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Let’s Talk Politics

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  • What Has Happened to America?

    Posted on Thursday, April 19, 2012

    There’s an energy of some kind in the air. I don't seem to recognize or relate to much of the cultural movements and activities going on around me. It's rather frightening, almost like being an alien in what used to be home. Oh, technology's rapid evolution I find most challenging and I fumble around behind even a five-year-old. But it’s not frightening.  

    The economy has been better but it has also been much worse. It is coming around. I would imagine as we've evolved into a global market system in which other, now highly-developed countries, are providing staunch competition that it will take some getting used to. We've always been taught that America is the most powerful and best country on earth. We aren't used to serious economic competition and all the money being controlled by a few International banks and corporations. We certainly don't take lightly our engrained supremacy. It's why I think the NRA is such a powerful organization. If all else fails, shoot. Soon, trying all else won't even be a plausible action; just shoot.

    Have you noticed how we banter around the word "war?" We have so many wars going on I question the culture's sanity. It seems we are compelled to keep at least one or two foreign wars going to bolster the manufacture of munitions; munitions, after all, being one of our biggest exports. I don't understand why we have to be beholden to the oil countries to supply our oil addiction. Why do we have to put even more stress on the Planet drilling holes all over the place? Why can't we just tell OPEC, “you want weapons? Then, lower the price of oil to the world-wide market! You want food for your people? Halt your projects on nuclear weapons and improve your schools. Pretty soon they wouldn't need the weapons because they’d be free of hunger, the children might just learn some common sense and there wouldn't be anything to fight about but religion. Oh, wait a minute . . . that's what started it all in the first place eons ago.  Bad idea, I guess.

    Back home, not to be outdone, we too, have our own war on religion in full swing, so we are told. We also have a war on women and a war on education and a war on unions and the middle class. Oh, and the ‘old’ war on drugs and war on poverty continue to escalate with no hope of winning in sight. We keep throwing money at it, keep building fences and safety nets but the battles remain lost. For the moment, at least, the war on illegal immigration is in somewhat of a lull because of the upcoming election. One candidate has gotten the message that he can't win without the Latino vote so the rhetoric has definitely taken a turn away from the Dream Act previously sworn doomed to veto during the primary.

    Oh yes, we have a war on the politicians as well. Everyone is sick of them and apathy and anger grows. We occupy and protest, march and speak out, yell at town hall meetings, but nothing changes. Governors that can be, are facing recall elections and governors safe from them due to state law are running rampant over their constituents. My home state of Michigan has literally become a dictatorship within a democracy where entire communities are taken over by the state and one 'City Manager' out of the governor's pocket runs everything. The elected officials and the citizens' votes are now powerless and unheard. My home town of Pontiac, Michigan has fallen under the sword. Maybe it deserved to fall if not run properly but a dictatorship in America? Where will it end? Next, a local war will break out because the city council may decide to “Stand Their Ground.”  

    In Florida, a day doesn't pass that you don't hear the moaning and groaning about our crook governor Scott, but the state Constitution doesn't allow for recall. I guess the founders decided that if the voters are dumb enough to elect a known crook, they deserve to be stuck with him for the term. Some must have failed to do their research! Perhaps, that is something to think about as another election approaches.  

    Don't listen to the rhetoric. Don’t listen to the what they can and will do. Listen to they have done or tried to do then check it. It is going to get really ugly and lies and rumors of lies will fester. Lies, like wars, do tend to infect. If I listen to a speech, I'm going to have my laptop powered up and ready to fact check as they speak. A couple of days ago I heard Mitt Romney state that Senator Perry released only two years of tax returns when running in 2004 against GW. Later I learned that it seems he dropped a zero. The correct number was 20 years.

    Just remember if the Mayan Calendar is wrong and we don't go hurling off into space on December 21, we are stuck with who we get for at least four years. I'm not ready to take too big of a risk and a pig in a poke. I think I'll stay with the slow, but steady, climb out of the pit we were in at this time four years ago. Unless, Congress grows up and ceases from playground warfare, it won't matter much anyway. There have been many job bills before congress to fix infrastructure and improve schools and job training, but the Congress, bent only on making him fail, nix everything. To do as much as President Obama has managed to do when from day one it was made perfectly clear by Mitch O‘Connel that the job of the Congress was to ensure he would be a one term president is pretty amazing. That's my opinion anyway.

    What has happened to America? We have lost the most valuable resource required to advancing civilization. We have lost respect. We have lost respect for each other,  for authority, anyone different, other nations, other life forms and the Planet. You name it. We have, to put it simply, lost respect for ourselves.

    Susan Haley  

    **Susan Haley is the published author of three books, several articles on networking, an award-winning poet, and an independent copy editor and book reviewer. The audio version of her novel "Rainy Day People" was awarded runner-up Finalist in the 2008 Indie Excellence National Book Awards. She also contributes a variety of editorials and excerpts of her work to various E-zines and newsletters and local papers.


    4 Replies
  • The Morning After

    Posted on Thursday, March 8, 2012

    Thank God it's Wednesday! The inaptly named "Super Tuesday" is behind us. Why do I feel like I have a chronic hangover? After weeks of basically irrelevant rhetoric, crunching the numbers, mixing the colors of states, the crucifying of each other, the absolute  depravity of the 'other side' that you don't happen to be on, it’s not over yet! It comes from both the candidates and the media, a ridiculous debate on the validity of the need and the boundaries of Women's Health vs. the immoral act of contraception even though 98% of the population practices, or has practiced it, and iced with the debate on the separation of church and state tenets dictated in the papers of our founding fathers. What happened to jobs and the economy? I have no idea what has been happening in the swirl of politics American style. It is embarrassing, downright embarrassing, to me. Why, it's as bad as the structure in this sentence.

    So bad that it is now Thursday!  Politics has never been pretty I don't imagine. Continuing the study of history beyond high school taught me that even the founding fathers had some sticky confrontations and personality clashes. All recent eras have had their issues and all campaigns, their nastiness. One can learn a wealth of information simply by reading some good biographies. I acquired a new education reading Doris Kearns Goodwin's "Team of Rivals" about President Lincoln. He served in arguably the most tumultuous period in our relatively short history.

    It all pales in comparison to what is going on now. In the 2008 Presidential race, I pretty much reacted to all the issues as they happened. I could manage a blog a week. It was the first campaign I'd taken the time to really get involved and it was vibrant and exciting because so much was happening both economically and historically. It seems this is true again in 2012 with one, in my opinion, colossal distinction. Super PACs that breed disgust for me.  

    The corruption is rampant. When a Supreme Court clears the way for limitless millions to be thrown at political campaigns it is no longer a Democracy where rights and policies are determined and sought after. It's an auction to the highest bidder. Here we are as a nation watching millions of people around the entire Globe going without work and food, and yes, birth control while a few corrupt men lie and buy their way in to a role of leadership. What must these same folks think, especially here in America, when they hear how many millions are spent to buy a candidate? It's unbelievable to me.  

    Where does all the money go? Are the owners of broadcasting networks and ISP's cleaning up? How can a candidate spend 11 million dollars in a single week of campaigning? I don't even comprehend that! Are they buying airplanes and jet fuel? Buying private pilots? Lining the back pockets of every official in a district? What of the decent candidates who don't have that kind of money? How do they get their voices heard? I'm thinking of people like Buddy Romer.  

    When so called adults in the legislative branch behave like spoiled children refusing to get anything solved or accomplished for America because it doesn't serve their own goals and ambitions, we should all consider refusing to go to the polls. I'm again beginning to think that a total boycott of the process is necessary, a refusal to be part of the game. We as a populace, regardless of party, need to demand accountability and equality. It absolutely doesn't matter who wins the election if no one in Washington will work with the victor or embrace the loser. It becomes a battle of revenge at our expense. When are we going to demand term limits?

    When women are actually threatened with having their right to choose taken away, it's insulting. When contraception becomes a sinful word, women are relegated to being a breeder or doomed to hellfire and damnation. That's what I think of when I hear contraception is immoral. Are women going to be forced to return to dark allies and disease to obtain family planning and healthcare?  

    Will a candidate's religion become the basis for the laws of policy? What will be next? Will President Obama’s equal pay for equal work be recalled? Will women be asked to give up the right to work outside the home? To vote? Are we to be considered an equal partner or accept a Biblical role of submission? We would talk about women's rights and treatment of women in other cultures?  

    Oh, that sounds extreme, doesn't it? Is it? Once one takes that first step backward, even one step, a door is tampered with, weakening it. A door closing a room long since fought for and locked. And, we are to blame this on God? I don't think so. That dog simply does not hunt!

    On this, International Women's Day, may I beseech you to be very cautious how you vote in November? May I ask you to be positive of WHAT you are voting for not just WHO you are voting for? Listen carefully to the subtle rhetoric and spread you news analysis to more than one channel which only sings to their own choir. Your daughter's and your granddaughter's freedoms may be in the balance. I include fair-minded men in this plea.  

    Susan Haley, Author
    RAINY DAY PEOPLE – A Novel
    FIBERS IN THE WEB
    AMBER RETURNS TO MAINE  

    **Susan Haley is the published author of three books, several articles on networking, an award-winning poet, and an independent contract editor. She also contributes a column to "The Florida Writer" the official magazine of the Florida Writers Association, of which she is Facilitator for the Sarasota County Chapter. The audio version of her novel "Rainy Day People" was recently awarded runner-up Finalist in the 2008 Indie Excellence National Book Awards. She is a contributor to a variety of editorials and excerpts of her work can be found in various E-zines, newsletters, and local papers. Her work can be sampled on www.sucarha.com


    4 Replies
  • State of the Union

    Posted on Thursday, January 26, 2012

    Used broadly, the state of the union could also include the state of affairs. I refer to the ongoing political circus that always performs throughout an election year. The candidates are all in Florida now and it's truly a zoo. I have yet to hear a policy plan on how to fix the country's horrid problems allegedly caused by the Obama Administration, not even in the scores of TV ads. In fact, they aren't even talking much about the president. They are too busy cutting each other to ribbons. I wonder sometimes if we are dealing with sane adults? One is promising a colony on the moon and the other is unemployed at $20 million a year. No, I'm not making that up. Ron Paul and Rick Santorum don't get much mention at all.  

    I get rather frustrated about the antics because they come to our state, rile things up, stir pots better left alone and then leave. The chest beating remarks regarding what they would like to see happen to Fidel Castro and their judgments on where he will spend eternity is a fine example of playing to the large population of Cuban Americans in Dade County. Even our Senator, Marco Rubio, a Republican as well, came out against the rancor between these two so-called potential leaders. Fidel Castro released a statement calling attention to the ignorance of these "American Politicians". It could very well undo the progress made in Cuban affairs that would allow families to visit each other. Meanwhile, these candidates make the mess and head for the next performance ring. I learned in Kindergarten (Robert Fulgham) that if you make a mess, clean it up!

    If asked to write the rules and format of the presidential debates, first would require a simple yes or no to questions such as, "Would you support efforts for Puerto Rico to become the 51st state?" Yes or no. After each candidate answered the questions yes or no, then each candidate would be given one minute to explain his reasons. They are not there to quote scripture, give a family tree lecture, and surely not there for two participants to enter into a bashing contest. I find it totally insulting to the two left standing almost ignored and asked only the token question which is usually unimportant. I could never take part in such an exercise because with my patience level for rudeness, I'd walk off the stage. I've turned off what could be interesting discussions on talk shows due to the total lack of good manners by those on the panels. They all interrupt, talk over each other and continue to get louder and ruder. It's an abysmal example of American freedom of speech without proper upbringing. These are usually otherwise intelligent people. It boggles my mind!

    Cut to the capital and the president making his way to the podium to give his report on the State of the Union. He proceeds down the aisle hand outstretched. He stops and warmly greets Gabby Giffords, truly a touching moment. He then stops and congratulates Defense Secretary Panetta on a job well done. No one knew at the time that the same Navy Seals team that had entered Bin Laden's compound had just rescued two hostages from an enemy encampment in Somalia. Typical policy of the "appeaser" of terrorists? I think I could throw a shoe every time a certain candidate makes that ridiculous charge.  

    My congratulations to the Navy Seals. These dedicated, specially trained troops have saved many lives making 'boots on the ground' unnecessary. The very thought of this possibility seems to scare the war mongers who seem addicted to invading other countries. I wonder if their excitement would be so great if their own five sons had to go to the front line of battle? Neither they, nor the candidate himself, have ever served in the military. Talk is easy when someone else has to do and pay for the task you propose.

    President Obama seems to be quite efficient out on the road with the people. Following his State of the Union message, the president took to the road to further discuss his plans and policies. Figures released by the pollsters the next day say that 91% of the American citizenry approved of the speech. I heard that on the morning news and cannot quote the source. Personally, I find that a little unbelievable. The day when 91% of the populace agrees on anything we won't need a government. I do agree, however, that the numbers the president quoted were all shown to be true by the 'fact checkers'. That, too, is quite rare. There is still a long way to go on the path of recovery and the president did challenge congress to bring him legislation on many issues. But at least, now, we seem to be headed north. I like the idea of taking $6 billion that we'll save in Iraq and spending it, instead, on starting to rebuild the crumbling infrastructure. America does need to invest in building new electrical grids and using wind power as well. To me, it is imperative that we start to get off our addiction to petroleum products, including plastic. Soon, the world will also lead us in attending to the environment. Do we really need ‘that’ much convenience?

    As I listen to the banter going on in the background with yet another Florida Presidential Debate all saying the same old rhetoric we've been hearing since the decades of the fifties and sixties, my simple logic tells me if you put even ten million of the unemployed back to work, the tax base and revenue will improve drastically. Presently, the imbalance of outgoing and incoming is so bad that even taxing the 1% up to 30% of their capital gains income tax will only make a dent in the problem. It seems letting the Bush tax cuts expire would be sufficient to begin while the ridiculous complexity of the US Tax Code is rewritten into something that rings of simplicity and equality.

    America needs to build things! Why can’t congress address the jobs bill? Our education levels aren't high enough in the world anymore to be a totally technological and professional level society; nor an entreprenural one. That's a truth that hurts. It's time for America to get back to basics and try to do better in the overall education of our next generation. For that, people need good paying jobs. Building things will provide such jobs. Perhaps, it's time to look forward, yes, but to now and then glance back over our shoulders to the values held by most of our parents. I believe they are often classified as "The Greatest Generation."      

     Susan Haley, Author  

    **Susan Haley is the published author of three books, several articles on networking, editing and publishing. She is an award-winning poet, and Independent editor and book reviewer. She writes for Fabulously 40 and Fox and Quill out of San Diego and was the poetry editor for The Infinite Writer. The audio version of her novel "Rainy Day People" was awarded runner-up Finalist in the 2008 Indie Excellence National Book Awards. She is a contributor to a variety of editorials and excerpts of her work can be found in various E-zines, newsletters, and local papers.


    2 Replies
  • Iowa: Test of Stamina?

    Posted on Saturday, December 31, 2011

    This campaign is being identified by the progressive media as "The Clown Car." The front runner is referred to as "Flavor of the Month." No, I'm not talking about a circus worker hawking ice cream. It's the latest description of the process used to select a nominee for the highest office in the land. This cycle centers on the Republican Party in its attempt to unseat the incumbent President Obama, still unopposed by any other Democrat. It has been the stated goal of the Republican Party for the last four years.

    The network news and the right media tend to over analyze and seem to often spur the antagonism between the candidates who have no love for each other to begin with. The campaign itself seems impossible to report or cover for the candidates rise and fall like a doomed soufflé. Now, it appears that lacking an electable prospect in the general election, the electorate is holding their nose and turning to Romney. It has become somewhat of a three ring side show. I often wonder what those watching around the world must think. Which brings me to my point . . .

    The world unrest, the economy, the debt, poverty, energy programs, the unstable status of nuclear weapons and even the weather are all of critical importance to our own future and the future of the entire globe. I have yet to hear one of these candidates take a firm position on just what they would do to address even one of these challenges. What course they would pursue with vigor. I hear about what they did in the nineties. Or what they didn't do. Or what they can do the day they take office which they legally can't. Personally, I find that all irrelevant to the problems we face now.

    In the midst of all the negativity being thrown at each other, the charges against the president run rampant. To hear this bunch talk, President Obama has done absolutely nothing right since being sworn into office. Their concerns center around religious issues such as pro-life and gay rights, neither of which address the major problems we face as a nation. Sure, everyone would like less waste and less bureaucracy in our government, but until we get the money out of politics and stop allowing lobbyists to mingle with politicians inside the hallowed halls of congress we are going to have those problems. Until we have strong and enforced campaign reform, term limits and finance reform, we will have corruption. No one president can change that. It's the Congress that has to change it and they won't cut their own nose off despite their face. The people have to fight in force.

    For many, I'm sure that they feel we are back to the voting for the less of two evils. Third parties tend to only fragment the vote with no real chance of success, in itself a shame. Yet at the same time, this may be the most important decision anyone voting in November ever had to make.  

    I urge you, especially women, to consider very carefully how your vote may affect you as a woman. The right to life is one thing, to ban birth control is another. Pro-choice is not mandatory. It takes no rights away from you, banning Planned Parenthood does. I'd urge you to research just what Planned Parenthood's programs do, not take a candidate's word for it.

    If you are considering voting for a certain person, do check their records! If they were a governor, check their record while executing that office. If a senator or congress person, check their voting record. All this information is freely available online. Then, too, even if you don't particularly care for President Obama, at least check his record to see just what he has done and don't just listen to the charges against him by candidates and Fox News. Notice, too, the times words and charges have had to be eaten like a crow feast.

    I'm not happy with everything the President has done or failed to do, but I will say he's had one full plate since the day he took office. Not to mention world disasters and a totally uncooperative congress, oft times from his own party. I understand both right and left have their turns at being mean and insulting, but I don't believe I've ever seen any president as maligned with name calling and charges of being un-American as he has been. In my opinion, I don't think anyone could have done any better under the same circumstances.  

    Susan Haley, Author
    RAINY DAY PEOPLE – A Novel
    FIBERS IN THE WEB
    AMBER RETURNS TO MAINE  

    **Susan Haley is the published author of three books, several articles on networking, an award-winning poet, and an independent contract editor. She also contributes a column to "The Florida Writer" the official magazine of the Florida Writers Association, of which she is Facilitator for the Sarasota County Chapter. The audio version of her novel "Rainy Day People" was recently awarded runner-up Finalist in the 2008 Indie Excellence National Book Awards. She is a contributor to a variety of editorials and excerpts of her work can be found in various E-zines, newsletters, and local papers. Her work can be sampled on www.sucarha.com


    2 Replies
  • A Christmas Greeting

    Posted on Wednesday, December 14, 2011

    Happy Holidays Everyone!

    I have shared a Holiday greeting on my website built by my webmaster, Kathy Killam, at www.sucarha.com. I design it and Kathy builds it. It’s a huge site and she’s done a great job. A techie I am not! The Christmas Greeting consists of an animated trailer and music. I was honored to have Yana request that I share my poem here.
    I also included another poem called “Christmas In the Forest” linked off the Home Page by James Kelly. Jim is a dear friend of mine, yet that developed after I’d done some juding for a local Poetry contest. I knew then, I’d just uncovered a master of imagery. Since. I’ve edited a book for him and it was recently published by Infinity Publishing under the title “From The Embers” and is now available on Amazon.com.
    My granpup, BB McPup, will guide you into the site from the Christmas page if you’d care to visit.
    Scroll down and Enjoy!

    Joyous Greetings to you all! Thank you for your support of my work.

    Blessings,

    Susan Haley
    Author/Editor  

    "A Different Kind of Christmas"  

      

    The calendar is turning;  

    it's near the end of year.  

    A different kind of Christmas  

    is about to be, I fear.  

      

    My list of gifts is growing,  

     and money's hard to find.  

    A different kind of Christmas  

     is forming in my mind.  

      

    Oh, lights will still twinkle,  

    and snowflakes will still fall.  

    A different kind of Christmas  

    won't change that at all.  

      

    Carols will still ring out,  

    and sleigh bells will still ring.  

    A different kind of Christmas  

    will be in the gifts I bring.  

      

    My gifts won't cost money;  

    new traditions, I can start.  

    A different kind of Christmas  

    will come straight from my heart.  

      

    I'll give love and understanding,  

    share a shoulder and a song.  

    A different kind of Christmas,  

    that will last the whole year long.  

      

    I'll stand up for your honor,

    and lend a helping hand.  

    And, hope a different kind of Christmas  

    will spread across the land.  

      

    I'll offer my forgiveness,  

    toss old resentments all away.  

    I’ll wish for yours to be returned  

    For the times it was me who strayed.  

      

    I'll take the time to thank you  

    as we gather by the tree,  

    for your part in our family  

    and all you've done for me.  

      

    Isn't that what Christmas means?  

    Aren't all its treasures free?  

    I think my different kind of Christmas  

    Is what was truly meant to be.  

       Susan Haley

    "Christmas in the Forest"  

    Christmas slips into the forest . . .

    No magi, no church bells to ring.

    Open-armed pines welcome the snow,

    A garment befitting a King.

    Fir’s scented boughs chase each other  

    Back and forth as they climb to the top.

    One lonely spike reaches the heights

    Where it waits for an angel to stop.

    Mottled birch, stately oak, sugar maple

    Shake hands as they nod in the wind.

    Voices that struggle to life in the branches

    Whisper their songs once again.

    The forest speaks boldly of Christmas,

    To the eyes of those who will call.

    Beauty and peace, like seasonal wreaths,

    Hang their hearts on the deep forest wall.

    Copyright  © 1999 James O. Kelly


    1 Replies
  • Are We Ready?

    Posted on Wednesday, November 23, 2011

    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


    5 Replies