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One year and counting! Seems impossible, doesn't it? Has it really been three years since we last traveled this political path to the White House? Not much has changed in the political games since then, the rhetoric continues to flow, the promises continue to be made, the people continue to struggle with it all and the Congress continues to do nothing. All is according to course in Washington DC. Now, the talking heads are ramping up for another go at it.

With an incumbent Democratic president running for re-election, the focus seems to be on the eight Republican candidates. It's a source of entertainment to be sure. The peaking and falling from grace, the gaffs, the media circus and the nonstop rhetoric which hasn't changed much in my entire adulthood, serves to anger me on one day and doubles me over in fits of laughter the next. Thinking of that in a serious mode, however, is downright sad. A nation is at stake.

Our country is in deep trouble and the games continue, seemingly robotic. These people don't even seem to be able to think beyond a vote and a contribution. Truth means nothing. Loyalty to anything but money is extinct. Lies are actually researched and constructed from bits and pieces of speeches made years ago then passed off as recent comments. The constitution means nothing. Liberties are ebbing away. A decimated working class is told to take a bath and get a job as if such an entity was plentiful. Investigations, committees and super committees and any other odd collection of politicians in their think tanks have failed and continue to fail. I believe they want to see us sweat while they compose campaign rhetoric. It's all about votes and ammunition for the blame game. But there seems to be nothing we can do and keep grace. Any protest is accompanied by slanderous remarks about our hygiene and classified as whining.  

Schools, colleges and universities no longer have education as their top priority if we are to believe what we're told. It's all about lack of money demanding cuts and yet doubling tuitions. Where is the money going?  Corruption is running rampant in the athletic departments as we hear of more and more universities breaking NCAA rules. The recent scandal at Penn State is beyond corruption. It's sick. Various candidates resort to doing away with the Department of Education and Child Labor Laws and turning everything back to the states. We can't even run one central government with equal representation. How are we going to deal with fifty different governments all educating to different standards, teaching different values? Next we know Missouri will be at war with Maine!

Can all this be so in America? Should we be afraid? I'm beginning to wonder when I look around and see riot-geared armed forces spraying military grade chemicals in the faces of unarmed, nonviolent students sitting in a row on the ground, not even moving to defend themselves. Are we losing even the right to protest without threat of bodily harm? Expecting something for nothing? I wonder how that goes over with the last of my parent's generation who came up through the depression, then fought the 'Big War' and came home and built this nation with the sweat off their backs; that same nation that we now watch crumble around us while we build other nations only to bomb them down again.

Or for that matter, my generation where almost a hundred thousand young men died in the jungles of Viet Nam only to come home and be spat upon. Soldiers today doing multiple tours in countries that hate us and just want us out. Men and women now almost ready to retire and finding their job and benefits in jeopardy. Or, working their fifty years and suddenly being looked upon as a drain on society with hands out for a freebie Social Security check. What? We all need a bath and a gearing up for the job hunt, too?

I remember scare tactics attempted years back by this or that party secretly poisoning the water with fluoride to take over the country and any other number of political games. And I, also, remember the Russian leader, Nikita Kruchev, saying "we will bury you without firing a shot." They'd bury us from within was the premise. Been pondering that thought a lot lately. The only thing I've learned regarding that possibility in the interim is that it won't help to hide under our school desk or line up in the cloak room away from glass. I'd be safer to watch my city council!

Next time you're out and have to run an errand in any public building think about all this when you have to be 'wanded' and sent through security at your own local county building when you go to pay your taxes. I recently got called to do jury duty and was searched to be allowed in to fulfill my required civic duty. I expected that procedure. What I didn't expect was the condescending attitude by the security people. To add insult to injury, we have to pay for that service although our libraries and animal shelters absorbed more big cuts this past year. Property values went down but property taxes went up. Would someone explain all this to me? I confess. I can't even begin to figure out what we are doing with all the billions and now trillions of debts and deficits! Where is the money going?

This is Thanksgiving week. I think everyone has something to be thankful for; even if it's simply the beauty of a tree around your home while it's still there. Personally, I have many things to be thankful for this year having endured some serious issues. I am grateful for Yana Berlin's kindness to me throughout as she trod her own difficult health path; something I didn't even know for a while because the dear woman didn't want to worry me! I'm thankful for her. I'm thankful for all my dear family and friends who were at my side when I was hospitalized and who support my work with the written word.  

I will spend Thanksgiving out in Nature, maybe along the seashore, and concentrate on hoping the politicians that lead us will wake up and realize what they are jeopardizing when they, in their own government job, allow America to lose yet again, what it's been intended to stand for all these years, equality and justice for all. We are definitely out of balance. But, for one day, I'll allow simple beauty to shroud the ugliness.

May your Thanksgiving be your best.

Susan Haley

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Member Comments

    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Midnightmom wrote Nov 24, 2011
    • Three years? Three years since the last election?! It surely seems like only one year. I feel the same pain from the same doubts in our leadership as you do. I personally am thankful for the people of the Occupy Movement. I think that Gingrich should be treated with the same (lack of) respect as he verbally gave to the Occupy American People! I am quite sure he could use to clean up his own act. His comments telling those people to take a bath and get a job just goes to show how much he is affected by a lack of jobs and how much he is in tune with reality.  

      Funny how many Republicans are debating for a chance to run next time. What’s the matter, are their intelligent resources running that thin that they can’t even come up with one out of twelve candidates that shine? I can only hope that the more they keep talking, ooops I mean debating their own, the more they show themselves to be lacking in those resources.  

      You are quite right - nothing has changed on the political scene no matter how bad Americans are suffering. The one thing that I keep wondering is why is the whole planet going through the same thing? There is revolution in the air everywhere and economic breakdown. Like you, I wonder, where is the money? It can’t just disappear.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Tamra wrote Dec 8, 2011
    • The lack of leadership certainly isn’t restricted to the Republicans. Lest we not forget, the Dems controlled both the executive branch AND the legislative branch for two years with no resulting improvement in the economy.   The leadership void in our national government overall is extremely troubling.



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    • +1 votes vote up vote up

      Susan Haley wrote Dec 8, 2011
    • Glad to see your comment, Tamra. I was spoiled when we used to get some good discussions going here.

      You are absolutely correct. I surely didn’t mean to imply that the corruption and lack of solutions were the blame of any one party! I think ALL government on all levels has been taken over by corruption. I see it in my own county and state. Even the few who may remain honest and sincere have to cave to the underlying rulers to get anything at all accomplished. I listened to a fascinating interview with the recently-released Jack Abrahamoff (sp.) It boggles my mind to read some of the writings of these felons once they are released.

      I am surely not a political scientist, nor an economist. Frankly, I don’t think most of the American populace has the first clue how deep these layers go. We are told what they want us to know or believe. I think many of the ‘leaks’ are deliberate propaganda masked within some revelation. In reality, we are reeled in once again.

      I don’t know that there are any answers to salvaging the so-called “American Dream“. I wonder if there ever was such a thing but for the post WW2 boom when manufacturing grabbed hold.  But, as the masses grew, rights and freedoms were granted, we failed to provide equal opportunities to all. Slowly, but very surely, the divisions grew.  

      Now, we find ourselves in a Global world driven by competition and power wars. People don’t like the term ‘class-warfare’ but that is exactly what we have. The hard part is figuring out the lines. It seems to be a human nature, ‘me’ centered thing more than a political thing. We’ve forgotten how to work together for the good of all.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Tamra wrote Dec 9, 2011
    • Hi Susan!  I recognize much truth in what you say.  I didn’t understand your writing to suggest any one group or party is to blame, but it seemed to have been intrepretted as such.  I see many people as very self-centered regardless of political party.  If the Golden Rule made a comeback, perhaps things would improve.  I don’t believe in repeated hand outs, but I very much believe in hand ups, for instance, in education.    

      It isn’t only the poor and under privileged getting a raw deal these days.  I must say, as a middle class American, I feel very beat up, too.  It seems we are all going at one another.  Few of us are interested in the common good anymore.  I think it’s basically due to a decline in basic values and morals.   It disturbs me as I prepare to send m teenagers out into the world.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Susan Haley wrote Dec 9, 2011
    • You speak like a woman from my own heart, Tamra. I’m fortunate in that my two sons are grown and have basically settled in and I have no grandchildren, but I do worry continually for the kids. I have two precious grandnieces, six and one years of age.
      As for the middle-class, what’s left of it, we carry the burden for both ends of the spectrum and the ‘back’ is breaking. I see why you feel beat up! I agree completely that it’s a decline in values and morals and total abandonment of the Golden Rule.
      I wish your young adult children the best. I truly do. Perhaps, something will give here soon.
      Best,
      Susan



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