…fisticuffs…

Looks like the Republicans are getting ready for a knock-down, drag out presidential convention in Cleveland, Ohio this summer.

Trump is the designated people’s nominee, while behind-the-scenes the establishment is scrambling to offer up its own candidate. It might be that we’ve only seen the tip of the iceberg with respect to the sporadic bullying which have broken out at Trump rallies. His cult following is ready to take it to the mat with anyone who gets in the way of their idol, as he takes over the White House…Trump’s own D.C. Miralago.

With Mitch McConnell’s refusal to consider the President’s Supreme Court nominee today, it is apparent that Trump’s followers are spot on in thinking that Washington is broken. As long as established Republicans continue to face off against anyone with whom they disagree, nothing of worth is accomplished. Their own Speaker of the House Boehner threw up his hands in resignation, and quit the political scene altogether. It’s not that they can’t get along with Democrats, Washington Republicans can’t even get along with their Tea Party branch of conservatives. Time and again Trump has said that Ted Cruz is unable to work with his fellow congressmen and women.

The battle that ensued within the confines of Capitol Hill in D.C. has erupted onto the streets of small town USA. It was long overdue. The Tea Party, backed by billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch, was going to eventually overwhelm the Republican establishment. It was just waiting for the right man in the form of a billionaire whose agenda paralleled theirs in returning America to…a patriarchal, isolationist society, favoring white men.

If Trump is denied the presidency by his Party’s hierarchy, he threatens anarchy on the part of his followers. So it seems the Republicans have opened their own Pandora’s Box and are unable to contain the tornado it unleashed. Like a Jack-in-the-box, Trump keeps bobbing up and down avoiding the poisoned arrows hurtling his way. As a boomerang returns from whence it came, Republicans never figured on having opportunist Trump bum a free ride to the highest office in the land and the most powerful position in the world…at their expense. All the while…

…blasting the Party to smithereens.

………hugmamma.Image result for donald trump images

(photo…ew.com)

 

 

 

 

 

 

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a deserved dilemma?

Wow! Republicans are running away from themselves. Trump and his followers are turning on the “establishment,” and the “establishment” can’t distance themselves fast enough…albeit a little late…from their presidential front runner.

Perhaps the Republican “establishment” have only themselves to blame for being done in by rogue candidate Trump. Former House Speaker, Bill Boehner, and current Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell, could not control the right-wing extremists in Congress. As a result these mostly junior congressmen were able to unhinge the proverbial Pandora’s Box. And what did they find inside? Donald Trump!

Even Ted Cruz, the Tea Party’s darling, could not imagine anyone wresting the Oval Office away from him, least of all Trump, the darling of Wall Street investors. Evidently, Tea Partiers and others, among them White Supremacists, have combined forces to carry Trump all the way to the White House. They see him as the man who gets them what they want, once he’s ensconced in Washington. If, and that’s a big IF, they succeed in crowning Trump president, the Republican “establishment” will have a bigger fight on their hands than they did with President Obama or that they would even get from Hillary Clinton. Trump will steamroll any opposition to his agenda. Diplomacy is not his style, and negotiation is tolerable to a point. And as he has demonstrated time and again, Trump has a low threshold for opposition. He escalates to the “boiling point” pretty quickly.

“I’m going to get along great with Congress. Paul Ryan, I don’t know him well, but I’m sure I’m going to get along great with him,” the front-runner for his party’s nomination said during his Super Tuesday speech. “And if I don’t, he’s going to have to pay a big price.”

(Ben Kamisar…The Hill, online)

Showing himself to be a man who talks out of both sides of his mouth…while Trump was kind of disavowing David Duke and the KKK…a known racist leaves no doubt as to Trump’s campaign reaching out to white supremacists.

James Edwards, a notorious white supremacist and radio talk show host, is promoting a recent interview with the son of Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump that’ll air on Saturday.

Edwards talked to the real estate mogul’s eldest son and campaign surrogate, Donald Trump, Jr., last Saturday for his “pro-white” radio show, “The Political Cesspool.” Previous guests on the show have included Neo-Nazis, Holocaust deniers, and Ku Klux Klan leaders.

Edwards heralded the 20-minute interview in a blog post flagged by Little Green Footballs, that boasted about his access inside a Trump rally in Memphis, Tennessee, last Saturday, where Edwards was broadcasting his show live. He said Trump’s campaign gave Edwards and his co-hosts full press credentials and “VIP” parking near the event.

“We’re watching history in the making,” Edwards said at the start of his three-hour broadcast from the press area of the Memphis Trump rally.  “Donald Trump will be the first Republican nominee that I have ever voted for.”

Edwards said he and his co-hosts have attended three different Trump rallies in recent months: One in Illinois, one in Arkansas, and the rally in Memphis. With press credentials from Trump, the white supremacists feel “every bit as legit” as members of the traditional media, he added.

A spokeswoman for the Trump campaign did not respond to questions late Tuesday about how Edwards was credentialed, or why Donald Trump Jr. gave an interview to a white supremacist talk show. 

The question is…will the Republican “establishment” bend to the will of the people for whom Trump stands? Including…

…the KKK and white supremacists?

………hugmamma.

 

 

 

from where i stand…

Every 4 years I’m a media pundit, right alongside CNN’s Wolf Blitzer and Anderson Cooper. While I’m not glued to the TV, I’m always within earshot of it. For those of you who just recently tuned in to hugmamma’s mind, body, and soul I’m referring to the U.S. presidential campaign.

I never mean to get so wrapped up in politics, it’s just that every nerve in my body cries out for relief from the insanity that’s reported nonstop. This time the man in the middle of the hurricane is Donald Trump. Eight years ago it was his female counterpart, Sarah Palin.

Buddying up with Russia’s Putin, Trump gives us an insight into his would-be presidency. If Trump likes somebody, he’ll do business with him or her; if he doesn’t, he won’t. Good place for billions of Americans to be…behind Trump’s eight ball. Something to think about.

As ridiculous as a president Trump would be, having Ted Cruz in the White House would be downright scary. He would take his Tea Party fight from the Legislature to the Oval Office. A stalwart champion of right-wing extremists, Cruz is a major player in Congress’s perpetual inability to act.

While Marco Rubio seems the lesser of two evils, what he and Cruz have in common is their strong Cuban pride. While Obama kept his promise to be president of all Americans, I have to wonder if Rubio and Cruz would be able to keep that same promise should the interests of their Cuban constituents ever conflict with those of our country. That’s a question only time could answer.

Ben Carson‘s tendency to speak his mind, while at times commendable, often reveals his naivete about politics and the world in which we live. It’s also difficult to imagine his soft-spoken demeanor in mortal combat with Putin, Isis, or even House Speaker, Paul Ryan. God Himself would have to fight those battles for Carson.

Jeb Bush is just not presidential material. He seems nice enough, in fact I’d probably like him better than his brother George W. Despite that I’m just not a fan of the Bush dynasty. I’m with Barbara, enough is enough. Let somebody else have a turn.

Carly Fiorina exudes potential presidential material, however her stiffness is somewhat off-putting. She reminds me of Dorothy’s Tin Man from the Wizard of Oz…in need of a heart.

During the Republican presidential debates, I’ve liked some of what I’ve heard from Lindsay Graham, Rand Paul, John Kasich and former NY Governor George Pataki. While I would never vote for Graham or Paul, I might consider Kasich or Pataki if the Democratic choice were as incorrigible as Republican Trump.

After watching last night’s debate among the Democratic presidential hopefuls, I’ll most likely cast my vote for Hilary Clinton. Unlike Fiorina, Clinton’s image has undergone enough of a transformation so that her softer side is glimpsed. Thankfully, she can still call up her muscular side as needed. After all, politics…as well as the rest of the world…still belongs to white men. It’s for sure however that Clinton would continue chipping away at the crack in the glass ceiling already begun by Obama.

As blustery as Trump is, Bernie Sanders is the Republican candidate’s match. Although everything Sanders says is substantive and rings true. The problem is he leans too far left to be viable for all Americans, namely the Tea Partiers. And while I may not agree with their politics, they deserve fair representation. My hope is that Sanders continues to fight the good fight for the poor and the middle class, unlike Trump who will continue to line the pockets of the wealthy. Something his followers overlook as they clutch desperately to a false god.

While Maryland’s Governor Martin O’Malley is a good option for president, he lacks the strong presence of Clinton and Sanders. It’s possible O’Malley could grow into the job, but in the current global turmoil we need someone who can “hit the ground running.” And for me the person most qualified is…

…madame secretary…clinton.

………hugmamma.

(Photo credit…Getty Images)

 

 

 

 

 

kanye west…for president???

OMG!!! Just heard on CNN that Kanye West might be considering a run for the presidency in 2020??? Reality TV in the White House??? The Kardashians taking over Washington D.C.???

That is even more bizarre than Donald Trump as President of the United States.

Just because we can…all run for president…does it mean we should? 

Tea Party conservatism has dragged in all manner of folks thinking they know what our country needs. Forget the need for wisdom and self-control and experience.

For Heaven’s sake! If I had the energy…I could be President!

Not!!! I know my limitations and strengths. Managing the President’s “to do” list sure as heck isn’t something I’m up for.

What makes Kanye West think he can…interface with our military hierarchy?…world leaders twice or three times his age?…Wall Street financiers?…white constituents who hate black rappers?…and most of all, Tea-Party congressional reps who’d just as soon impeach him, as recognize that he is the executive branch.

Talk about a political stalemate!!!

And who, besides the Kardashian fans…many in other countries, would want to see those women parading around half-naked in the White House? Moreover, it doesn’t seem likely they’d give up their millions as reality TV stars to sit around twiddling their thumbs. I can’t see them volunteering to mingle with the underprivileged at homeless shelters. The sisters would stand out in their stilettos and bouffant hairdos.

The fact that sex is a huge part of the Kardashian brand won’t sit well with conservative evangelists, either.  Come to think of it, neither would liberals with good, old-fashioned values. 

Between Kanye West’s ego and Kris Jenner’s managerial skills, I’ve no doubt they’re thinking seriously about the presidency. After all, Donald Trump is just as qualified. 

Reality TV and real life…

…are they really one and the same???

………hugmamma.

zealots in congress…

Zealot…”a person who has very strong feelings about something (such as religion or politics) and who wants other people to have those feelings…”

That’s what Webster’s dictionary defines as those who are running away with the Republican Party…and trying to do the same with our government.

Our government. Not their government. Not the president’s government. 

A coming together of contrasting ideologies for the good of all…not for the good of a handful.

Where I might have entertained the idea of a Republican president, Boehner’s resignation as Speaker of the House cemented my vote for a Democratic president. Second in line for the presidency, Boehner, the most powerful Republican according to the constitution…if he has no faith in the Republicans…why should I?

By his action, Boehner voted against his own party. I cast my vote with him…

…i’m sure i’m not alone.

 

 

tea party candidate…

Donald Trump! 

Kind of sad that so-called Tea-Partiers pledge their blind allegiance to billionaires like Trump and the Koch brothers, David and Charles. Their followers are like sleep walkers dreaming of the fabled Garden of Eden. There where a little elbow grease will reap bounteous rewards with very little, if any, help from outsiders.

Yes, Trump speaks PLAIN in a voice loud enough to be heard the world over. It’s also obvious that his world view is just as plain… it’s either black or white, right or wrong, you’re with me or you’re not, it’s my way or the highway. Only followers who cater to Trump’s every whim will have his ear…and only for as long as the Donald is entertained.

Sarah Palin was just the appetizer in the race to be President of the United States. In Donald Trump the Tea Party has found the main course. It’s a marriage made in heaven. Tea Party heaven.

Just as Palin remained true to her dumb self, where politics and geography…she claimed she could see Russia from Alaska…were concerned, Trump will stay true to his bullying self. Rather than debate the facts in tomorrow night’s Republican presidential debate, he will talk and talk and talk about how great he is and how stupid everyone else is. He’s obviously getting away with such grandstanding, owing in large part to his Tea Party following. On the world stage, however, neither Putin nor Isis militants will be overly impressed with someone who epitomizes everything that’s wrong with America. 

Like it or not, the Tea Party is slowly digesting what remains of the Republican Party. And Trump is…

…the final belch.

………hugmamma.

barbra streisand…speaks

The Movie Album

I subscribe to Barbra Streisand’s blog via The Huffington Post.

It’s rare for Streisand to take center stage unless it’s to do what she does best…sing and act. I’ve found, however, that she also writes eloquently. 

With the political quagmire in Washington having a deletorious impact upon the lives of everyday Americans, I wanted to share Streisand’s heightened concern…in her own words.

As we now enter the third week of the unnecessary government shutdown, Americans should remember the words of GOP Representative Martin Stutzman, “We’re not going to be disrespected. We have to get something out of this. And I don’t know what that even is.” This statement reflects a cultural resentment in the land over a changing America. Maybe if the President calls and says he respects the Congressman and the Speaker, the country could move forward.

As the October 1 New York Times front-page story pointed out, this shutdown was conceived in meetings sponsored by the billionaire Koch Brothers and former Reagan Administration Attorney General Edwin Meese. The purpose was to defund the duly authorized Affordable Care Act by holding the rest of the government hostage. Talking points were prepared for members of Congress and tens of millions of dollars were spent on propaganda trying to convince Americans that the health care law was going to ruin America and end their health care options.

President Obama has provided access to health care through private insurers that will both help our economy and millions of Americans. It should be noted that the ACA was based on an idea from the conservative Heritage Foundation. The 2012 GOP Presidential candidate Mitt Romney signed similar legislation in Massachusetts as Governor. Our country is one of the few major industrial nations in the world that did not provide access to health care for its own people. Many have a simple, single payer system.

The opening days of the ACA showed significant demand for health care access. Perhaps the greatest Republican fear is that their rhetoric about the ACA, including government “death panels,” will be quickly proven false. When explained properly, the provisions of the ACA are quite popular. Americans will soon understand that the law provides both needed benefits, and reduces medical costs and the deficit in the long run. This is the forecast by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.

There is no excuse for the obstinacy of Speaker Boehner insisting on renegotiating a law passed by Congress and deemed constitutional by the GOP-led Supreme Court. There should be an immediate vote in Congress to re-open the government of, by and for the people. Let the people see the Tea Party Republicans vote.

This government shutdown has had immediate effects. It has delayed the death benefits for survivors and associated funeral costs of the soldiers who were killed in Afghanistan. This is just the most outrageous outcome of the GOP’s actions. Embarrassed Republicans quickly tried to pass an ad hoc fix. They pretend the World War II Memorial should be open and ignore that imported seafood is not being inspected. This shutdown is also costing the American people real money — over a billion dollars so far. The stock market has reacted by shredding over 600 points, as uncertainty mounts and Americans are thrown out of work.

Reacting to polls, the Republicans switched gears and decided that Obamacare was not the issue but federal spending was. A budget sequester is already in effect cutting federal spending in arbitrary ways. The deficit has already been cut in half. Our children are now being denied placement in Head Start programs, and vital other government services, like medical research, have been curtailed. The Senate also accepted the Republican total budget number, but this was not enough. The GOP decided to fool with the full faith and credit of the United States by threatening to exceed the debt ceiling.

Apparently there were enough moderate Republicans left in Congress to pass the Senate bill to end the shutdown and pass an immediate debt ceiling extension, but SPEAKER BOEHNER, fearful of the Tea Party and its billionaire backers, WILL NOT ALLOW A VOTE. The GOP position is, “Give us what we want or we will promote economic chaos.” They ultimately want to overturn the results of the last election.

In this country, our elections are supposed to mean something for policy outcomes. In 2012, the President was easily reelected with 332 electoral votes, the Democrats picked up two more seats in the Senate and received over 1.1 million more votes for Congressional seats than the Republicans. The Republicans were able to retain control of the House of Representatives because GOP-led state legislatures redrew Congressional lines after the reapportionment and redistricting following the 2010 census. According to the latest AP-GfK POLL, the approval rating of the Congress is 5%, the lowest figure ever recorded.

Former Labor Secretary Robert Reich noted one of the real aims of the Tea Party conservatives is to undermine the faith of the American people that the federal government can solve national problems. Given all the voter restrictions Republicans have instituted on the state level, they hope fewer and fewer Americans are civically engaged and vote. This should particularly concern American women as it took nearly 150 years of struggle to have this “right”.

I hope enough Americans draw the opposite conclusion and hold those Republicans responsible for this orchestrated and manufactured crisis fully accountable in 2014.

Coincidentally, the Heritage Foundation, of which Streisand speaks, is funded by the Koch brothers. They, it seems, are attempting to manipulate both sides of the debate over The Affordable Health Care Act.  It’s like a chess game which they plan to win however they can. And we, the American people, are the pawns in these billionaires’ game. And by the way…it’s also the Koch brothers who fund the Tea Party, dictating the direction in which it moves.

…a good read for those seeking the truth………hugmamma.

 

 
 
 

shutdown…a matter of semantics

An expert on prison sieges likened the current U.S. government shutdown to prisoners who hold the institution hostage. Those in authority must negotiate with the prisoners in order to return the establishment to normalcy.

So far there’s a lot of dancing around by both sides…the President and his supporters…and Baynor and his motley crew of supporters and challengers.

The Health Care Law is just that…the law. 

Tea Party reps don’t like the law, so they’re holding Americans hostage with the shutdown. Representative Ted Cruz and his followers are trying with all their might to reopen the discussion on Obamacare. They’ll even do so on the backs of millions of citizens who now find themselves furloughed and unable to pay their bills.

In the summer of 2013, Cruz embarked on a nationwide tour sponsored by The Heritage Foundation to promote the congressional effort to defund the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, arguing that a shutdown of the government would not be a disaster for America or the Republican Party.[77][78]

On September 24, 2013, Cruz began a speech on the floor of the Senate regarding the Affordable Care Act relative to a continuing resolution designed to fund the government and avert a government shutdown.[79][80] Cruz promised to keep speaking until he was “no longer able to stand.”[81] The fourth-longest speech in United States Senate history, Cruz yielded the floor at noon the following day for the start of the proceeding legislative session after twenty-one hours nineteen minutes.[82][83] Following Cruz’s speech, the Senate voted 100–0 regarding a “procedural hurdle toward passing a stopgap funding bill to avert a government shutdown.”[84] Cruz was joined by 18 Republican senators in his effort to prevent stripping out a clause that would have defunded the Affordable Care by voting against the cloture motion, leaving the effort 21 votes short of the required number to deny cloture.[85]

It’s unclear which Americans the right-wing extremists in Congress represent. The quick answer seems to be…the wealthy who are at the helm of the Tea Party…and folks who prefer the America of old, perhaps pre-FDR and his New Deal. Since the Depression is a relic of the past, the younger right-wingers might feel our country is exempt from another. Or they might be willing to risk sinking into another Depression as long as they can take care of their own. 

Wouldn’t it be nice to return to the good old days? 

The March 1944 eruption of Vesuvius, by Jack R...

The March 1944 eruption of Vesuvius, by Jack Reinhardt, B24 tailgunner in the USAAF during World War II (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Unfortunately, the world has erupted like Mt. Vesuvius, and there’s no pouring the magma back down into the crater…no matter how hard we try. Like the lava that dries and hardens, mankind and all its virtues and faults, are part and parcel of the landscape. 

I think the Tea Partiers are looking to…

…return to the garden of eden…before eve tempted adam to take a bite…

………hugmamma.

English: Man Made in the Image of God, as in G...

what’s wrong with…this picture?

Did you see the one where the guys in a boat headed straight into the tornado’s water spout…with boyish glee? And when interviewed, the boat owner said…he’d do it again, given the chance?

Did you see the congressmen who, when interviewed, swore they’d shut down the government…rather than allow millions of Americans the opportunity to sign up for health care insurance tomorrow?

Did you see the video in which a black SUV is chased down by a pack of motorcyclists who travel the road as if…they own it?

As we all know, there are two sides to every story. Whatever the arguments, certain facts are indisputable.

Had the boat overturned going through the water spout, the coast guard would’ve been called into action to rescue those numb skulls. And who would have footed the bill…us, the taxpayers, of course!

If the government shuts down, thousands of middle class folks will be furloughed, military families will cease to be paid, and the health care law will go into effect. So what will those idiot Tea Party reps have gained? Why…attention on the world stage, of course…at no cost to themselves since their salaries remain intact, regardless.

The pack mentality screams out…”One for all and all for one!” So when a gang of motorcyclists takes over the highway, surrounding a car on all sides and traveling as though they’re “rubbernecking,” what’s a car driver to do? Get out and walk?

Some days it’s difficult to believe what I’m seeing…

…ever have one of those days?,,,

The Gadsden flag

 

………hugmamma. 

what doth it profit a man…if he gain the whole world…

Readers who have continued to visit, despite my political musings of late, know that I have been engaging in Internet conversations with respect to America’s presidential election. As can be expected, the chatter is fast and furious, with both sides tossing their opinions into the ring. It’s the civilized way of…throwing punches.

Politics, and religion, are not topics most folks care to discuss. Understandably so. Confrontation isn’t something we seek out.

However, defending one’s beliefs and fending off those who would make mincemeat of them, is an honorable venture. And sometimes, as in the case of which path our country should take towards economic recovery…I find it a moral obligation to step up to the plate.

In the process of doing so, I’ve learned some very disturbing facts.

My previous post, declining an award, spoke to my deepest frustration…that our government is where men like oil-billionaire brothers, David and Charles Koch…shop. You might want to see what I’ve written about their infiltration into the U.S. Congress.

Not lagging far behind is my concern about the example being set for younger generations, now and into the future.

Romney

Romney (Photo credit: Talk Radio News Service)

Presidential candidate Mitt Romney has proven himself extremely adept at dancing around the truth.

Unlike most, I don’t feel President’ Obama‘s seeming lackluster  performance at the second debate is fully owing… to his lack of preparation…or not wanting to be there…or wanting to appear presidential.

Yes, I think all these things may have been in play. However, I give credence to the President’s assertion that…he wasn’t prepared for…the new and improved Romney. Actually, he wasn’t reformed. He just moved from the extreme right of the Republican Party…back toward the center.

Trying to play to the Tea Party folks, Romney claimed a lot of things throughout his campaign…which he began disavowing in the first debate.

Romney’s opportune transformation back to a moderate Conservative were motivated by his descending poll numbers.

Having been proclaimed the winner of the first debate, Romney’s campaign gained traction. So much so that the race to the finish is now…neck and neck.

Meanwhile the youth of America, as well as the world, see with their own eyes and hear with their own ears, that it’s okay to…sell out one’s values to get what you want…to curry favor with folks who matter when it counts…to rough up your opponent or even knock him to the ground…to say one thing in private and something else in public…to use capitalism as one’s own family crest…to politicize others’ misfortunes to one’s own advantage…to hold oneself unaccountable when asking others to have faith in your promises.

It’s difficult for me to reconcile Romney’s being a man of faith…with what he practices in his professional life.

According to Webster’s, FAITH…1.confidence or trust in a person or thing. 2. belief in God. 3. a system of religious belief. 4. loyalty or fidelity.

How can I have faith in someone who seems to abandon his faith…when it’s convenient?

Is this what we want to teach…our children? How does Romney square what he does…with his 5 sons?

To his credit, Tagg Romney, the eldest, when asked how he felt during the second debate, said he…wanted to go down and take a swipe…at the President.

The younger Romney said what he felt in his gut.

He might have been spared the embarrassing made-for-TV moment…had his father not taken him down the path… by accusing the President of lying in the Rose Garden the day after the attack of the U.S. Libyan consulate.

Moderator Candy Crowley rightfully indicated that the President had, in fact, called the incident “a terrorist attack,” the day after the occurrence.

Truth in journalism…long the hallmark of our beloved Walter Cronkite.

Truth in life.

While we fight to regain our economic standing, to guarantee jobs for everyone, to renew the promise that all can realize the American Dream, to ensure a better future for our children and grandchildren…let us always remember…

For what doth it profit a man, if he gains the whole world and suffers the loss of his soul? 

…leading…by example…

………hugmamma.

As expected, most residents of Utah where Romney’s Mormon faith is headquartered will vote for him. Not everyone, however. Utah’s Salt Lake Tribune  has endorsed President Obama in an article entitled “Too Many Mitts.”  http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/opinion/55019844-82/endorsement-romney-obama-president.html.csp

up and running, for now, comcast

Don’t want to jinx the recovery of our internet connection, but right now I’m typing away on my laptop upstairs. If this keeps up, I won’t be visiting the “dungeon” much anymore. Our family room is nice and cozy, just a little dark since sunlight streaming in through the windows is pretty minimal, especially given the fact we live in the Pacific Northwest. Someone should bottle and sell sunshine. I’m Hawaiian, you’d think I’d have the inside track, although I’ve lived away from the islands for 30+ years. I’ll have to call some relatives. But I digress.

Comcast’s rep who’d been by last night called early this morning. I let him speak with my husband. Evidently they did some work last night in our area. If our problem is resolved as a result, then the job will have been successful, and there’ll be no need for a followup visit to our house. “Knock on wood,” looks like we’ll be spared Mocha’s unstoppable barking when strangers show up at the door. The rep is still committed to trying to change out our single modem, for the more current 2 modems. Otherwise, it looks like we’re good to go.

So for now, all’s well that ends well. I know, as one comment stated, that Comcast has bigger issues with the government and public than our little dilemma. But as I replied, I’ve also got bigger battles to wage than what Comcast is doing or not doing. Yes, it’s good to look at the “bigger picture,” but it’s also wise to focus on taking small steps towards accomplishing change. Most of us can only wrap our minds around the small stuff, anyway. The big politics can overwhelm, stopping people dead in their tracks. Better we do what we can do, and leave what we can’t to those who are better equipped for the challenge, remembering that small still counts.

I may not be as recognizable as the Tea Party organizers, but, hey, those 2 housewives started small, and look where their blogging got them. Perhaps companies like Comcast do sit up and take notice when we Lilliputians speak. My husband says they do; his company has someone trolling the internet tracking comments, good and bad. So we should all register our voices on the internet, since our access to mainstream media is limited, and manipulated to suit their purposes. But remember the wise, old adage “You can get more with honey, than vinegar.” As I’ve aged, this truism is even more relevant, for my own self-serving reasons. Life is short. Alzheimer’s looms. Heart attacks are even more plausible. Why am I going to quicken all 3, by stressing out over “stuff.” My urgent priorities are my health and my family. Amen.

for keeping my voice on the internet, thanks Comcast…hugmamma.

o’donnell, Palin harbinger?

Christine O’Donnell, the Tea Party’s latest winning candidate for political office is touted as a Sarah Palin look-a-like. Though the resemblance is not exact, it’s pretty close, brunette, attractive, broad smile, friendly demeanor, seemingly approachable, self-described reps for soccer moms around the country. I’m not a teetotaler or a Republican, I usually vote Democrat. But being a woman, I am intrigued by this latest brand of female politician. What member of our gender wouldn’t be. After all, Palin and O’Donnell claim to represent us ordinary people. While my inclination is more toward women like Hilary Clinton and Michelle Obama because of their experiences and views, sitting down to coffee with these two wouldn’t feel natural or comfortable, but neither would I feel comfortable sipping tea with O’Donnell or Palin. 

What I find interesting about the recent turn of political events is how it might affect Palin’s decision to run for president. At coffee one day some time ago, one of the ladies from exercise class pooh-poohed the idea that Palin would ever be considered a serious candidate. I wasn’t so sure; I’m still not. While she may not answer questions in the manner to which we are accustomed, she connects with ordinary people who probably can’t offer glib answers either. I know. I may have a gift for writing, but I can get tongue-tied when speaking, especially when defending an opinion.

My thoughts are that Palin may be using these next couple of years to build a grass-roots political base, from which she’ll launch her candidacy. The Tea Party may be at the forefront of this reality. Obama’s election was probably the catalyst for this seismic political shift to the other extreme. Just as a black, Democratic president captured the imagination of millions, appealing to the emotions of many who cast votes in his favor; Palin is finding fans among those disenchanted with Obama’s perceived expansion of big government. Conservatives underestimated the possibility of a black president; opponents may be too quick in dismissing Palin as a serious contender.

The recent Vanity Fair issue chronicles a behind-the-scenes look, “Sarah Palin, Smears, Lies, and Big Speaking Fees: Inside Sarah Palin, Inc.” by Michael Joseph Gross. In a 40 minute speech in Independence, Missouri, Palin’s unfettered language connected with the audience. “They talk down to us. Especially here in the heartland. Oh, man. They think that, if we were just smart enough, we’d be able to understand their policies. And I so want to tell ’em, and I do tell ’em, Oh, we’re plenty smart, oh yeah–we know what’s goin’ on. And we don’t like what’s goin’ on. And we’re not gonna let them tell us to sit down and shut up.”  Voicing her views as though speaking for them, her listeners “believe she is just like them, and this conviction seems to satisfy their curiosity about the objective facts of her life.” Among others interviewed by journalist Gross was Colleen Cottle, “matriarch of one of Wasilla’s oldest families, and who served on the city council when Palin was mayor. She says she and her husband, Rodney, will pay a price for speaking candidly about Palin. Their son is one of Todd Palin’s best friends. ‘But it is time for people to start telling the truth,’ Colleen says. She describes the frustrations of trying to do city business with a mayor who had no attention span–with Sarah it was always ‘What’s the flavor of the day?’; who was unable to take part meaningfully in conversations about budgets because she ‘does not understand math or accounting–she only knows buzzwords, like ‘balanced budget’; and who clocked out after four hours on most days, delegating her duties to an aide–‘but he’ll never talk to you, because he has a state job and doesn’t want to lose it.’ This type of conversation is repeated so often that Wasilla starts to feel like something from The Twilight Zone or a Shirley Jackson short story–a place populated entirely by abuse survivors.” 

In years past when I was frustrated with how men governed, I’d share my feeling that moms should be in charge. For centuries we have been the primary caretakers, instilling our children with values. But they are not only future citizens, they are literally of our flesh, making their lives more cherished than our own. I surmised that mothers would wield power in the best interests of families, where I felt men reveled in having  power, period. Palin may have altered my thinking.

“Why are you pretending to be something you’re not? That is the question so many Alaskans have asked this year as they’ve watched Sarah Palin travel the nation. According to almost everyone who has ever known her, including those who have seen the darkest of her dark side, Sarah Palin has a great gift for making people feel good about themselves. Her knack for remembering names and faces and the details of her interactions with people–and for seeming to be present to the person in front of her–constitute an extraordinary power of engagement. Now she is using that power in a fundamentally different way. In part she is using it in the service of her own ambitions. …Those who once felt close to Palin have followed her public transformation with a confused range of emotions. The common denominator is sadness. ‘People who loved Sarah Palin are disappointed,’ said one woman in Wasilla, ‘because they found out that Sarah Palin loves Sarah Palin most of all.’ ”

I’ve decided that the best candidate is not determined by gender, but by what I feel he or she can do to improve the plight of our country. I’m sure everyone feels the same way, and so we’ll all vote according to our individual consciences, which is as it should be. But I still wonder what Palin will do in 2012, and if she’ll be a force with which to be reckoned.

tea party wins, foretelling the future?…hugmamma.

“aloha,” the meaning

I don’t claim to speak for all Hawaiians, only myself and perhaps a handful of others I know who may share my sentiments. The uproar over a mosque being built near Ground Zero seems to be growing the ever-widening gap among people, in our country and abroad, but particularly here in America. Republicans and Democrats have always been on sparring terms, but added to the mix now are the “Tea-Party” supporters with Sarah Palin seemingly at the helm. An uneasy coexistence among us began when the streamers and champagne glasses were tossed out, after President Obama’s inaugural. Did civility and tolerance get thrown in the trash as well?

Wanting and needing to live a healthy life going forward, for my sake and that of my husband’s and daughter’s, it’s been essential that I adopt a more compassionate, positive outlook toward myself, and others. Diseases, like Alzheimer’s breed on negativity. I’m certain, as survivors of cancer would agree, that dwelling upon the bad aspects of the disease doesn’t help in the fight against and may, in fact, promote its spread. So why would we want to encourage more vitriol amongst ourselves, families, friends, neighbors,co-workers,communities and fellow-worshippers of the same Being whom we all believe as benevolent? Might we not share that same benevolence with our fellow-men and women?

Opponents of both views  in the brouhaha over mosques being built on U.S. soil seem unwilling to share the land, let alone compassion ( “a feeling of sympathy for another’s misfortune” according to Webster) towards one another. Yesterday’s Journal cited several ongoing conflicts around the country. In Temecula, California “Local officials will consider in November plans by the Islamic Center of Temecula Valley for a 25,000-square-foot mosque.” Pastor William Rench of Calvary Baptist Church, potentially neighboring the proposed mosque, is concerned about extremist sentiments expressed by one American Islamic leader.  The Islamic Center of Murfreesboro, Tennessee, plans to build a new mosque and school. Darrel Whaley “A local pastor at Kingdom Ministries Worship Center…has spoken at county meetings against plans for the mosque and recreational facilities.” Meanwhile plans have been approved to build a mosque in Sheboygan County, Wisconsin. President of the Islamic Society of Sheboygan, Imam Mohammad Hamad says “The issue here is not the issue of a religious building, it is an issue of the Constitution.” A supporter Reverend Gregory S. Whelton, pastor at St. John’s United Church of Christ in Sheboygan felt President Obama’s controversial remarks “articulated the same issues of religious tolerance that were at stake here.”

Since Lincoln’s stand against racial prejudice, which cost too much in the loss of human lives, our country has struggled to rid itself of the taint of human degradation, slavery. But it seems to be our lot on earth never to achieve equality for we always keep our hearts and minds closed to others, who are unlike ourselves. Perhaps we fear they will take what we have, leaving us nothing. 

I struggle too, I’m not above the fray. But for the sake of our children and their children, it’s my sincerest hope that we continue fighting for equality of ideas, beliefs, cultures. Politics, it seems, carries the day suffocating our values, our humanity.

Tourists and others comment on the “Aloha spirit” among Hawaiians. It is spoken of as a beneficent state of mind. For the most part, it is. Native Hawaiians under the rule of King Kamehameha wanted for nothing. He owned the land, and the people were granted its use for their daily needs. I think because of this, Hawaiians are not hoarders by nature. Unfortunately this inherent openness toward sharing the wealth and beauty of the islands has enabled others to historically take whatever they wanted, leaving the natives very little to share of their inheritance.

Despite their own dilemma most Hawaiians continue to welcome visitors to their Paradise, the thought being we all need one another to survive. So they continue to share the thunderous waterfalls, the white sand beaches, the warm waters of the blue Pacific, the green canopies of local foliage, the migrating humpbacks and other wildlife that still abounds, the hula dancers telling stories with their hands, their eyes, and melodic voices rising on soft breezes evoking reminiscences of Hawaii’s past, wonderment at Hawaii’s present, and promises of Hawaii’s future.

Hawaiians are not exempt from the trials and tribulations of others, they  would just prefer that everyone get along. There’s an old saying my mom use to pass along when some wrong was righted “No mo pilikea.” We knew then there would be “no more trouble,” “no more worries.”

that’s what I wish for us all…hugmamma.