Throwing the baby (or 242 Years of History) out with the bath water.

I am assuming that most folks know the first phrase in the title above.   Here is what my friends at Wikipedia say that means:

2018-03-19_08-25-31.png

In a nutshell that means don’t throw the good stuff out with the bad. That sounds like a common-sense thing to me, but it sure seems like there are a lot of folks out there that missed that lesson when it was taught. The folks I’m talking about are the ones who put the current yahoo in the Oval Office. They just seem to be so upset about not getting their share that they want to take everything away from everyone else instead of just working to get it for themselves.

We as a democracy have managed to survive 242 years with the constitution produced by our Founding Fathers. Yeah, it needs some dusting off and sprucing up, but it is the reason we are still around when so many other democracies have come and gone.

The current guy in the Oval Office just doesn’t seem to have any respect for what our founders put out.  I don’t know if it is because he hasn’t read it or just doesn’t understand it? Or maybe it is because he thinks we are a monarchy. Six of one, half dozen of the other I suspect… Will someone send him a large-print copy to look over.  Maybe one written with a very large permanent marker. He seems to favor that mode of writing if he favors any at all.

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Puppy Dog Eyes

2018-03-23_15-52-29.pngThe old Indiana governor, which is my home state is probably the best Vice President in US history.  I know that is kind of a bold statement, especially coming from me! But hear me out. If you are as sharp as a tack you probably already figured it out.

The basic job of the vice president is to sit in his office and wait for the president to die. At least that is the Republican take on it, the Democrats actually put their VPs to work. I got to change subjects slightly here to make my final point so bear with me. The old saying in DC is if a president wants a friend in Washington then he should get a dog.  Well, I think the current Oval Office occupant has the best of both worlds.

Every time I see the VP with him he is looking at him with “puppy dog eyes”.  He just seems to be in awe of everything the guy says or does.  He is definitely a loyal employee who would never dare to question anything his boss said, and he is definitely house trained.  What more could a sitting president, especially the current one, want?

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The Slippery Slope

canstockphoto21427163.jpgI have been thinking about the slippery slope lately and how it has gotten so many people in trouble over the years. About fifty years ago it caught a lot of Christians in its net. They were just tired of having to explain why science was proving things contrary to what their bible said.  They were afraid if they didn’t deny all this scientific stuff that before long the Bible wouldn’t be able to hold water. So, what did they do? They suddenly decided that every word in their beloved book had to be literally true and anyone who said otherwise was spouting fake news. They said if anything is false about the bible then everything had to be false. I never understood that logic, but that is the slippery slope they built for themselves.

Fast forward to today, and another slippery slope is catching up with some folks. These are the ones who put #CO3  in that room. They are willing to let the guy have a pass absolutely anything because if they call him out on even one thing, they will fall on a slippery slope where everything he says has to be declared fake. If that happens, they would finally have to admit that they made a terrible mistake, and recognizing that is something no one wants to do.

Ironically, it’s mostly the same group that built both slippery slopes.  Once you construct a “slippery slope,” it’s tough to get back to rational thought.

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#CO3 = CurrentOvalOfficeOccupant

A One-Armed Economist…

This post is going to be about the economy and how the stock market has been acting lately.  Don’t expect me to give you some sage advice about where to invest your retirement money. I would likely be wrong if I even attempted that. Nope, what I am going to talk about is how the stock market has acted throughout history. I think I do know a thing or two about history, but don’t even count on that.

We all know that historically the stock market almost always does better in Democratic administrations than Republican. Why that is I don’t have the foggiest idea because at least in the last 3 or 4 decades the Republicans are the party for the rich and we all know that a significant majority of stocks are owned by the rich.  Every CEO seems to get millions of new shares every year lately. Another example is to look at the latest tax fraud, oh wait a minute, they call it a tax break for the rich of which we seniors I guess are supposed to pay for with our reduced monthly social security checks.

But if you think about it very much you will probably figure out that the rich get richer no matter who is in charge of the government.  They just have a way of getting their desires, and their desires are almost always about money, no matter what.

Ok, I will finally get to the reason behind the title of this quote. It came from Harry Truman. He made the comment “All my economists say on the one hand, but on the other…”  To that remark, he said, “give me a one-armed economist” 🙂  That is what we need in today’s world, one-armed economists. Someone who doesn’t mince their words.

Let’s finish off this post with some more words of wisdom from Harry

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Christianist Cult of Trump…

I will admit up front here that I cherry-picked the quotes below and the Facebook shot from a very long, agonizingly long, article from a Catholic site entitled Patheos.  The author is Mark Shea who is evidently a regular contributor to that venue.

The gun debate is an obvious case in point.  Virtually everything I have had to say about it turns on a very fundamental moral point, summed up here:

2018-02-25_09-16-35.png

The Christianist cult of Trump advertises itself to the world as the face of Real Christianity.  So proud is it that it routinely declares the pope a heretic as it cheers for the lies, corruption and sometimes appalling cruelties to the poor and contempt for common decency that characterize this Administration.  And the world watches and believes them when they say they are the true representatives of the gospel. They see when Christians give Trump a mulligan for fornicating with porn stars and join in declaring his victims to be liars. They see every lie and cruelty excused and know Christianists are full of crap.

via Why Don’t you Talk about Theology Instead of Politics, Mark?

Like many theologians, the author just can’t seem to come to the point directly. He needs to circle around it many times. But I think what I pulled out of the post is tantamount to what “Christianist cult of Trump” is doing to damage the face of Christianity.

But then again I firmly pray that these cult members are actually a minority fringe whose time will come.

I want to close out this post with another quote re-inforcing the damage these fringe groups are doing.

2018-02-25_11-58-04.pngAt a certain point in “God and Donald Trump,” the recent theological gymnastics on display from Tony Perkins and Jerry Falwell, Jr., among others, to explain ongoing conservative Christian support for a president who (allegedly) paid off a porn star weeks before Election Day so she would keep quiet about their (alleged) affair become clear. There will be no point at which Trump’s most loyal evangelical and charismatic supporters declare they have had enough. Because to do so would be to admit that they were wrong, that God wasn’t behind Trump’s election, and that their Holy Spirit radar might be on the fritz. That it was, after all, about something as temporal and banal as hating his Democratic rival.

via Millions of Americans Believe God Made Trump President – POLITICO Magazine

Of course, they are wrong that God put Trump in the Oval Office.  We now know that Russian trollers did it. 🙂  Will there come a point in time when Christianity will totally morph into a political organization without any reference to the spiritual one or even to the messages of Jesus? Will the word “Christian” like the word “gay” become something totally different than its previous definition? The jury is still out on that.

 

Going It Alone…

I am told that belonging to a group is one of the most basic needs of humanity. We are social animals and contrary to what many believe we all want to be part of a tribe.  To go out on your own is frightening to many of us.

2017-12-30_09-11-07.pngWe applaud State Sen. Cheri Jahn’s decision to drop her party affiliation and serve out the remainder of her term as an independent.

Voters have seen hyper-partisanship and special interests defeat common sense in Denver for far too long under both Democrats and Republicans. Coloradans deserve independent legislators who can truly put the people first.

Source:  State Sen. Cheri Jahn Declares Independence from Broken Two-Party System – Centrist Project

To me, being alone and self-dependent is part of my core makeup. I’m sure part of this is due to my Aspie traits in that I just don’t socialize well so my alone time is more pleasant than being part of a crowd.   Another reason might be because deafness cuts off communications. I used to often say that “being lonely is being alone and not wanting to be”. I still kinda believe that even though I have not been alone for 30+ years now.

2018-02-18_13-54-22.pngI know being part of a larger group is considered essential especially inside our nation’s beltway. Without it means no plush committee assignments. It also means having to form your own opinion about everything you vote for. In other words, it means the loss of power and that is perhaps the tantamount reason so many people chose to get into the beltway fishbowl.

I have been studying the history of our political systems for a while now and one of the future predictions is that the US will go the way of many European democracies and morph into a multi-party government. With three or more viable parties it is practically impossible for any one party to be able to form a majority government on its own.  That means compromise is inevitable.

In that light, there is talk in Congress about forming an independent caucus but that will take some additional members to become a reality. I personally, and I pray you too, will do what I can to help independent candidates wherever I find them whether they are in your State or not.

Mutual Toleration

Mutual toleration is a term that I didn’t know existed but it does almost perfectly describe the current political problems.

President Trump hasn’t destroyed the republic. This should not surprise us. Our democratic institutions are strong. And Mr. Trump, despite his reckless attacks on democratic norms, is a weak and inept leader.

But that doesn’t mean democracy is safe. The problems we face run deeper than the Trump presidency. While Mr. Trump’s autocratic impulses have fueled our political system’s mounting crisis, he is as much a symptom as he is a cause of this crisis.

To function well, democratic constitutions must be reinforced by two basic norms, or unwritten rules. The first is mutual toleration, according to which politicians accept their opponents as legitimate. When mutual toleration exists, we recognize that our partisan rivals are loyal citizens who love our country just as we do.

The second norm is forbearance, or self-restraint in the exercise of power. Forbearance is the act of not exercising a legal right. In politics, it means not deploying one’s institutional prerogatives to the hilt, even if it’s legal to do so.

Source:  How Wobbly Is Our Democracy? – The New York Times

Yeah, I can see that these two basic norms for a democracy are being stretched to the limit during our present times. I would suggest you click on the link above to read this entire article if you have the time.

When did we stop accepting that our political opponents are legitimate?  When we stop thinking of those on the other side as a loyal opposition and start thinking of them as the enemy, political disintegration occurs. Of course, there have always been radical fringe factions in our political parties with the “enemy” mentality but they now seem to have almost “taken over the asylum” so to speak.  I kinda think these times can be easily ameliorated is only all of us would become more fundamentally engaged in the election of our officials.

In some ways, the second stated basic norm is more troubling than the first.  First off, when our constitution was written the idea of two opposing political parties was not on the radar screen.  I think it was just assumed that the people we elected all had a common goal of representing the “people”, not just a subgroup. It also assumed that the chosen leader of our country would be an accomplished statement, like our first president, who would not seek the office for power.

In a closing thought, I think it is time for us to revisit our cherished document to bring it up to the reality of our times. Putting one person in charge of the entire executive branch is a recipe for disaster. Maybe it is time to more thoroughly define where power belongs to each branch of government.  No, I don’t have a proposed solution for this; that effort is way above my pay scale so to speak, but I kinda think it is time to make that happen.

A Principled GOP Senator… And a Corrupt System

Sadly, it seems the only way a politician can show his principles and criticize their own party is when they are heading out the door. That certainly is the case with Senator Flake of Arizona. As long as you are dependent on the current corrupt system to get elected you have to keep your mouth shut and just take the money.

2018-01-23_19-41-38.png“No longer can we turn a blind eye or deaf ear to those assaults on our institutions and, Mr. President, an American president who cannot take criticism, who must constantly deflect and distort and distract, who must find someone else to blame, is charting a very dangerous path,” Mr. Flake said.

“And a Congress that fails to act as a check on the president adds to that danger.”

via Arizona’s G.O.P. Senators Assail Trump for His Attacks on the Press – The New York Times

I don’t know how we get out of this condition? The two parties around today seem to totally hate each other and are willing to cut off their nose rather than admit that their enemies have something good to provide.

I think it is time before it is too late to think about some constitutional changes. Our current constitution might have worked well for an 18th and 19th century America but there are just too many ways to subvert it in the 21st century.  Gerrymandering, which thanks to sophisticated computer systems is now an art form that almost assures a corrupt system.

Another item that needs to be seriously addressed is the power given to one person in the executive branch.  If the current Oval Office occupant somehow manages to survive his total term in office, America might just look like something very different. He came into office thinking, due to his almost total ignorance of governmental processes, that he was a king instead of a president of a democracy.  The sad part of this story it that he refuses to try to learn what this country is all about.  He seems determined to make changes that will eliminate any evidence of his predecessor and will primarily benefit himself and some others like him. I know executive power drifts with the times but current fundamental powers are simply too concentrated.

Maybe it is time to really shake things up. Maybe it is time to create a new political party to attack the corruption of the two currently in existence. One, or maybe both of the current political parties needs to go the way of the Federalist Party, Whig Party, Know-Nothing Party, and several others that have come and gone from the American landscape.

But in the end, none of the ideas above can really result in real reform without a fundamental change in the electorate. We who elect these officials need to become more informed of what it takes to maintain a democracy in the 21st century.  I don’t even know if “government” is taught in high school anymore? We need to select our government leaders with at least the same enthusiasm as selecting our favorite sports team.

 

 

A Free Ride vs. Earning Your Way

This post has been sitting in my “draft” box for quite some time because I just don’t seem to see it as complete. I don’t want to insult people who think differently on this subject but I want to get my point across as to the potential harm being privileged might cause. Complete or not its time has come to move it to a daily post.

I want to admit upfront that I am prejudiced on this topic. When I find that a person has pretty much had a free ride in life I become very skeptical about their successes and accomplishments. Maybe this is due to my having to earn my own way for so much of my life. Maybe it is jealousy, who knows. I am one to believe that adversity builds character and when it is absent privilege dominates a person’s attitude.

canstockphoto24086664When I was ready to go to college I applied for hardship scholarships but found out that since my mother who abandoned me when I was ten went on to marry a pretty rich guy I did not qualify for them. My mother had no inclination to help me with college as she didn’t see anything in that for her.  I did manage to borrow $200 from her once because I was panicked that my tuition payment was late. When I finally earned enough to pay her back the check I sent was quickly cashed. I understand now why that happened. Narcissism is totally about self, there is just no room for others in a narcissist’s mind.

Getting back to the topic at hand, some people probably think I mean when I say “free rides” are people like the current Oval Office occupant who was given a “mere $4 million” (equivalent to $40 million now) to start his way in the world. Yes, he and people like him are absolutely included in this list but I go beyond that to other categories.

Many parents think they are giving their children a headstart in the world by providing for all their needs. But that often leads to a lack of empathy for others.  Having to earn your own way breeds humility and empathy for those who are worse off than we are. Privilege too often breeds contempt which often manifests itself in looking down on others.  The irony is that the privileged are more likely to demand that if people cannot pull themselves up by their bootstraps then it is their own fault.

I just hope that all those parents out there who are giving their kids a free ride in life are also giving them strong lessons in empathy for others who don’t have the advantages that have been given to them.

On another topic in this area, I am very much in favor of the inheritance tax or “death tax” as my opponents like to call it.  Prior to income taxes that was one of the primary ways to fund the government. In my humble opinion, inherited money probably ruins more lives than it helps and the recently passed tax legislation will only make this problem worse. Inherited wealth should at least be counted as income to the recipient and taxed at that rate.

In Search Of The Original America

One of the primary threads here at RJsCorner is my InSearchOfAmerica posts. That is where I travel around this great country to find stories and take pictures.  The majority of this search has been about our early days as a nation. I recently realized that I am omitting a large part of this search for America’s roots.  It actually occurred centuries before the European conquest of America. If I want to discover the real America I have to begin there.

When we read our history books we can easily come to the conclusion that when Christopher Columbus came to America’s shore it was a desolate place just waiting to be conquered. Since history is written by the victors that view was what was taught.  But in reality, there were already millions of people calling this land home. Here are some words to realize that history:

Most scholars writing at the end of the 19th century estimated that the pre-Columbian population was as low as 10 million; by the end of the 20th century most scholars gravitated to a middle estimate of around 50 million, with some historians arguing for an estimate of 100 million or more

Source: Population history of indigenous peoples of the Americas – Wikipedia

History books give us a several different view on this fact.  The prominent recorded view was that native-Americans were not really human because they did not pray to the right god.  Others basically said the “indigenous” people, were not real people but savages.  We are now finally beginning to understand the utter fallacy of those words.

2018-01-17_10-36-40.pngGetting back to the topic at hand, we know that there were, as shown in the picture above, thriving population centers throughout what we now call America. Many had very sophisticated forms of government and rules for society. And yes, many had deities quite similar to the one Europeans brought with them. What they didn’t have were the weapons to withstand the onslaught that followed.

Since I am about one-eighth Shawnee I am embarrassed that it took until now to recognize these facts.  In reality, America was not discovered in the 15th century but instead invaded.

I need to do some future posts about this. Shame on me for not doing them sooner.

The “10%” Parties…

The Democrats have become a party of 10%

I don’t criticize the Democrats nearly as often as the Republicans but in some ways they deserve criticism even more in that they claim to be something but their actions prove to be opposite. If you look at the Democratic party in the last decade you would be hard pressed to convince yourself that they are the working man’s party they were once known as.

They seem to be almost totally about the fringes of our society. They seem to spend the most time worrying about abortion on demand, gay rights, and immigrant status than they do about the family trying to live from paycheck to paycheck. There is certainly nothing wrong about being concerned about 10% percent of our population but they must also be looking out for the middle 80% of us. It is almost as if we have vanished in their eyes.

Yes, the minimum wage is important since it affects almost 3% of hourly-paid workers but what about the 80%, who have gone for decades without a raise? Don’t they deserve attention too?

The Republicans have become a party of 10%

Of course, it is pretty obvious to most of us that the GOP especially now represents the richest 10% of our population. They just don’t seem to care about the rest of us.  They give big tax breaks to the top 10%  and then put the inevitable bill on the rest of us along with a token temporary tax break.

They knock down tax rates for dividends that the top 10% primarily depend on below what the working man pays in income taxes. They insist that millionaires pay a lower tax rate than the people who clean their offices.

This has pretty much been the case for a few decades now but with the latest Republican administration, they have taken it to a whole new level. Given the outrageously racist things their current leader tweets and rants they show moral cowardice as well. They just won’t call him out on them. The Republican party is rotting away in order to keep a hold of power.

Who is to look out for the other 80% of us?

I know it seems that the current situation has been going on forever but in reality, it can be measured in months, not decades or even years. I want to bring in a quote here about what was once the norm, in case you may have forgotten:

“It was once said that the moral test of government is how that government treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; and those who are in the shadows of life, the sick, the needy and the handicapped.” Those words from Hubert H. Humphrey would likely not be described as the mission of Democrats today, many of whom are as connected to the Wall Street elites as the Republicans are.

Source: Politically Homeless: How Republicans — and Democrats — are Leaving Many Christians Behind – Red Letter Christians

Change seldom happens from within. Instead, it is usually forced on us. Can the two 10% parties ever get back to representing all of us? That is the question of the day. Personally, I don’t care to wait long enough for it to happen on its own…

 

 

Politics As A Cure for Spiritual and Social Loneliness?

Most of us can probably cite at least a couple of reasons for the conditions we find ourselves in today. Some blame the Internet, some religious exclusivity, or maybe religious politicization. Others say it is just plain self-centeredness. I don’t suspect that many put loneliness as part of the mix but maybe it is deeper than we realize.

2018-01-08_18-18-38.pngWhen politics is used as a cure for spiritual and social loneliness, it’s harder to win people over with policy or philosophical arguments. Everything is shaped on a deeper level, through the parables, fables and myths that our most fundamental groups use to define themselves…

Trump’s supporters follow him because he gets his facts wrong, but he gets his myths right. He tells the morality tale that works for them.

It should be said that people on the left and on the right who try to use politics to find their moral meaning are turning politics into an idol. Idolatry is what happens when people give ultimate allegiance to something that should be serving only an intermediate purpose, whether it is money, technology, alcohol, success or politics.

Source:  https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/30/opinion/when-politics-becomes-your-idol.htm

I can certainly see some truth in the words above.  It is now a well-known fact that the rural areas of the nation are where most of the Trump voters came from. Many in that area are more isolated than their urban neighbors. Most likely, they are also less educated but maybe that is another story.  Does that make them lonely, it could, especially among us senior citizens.

I have never understood why senior citizens would vote Republican when one of their fundamental goals is to make drastic reductions to Social Security and Medicare? They see services for the elderly as dreaded “entitlements” that need to be eliminated. For seniors to be Republicans is like cutting off your nose to spite your face.  It is widely known that one of Mr. Trump’s primary support groups are people over 65. I think I have some experience with that group.

There are many seniors, including me to some extent, who are isolated from the mainstream.  We spend the majority of our time by ourselves. Some choose, like the current Oval Office occupant, to spend many hours a day in front of the TV. For the most part, they only know the world through cable news networks or probably just one of those networks. Since politics is the major source in their lives they take the topic on as a friend that they no longer have.

I can remember my grandma in the 1950s being obsessed with TV wrestling.  She never missed her wrestling show and would shout and scream at the bad guys on the flickering black and white tube.  No matter how much we tried to convince here that TV wrestling was fake she simply would not believe it. I think the same thing kinda holds for many who are supporting Mr. Trump today.  There are many seniors who have pledged allegiance to him no matter what he may do. That totally misguided faith puts a stain on all of us over 65.

Politics has a place in everyone’s life but it should only be for intermediate purposes and not as an idol onto itself.

Fed up with Democrats and Republicans?

The stampede is starting?  Do you hear it? There are more and more daily saying “Enough is enough”.  Yet another poll shows that we all, no matter what political real estate we hold on to, are getting fed up with partisan gridlock.

new poll by the Public Policy Institute of California says 59 percent of Democrats, 62 percent of Republicans and 72 percent of independents — and, overall, 64 percent of likely voters — agreed with the statement that Americas two main parties “do such a poor job that a third major party is needed.”

Source: Fed up with Democrats and Republicans? Heres a third option. – Chicago Tribune

I just don’t know if the current two political parties will ever be able to get along again. There is so much spite and incivility being tossed back and forth across the aisle, too much baggage to let loose of. It’s more like the Hatfields and the McCoys now. It seems the only answer is to look elsewhere for those who will look out for us in the political world.

2018-01-05_08-43-41.pngI have discovered that there is an option brewing and is gaining steam on a daily basis.  It used to be called the “Centrist Project” but now is morphing into “Unite America”. If you are one of those who is looking for an alternative you might want to consider them. Will their coming to power happen overnight? It will likely take some time but then again the current Republican party was formed and won the Oval Office within five years so it might just happen sooner than you think especially in today’s accelerated world.  But it will take a groundswell to happen and that means many of us have to get on board.

Sometimes political parties simply outlive their usefulness. Sometimes they morph into something completely different from their roots.  I can see both of those reasons in both political parties today. Which one will go by the wayside along with the Whigs and Do-Nothings is hard to predict but I kinda think it will be the one that allowed the hijacking of their party to happen and then foolishly jumped on board with the idiot who stole their party away from them in the first place. That very scenario seems insane and those are folks who I have lost all confidence in. They have shown me time and again that for them it is politics over principles. Citizens be damned…

If you are like me and fed up with politicians the way they are now, then click on the Unite America logo above to learn more about this emerging organization. Better yet, send them a donation to help them get started.  I already have…

Another 10 Lies From a Trump Interview

To me, the most disgraceful thing about the current Oval Office occupant is his constant lying and exaggerations.  I’m not sure how much of it is just plain ignorance, but even ignorance is no excuse. From the quote below he managed to rattle off ten lies in less than 10 minutes. Maybe that is a record but I kind of doubt it. I wonder what the total lie count is for the year just ended? Probably in the thousands..

2017-12-31_11-42-47.pngPresident Trump, in an impromptu interview on Thursday with The New York Times, rattled off at least 10 false or misleading claims about …

  • He inaccurately said the claims against Paul Manafort occurred “many years ago before I ever heard of him.”
  • He misrepresented what a senator has said about the Russia investigation.
  • He falsely claimed the Democrats “made the Russian story up as a hoax, as a ruse, as an excuse for losing an election.”
  • He claimed to have “saved coal,” contrary to trends reported by the government.
  • He overstated his influence on the special Senate election in Alabama.
  • He gave a premature estimate of the cost of the wars in the Middle East.
  • He falsely claimed to have “essentially gutted and ended Obamacare.”
  • With no evidence, he accused other countries of sending their “worst people” through the diversity visa lottery.
  • He exaggerated the trade deficit with other countries
  • He exaggerated the number of followers he has on social media

Source:10 Falsehoods From Trump’s Interview With The Times – The New York Times

Maybe I should forgive him for this horrible trait? He has lived a totally privileged life that has been centered exclusively around himself. I think his father was much like him so maybe it is inherited?

But one thing I am certain of is that the blame for him occupying that cherished real estate is the ignorance of the voters who put him there and the laziness of the ones who didn’t bother to vote at all. I hear leaks from his once buddy Steve Bannon that while he was campaigning he didn’t want, nor expect to be elected and was shocked as much as anyone else at the voter ignorance that put him there.

I find it somewhat relieving that we managed the first year of him and am hoping that this year will be his last and in 2020 we will have learned our lessons never to allow this to happen again.

Was 2017 the Craziest Year in U.S. Political History?

Here we are starting out another new year. I’m just happy we survived 2017 without too much permanent damage or at least damage we can’t undo when sanity finally returns. I’m sure you are like me in thinking that the current Oval Office occupant is the worst in our nation’s history.  But maybe he isn’t, at least quite yet.  I choose two years from the reference source below at possible proof of that:

1865: An assassination, a racist, a political fracture

2017-12-30_16-03-03.pngThen, five days later, came the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. “Here was the rebellion put down in the field,” Grant later observed, “and starting up in the gutters.” The Great Emancipator and head of the Republican Party was succeeded by Andrew Johnson, a Democrat and an unapologetic racist, throwing American politics into turmoil. The Ku Klux Klan loomed just over the horizon. The events at Appomattox Court House had briefly promised regional harmony, but the radical change in leadership at the White House hinted that the deep fracture between North and South would harden into a permanent feature of our national life, a source of lunacy that bedevils us to the present day.

1968: ‘It’s hard to think of a more chaotic year’

2017-12-30_16-08-10.pngIt’s hard to think of a more chaotic year in contemporary American history than 1968. After years of mounting social discord over civil rights, civil liberties, changing codes of behavior and the war in Vietnam, many citizens now firmly believed—be it with hope or dread—that a revolution was nigh. The year began with the Tet Offensive, which convinced many Americans the war was unwinnable, and ended with the presidential election victory of Richard Nixon, a man whose political career had been said to be over just six years before. In between, turbulence reigned.

Source: Was 2017 the Craziest Year in U.S. Political History? – POLITICO Magazine

I don’t think any president really chooses his vice president thinking that he will not survive his term in office. In 1864 Lincoln was looking at the end of the bloody Civil war and chose his running mate to sound the theme of unity when the South returned from their traitorous ways.  Little did he know that a few short months later Johnson would be in charge of those times. Despite all the spin that they tried to give me recently at the Johnson Presidential Library in Tennessee Johnson did a terrible job. He basically tried to just do a little slap on the wrist and then return to everything the way it was before Fort Sumpter.

I lived through 1968 so I have a first-hand account of that year. Even though I was a naive twenty-two-year-old trying to just get through college, I knew things were bad. There were riots in many major cities, killings on college campuses and pure havoc at the political conventions that year. Things were bad and it was hard not to notice it.

If you want to feel a little better about today’s world browse through the source list above to see other bad years.  Things have been about as bad as now several times in our history and we survived each of those times.