic candidates this year. Although they are not perfect, and have not already fixed all the problems, it's our best bet for a better future. The Democrats deserve your support. At this time we only have a slim majority in the Senate and we need more Democrats there to pass the legislation we need.

It's self-defeating if you take out your frustration on the system, and refuse to vote. Instead of standing on the sidelines, please help the Democrats get more Senators and keep the House of Representatives. We also need more Democrats in the state legislatures, governors' houses, and other state offices.

The Republican politicians are not thinking of you (even if you are a loyal Republican). You can see the evidence - they have been working on a master plan to take away abortion rights ever since Roe vs. Wade became the law. The base of the Republican party is forever fixated on the former president, their hero, and deny the fact that he lost the election. You saw the deadly insurrection Trump supporters staged on January 6. They will do anything to get power, so this could be our last chance to hold onto our democracy.

Vote Blue no matter who because even though not all Democrats are equal, the more Democrats we have, the more we can get done.





Abortion Rights
May 3, 2022

The Thirteenth Amendment, one of the three Civil War Amendments, prohibits indentured servitude. Here's a 2010 study out of Northwestern University School of Law to explain why forced child bearing is indentured servitude to the state:
I. The basic argument
The Thirteenth Amendment reads as follows:

1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.
2. Congress shall have the power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

My claim is that the amendment is violated by laws that prohibit abortion. When women are compelled to carry and bear children, they are subjected to "involuntary servitude" in violation of the amendment. Abortion prohibitions violate the Amendment's guarantee of personal liberty, because forced pregnancy and childbirth, by compelling the woman to serve the fetus, creates "that control by which the personal service of one man [sic] is disposed of or coerced for another's benefit which is the essence of involuntary servitude." Such laws violate the amendment's guarantee of equality, because forcing women to be mothers makes them into a servant caste, a group which, by virtue of a status of birth, is held subject to a special duty to serve others and not themselves.

Read the whole paper: Forced Labor, Revisited: The Thirteenth Amendment and Abortion northwestern.edu.





Democrats Deliver
May 2, 2022

Who fixed the economy after the 2008 real estate market crash? Let's see, President Obama came into office in 2009, so he had something to do with that! Who fixed the economy after Covid struck in 2020? Let's see, isn't that when we elected President Biden?

Who lowered the deficit between 1992-2000? Wasn't that President Clinton and Vice-President Al Gore? Yes! And who has lowered the deficit in 2021-2022? Must be President Biden.

Inflation has become a factor due to lack of supply and the same or bigger demand in the wake of the Covid pandemic. Who do you trust to fix it? The Democrats are much better at handling the economy and more likely to take steps to curb inflation.

Who provides FEMA help to any state that has a disaster, regardless of whether they supported him in the presidential election? It certainly wasn't the former guy! He only gave out FEMA help to red states, but sometimes had to give FEMA aid to blue states if forced to do so. The answer is, every president (except the former guy) gave out FEMA help regardless of whether states supported them in the last election.

How did we get the Affordable Care Act? Let's see, as I recall, it squeaked through the Democratically-controlled House and Senate under President Obama. And who said it was a big f'ing deal? Wasn't that a Obama's vice-president? Yes! And he is now known as President Biden.

Who got gay marriage legalized? It happened when President Obama was in office and the Supreme Court had fewer right-wingers.

Who passed the Dream Act (DACA)? Well, nobody yet, but President Obama signed it into law as an executive order. His successor rescinded DACA his first year in office. Who is still pressing for Dreamers? It certainly ain't any Republican. They are constantly trying to pick a fight at the boarder.

The Democrats Deliver for Americans, and if we get more Democrats in the House and Senate, Democrats can deliver more. Please help spread the word.





Midterm Elections
April 27, 2022

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The blue wave first hit in the 2018 midterms when Democrats took back the House of Representatives. This gave Democrats a voice and, among other things, they used it to hold Trump accountable. They investigated and voted to impeach him first for threatening Ukraine President Zelensky, then for stoking crimes against America on January 6.

The blue wave continued into 2020 when Democrats won the White House, held onto the House, and took control of the Senate with a narrow margin. Even with two slowpoke Dem. Senators, Democrats passed infrastructure and health care legislation, and confirmed a Supreme Court Justice, and many federal judges. Thanks to Democratic leadership, we prevented a devastating depression and jobs numbers are up. We have the lowest unemployment since the 1970s.

The blue wave is still alive and kicking. To illustrate the strength of our blue wave, we can recognize it an enduring blue fabric wave. It's also a wave in the ocean, but ocean waves are ephemeral - they break, then they're gone. Our blue wave has been going strong since 2018.

Like always, talking head pundits try to count the votes six months before the election. It's what they do. Pundits act like they have crystal balls to predict the future. Usually, when pundits tell us we have already lost the election, they are trying to use their power to depress turnout.

Don't listen to the pundits' gaslighting. Use your time and energy to confirm you are registered, and encourage your friends to get registered and vote. Make micro donations to candidates you like as much as possible. Research who's on the down-ballot, so you're ready to go once you get inside the voting booth. We need to win local races as well as federal races to protect our democracy.





Coming to Terms with Propaganda
updated April 13, 2022

Okay, jobs are up under President Biden. In some places they are not up to what they need to be, for example New York City, where much of the economy depends on the entertainment business. Not everything is opened up yet, although they are getting there.

Anybody who thinks the job market has collapsed under President Biden is living in a parallel reality. True, inflation is outpacing the minimum wage, but the whole world is in an inflationary cycle because of supply and demand. The demand for goods and services is high and supply is low, so prices go up. Still, many people feel disappointed because President Biden didn't fix all the problems yet. Or worse, they think all Democrats are pedophiles who eat babies.

Maybe we just need to accept that Russian military-grade propaganda (also manufactured in America and other countries) has captured many minds in America. If we come from that realization we will understand why people think Biden has lost so many jobs lately.

One problem with the Democrats is they fail to see what's going on with the brainwashing. They give the Republicans and Republican-leaning Independents too much credit, as though they are sane and dealing in good faith.

Maybe the belief that the other side is sane and dealing in good faith is another form of propaganda - something all Democrats tend to believe even though it's not true. We need to wake up.

Another thing we need to come to terms with. The mainstream media. It's unfair in the way they emphasize Hunter Biden's problems but minimize the $2 billion Saudi Arabia invested in Jared Kushner. Hunter Biden is one of President Biden's sons. He's made a sloppy mess of his business dealings, but he's not president, he's not running for office, and he doesn't lobby his father for legislation.

Another example of hypocrisy is Virginia and Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. She's a QAnon extremist and there he is posing for photos with QAnon candidates. That's definitely breaking the norms America has enjoyed for more than a century.

The media emphasized Hillary Clinton's emails, private server, and her role as Secretary of State during the riot in Benghazi, but they minimized Trump using a regular cell phone, taking home top secret documents when he left the White House, and his role in the January 6 insurrection.

One problem with American media is there are more monopolies now than ever and the people who own the corporate monopolies love money above all else and don't care about the country. The sooner we realize this the less surprised we will be every time they draw false equivalents or purposely play down the good job President Biden is doing to get us back on track after a lengthy, deadly pandemic.





Propaganda
March 13, 2022

Ever since last month, the only story on the TV news has been what's going on in Ukraine. It's okay with me, since I acknowledge the TV news tends to only cover one story at a time - that's their thing ever since the O.J. Simpson trial in 1995. Taking this into account, I look for the new things they cover on this subject. One thread I'm following is when they expose propaganda. Besides on TV, I've heard a lot of other propaganda and would like to share what I've heard lately.

Here's an example of propaganda echoed back to me on a telephone catch-up call with a conservative friend: "Don't worry about what's happening in Ukraine. These people have been fighting for hundreds of years. It's just like Iraq [with the Shiites and Sunnis]."

That's not true. There are Russians living on both sides of the border, and in fact, Ukraine used to be part of the Soviet Union. When the Soviet Union ended in 1991, Ukraine emerged as a democracy. The truth is, since 1991, Ukraine has struggled to protect itself from Russia. This war is happening because Putin has delusions of grandure, possibly set on putting the Soviet Union back together.

Putin's propaganda is that Ukraine has been taken over by Nazis, and threatens Russia. Ukraine may have neo-Nazi groups like many other countries, but Nazis certainly have not taken over the Ukraine government. President Zelensky is Jewish and lost family members in the Holocaust during World War II.

Here's another one: I met a woman from Alabama staying at an Airbnb in our condominium community. Somehow we got onto the subject of real estate and she said she had a wealthy friend who owned a lot of properties, "but because of Obama, his property lost its value."

The real estate bubble-crash took place between 2005 (height of the bubble), and culminated in a disaster in September 2008, when there was a run on the banks. In September 2008, we watched in horror as the derivative debacle nearly destroyed the world economy. This happened right before the 2008 election where George W. Bush lost to Barack Obama. When Obama took office in 2009, he urged Congress to pass the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Then in 2010 Congress passed the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. Thus, the housing market equalized after many painful foreclosures and short sales, and after many people lost their homes and their life savings. Obama was a Senator from Illinois during the real estate market bubble-crash, the president was George W. Bush. So you can't exactly blame the crash on Obama (he fixed it).

Yesterday I met a young man and we had a friendly talk about politics. There was one point where we disagreed. He said the economy was much better under Trump. Then I asked him, do you remember 2020? Covid came to America in February-March, and everybody was locked down. Musicians cancelled tours, Broadway closed down, sports teams cancelled games, and organizations posponed conventions. People cancelled their vacations and the tourism business suffered. We nearly let the airlines go bankrupt. Restaurants closed down - many went out of business. The only place you could shop were grocery stores, hardware stores, and pharmacies. Many small businesses went bankrupt. City streets were lined with empty storefronts, while unemployment soared, and Covid killed hundreds of thousands of people.

Trump did little to mitigate things. He discouraged people from wearing masks. He discouraged testing and did little to get tests or other PPE to medical workers. He pushed pharmaceutical corporations to develop vaccines, but when the vaccines came out, he helped drive the propaganda against vaccines. He got vaccinated, but didn't disclose that until much later.

My new friend said, "But didn't all that happen after Biden got in office?" (How soon we forget?) I gave him a timeline - Covid 19 is called 19 because it was first discovered in 2019 in China. It came to the USA in 2020. The election was in November 2020, where Joe Biden won both the popular vote and the Electoral College vote. (I'm not going to address the propaganda around that since anyone who believes the election was stolen is too far gone to listen to reason.)

Here's another bit of propaganda I saw on TV: Bill Barr, who was an Attorney General under George W. Bush and the former guy, wrote a book denouncing the former guy for his "obnoxious behavior" and said he was "not my idea of a president." However, Barr said he would vote for former guy again because the alternative (any Democratic candidate) would be worse.

This is pretty crazy, but behind most of today's propaganda is a thread of racism. I believe the reason Barr looks down on the Democratic party like that is because the Democratic party is racially diverse. He thinks the former guy would be much better than risking another black president or woman president, or worse a black woman president.

These days propaganda does not create itself. There are offices in Russia where military strategists plan the next wave of propaganda as though they are screenwriters working on a TV melodrama like Days of Our Lives, or As the World Turns. They observe the fissures in our democracy, then make up lies to widen the divides. They transmit the newest conspiracy theories to Fox News and other propaganda outlets. As soon as one propaganda outlet puts out the new talking points, the rest mirror and amplify the lies, and pretty soon people are talking about it on social media, blogs, and podcasts. This is the new reality we face.

This is why I appreciate the sane people in government and media who are pointing out the lies and false flag operations Russia is using to try to gain support for their campaign. It's not about threats against Russia, the war is to take Ukraine's real estate. We need to fight for the truth, and the truth will come out.





Praying for Peace in Ukraine
February 23, 2022

Here at the Surrealist News editorial table we are praying for peace and freedom for Ukraine. It looks like Putin is poised to invade Ukraine to get their real estate. Putin is starting a war in Europe. This has not happened in my lifetime, but my mother was in high school during World War II. I've also studied World War II and am pretty much aware of how that went. Like my mom said, we were not sure we would win that war, and for a while it seemed like we were losing. War is dangerous and starting a war is dangerous.

We are not looking forward to what is to come. However, Republicans are apparently now on Putin's side, and can't wait for him to start a war in Europe. This is disheartening. They may as well fly the Russian flag.

We ask any anti-dictator Republicans to wake up and look at what has happened to your party. Please ask yourself if this is still your Republican party, and whether you can vote for any candidates with an "R" after their name. Look what you have done already by voting Republican during the time of Trump.





One Year into the Biden Administration
February 3, 2022

This video came out a few weeks ago. Enjoy! Youtube





Upcoming Presentation
January 25, 2022

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Click here to register for the conference. After it's over, I'll post my talk to Youtube and share the link.





Predictions for 2022
January 25, 2022

These are my predictions for this year, published in the Sedona Journal of Emergence:
predictions2022.html





First Week of 2022 Round-up
January 9, 2022

This week was full of news about the January 6, 2021 attack on the Capitol. Some people still think it was just a regular tourist visit, or that it was a false flag. Nevertheless, the January 6 Committee is moving forward. One thing we want them to investigate is what Trump was doing on January 6, and why it took more than three hours to send in the National Guard. Reports say Trump was sitting in front of his TV appreciating the attackers.

Although Attorney General Garland chooses to remain enigmatic, President Biden came out with full force in his address on January 6. He never mentioned Trump's name, but said:
So let's speak plainly about what happened in 2020. Even before the first ballot was cast, the former president was preemptively sowing doubt about the election results. He built his lie over months. It wasn't based on any facts. He was just looking for an excuse, a pretext to cover for the truth. He's not just a former president. He's a defeated former president. Defeated by a margin of over seven million of your votes. In a full and free and fair election.

There is simply zero proof the election results are inaccurate. In fact, in every venue where evidence had to be produced and oath to tell the truth had to be taken, the former president failed to make his case.
In my opinion, Biden's address one of the best things that's happened so far this year. You can watch it and read the transcript here: npr.org





Notes to the Future
January 3, 2022

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Notes to the Future
January 3, 2022

Here it is three days before the first anniversary of the violent insurrection and rioting at the US Capitol. There's now hope the people who planned this event will be called to account. They're fighting with each other now, as this Washington Post article explains. It appears the whole cause of lies has become a hot potato.

WashingtonPost.com





2022 is Here!
January 1, 2022

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