Religious Jihad… Caliphate… Putin & Crimea… Global Problems…

Global Concerns

Around the world today, we continue to face multiple global issues (only going to discuss a few here), issues large enough that the entire global community must weigh in and do more than talk. And oh yeah, we will need to provide the UN and Interpol with much more bite (punishment and enforcement) – they absolutely require it.

Yes, these concerns and issues are all highly serious but we must start doing more.

The spread of one religion full of zealots is not just an issue for one region of the world – it is a significant issue for all citizens of the globe.

And a country using its military might to take land and/or to instill fear by proposing military expansion under the pretext of “to insure our citizens are not harmed” can no longer be tolerated or allowed.

 

One does not need to hold the highest security clearances to know or see what is happening around the world, there are plenty of news outlets to cull information from, using your own research efforts. But – you “HAVE TO” use your own mind and brain power to make your own informed decisions. It will mean watching portions of multiple network TV or cable news programs, radio shows and Internet news feeds. You “cannot” filter all of your news from just one or two sources; you must broaden your horizons of where you get your news. Listen to news coming from multiple political parties, not just your own.

Anyone publically disavowing science yet does not nothing about any aspect of the science they are attempting to disprove, i.e. evolution, global weather patterns, financial economies, the science of diplomacy or military arts and so on – is that the type of person you want to listen to and to follow?

Listen, if you continue to diligently listen to only a couple of sources, you are no better than the kids being brainwashed in the numerous madrasas in multiple parts of the world. And we, many of us, all know that many of these madrasas are pounding select knowledge and no more into the heads of all the impressionable men and boys (remember, girls and women are not worthy of education). Many of these impressionable men and boys are taught to dislike, disavow and hate the lifestyles and teachings of the western world.

In the end, the mass majority of individuals leaving madrasas are still ignorant and mostly uneducated… but frighteningly have their sights set on hating and killing anyone not of their religion or are from the western world.

 

One does not need to be the best National Security Intelligence SME to analyze open source (not classified) information from around the globe. You can use that significantly important organ of your body, your very own brain, to dissect and analyze the information you see and read for yourself.

YOU, you are smart enough to compare multiple news items and see which ones hold water and which ones do not, especially if you do your own research to see if what is being discussed is true or not. You are your own intelligence analyst – you’re an intelligent human being, I sure hope you are.

One just needs to open their eyes and “see,” not just look, what is occurring and extrapolate about what is happening now and onwards into the future. Extrapolate the information you’ve analyzed and see where the path ends up a week from now, a month or year from now. You have to project forward intelligently.

 

Religious Jihadists

To spread the word of Islam by killing non-believers of all other religions – that is one goal of a religious zealot or some type of Jihadist. To be very clear here, many of us know that the mass majority of Muslims are peace loving – it is the minority of dangerous zealots, who want to make the world over in their image, following Sharia law that we have to worry about.

 

A group of individuals, no matter what religion they purport to be part of or are from – no can kidnap women and girls, killing the men and boys and force those captives to follow an unwanted religion. There is no justification for it.

What zealous religious individuals around the globe have to understand (I know, I know – they may never understand) is that there is the matter of free will and expression. They cannot force others to follow a religion that was created centuries ago out of ignorance and grew over time with religious leaders evolving over that time as well. Those religious leaders, zealot or not, evolved over time, holding titles from witch doctor, shaman, priests, imam, apostle, dalai lama, swami, abbot to sun gods, etc., etc….

The choice of free will means people can choose to believe in any one of the many gods out there and to follow whatever religion they want – but it is their choice to do so, or to ‘not’ follow any god or religion. Just because a group of people spurred on by someone claiming to be their religious leader, who commands their followers to commit Jihads or Fatwas, it does not make it right. And make no mistake about it, a Jihad or Fatwa that dictates killing someone is not legal in many, many parts of the world. It is just murder.

The growth of modern day terrorists and their aims lead them to want to transit international boundaries and create fear and death by any means handy. These terrorists say it is to right the wrongs of all the years of western superiority. Unfortunately, I will say, many of our ancestors did take many, many things by force and in the process, suppressed the people who lived in those affected countries, including the U.S…

Today, we have many people following varying religions around the world, religions that rose up out of superstition and lack of education from 10s of thousands (if not 100s of thousands) years ago and then passed down through the ages to us, the descendants’ descendants.

And please, if anyone wants to follow an ancient tradition that is their right but those people cannot force others to do so, it has to be of free will, if that is desired.

   

A Caliphate?

Now, as everyone should be aware of, we have a hard core group of individuals in the mid-east who, under their leader – Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi (the piously humble man wearing a very expensive wrist watch), wish to create an Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (now calling itself, the Islamic State…). Or if you will, al-Baghdadi wants to start the beginnings of a new Caliphate.

This is still a terrorist activity even if the terrorists believe it to be some kind of holy crusade.

In their drive to create this Caliphate, suppose these individuals, who are hell bent (pardon the pun) on doing whatever they can to demolish, destroy and flat out create massive deaths around the world, suppose these terrorists start using hidden explosives (and vastly improved miniaturization techniques) in wearable’s such as FitBits, packed into the frames of many pairs of glasses or even within the handles of suitcases…?

Suppose they actually get more American’s or visitors to the U.S. here on a Visa to successfully cause deaths by poisoning the water supplies of small towns (or larger cities) or other such dastardly acts of violence…?

What do we do, start doing even more pervasive and extensive searches of citizens around the globe to prevent the spread of terrorist activities…?

For all we know, in the future, Boko Haram may want to become of that group, growing their own list of horrific acts…

In any regard, a Caliphate led by religious zealot(s) is a dangerous thing for the world to deal with.

 

Putin, Russia, Crimea, etc…

Okay, we have the mid-east as a very hot spot, what about in Eurasian? Look at Putin of the Soviet Union, errr sorry, of Russia. It really appears as if he wants to pull the Soviet Union of yore back together again. What else can explain the inextricably odd actions that the man is doing?

Or is he simply off his noggin in annexing a portion of Ukraine – Crimea, to grow Russia back into its former self – the U.S.S.R…? Is he seriously looking at Georgia, Moldova and others? Has he absolutely gone wacko in threatening Finland? If you do not recall or did not know:

  • Putin in 2012 [1] stated, “Saying that Finland will surrender its right to act independently in the event it joins the western military alliance, Putin added that Moscow will respond to deployment of any NATO attack missiles based in the Nordic country.”
  • Then in 2013, he threatened Finland with reoccupation [2] and
  • In 2014 [3], “According to Andrej Illarionov, the President’s chief economic adviser from 2000 to 2005, Mr Putin seeks to create “historical justice” with a return to the days of the last Tsar, Nicholas II, and the Soviet Union under Stalin.” Also from the 2014 story: “Parts of Georgia, Ukraine, Belarus, the Baltic States and Finland are states where Putin claims to have ownership.”

So what does the world do with an individual who has delusions of grandeur, which is what it appears to me? Does the global community stand by twiddling its collective thumbs waiting to see what Putin does? Or does the world come together in sending a clear and definitive statement to Putin that he cannot cavalierly move his military into other countries with the belief that his predecessors were wrong in granting sovereignty and land to other countries – Ukraine, Finland, Belarus, etc.

Yes, the EU does get a large amount of fossil fuel from Russia but at some point, the world, especially the EU and its neighbors must put the pedal to the metal and show Putin how much solidarity there is in that hemisphere and that he cannot continue bullying countries because he has a larger military.

 

There will be some initial pain in putting up a strong cohesive front towards Putin but a bit of sacrifice early will likely quell any future problems – such as another military incursion into places like Georgia or Crimea.

 

Then too, it’s likely that Putin is desirous in occupying those areas of Ukraine for the vast energy reserves (gas and oil) below ground, within the Ukrainian eastern borders. He took Crimea for the naval base infrastructure currently in place.

 

And as for the U.S., no, we are not exempt from problems. We know that we have a good number of individuals in the U.S. that want to create problems like not paying taxes, attempts at secession in the state they live in and on and on (i.e. militia, sovereign citizens – for which their numbers grew when someone of a different color became President). There are multiple issues of a long list of problems in the U.S., such as gun violence, racial disparity (still), educational woes and on and on…

 

Our Global Future…

Education

We have to set a goal, one primary overarching goal – that of providing better, much better education to everyone around the globe. Yes, the education will have to be modified for whatever country but everyone should be educated, to learn to read and write and think for themselves. In providing ‘quality’ education, it will allow more people the chance to grow their own choices and make better choices for them and their families.

Of course this is not an easy task, we are still working on in many of the developed countries but we have to spread education and the tools to gain that education. If we do not, we will all have a bleak future. If people grow up ignorant and only see, hear and read selected teachings from their country’s education system or from a religious group, they do not grow and these people only see things through a possibly much distorted lens, lenses which could continue to cause anger and hatred and jealousy.

A lack of education amplifies ignorance and ill will.

Communication

We all need to make better efforts in communicating – “talking” – to each other. We need to find acceptable common grounds to meet on (such as peaceful coexistence). We need to talk to each other, not attempting to force one country’s belief on another or one’s religion on others.

We need to talk to each other and in doing so, we “must compromise” – no one can have everything they want. It is just not possible, without engendering hatred and violence.

Collaboration

We need more collaboration between all people, all nations! If the world continues on as it is with more nationalism growing in different countries, more secessionist attempts within countries, deepening of certain religious branches – we are going to end up in a world of separateness, with no one wanting to assimilate within a country’s borders. Nor will we have people looking past the ethnicity, race, religion of others, just because they are different – outsiders…

We will have a future plagued with more:

  • Violence,
  • Terrorists,
  • Gangs – Mafia, Triads, Mafiya (Russia), Yakuza, MS13
  • Nations hankering to take land from other country’s for water, mineral and energy within the other country (just because they have a bigger military),
  • Etc., etc., etc. – I could go on all day 

We have to work together and help the weakest nations grow and begin to prosper. We have to do away with all the remaining dictators and corrupt President’s, in certain countries, along with their crony politicians and business leaders.

We have to do more.

 

Definitions

SME   Subject Matter Expert

 

References

1 – Finland will lose ‘sovereignty’ if joins NATO – Putin, http://rt.com/politics/putin-finland-nato-missiles-509/, 22 Jun 2012

2 – Putin threatens Finland with reoccupation, http://www.kavkazcenter.com/eng/content/2013/03/15/17466.shtml, 15 Mar 2013

3 – Vladimir Putin ‘wants to regain Finland’ for Russia, adviser says, http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/vladimir-putin-wants-to-regain-finland-for-russia-adviser-says-9224273.html, 30 Mar 2014

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50 years later & SCOTUS – We’ve Failed…

Really? Really!!!

Okay, 50 years later and SCOTUS (supreme court of the US) has apparently failed people of the U.S., those who are morally inclined for doing the right thing for the many and not just the vocal. 

Religion, as I know it, is a private affair and as such should never play a part in local, state or federal government. Yet, it does.

Yes, when this country was formed, people knew less about science but they knew more about racism, bigotry, suppression, oppression, sexism, discrimination – well, should I continue on…?

My point is, is that this country has changed over a couple of centuries – at least a little bit – and the world has changed. It is supposed to be for the better, not in taking strides to go backwards. 

Yet, this is what the SCOTUS is doing, with their latest decision for Hobby Lobby and contraception, causing us to go backwards in our nations’ progress. That decision was a slippery slope (Justice Ginsburg and Hillary Clinton both stated that). That decision is going to open up a Pandora’s Box of more discrimination across the country – no service for gays, attempts to do away with minimum wage, etc., etc., etc.

Nia-Malika Henderson wrote a great piece on this topic: How Justice Ginsburg’s Hobby Lobby dissent helps shape the debate about reproductive vs. religious rightswww.washingtonpost.com/blogs/she-the-people/wp/2014/07/01/how-justice-ginsburgs-hobby-lobby-dissent-helps-shape-the-debate-about-reproductive-and-religious-rights/ Jul 1, 2014

 

Religion as I understand it, and no disrespect, is that if individuals want to practice any religion, they are free to do so, as long as they are not forcing others to see it or be an unwilling participant. For example, those of us who may be atheist or agnostic – are forced to handle currency with “In God We Trust” or to see it in courtrooms and/or other public governmental institutions.

If one wants to practice their religion – don’t make everyone around you be unwilling (or unwitting) participants. Hobby Lobby, in its zeal wants to implement their religious belief on their thousands of employees and not all of them are religious, just because they work at Hobby Lobby. For those of you who say ‘maybe those employees who don’t like it should get another job elsewhere,’ – what do you know of the plight of those workers? Do you know how easy or difficult it will be for the Hobby Lobby employee to ‘easily’ move on to another job, one that is as good paying (hopefully) as the one they are leaving?

Why are people trying to force religious beliefs on others? Why aren’t the religious, those that are trying to spread religion, letting the non-religious go about their business in peace? Not allowing the non-religious (or even the willing religious) to partake of something like contraception is somewhat abysmal and akin to Sharia Law. Yep, I did say Sharia Law because that what it boils down to when one wants to put their religious stamp on others who do not want to participate.

If one is religious that is fine, you can believe the world was created 6,000 years ago that is quite up to you. There are even those who believe that mankind domesticated dinosaurs but there are no dinosaur fossils (T-Rex, Stegosaurus, Brontosaurus, etc.) as young as 6,000 years old.

But for some people, they believe in the science of the world being created hundreds of millions of years ago (and more) with the human race evolving over the past several million years, with fossils to prove it (Australopithecus, homo habilis, homo erectus, neanderthals, homo sapien, etc.) – that is, if one believes in carbon dating as many do.

We have got to separate and remove religion from politics and government, we have to.

 

The Supreme Court has been making decisions they believed were helping but in fact are actually hindering and causing us to become a have and have not country.

A case in point, the Citizens United decision, where more money can be dumped into politics – that is simply bad but many people seem to believe it is a good idea. It is not.

If those with the most money influences (and dictates behind the scenes) political events and issues because of that vast wealth being sent in at fire hose torrent speeds, the less wealthy will feel the effects and suffer accordingly. This is akin to going back to the robber baron days where the rich were the one’s setting the rules and regulations, the poor “be damned!”

Now of course, not all rich are as maliciously inclined to gobble up all they want with scant disregard to the ‘little people’ or the ’47 percent.’ There are many altruistic wealthy folks, just not enough to overcome the non-altruistic…

 

And the voting rights issue, it is bad enough that we have the problem of political gerrymandering compounding every single problem facing us. Because the SCOTUS knocked down sections of the VRA, we are at this cliff drop off of states making sweeping changes to hinder and impede the votes of certain people. And using the fear of voting fraud in certain conversations keep cropping up, yet, there is very little fraud…

Please do your own wide research on this, “do not” just go to one news outlet and read content there – READ & RESEARCH FROM MULTIPLE, VARIED SOURCES!” Otherwise, you will doom your own knowledge and filter only on what you want to read rather than other varying opinions, which ‘may’ help you to form newer, better and more knowledgeable opinions.

If some of the states wanting to implement some of the draconian voting laws, why not make it easier for the people? Why not put into effect, mobile voter registration vehicles where the vehicle can go to different communities on a rotating basis to let those folks register? This would alleviate the commuting people for many of these folks… right…?

The SCOTUS, in their great wisdom, in cutting out parts of the VRA allowed many states to modify and cripple voting for quite a few citizens.

Overall, the SCOTUS has failed. They have failed, more than likely, in using their personal values rather than logical and contemplative reasoning to decide momentous decisions that spread far and deep into the future.

So ultimately, we, the people of the U.S. have failed along with the Supreme Court. Why? Because we get who we vote for in the political arena. If one votes for a vitriolic individual who refuses to compromise, poo-poos any real science and looking to establish extreme measures to resolve some problem – that is who goes onward doing things many people dislike. 

Subsequently, these individuals in office, they are the ones who go on to decide in some form or fashion the types of people who serve on boards, committees and institutions like the Supreme Court. People like members of the SCOTUS make decisions, which extrapolated out into the future, can cause chagrin, harm and little progress.

We failed because too many people are too short-sighted and use things like gender discrimination or religion, a hugely personal belief, in attempting to brand everyone around them with the same philosophy or belief – whether others want it or not.

SIDEBAR: On the topic of gerrymandering, we have to stop it and stop it now or else we will just see, for the long haul, political parties no longer having truly competitive races with continual gridlock at every turn. We need an independent organization that is bi-partisan to create new district lines in every state, a system that is fair and equitable and not one where we have: “okay, this group here is fine, they will vote for democrats at every election” and “this group over there is fine, they are all one race and wealthy, they will only vote for one party forever.”

Why can’t we stop this gerrymandering nonsense, it is at the heart of political gridlock….!!!??? Or are we doomed to having one party or the other, because of gridlock, blocking commonsense changes and progress for everyone…?

NOTEABLES: To obtain medical supplies dependent on your employer’s beliefs and desires, who in Hades and/or in their right mind would want to do that?

To allow the rich to dictate (again) the direction of politics and societal norms (if we have any left) – who in their right mind would want that?

To allow states to hobble the voting activities of many of their citizens because it would make the voting more slanted towards one party, well, that is just so disingenuous…

Maybe the worst of all, having men decide what is right and best for women and their productive organs (their bodies) – that is simply unbelievable of the utmost magnitude.

Solutions for inequities, religious superiority (anywhere in the world) and other discriminations:

Many of us are as stumped as anyone else, successful and resourceful answers are difficult and difficult to implement once found. There are too many people who are too dogmatic in their beliefs and refuse to modify their beliefs – even if you put illuminative and very verifiable evidence on their plate in front of them, served up with a heaping bounty of ‘no guilt’ and complete lack of finger pointing.

We just do not seem to have enough people in this country (or around the world) who are looking past their own nose, their own short-sightedness and looking down the road to the future as to what will be best for society overall… Too many people (and businesses) are looking at short-term gains and goals and not the long game.

We need ‘more’ people in this country that are willing to:

  • Open their eyes and their minds to become better educated and to broaden their mental and moral horizons
    • Read or watch or talk about topics that stretch your own internal compass
  • Stop the self-filtering habit of continuous conversations with the ‘same’ people discussing the ‘same’ topics free of differing, open and diverse viewpoints
  • Stop the self-filtering habit of only listening to the ‘same’ radio stations (radio or online) and/or to the ‘same’ TV news channels all the time – instead, more people should watch different TV/radio programs
    • Watch PBS, BBC, AlJazeera America, FOX, CNN, Bloomberg and/or CNBC to gain a grasp of other opinions from differing viewpoints, from other perspectives – to see what is going on in other parts of the country (and the world)
    • Stop listening only to individuals who rail and rant about limited topics that make little sense in the short term – such as stopping change, things like renewable energy and gender equality (at everything, as much as is possible but most certainly in pay and power) – go outside of your comfort zones and hear/see multiple other aspects of life and the economy – many people around the country have different thoughts than you – you do not control what others should be thinking or seeing or doing
  • Help educate other people in their communities to broaden their minds and stop thinking and acting as if we were still in America of 1800, or 1880, or even 1955
    • People HAVE GOT to start thinking of those long term goals that was mentioned previously, 10, 20, 50 and 100 years into the future – yes, there may be pain now, the initial cost and the mental disequilibrium, which is sure to arise
  • Help the less advantaged people rise up and become better, where in the end, the entire society prospers and not just the few who had it handed to them from their ancestors – those who simply took what was available while oppressing and suppressing others

None of this can be accomplished without many more people ‘stretchingtheir minds to learn newer things, accept more ways of thinking and certainly not least – becoming more adaptive to the ever changing world of the future. And being old, young, religious, straight, gay, white, brown, black, blue or green – none of that excuses anyone from changing for the better and bringing EVERYONE forward with them.

There is no excuse for being unwilling to change! We are moving further into the 21st century, all of us must change…

 

 

 

C’mon, Really – “It’s always been that way ‘historically’”…. Racism

Really? Really!!!

It’s always been that way historically…. a statement purportedly made by Donald Sterling to his girlfriend V. Stiviano who is a woman of mixed race, which races are not important, at least to myself and many others around the globe.

Why should it matter? Why should anyone care at this point in our history as to what color someone else is? “NO ONE” should care what color or race someone else is, here in the 21st century – we should be moving on to a better and more enlightened future.

 

Yes, Sterling (purportedly) hit it on the nail head that it has been that way historically but do we need to continue on with any bigots, racists, racism or anyone who believes in racial supremacy? There are those who believe we need to get rid of affirmative action because the time is right (Supreme Court amongst others). Yet we have individuals like Sterling and Cliven Bundy (Nevada rancher who believes in a sovereign state but not the U.S.) who open their mouths and make it blatantly known how they truly feel, to the world.

 

These two individuals are not isolated cases of racism; there are many, many more incidents of racism in America and around the world – it is only more covert and insidious. These individuals and some of them will tell you to your face they are not racist, thrive in restaurants, in your workplace, at your gym, at your local bar, etc.

There are many people who can recount multiple painful situations (I know I can) where they were either an outright victim of racism or were a victim of more insidious racism – i.e. on the job receiving unequal pay or less favorable jobs (same as in gender discrimination).

Along the lines of covert racism, there are so many fraudulent people out there who will joke with the person of a different (“inferior”) skin color, slap them on the back out of camaraderie and even have drinks together – but it is all a front. It is a front because, behind closed doors with ‘others of their kind,’ the frauds will let their inner thoughts come out and ring true as they trash talk and belittle the person(s) of a different color. They may not be members of the KKK but it may as well be the same thing, the frauds act as if they are superior.

If you have experienced this, you will know what I mean. For those that do not or doubt it, let me point you in the direction of two recent points of reference:

==> Exhibit ACliven Bundy & Exhibit BDonald Sterling

 

We still have ‘good old boy’ networks thriving everywhere; the problem is in proving it. One cannot know or find out unless the racist(s) in question lets it slip accidentally or someone in the know blows the whistle. We have vast numbers of racism occurring everywhere, at a time when it should not matter what color a person’s skin is or what race they belong to.

— Why does race matter?  Why should race matter!!! —

 

And as to affirmative action I mentioned previously, unfortunately, we do still need it for a bit longer in order to continue to level the playing field for many who would not move upwards without it. Examples, okay, how about this one – schools that receive more funding or better *you name it* than schools in disadvantaged areas.

 

Back to race issues though, some people look at the skin color of another and automatically stigmatize that person with having the “wrong” or “different” skin color. Some of these people who act racist do it intentionally, while others do it sub-consciously because of years of growing up and being brain-washed with it (similar to growing up in a religious family where every single day, all you hear and see is religion with no countervailing arguments or viewpoints).

 

Why is it that people who do have racist issues continue having those issues in the 21st century?

 

Is it out of fear that the person of a different color might do a better job or be a better person? Are people still afraid of – “becoming tainted” from being around someone of another color? Do so many people ‘still’ believe they will become contaminated from interacting with others of another race?

 

Why aren’t even more people starting to look beyond the skin color of another and put value on the person within that skin? Why don’t more people realize that interacting with many more others will allow for more growth, more sharing and a better society?

 

 

It is what is inside and under the skin that makes the person. It is the person’s integrity, character, ethics, heart and thoughts that make the true individual – not just the outer layer of skin of whatever color.

Everyone needs to become educated that skin color is ONLY skin deep and that the person beneath that outer layer of skin – wants and desires the same things you want and desire.

 

It is a flat out shame that we still have to continue working on racism at this time. Many years ago some of us (and then many more years ago for those who came before us) were so optimistic that in the future, race would no longer be a problem. We thought, acted and talked in a manner of inclusiveness, hoping that others who did not act/think that way would pick up on our cues – and that it would accelerate over time, growing in an ever expanding curve upwards.

We were wrong. We were very, very wrong…

But we still continue to have hope that one day, most racism will actually die out (and groups like the KKK along with it).

Political parties and our future

Originally posted Aug 1, 2013 at & moved from: http://patrick642.wordpress.com/
Change. Improve. Innovate. Be better.
~ Pressing issues, from cyber security, to strategy, to innovation, to improvements (self, others, organizations)

Politics. At some point in the future, with the way things are nose diving in politics, we may wind up with a one party system for the country (maybe even one for N. American as a continent – but that is way off in the future).

So many politicians are in office nowadays primarily looking out for themselves rather than their constituents and the country. What happened along the way to get to this point where these selfish individuals want to line their pockets while in office or once they get out of office? What happened to those folks who went to Washington to do selfless work for the people of the country rather than completely toeing the party line, even if it makes no sense to them? Yet they kowtow to their party leaders, sometimes with no self-recrimination. What happened to those bold individuals who would stick up for things that were just and right, even if it did mean they were only a one term politician? But what they stick up for just may end up paving the way for new progress and improvements for those who follow them. What they do ‘might’ break the logjam that continues to hold us back from actually being the GREATEST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD.

Is it that the allure of being in the spotlight brings out the worse candidates to public office? Or rather, maybe I should say that it brings out the worse of that candidate/political member… Or is it the allure of making buckets of money while they are in office and then after they leave office? We know that a lot of individuals go in to office with a modest bank balance but at some point along the way they seem to have millions of dollars in the bank and in investments. Is greed the factor that draws so many individuals to the highest public office now. Many individuals who should be running simply cannot afford to so, what with the steep, STEEP cost of running for office and/or remaining in office. We should not need to have candidates for president raise and spend $1,000,000,000 (billion). Neither should we be seeing candidates for mayors, governors, congress or senate now be required to raise millions of dollars for their war chest to run and compete against other candidates who might be rich or well funded. We need to somehow rejigger the methodology of how we get good and decent candidates to run for office, without all this massive amount of spending…

I favor no one party blindly but I will say that I am an independent who leans heavily to the democratic party. But, I don’t follow that party blindly just because they are democrats. So if you are of a different party that is your right, just don’t hate me or respond negatively just because of the party difference. We are supposed to be one country, one where we should be able to speak our minds – but not rabidly without commonsense and common courtesy. Be passionate but not bullheaded, stick in the mud or ostrich in the sand passionate.

We have to hear what all parties say and do “our own homework/research” to get more ground truth and complete facts. Not just one side of the story. This is what is killing us, so many people listen to just one side on a daily basis and they end up with this vicious bubble filter (actually, read Eli Pariser’s book on “The Filter Bubble ” and gain some insight from that). Then these folks stay in that filter bubble and close their minds to new, fresh, different ideas – all because they may be too unsettling for them to come across something different, even if what they come across may be more true. I would say, “to each their own” but this is too important for so many people in this country to get in and stay in those filter bubbles. It is flat out dangerous.

We have too many in the different political parties that already make it more expensive and dangerous to be involved. We have states and cities around the country that are sneaking in bills that are harmful to the people of the state. Rather than debating the topic at hand, these bill sponsors rename the bill with something esoteric and stash it in another bill and then sneak the bill in at the deadline…

Maybe we do need one party in this country, one that is for the people that treats all Americans with dignity and respect. Whether they are women, people of different races, have lower educational backgrounds – the point is, we are supposed to be helping each other, not making the “have not’s” suffer as they are. All Americans should be getting a fair shot, not because they belong to just one party (‘ours’ – not ‘theirs), because for sure if you suppress someone, you are not being fair.

Do we need to change the political party system? Because to me, this bicameral one is having far too many expensive and ineffectual issues. We have to stop all these stalemates and get things moving. We all know. sorry – I mean ‘many of us’ know that the longer we delay projects, they become more expensive. And we have to start thinking of the future, strategically and put things in place now (even if they are expensive) so we can reap the benefits and rewards down the road.

Okay, enough on this for now – I just get riled up hearing all these political fights that make no sense. Conservative or Progressive – we need to be fair and help everyone up.