RJ's Corner

Looking Back to See a Path Forward…





One thing I like about my lifetime study of American history is that as Solomon said “there is nothing new under the sun”. Almost everything happening today has some corollary in the past. The John Kennedy quotes from more than fifty years ago could have just as easily been made today. It is hard for me to imagine that Kennedy was born almost a century ago.  As standards go he was a very young president much like our current one. I, like so many of my generation, will always remember him as a young man cut down in his prime.  We can only imagine what he could have accomplished if he had not been killed by an assassin’s bullet.

The concept of linking the help for the poor to saving the rich is very enlightening. I simply can’t understand how the rich cannot understand that by suppressing wages and jobs they are actually eliminating customers for the products that fuel their wealth. A consumer society such as we are depends on people being able to buy the goods and services they themselves provide. This was perhaps first recognized by Henry Ford and that brought about the middle class property that we all now dream so much about. I think the very existence of the middle class that resulted in our economy thriving was a direct result of Mr. Ford’s actions and the middle class will not prosper until the next version of Henry comes along.

The second quote is very applicable to the fact that the GOP has voted more than fifty times to take away affordable healthcare to more than ten million of our citizens without anything to replace it. It is very obvious to most of us that one of our political  parties is known as the party of no alternatives, finding fault with everything, gloom, and wanting influence without responsibility.  When will they ever learn that these practices have no place in a compassionate democratic society.

Enough said…. Thanks John for teaching us even more than fifty years after your death…



A Man Deserting a Woman…



Makes sense to me now if they would only add it to the GOP political platform….


America Died From a Delusion…

Will Rogers 6Here we go again! America is running true to form, fixing some other country’s business for ’em just as we always do. We mean well but will wind up in the wrong as usual.

When some nation wants us to help ’em out, they use the same old “gag” that we should exert our “Moral Leadership: and, like a yap, we believe it when as a matter of truth, no nations wants any other nation exerting “Moral Leadership” over ’em, even if they had one.

If we ever pass out as a great nation we ought to put on our tombstone: “America died from a delusion that she had Moral Leadership”  — Will Rogers June 22, 1931 —

I am ashamed to admit that it has been a while since I used one of my hero’s quotes here on RJ’s Corner. Shame on me, Will’s words are what helps keep me centered during today’s version of turmoil. It has been eighty-four years since Will said these words and they are as true today as they were then.

No country, or even individual for that matter, wants someone to give them moral leadership. To even insinuate  that you want it is to admit that you don’t have enough of your own and for us Americans that is an almost impossible thing to say. We Americans are a pompous and egotistical bunch so we fall for this logic too easily. We like to think that somehow when God passed out morality we got a double, no a triple, dose of it.

Can you imagine if for instance Britain came over here to provide us with some “Moral Leadership” in the area of providing universal healthcare to our citizens?  Or worse yet to show help us get our murder rate to the extremely low levels of their’s?  I will be one to admit that we certainly could use their “Moral Leadership” in these areas but I am absolutely certain that their offer would be quickly and adamantly rejected.

What “Moral Leadership” means today is that countries want us to give them some of our weapons to more easily kill their enemies. It means that they want us to pump trillions of bucks into their country to do something they don’t have the will to do on their own.

Now don’t get me wrong here, I am not saying that we don’t do some good in the world but as Will said almost a hundred years ago we far too often just get it flat-out wrong.  We stick our noses in where it doesn’t belong…

Thanks again Will for keeping me focused….

Trickle Down…


I wonder when the Trickle Down theory will ever be discounted in my GOP friends. Probably never….. they have tattooed it on their foreheads…

I Love America, But…

I love America and I can’t imagine living anywhere else in the world. But I’m sure there are those out there that have a very different opinion  of me. Some who accidentally come across my blog here have flatly told me so.  They think I must not love my country because I say critical things about it. Sadly I’m pretty sure that is the mentality that prompted Rudy Giuliani to recently say our president doesn’t love America or anyone in it.

2015-02-23_10-17-18I do not believe that the president loves America,” the former New York City mayor said Wednesday. “He doesn’t love you. And he doesn’t love me. He wasn’t brought up the way you were brought up and I was brought up through love of this country.”

SOURCE:Obama Derangement Syndrome –Vox.

Maybe those of us who say critical things about our country need to say more often “I love my country, but it is not perfect.”  We need to always strive to be better tomorrow than we are today. In fact those who seem to have a blindness to that belief are more dangerous to our future than I could ever be.

Charles Blow in a New York Times Op-Ed made the comment that “In fact, that (criticism) is a measure of love. Honest critique is a pillar of patriotism”.   One of the main differences between the U.S. and say Russia is that we are allowed, some would say encouraged, to criticize the actions of our leaders.  We are different from most of the rest of the world in that regard. In Egypt a blogger much like myself who made some mild criticism of that country was recently sentenced to receive one thousand lashes which is almost a death sentence because he blogged something they didn’t like. We are a great country because at least some of us in an attempt to make our country better speak out where we might fall short of our founding principles and morality.

When Rudy said the quote above he was quickly admonished by several in his party but not all.  But there were some of the presidential-wants-bes who are probably afraid of offending those in the base of their party by defending President Obama and didn’t have the courage to do so. I think those few (Rubio, Walker, and Jindal) have a distorted sense of their party’s base, or at least I hope they do.

Rudy needs to go back to his Catholic roots to learn not  to judge what is in others hearts, that is the business of God and He said as much.  I love this country but it is not perfect….



2014-12-12_09-13-53“Now which is the narrowest, religious intolerance or political intolerance?” – Will Rogers, 20 April 1927

I have been pondering that question for some time now myself Will. We all know that so much of politics, particularly the GOP brand,  is primarily driven by fear. The politicians want people fearful of their opponents winning over them. They keep our military budgets at absurd levels by keeping us fearful that if we reduce that grotesque   spending on our war machine terrorists will flood our shores.

But then again isn’t religious intolerance the reason for the majority of the world’s wars? We religious people seem to allow our extremists to tell us who is our enemy. Right now some of those jihadists nuts say that anyone who is not a Muslim simply need to be eliminated. They threaten, and sometimes even carry out that threat to a minute degree.  It amazes me how the vast majority of any religion, but particularly the muslims, doesn’t reign in the rouges among them. They seem to let the extremists talk for them?

Yeah Will,it would go a long way toward world peace, and everyone just getting along if we had a little less of both religious and political intolerance. Which one is worse I just don’t know…. and I don’t think I will ever figure that one out…

The Less You Know….

2014-11-24_15-03-15“I am kind of like a politician. The less I know about anything, the more I can say about it.” – Will Rogers, 12 June 1928

I’m kind of like a politician myself Will. One of my favorite quotes is “You don’t have to know what you are saying as long as you say it with authority”. That should be the mantra for most of those politicians inside the beltway. Too many of those yahoos like to strut around like they are experts on everything but in reality they let the lobbyists with the biggest purse tell them what to say and believe.

Its time we started sending some “real” people to that totally fake city… :)

Wanting a Gun….

2014-10-16_07-36-09“They want Peace, but they want a Gun to help get it with.” – Will Rogers, 9 February 1930

Yeah Will, nothing has changed much in this area since your day.  About the only thing different is that we have MUCH bigger guns now. It goes back to the old quote “If all you have is a hammer everything looks like a nail”. I love this country but I simply can’t begin to understand its obsession with guns…..

I Find Myself Much Happier…

2014-10-19_09-42-23I have taken leave of politics. I think little of them and say less. I have given up newspapers in exchange for Tacitus and Thucydides, for Newton and Euclid, and I find myself much happier.

Thomas Jefferson in a letter to John Adams January 21,1821

I always get a certain degree of pleasure to find that my recent decisions were tried by my heroes before me. About a year or so ago, maybe longer as time seems to be flying by lately, I decided to take my leave of politics. To me that venue has taken a dark turn that I seem to be unable to tolerate now. I decided to leave how we get out of this gutter to those who can actually effect a change. I decided that until things improve, if they even can, I will be voting against anyone currently in office at the State and national level. I see it as the only remaining way to get through to those hard-hearted, spiteful people who have gridlocked our political processes.

Jefferson had been out of political office for about 15 years when he penned this letter to Adams. He finally had enough of it. I find myself in the same mental state.

Each Worse Than The Other….

2014-10-16_07-36-09You know the more you read and observe about this Politics thing, you got to admit that each party is worse than the other. – Will Rogers, 31 December 1922

You know Will it took me a lot of years to discover what you did. I finally gave up on both political parties after it was obvious that those yahoos in congress were not going to allow President Obama to accomplish anything beyond ACA. Forget that it would have made us a better nation. Forget that much of it would have solved many of the driving issues of today. They simply won’t allow anything of any meaning to happen in that gridlocked city.

I started out as a Republican when I voted for Richard Nixon and moved to a Democrat after I saw the effects of Reagan. Now I am an independent I suppose but more to just vote the “ins” out. We gotta send a message to those who currently represent us that they have failed miserably. The only way to do that is to keep voting them out of office until they finally get it.

Round 1 next Tuesday……


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