Consensus Future, Cultural Nostalgia & The Rise of the New Populism

The future is coming while we are looking backwards

“We look at the present day through a rear-view mirror. We march backwards into the future”. Marshall McLuhan

COMMENT AND OPINION:

CONSENSUS FUTURE, CULTURAL NOSTALGIA, & THE RISE OF THE NEW POPULISM

By T.K. McNeil

“When I pronounce the word future the first syllable already belongs to the past” Wistawa Szmborska

Future Concerns

Of all human concepts, the future is among the most pervasive

Of all human concepts, the future is among the pervasive.

Of all human concepts, the future is among the most pervasive, as well as the most powerful. The basis for the concern around children as well as the justification for some horrendous acts. It is also one of the least certain and most fraught with problems.

Consensus Future

“Consensus future” refers to the visions of the future most people agree on. Largely because they are the visions that we have been given through culture. This includes the notion of cloning, first presented in a major way in the 1993 film Jurassic Park. And self-driving cars, have  been a common futuristic theme in popular culture since at least the 1960’s. Just think Batman. The majority of technology trends are imagined and created on consensus future.

Ballardian Banality

British science fiction writer created future worlds.

British science fiction writer J.G. Ballard created future worlds.

One of the biggest issues with future forecasting, particularly in terms of technology trends, is the fundamental unpredictability of both people and markets. Even a brief glance at the history of technology trends reveals an essential inability to show where trends are going to go, as well as a strong tendency towards normalization. One of the sharpest observers of this latter trend was the British science fiction author J.G. Ballard. Ballard created future worlds at the height of the future craze of the mid-20th century that were remarkable, mostly for the basic lack of surprise shown by the characters to the technology that surrounded them. Embryonic proof of the consensus future.

Manufactured Normalcy

One of the lesser known theories in terms of futurism is “manufactured normalcy”. With regard to technology trends, this term refers to the tendency of people to adapt quickly to any new piece of technology. The first period of excitement getting shorter as the turnaround between new models continues to decrease. It has, in fact, been argued that such surprise, or “future shock” as term by sociologist Alvin Toffler in his 1970 book of the same name, has largely subsided, if it ever existed at all. This happens even if the technology in question is not actually boring, or at all commonplace, and tends to apply, especially to things inside the consensus future narrative.

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Pete Buttigieg Calls Out Evangelicals

Pete Buttigieg Calls Out Evangelicals
If you haven’t seen this news snip of Mayor Pete it is time you did. We here at www.calamitypolitics.com were moved by this man’s honesty. What a heart touching disclosure. I’m loving Pete Buttigieg. If you haven’t got a favorite for the primaries, you should take a look at this gay, son of an immigrant with the hard to pronounce name. I think he can bring something valuable to the conversation-Vote Democrat, they have the working person’s back. #BlueWave2020Darlene

21 Reasons to Smile, in Spite of Donald Trump

COMMENT:

21 Reasons to Smile, in Spite of Donald Trump

By D. S. Mitchell

I sat down with computer in lap and began writing my 441 www.calamitypolitics.com post

Another Post

I sat down with computer in my lap and began writing my 445th post to www.calamitypolitics.com.  Before I started this blog, I worried that I wouldn’t have enough to write about. I mean, it even occurred to me that I might exhaust all my grievances against the Mango Menace within a couple of weeks. I was so innocent. So naive.

TV Has-been

Who would have thought that a TV reality show has-been, would be elected to run the White House like a New York slumlord. How could any of us; with our limited historical perspective, ever imagined the extent of perversion, fraud and corruption that this grifter president could bring to Washington. My God, reporters have an average of a scandal, or two, a day, to choose from. In fact the scandals and corruption news is coming so fast and furious that we have to literally bob and weave to stay clear of flying falsehoods and denials.

Breaking News Feed

In fact, on a really good Friday afternoon two or three of the juiciest scandals in American history will explode on the CNN Breaking News feed.  Yes, every Friday. Like clockwork. I just said American history. It is the most mind-spinning administration of graft and compromise in U.S. history. What other administrations in memory could, in one week, produce more scandals than the Obama, Bush, and Reagan administrations combined.

Hold On

I recommend you hold on to that safety strap. I expect the tempo of the legal battles are about to pick up speed. Subpoenas will be flying out of the House. My “trouble coming” antennae are quivering. We are on a perilous ride, created by the megalomania of Donald Trump.

Choice of Vices

Now it’s time to open a bottle of wine, roll a doobie, or grab a box of chocolates, whichever be your particular vice. Then find a comfortable chair sit back and just breathe. While savoring your wine I am going to share with you some positive and uplifting energy.

Here are 21 Reasons to Smile: In Spite of Donald Trump

  • Astronauts
  • Sunsets over water
  • Wraparound sunglasses
  • The Science Channel
  • Getting the perfect selfie
  • The Muppets
  • Touching toes under the covers
  • Blowing the wrapper off the straw
  • Winning at Monopoly
  • A dog’s cold nose
  • Warm apple cake
  • Winning at Monopoly
  • Old jeans that fit just right
  • The clatter of skis being loaded
  • Drawing a Royal Flush
  • The rumble of a train as it passes
  • The imagination of a six-year-old
  • Your lover’s voice
  • A friend’s hug
  • Daddy’s wisdom
  • Lady Gaga
  • Old yellowed family photographs
  • Denim and plaid

Have another glass of wine. We’ll connect again.

Darlene

Murder And Intrigue: The Life of Kim Jong-Un

 

** North Korea is the most isolated, secretive and repressive regime in the world. There is no reliable biography on Kim Jong-un.  Dr. Van Jackson, a professor at Asia-Pacific Center said, “It is hard to verify most information coming out of North Korea. In the absence of a reliable official biography, the information publicly available about Kim Jong-un reflects a ‘broad consensus understanding from experts keeping a close eye on the regime.” Calamity Politics has depended on the accuracy of many articles printed in the United States and the UK to compile this article.-Darlene

The women of North Korea love the Supreme Commander

The women of North Korea love the Supreme Commander. The Supreme Leader is famous for his womanizing ways.

Murder and Intrigue: The Life of Kim Jong Un

By D. S. Mitchell

Childhood picture of Kim Jong-il with his son, Kim Jong-un wearing Mickey Mouse ears.

Childhood picture of Kim Jong-il with his son, Kim Jong-un wearing Mickey Mouse ears.

Who is Kim Jong-Un?

Recent meetings between Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un have fueled questions about the most isolated and secretive country in the world. People in the west are curious about the “Hermit Kingdom” of North Korea and its brutal leader, Kim Jong-un. We do know he was the third, and youngest son of Kim Jong-il and Ko Yong-hui. Kim Jong-il was the absolute ruler of North Korea from 1994 until his death in 2011. His grandfather, Kim Il-Sung became the first leader of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea in 1948 and ruled the country with an iron hand until his death in 1994. “Kim Jong-un is the third head of state from his family’s dictatorial dynasty, one of the last absolute inherited monarchies on earth (KSRO).”

Early Life

Kim Jong-un in early picture

Kim Jong-un in early picture

Kim Jong Un (also spelled Kim Jong-Eun) is believed to have been born January 8, 1983 (or possibly 1984). Much of his early life is shrouded in mystery, or downright confusion. Several conflicting and contradictory stories about him while he lived in Switzerland have emerged. Many experts believe Jong-un was confused with his older brother Jong-chul on several occasions. Jong-chul also lived in Switzerland at the  same time, but attended a different school.

School Years

Kim Jong-un attended the Liebefeld Steinholzli state school in Koniz, near Bern. Kim Jong-un’s identity has been proven by anthropological forensic studies of images from official school photos of the boy.  The  Liebefeld archives study was done by the University of Lyon, France using facial recognition . Kim Jong-un used the alias “Pak-un” or “Un-pak” and posed as the son of a North Korean embassy official. His mother Ko Yong-hui is known to have been at least a part-time Swiss resident during the years between 1991 and 2000, living in Geneva.

Does Kim Jong-un Speak English?

Dennis Rodman former NBA basketball star meets with Kim Jong-un

Dennis Rodman former NBA basketball star has met with Kim Jong-un at least twice.

“Pak-un” (Jong-un) is remembered as shy and quiet. He studied French, English and German. He loved American basketball, Michael Jordan and computer games. He was reportedly a mediocre student. It is believed he speaks decent French and German.  It is not clear whether he actually has a command of the English language. Dennis Rodman after a visit to North Korea said that they used an interpreter, but he also indicated that Kim made several remarks to him in English. After many years isolated from English, French or German it is unlikely he has a true command of any of the languages.

Kim Jong-nam

In 2001 Kim Jong-nam the half-brother of Kim Jong-un was arrested trying to visit Tokyo Disneyland on a false passport

In 2001 Kim Jong-nam the half brother of Kim Jong-un was arrested trying to visit Tokyo Disneyland on a false passport

Kim Jong-nam was Jong-un’s elder half-brother. His mother was a Kim Jong-il’s consort, the beautiful North Korean actress, Song Hye-rim. Kim Jong-nam was born in May 1971. He was for many years the favorite to succeed his father. In 2001 Jong-nam embarrassed North Korea by being caught trying to enter Japan illegally on a fake passport allegedly to visit the Tokyo Disneyland. The incident caused a great deal of publicity and his father was enraged over the international embarrassment that the incident caused. At the time Kim Jong-nam was the closest thing North Korea had to an international playboy.

More Than Mouse Ears

Kim Jong-nam was North Korea's international playboy

Kim Jong-nam was North Korea’s international playboy. He had been targeted for death multiple times because of his reform politics.

Out of favor Kim Jong-nam was exiled from North Korea. Until that time Jong-nam had appeared to be the chosen successor to Kim Jong-il. His hereditary position was now in jeopardy. In the first interview ever given by a member of the Kim family to media outside of North Korea he denied the disastrous Disneyland trip was the issue dividing him and his father. Kim Jong-nam told a Japanese journalist from the Tokyo Shimbun newspaper that his alienation from his father was related to his western ideas.  Kim said his education in Switzerland had changed his views and that he had become an advocate for government reform. He said he was deeply concerned for the average North Korean citizen.

Time After Time

Kim Jong-nam claimed he lost favor with his father over reform issues

Kim Jong-nam claimed he lost favor with his father over reform issues and his wish to improve the lives of ordinary North Koreans

When discussing these issues with his father, Kim Jong-nam said his father accused him of being a “capitalist”.  The void between the two grew with the passage of time. Reports show that Kim Jong-nam escaped multiple assassination attempts, in 2006, 2007, 2010, 2012. A desperate Jong-nam is known to have written to Kim Jong-un pleading for his life. However, after that appeal, Jong-nam agreed to an interview with Yogi Gomi a Japanese journalist in which he said, he “expected Kim Jong-un would fail, citing that “he was too inexperienced and young. Without reform North Korea will collapse and when such changes take place the regime will collapse.”  Drum roll….

Murder Played and Replayed

Jong-nam, Kim Jong-il’s capitalist son was murdered 2/13/2017 in a bizarre on-camera attack at the Kuala Lumpur, airport by two women. The moment of the attack was replayed on western television for over a week. Jong-nam was 45 years old. One woman splashed liquid in his face and the second woman used a rag to smear the liquid around his face.  He was dead from VX nerve gas poisoning within 10 minutes of the attack. A Vietnamese woman, Doan Thi Huong, and an Indonesian woman, Siti Aisyah, were arrested after the attack. Both women confessed to the attack but testified they believed they were playing a prank for a TV reality show.  Siti Aisyah was released in March 2019 after charges were dropped. Doan Thi Huong pleaded guilty on a reduced charge and is scheduled for release in April 2019 for time served. Most intelligence services believe Kim Jong-un ordered his half brothers killing.

Another Brother

Kim Jong-chul. Jong-chul is Kim Jong-uns older brother and was considered effeminate by his father.

Kim Jong-chul. Jong-chul is Kim Jong-un’s older brother and was considered effeminate by his father and was passed over to lead country.

Kim Jong-un has another older brother, Kim Jong-chul. Kim Jong-chul was born in 1981. He was not favored by his father. Jong-chul was considered to be “effeminate”.  Kim Jong-chul has no interest in politics it is said. Thae Yong-ho a former deputy ambassador who defected to South Korea has said, “Kim Jong-chul leads a quiet life in Pyongyang where he plays guitar in a band.” I close my eyes and try to imagine this son of the dead “Supreme Leader” playing in a head-banging band hammering out tunes in a smoke-filled North Korean bar.

The Chef Tells His Story

On the other hand, Kim Jong-un was very much favored by his father. “He is a big drinker and never admits defeat” said Kenji Fujimoto Kim Jong-il’s personal chef.  Fujimoto continued describing Kim Jong-un saying, “He smokes Yves Saint Laurent cigarettes, loves Johnnie Walker whiskey. He is a chip off the old block, a spitting image of his father in terms of face, body shape and personality.” By 2009 it was confirmed that Jong-un was being groomed to succeed his father. It is agreed by most experts that Kim Jong-un attended and graduated from Kim Il-sung University. His attendance was from 2002-2007. The University is a leading officer-training school in Pyongyang. In 2010 Jong-un was given the rank of a four star general. This despite Jong-un never having had any military experience.

Succession

King Jong-un showed great emotion at his father's funeral

Kim Jong-un showed great emotion at his father’s funeral, crying openly.

In December 2011 Kim Jong-Un was placed at the head of the party, the state and the army within weeks of his father’s death. During the same time Kim Jong-un was declared the country’s “Supreme Leader”. Since that time he has been honored with many other official titles: First Secretary of the ruling Korean Worker’s Party, Chairman of the Central Military Commission, and National Defense Commission. A man of  limitless strength and abilities. In fact, the United States also has such a man. A man known as Jared Kushner. A man who is able to carry out nothing. But, who keeps getting more and more responsibility.

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Oh, The Places You’ll Go! (With Nepotism)

The Trump clan are all about their brand

OPINION AND COMMENT:

Oh, The Places You’ll Go! (With Nepotism)

By Ross Turner

In The Moment

Nepotism has found renewed vigor in the presidency of DJT

Nepotism has found renewed vigor in the presidency of Donald J. Trump.

Nepotism is having a moment right now.  Arguably, this moment never ended, but it has found renewed vigor in the presidency of Donald J. Trump.  Nepotism simply means favoritism towards relatives, usually expressed by their appointment to unearned positions.  The word stems from the Latin nepos, meaning nephew, which during the Middles Ages became nepotismo in Italian. Nepotismo referred to the tendency of Popes and bishops to assign relatives to positions of power.  Since they took vows of chastity and had no sons of their own, these assignments often fell to nephews.  The word may be medieval, but the practice is as old as mankind.  We are biologically hardwired to favor our kin over strangers, but this doesn’t mean that family is always fit for the job.

The Nepos Scale

Trump by hiring all his family has done a great disservice to the country

Trump by hiring all his family has done a great disservice to the country

History is rife with examples of nepotism that highlight its often disastrous consequences.  From the formation and collapse of the Roman Empire, to countless mad kings lording over the realms of Europe, much bloodshed and tumult has occurred as a result of incompetent kin who never should have held power in the first place. Nonetheless, families can’t seem to help themselves and keep on appointing each other to run their businesses and countries (into the ground.)  So, in the spirit of family, let us survey the Trump clan and see how far nepotism has taken them.  To assist in our appraisals, I’ve developed a highly scientific metric called the “Nepos Scale.”  Zero nepos is billing your toddler for diapers; five nepos is promoting your toddler to Director of Operations.

Ivanka Trump: The Golden Child

Ivank is without question the crown jewel

Ivanka is without question the crown jewel.

Ivana Marie “Ivanka” Trump is, without question, the crown jewel atop Trump’s golden mane of straw.  You can tell because, in addition to being named after his first wife, Trump claimed that “perhaps [he’d] be dating her” if she weren’t his daughter.  I’m no Freudian psychologist, but… yikes.  Moving right along, Ivanka, like her father, attended Wharton Business School where she, like her father, received a B.S. in economics.  Just a year later in 2005, she clawed her way up to an entry-level gig as Executive Vice President of Development & Acquisitions at the Trump Organization, as most college grads do.  However, in an effort to shed her image as merely the privileged offspring of her rich father, Ivanka thereafter spent many a hot summer personally working her lemonade stand in the Bronx, slowly accruing wealth.  Just kidding; she sold fine diamonds and gold jewelry in downtown Manhattan until dad decided to get into politics.

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Too Rich For Jail: The Case of Paul Manafort

Paul Manafort laundered money, filed false tax returns, and committed bank fraud in the millions of dollars

Paul Manafort laundered money, filed false tax returns and committed bank fraud in the amount of at least $55 million

Too Rich for Jail:

The Manafort Case A Lesson In Sentencing Disparity

By Quinton Reed

What is Sentencing Disparity?

We have a two-tiered justice system

We have a two-tiered justice system in U.S.

Idiomized, you may hear the term as a “slap on the wrist”. As an adjective, a justice system might be described as “two-tiered” or “hybrid”; a lawyer may be accused of upholding “double standards”. These phrases are used to describe situations of sentencing disparity. Sentencing disparity is defined as: “a form of unequal treatment that is often of unexplained cause and is at least incongruous, unfair and disadvantaging in consequence”.

Across the Spectrum

Many believe that the Paul Manafort sentence was based on a bias for the wealthy

Many believe that the Paul Manafort sentence was based on a bias for the wealthy & upper class criminals. White crime is a wink & a nod.

Sentencing disparity is rampant in the US Judicial system. Discriminatory sentencing in the courtrooms occur on the basis of gender, race, immigration status, religion, sexuality, and economic status. For the sake of providing thorough commentary, this article focuses specifically on classism. Particularly how obvious it was in the most recent case of Paul Manafort. That is to say, the last sentencing on Manafort’s case–especially as compared to other, similar cases–and the attitude surrounding that ruling–is intrinsic in the discussion of sentencing disparity on basis of class.

The Price of Freedom

Studies show that sentence severity is linked to economic status.

Studies show that sentence severity is linked to economic status in the justice system

It isn’t a matter of one or two set of statistics that correlates sentence severity and economic status; it’s an epidemic. A study conducted by The Brookings Institution’s Adam Looney and the Federal Reserve Board of Governors’ Nicholas Turner was enlightening .  The statistics revealed that boys who grew up in the bottom tenth of income distribution were 20 times more likely to be in prison. Both researchers were not only economists, but also used to work for the Treasury Department. This position provided plenty of research not only on prisoners’ incomes before imprisonment, but also the incomes of their parents.

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Trump’s Cowardice vs McCain’s Heroism

 

John McCain was an Annapolis grad and Navy aviator

John McCain was an Annapolis grad and Navy aviator. His father was an Admiral as was his grandfather.

Opinion and Comment

Trump’s Cowardice vs McCain’s Heroism

By David L. Shadrick

Personal Bias

I am living in a transitional housing unit for veterans.

I am living in a transitional housing unit for veterans

Please be warned of the following issues I harbor so you can remove my personal bias’ from the narrative.  I’m a Veteran living in transitional housing.  I work helping the homeless through legislation and litigation.  My focus is on the 85% of the homeless population who have a diagnosed mental illness.  I’m extremely annoyed a non-vet has the cojones to attack a vet, especially after his passing.

The Vietnam War

John McCain’s heroism during the Vietnam War is well recorded.  Simply speaking, there were four major choices young men faced when their draft number came up.  Some of the men decided to go to Vietnam and serve their country.  Others moved to Canada, leaving behind their lives in protest.  Some took their chances in court and risked going to prison.  Finally there were those that received a deferment of some kind.

Serving Your Country Versus Deferment

John McCain was an Annapolis grad and Navy aviator

John McCain was an Annapolis grad and Navy aviator. Shot down over Hanoi. Wounded and imprisoned for five years by North Vietnamese.

Because this article is focused on Trump’s comments about Senator John McCain’s heroism, I’ll be brief. I’m only looking at serving your country or choosing a deferment.  While many people believe that Trump’s deferment was obtained illegally, I will not be addressing that issue.  It is also irrelevant to the issue at hand.

Off To War

An Annapolis grad and aviator, John McCain came from a long line of naval officers. McCain decided to serve his country and suffered one of the worst fates a service person can endure.  It is important to note here that the North Vietnamese had given McCain a get out of jail free card. McCain’s father was an Admiral and because of that rank, the younger McCain was offered a flight home. When he refused to leave his comrades he was literally subjected to five years of non-stop torture.  Just being able to survive this kind of torment, much less being able to thrive after it, is a tribute to McCain’s personal character and heroism.

Trump’s Choice

Meanwhile, President Trump received a medical deferment, the only choice that didn’t involve a sacrifice.   I have no problem with someone using this method to avoid serving in a war they didn’t support.  But I believe strongly that it disqualifies such a person criticizing someone who went; someone like John McCain.

Inappropriate and Disgraceful

Concentrating on Trump’s  comments about McCain’s heroism isn’t the point of this article.  There is no doubt that his continuing comments are inappropriate and disgraceful.  Trump says he “doesn’t like heroes who get captured.”  I don’t f*cking like civilians who think staying home was just as good as going to Vietnam. Or, challenging the validity of  Senator John McCain’s heroism.

Even Trump Supporters

The National Cemetery is filled with men and women who did not choose deferments, escapes to Canada or jail.

The National Cemetery is filled with men who did not chose deferments, escape to Canada or jail.

As I mentioned before,  I currently live in transitional housing.  I share an apartment building with about a hundred other veterans.  Let me assure you all of them are angry about Trump’s attacks on John McCain.  John McCain’s heroism is not Trump’s to question.  One of my friends is an ardent Trump supporter who always defends Trump, no matter what the position.  I announced to my friend that I was writing an article for www.calamitypolitics.com condemning Trump for his attacks on McCain. He agreed that such a response had to be written.

No Support

No matter what your political affiliations very few support attacks on a dead people, certainly not a man of Senator McCain’s stature. Hey, the man is dead and can’t punch back. Let him rest in peace. It leaves his still grieving widow and children to defend his legacy. Shameful, that the family had to fight back to have McCain’s heroism protected.  It just highlights Trump’s  fundamental weakness of character. A spineless man who fights imaginary wars is what we have in the White House.

GOP Backlash

Backlash over the attacks on McCain’s heroism were swift and harsh.  While one would expect that the Democrats would issue a harsh response  to Trump’s remarks, the condemnation from the right was swift and harsh as well.  Strange, Lindsey Graham, one of McCain’s closest friends during his lifetime, exchanged a condemnation of Trump for an evening of champagne and cronyism at Mar-a-lago.

To quote the Business Insider

Here are some responses from prominent Republicans taken from an article by the Business Insider. (Full story here https://www.businessinsider.com/gop-senators-slam-trump-tirade-against-john-mccain-2019-3.

Senator Mitt Romney condemned President Trump's attacks on the dead Senator, John McCain.

Senator Mitt Romney condemned President Trump’s attacks on the dead Senator, John McCain.

“Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah, the 2012 Republican presidential nominee who is often critical of the president, condemned Trump’s comments on Twitter.

‘I can’t understand why the President would, once again, disparage a man as exemplary as my friend John McCain: heroic, courageous, patriotic, honorable, self-effacing, self-sacrificing, empathetic, and driven by duty to family, country, and God,’ he wrote.

Republican Sen. Johnny Isakson of Georgia, who rarely criticizes Trump and avoids big headlines in the press, also spoke out against the president for his repeated attacks on McCain.  Isakson, who chairs the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee, told The Bulwark, a conservative opinion website, that he intends to excoriate Trump in the same manner he did shortly after McCain’s death when the White House did not properly lower their flags to half-staff.

‘I want to do what I said that day on the floor of the senate,’ he said. ‘I just want to lay it on the line, that the country deserves better, the McCain family deserves better, I don’t care if he’s president of United States, owns all the real estate in New York, or is building the greatest immigration system in the world. Nothing is more important than the integrity of the country and those who fought and risked their lives for all of us.’

Republican Senator Johnny Isakson came out hard in response to Trump's attacks on McCain

Republican Senator Johnny Isakson came out hard in response to Trump’s attacks on McCain

During an interview with Georgia Public Broadcasting’s “Political Rewind” later on Wednesday, Isakson called Trump’s comments ‘deplorable’. He suggested that type of comment did considerable damage to the way military veterans are treated.

‘It’s deplorable what he said,’ Isakson said. ‘It will be deplorable seven months from now if he says it again, and I will continue to speak out because there’s one thing that we got to do. You may not like immigration, you may not like this, that, maybe a Republican, maybe a Democrat. We’re all Americans.’

‘There aren’t Democrat casualties and Republican casualties on the battlefield. There are American casualties,’ he added. ‘And we should never reduce the service people give to this country, including the offering of their own life, even in political fodder in Washington, DC, or anywhere else for that matter.’

Send your complaint letters to the White House, Washington, DC

Send your complaint letters to Donald J. Trump the White House, Washington, D.C.

–  The Business Insider, March 20, 2019

Write The White House

Please take note of this disgraceful behavior from President Trump and speak up.  Just because you agree with his policies 99% of the time, please realize this time is the 1% of the time you need to disagree.  Write or e-mail the White House and demand an apology for his attacks on McCain’s heroism.

 

Cory Booker: A Candidate Close-Up

Cory Booker: A Candidate Close-Up

by Amaya Oswald and D.S. Mitchell

Introduction to Cory Booker

Senator Cory Booker waves to crowd during a polical rally

Senator Cory Booker waves to crowd during a political rally

As of February 1st, 2019, Cory Booker is officially running for the 2020 Democratic Presidential nomination. As of March 20, 2019, he now makes up one of sixteen Democrats running. And there are at least 2-3 other hopefuls still on the sidelines, including former Vice President, Joe Biden.

Middle Class Cory

Cory Anthony Booker was born in 1969, in Washington, D.C. His parents were among the first black executives hired at IBM. Cory grew up in a strong middle class home in Harrington Park, New Jersey. His family was religious. It is easy to imagine. Sometimes when he is giving a stump speech you can almost feel the revival coming on. All we need is a little foot stomping to make it happen.

Education

Booker earned both his bachelor's and his master's degrees at Stanford

Booker earned both his bachelor’s and his master’s degrees at Stanford.

Cory Booker seems to be a bit of an overachiever in my eyes.  Cory was a damn good student and a damn good athlete. He was good enough in football to be named to the 1986 USA Today ALL-USA High School Team.  He continued to play football and was a tight end for Stanford. Even in this more competitive environment Cory was named to the PAC-10 Academic Team. Additionally he found time to be elected class president, at least once.  He earned a Bachelor’s in Political Science and a Master’s in Sociology. He got a Rhodes Scholar appointment and received an Honors Degree in U.S. History. And he topped all that off with a Juris Doctorate in 1997, from Yale Law School. WOW. That deserves some respect.

Stunt Man

Cory Booker went on a 10 day hunger strike to draw attention to Newark's drug issues

Cory Booker went on 10 day hunger strike to draw attention to Newark’s drug issues.

All wrapped up in top student, top athlete, top candidate there is a bit of a stunt man and carnival barker. Cory Booker in 1998 won a seat on the Newark, N.J. Municipal Council.  While he was councilman he went on a 10 day hunger strike and set up a tent in a crime infested neighborhood to highlight the city’s drug problem .

Mayor of Newark

He tried for the mayor position in 2002, but lost. He tried again in 2006 and won becoming the 36th Mayor in Newark’s history. While Mayor, Booker would often go out with ‘first responders’ to answer calls. On one occasion he ran into a burning building and brought out a woman suffering from smoke inhalation. On another occasion he responded to a senior citizen’s home and proceeded to shovel the man’s sidewalk.  And who could forget when the mayor discovered a freezing dog. A hands-on activist, Booker literally protested Newark’s urban development plan. Are these actions based on genuine human concern, or just attention seeking behavior? I imagine, at least a little of both.

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