Sunday, April 24, 2016

Immigration: A real issue or smoke and mirrors for a power hungry jerk?

Immigration...So many sheep in this country have completely forgotten that they are the descendants of immigrants.  Let alone what it means to our economy.  Oh I've heard the arguments that they "take" jobs from "hard working" Americans.  The wonder excuse that they are "taking over our country" and/or that if they refuse to speak "our" language and be "like us" that they don't belong here.  I don't know how many times I've tried to talk sense to people about how ridiculous hating on the immigrants, illegal or not, is just sheer stupidity, but it generally falls on deaf ears if not hostile ears.  The problem isn't that their opinions don't count or matter.  The problem is that they are so misinformed it's nauseating.  Don't get me wrong.  I'm all for people finding out facts and forming their own opinions, but thanks to the internet, what I'm finding out is that many people simply find the first site that backs up their own pre-formed opinions.  It's not hard to find out these sites are bogus or that they are "far right" tripe sites.  But even something more important that so many people seem to be bypassing anymore is that to form a truly valuable opinion on something they need all the facts.  Joe Blow sitting next to you at work or the bar might have his opinion and he may or may not have formed his opinion with all the facts.  Odds, though, are that he formed his opinion the same way they did.  A couple of the facts that have been skewed by the media or by some other person, presented as all the facts, and they've processed all this into their limited opinion.  Immigration, or more correctly, the immigration issue, particularly the illegal immigration issue is the best example of so many people repeating half-truths, some facts and even more bs that somewhere along the line someone added to make the "story" sound better.  It's like a children's game of telephone gone horribly wrong.

What are the facts?  The fact is illegal immigration to this country is dwindling.  Yes.  That's a fact.  Donald Trump claimed that there are 30 million "illegals" in this country.  Why anyone would vote for him astounds me because any flaming moron could look up that this number is so out there in the o-zone layer that this man knows nothing about fact checking.  Which is fine if you are Joe Blow at the bar--annoying but fine, but this man wants to be the most powerful man in this country.  In a job interview, you'd better know your facts and he simply doesn't take the job seriously enough to research while flying around in that fancy plane he likes to brag about.  So what are the real numbers?  Just over 11 million in the USA right now.  It varies depending on which creditable source you review.  DHS, Department of Homeland Security says 11.4M and Pew Research says 11.3M.  The facts are that illegal immigration into the USA peaked in 2007 at about 12.2M and has been on decline over the last decade.  Even they know Obama has been a disaster.  Okay, my opinion.  See how easy it is for me to write that and if I didn't you might actually take and repeat that like fact but it's not.  It's a joke out of my opinion.  That's it.

So let's put this in perspective.  We'll use the DHS number of 11.4M (current estimate).  In 2014, there were 318.9M people in the USA legally.  Most illegals avoid being counted now because of paranoia.  They don't trust the authorities in their previous countries, let alone here.  But let's say that 318.9M actually counts them, even then they make up 3.5% of the population.  Seriously.  That's it.  So what?  They still are a lot.  Really?  As of 2014, there were 42.4M legal immigrants in this country--20M of whom are counted even though they are now legal citizens of the USA--aka. naturalized.  The other 22.4M are legal immigrants with sponsors, on work visas or student visas, and the like.    Student visas make up about 1M people in this country.  Even though they are not actually immigrating, they are counted in the immigration rolls.  Likewise with work visas, they aren't necessarily staying.  Many people come here because their jobs require it, but like anyone that has ever moved away from home can tell you, sometimes the experience of living elsewhere just makes you homesick enough to want to go back and never leave.  So while those numbers may seem high, they are not completely accurate as far as the actual immigration, those people who come over here with the intent of staying.

The naturalized citizens shouldn't be counted at all in my opinion, but now here's the interesting thing.  No matter when they became naturalized, they are included in this count.  If your grandmother immigrated after WWII and has been a naturalized citizen since 1954, they still count her in that 20M.  When does a naturalized citizen actually not get counted?  When they are dead, and even then, think about the voting fiascos where dead people have been included in voting rolls for decades after they die.  I'm not sure we can guarantee that all the naturalized citizens they are "counting" are even still alive.  Once they are naturalized, they are just like any of us that are natural born.  They don't have to renew this or that or keep up with their visas, passports, et cetera.  Would you in their shoes?  Maybe, maybe not.  They might be more likely to keep up their now USA issued passports if they still have family or friends overseas, but even that is not guaranteed.  Regardless, think about the fact that when people talk about the legal immigrants they are still counting American citizens.  

Well, the numbers prove nothing.  Immigrants in general are running rampant on our streets.  The numbers show that there are plenty of legal immigrants and they should come legally.  Well, not exactly.  What the numbers show, the legal immigrant numbers, is that we have legally allowed 22.4M immigrants (not all immigrants--some are just on extended stays for school or work) into this country.  Now the ones that are staying have been here for no telling how long.  Just like the grandmother example I used earlier, they may have been here for decades.  We approve approximately 1M legal immigrants to enter this country each year.  That's it--globally.  Almost half of those are family visas--wives or husbands and children of approved visas.  Refugees make up about 70K...that's right 70,000--of the 1M we approve visas for--7%.  So when people scream about how terribly risky it is for us to take in refugees running from religious extremists in a part of the world very few of us have seen other than on television, it seems almost laughable that 70K is a number to scream about compared to the 320M Americans here.

So what?  Those numbers are massive.  Really?  Between 1910 and 1915, 13M, that's right 13 MILLION immigrants entered the USA.  So what, your point?  My point is that the population of the USA during the 1910 census, and remember the census didn't care if you were here legally or illegally so people didn't avoid being counted, was 92.2M people...92,228,496 to be exact.  Now there were likely some babies born prior to that being completed and some people that moved into the country as it was being completed, so it's not really 100% accurate, but neither are our numbers today.  The census attempts as good as it can to be a snapshot to predict population over the next decade based on it and historical data.  Okay, but to my point,  The percentage in just 5 years an hundred years ago:  14.1%   So let's review.  We allow legally 1M a year right now.  Just 1M per year, which is 0.3% compared to our current population.  Do you see how ridiculous worrying about immigrants is?  But that's only the legal ones.  Yes, but how many illegals do you think enter this country each year?  That 11.3M is how many total.  Estimates are that 700K, aka. 700,000, illegal immigrants enter the country each year.  Donald Trump has all these crazy people in a tizzy over 0.2% of the population.

One risky immigrant is too many.  Okay.  The most devastating terrorist attacks in the 1990s were the Oklahoma City Federal Building bombing--American, the Atlanta Olympics bombing--American, the Unibomber--American, Columbine High School--American kids.  We have plenty of our nutjobs here to worry about, so we don't need anymore.  You might have a point, but as the Land of the Free and the Brave--it sounds awfully like cowardice to be afraid that immigrants legally or not would cause more pain than we can handle.  Cowardice is not the America that my grandparents instilled in me.  We are the greatest, not because of might or right or religion.  We are the greatest because we are made up of all the greatest of every immigrant we have absorbed into our society.  We aren't just German, Polish, Irish, French, Italian, Greek, Lebanese, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, et cetera...We are not just Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, Wicca, Atheist, Shaman, Buddhist, et cetera...We are as whole ALL of it.  Everything and everyone.  We are the world and that is what has made us great.

Fine, but they are taking our jobs.  The largest influx of immigration was the late 1800s to early 1900s.  My grandmother's parents immigrated right at the turn of last century.  Most of the jobs and small businesses grown during the 1910s and 1920s came from immigrants.  That's right.  A large part of the "Roaring Twenties" were because of immigrants.  Even now, as we argue over increasing the minimum wage to $15 an hour, we forget that hard working immigrants would take the current minimum wage very gratefully for flipping burgers while they learn our language, can go to school, save to start their own businesses like many of grandparents and great grand parents did just a century ago.  I'm super opposed to raising the minimum wage and most conservatives are.  Financially any idiot can remember that when minimum wage was $3.35/hour and a "value" meal cost about $3 and some change.  Then minimum wage was raised to $5 something and the "value" meal went up to $5-$6.  Now it's $7.35 and a "value" meal average price is $7.  It was a little higher, but most of us if we have to spend $7, may as well spend another 2 or 3 dollars and eat in a better restaurant.  Well, that's my logic anyway.  No conservative is for raising the minimum wage--yet so many get tizzed up over immigration.  Yet, every single immigration boom has resulted in a financially and globally stronger USA.  Immigrants built the railroads, immigrants created or were the workforce for the economic boom of the 1920s.  Immigration historically has always worked in our benefit.  It's just a fact historically.  The "boom" in the late 60s and boom in the 80s.  I know there's a very complicated explanation based on some obscure economic theory that someone probably won the Nobel Prize in Economics or Mathematics for, but that's not something average Joes get.  What we get is immigration boom in the 1910s, followed by financial boom in the 1920s.  Immigration boom from 1965 to mid-late-70s...followed by financial boom in the 1980s.  That's what average Joe gets and that's what immigration has meant over and over for this country.  The truth is that immigrants are willing to take the jobs that we have groomed our kids to think are below them and that they should get paid for shit jobs better than shit job pay.  Flipping burgers was never meant to support a family.  Period.  It's a crappy high school job or the job the old retirees took because they were bored.  Not the job some idiot with 3 kids was supposed to be working--unless in between jobs and just trying to make ends meet temporarily.  Immigrants would work for the $7.35 and manage to send half their paychecks back to family or saving it to pay the fees to bring their families here.  And they wouldn't complain that it was shitty pay and they need more for flipping burgers because in their previous countries they wouldn't even have a job.

Which brings me to the point that most Americans, hell even most Europeans or western countries as we are referred to as a whole, people that are immigrating away from their countries are normally running for their lives or running towards hope of a better life.  I heard a fine lady that I admire a lot say just yesterday to someone that "hope is everything.  We have nothing if we have no hope."  How true.  Many Americans equate hopelessness to depression now.  I know I'm even one of them.  I have friends that suffer from depression and it's hard to watch how miserable they can be.  What we forget is that some people in this world live in hopelessness based on the country they are living in.  The Olympics are in Brazil this year.  Rio de Janeiro.  It's one of the most beautiful cities in the world.  Yet, in Brazil, the education system is extremely limited.  If you fail a class, you are out of school whether 3rd grade or 11th.  That is the education that you get and you get no second chances.  The USA is one of the only countries in the world that we are the great believers in second chances.  Even a kid can fail a class or even a grade.  We still give them the opportunity to try again.  Not in Brazil.  Not in most of Central and South America.  I served in the Navy with a guy from Colombia.  He made it through high school but he didn't make a high enough score to go to college.  Yes, even if you graduate high school and want to go to college, if you don't score high enough, you're not going.  Well that sounds like the SAT or ACT?  Sort of, but there's a number of slots in colleges the governments run, and you either score high enough to get one of the 100 openings or you don't.  It's got nothing to do with you being capable.  And these tests they have to take test everything from day one of school.  They study for a year before taking it in the hopes of one of those precious appointments.  Picture every kid in this country looking for an appointment to one of the military academies and no other options in the country.  That's the world they live in.

Bullsh*t, you say?  The 2014 World Cup in Brazil was the first time that the Europeans got to see what Latin America is like.  We Americans, unless we have caught the soccer bug, still for the most part have our heads in the sand.  Those people who have no or minimal education live like the pictures below and try to keep in mind they have no choice.  None.  This is it.

 Do you think anyone living like this doesn't dream of a better life?  Hell yes they do.  We are a country where you can get a GED.  They don't have that opportunity.  They failed once; they are failures forever.  We are the country of hope.  Conservatives that speak against immigration say they will take our jobs.  These people would take any job--even the jobs we as Americans think we are too good for and deserve $15 for.  They would take them, they would strive to get a GED, unlike a stereotype, they would be trying to learn English.  For those of you that don't know, English is one of the hardest languages in the world to learn.  Too, two, to?  One, won?  Will, will, will?  Will the noun, will the verb, will the other noun that can also be a verb?  (You're racking your brain on which will is that and you grew up speaking English all your life.)

Which brings me to the final ridiculous argument:  All immigrants should have to learn English.  Okay if they want to become permanent citizens, but oh my God.  English is literally one of the hardest languages to learn.  Most Americans butcher the English language horribly just because it is that difficult to keep those words that are pronounced the same but spelled different straight.  Add those words that are spelled and said the same and have multiple, completely unrelated, meanings.  Geez  Heck, every American knows what "geez" means but if you look up the definition it doesn't actually convey the whole of the meaning.  We have those words that just express emotion unlike a lot of other languages.  How annoying is that?  Well, not to us, because we use it constantly, but just imagine trying to follow our discussion when we throw a lot of those type of words in.

When we talk about building a big fancy idiotic wall to prevent 700,000 people...oh right, almost forgot.  Only 60% of illegal immigrants come from Mexico, so that's 420,000 people.  That idiot Donald Trump wants to spend $8M to build that damn wall to prevent the equivalent of 0.1% of the US population from coming into the United States.  Really.  Immigration is not our problem.  It's such a tiny little drop in the bucket.  Idiots that want power try to make idiots out of us by making us focus on something that is so tiny we will forget all the really big issues that need to be addressed.

Anyway, at this point, you may or may not agree with me, but if you remember nothing else, remember these things:

  • Historically, immigration booms have been financially and globally good for the USA over and over and over.  
  • Immigration numbers actually include naturalized citizens, even the government numbers.
  • Annual legal immigration is less than 0.3% of the population.
  • Annual illegal immigration from Mexico is 0.1% of the population.  

Then really think how important this issue is to you and how important it should be.  Is it smoke and mirrors for some rich boy brat and his immigrant whore trying to make a grab for the White House?  Is it really that big of an issue that it is truly affecting your everyday life?  Is it really bad for the United States as a country?  Or is it just that politicians were looking for someone to blame instead of taking the blame themselves?

Monday, April 18, 2016 might be all on you...

This blog has been difficult for some reason.  Friendship changes over time, but the truth is that if you complain about how few friends you's on you.  I've got a lot of friends.  Good, great, best friends.  I'm a dedicated friend and the only time I used to give up or "lose" friends would be when I realized that they were backstabbing POSs.  When people have your back through thick and thin, that is what real friendship is about.  There are layers of friendship.  Friends are better than acquaintances.  Good friends are better than friends.  Great friends are better than good friends.  Best friends are well the best of the friends you can have.  But the different levels have nothing to do with whether you have friends or don't have friends.  Everyone can find at least one or two people that are as honest or as deceitful or as whatever as they are.  That's just a fact.  Honest people might only have one or two.  Dishonest people might only have one or two.  Shallow people can have a slew of "friends" but no one that trusts them or that they trust.  Why do any of us only have a "couple" versus those of us that have several good, great or best friends?  I've got enough good, great and best friends that I can tell you what they all have in common.  True friendship is there no matter what and true friendship is through thick and thin.  

What isn't true friendship?  Well, true friendship expects nothing in return.  If you want something for being someone's friend, expect them to be at your beck and call, expect them to like who you like, dislike who you don't like, expect them to always agree with you, then you probably don't have any friends.  Sorry, just true.  If you have ever screwed one of your "friends" significant others--boyfriend, girlfriend, wife, husband, even currently dating but not all the way there yet--yes, you.  You are not a friend, let alone a good or great or best friend.  You're a sleezoid and the only "real" friends that you have are other sleezoids.  I know.  You think they are your friends.  Nope.  In the back of their minds, subconsciously, they know you're worthless and they are probably equally worthless.  Grams used to say "birds of a feather flock together".  It's not always true, but when you talk about sleezy people, it's spot on.  Good people just don't hang out with people that might screw them over on a regular basis.  Of course, most true friends don't have to be up each other's butts to still be friends.  True friends don't monopolize their friends' time.  They don't try to manipulate them into doing what they want to do.  It takes some time to realize when someone does try to manipulate you, so don't beat yourself up if you happen to find out that someone you thought was a "good" friend turns out to not be.  True friendship is precious, but true friendship accepts you the way you are.  Unless you're one of those backstabby or unpredictable people or clearly might sleep with someone's spouse.  Then, no one with any sense is accepting you the way you are, except other whore bags, and there's an irony there.  Even they don't trust you, so that's not going to be true friendship either.

Oh, I know, I'm being harsh.  It's not harsh.  It's just fact.  Too many people are not trustworthy anymore, but then seem shocked, and offended in many cases, that someone drops their @sses like hot potatoes.  Why so shocked?  You get out of friendship what you put in...Like in any relationship, everything might be 90%-10% today, 10%-90% next week, 30-70, 40-60, 80-20, but it all equals out to 50-50.  If it doesn't equal out, and I'm not talking about financially but personal investment--after all "normal" people have friends to have friends, not to gain, so someone who you find seeming to "gain" or trying to gain from your friendship might be less than a friend than you thought.  Likewise, if you happen to be one of those people that seems to always shove your way or no way down everyone's throat, then you're probably an asshole, not a friend.  Don't get me wrong.  Sometimes, you might have to remind even a true friend to respect you, but true friends are there when it counts not when it's convenient for them.  

Convenience isn't about friendship.  It's about having what you want and not really caring about anyone else.  I've known plenty of people that are all about their own convenience but not really that great at being friends.  Well, they're not, because they think you owe them something for being your friend.  No one should owe you anything for your friendship and vice versa.  If you don't put forth any effort to check on your friends and expect them to constantly be the ones checking on you, well, that's another sign you're a lousy friend.  It's all on you.  No, I know that isn't nice, but I've tried to write this blog as sugar coated as possible and it comes off as fake and like it's missing something.  It's been missing the truth.

And the truth is what every friendship, true friendship, is based on.  You tell your true friends your real thoughts and if you can't, then they aren't really as good of friends as you thought they were.  Levels of sharing come with levels of friendship--friend, good, great, best--more truth and sharing with higher levels.  No truth at all--acquaintance or less.  Friendship has to have some amount of trust and without truth there is no trust.  

I'd love to tell you that I have never been screwed over and how to avoid being disappointed by someone that you think of as friend.  But here's the thing:  Friendship is not a two way street sometimes.  The trick is to downgrade someone that you thought was a great friend to just a friend when you realize that's where they put you.  If you can't, then well, part of it is on you.  It doesn't mean that you are a bad person for degrading them, and it doesn't actually necessarily mean that they are bad person for not being as good of a friend as you thought either.  It just means true friendship can only be sustained when the friends are putting the same investment in the friendship.  If you're putting in too much--back the f*** off.  BAM.  Don't whine about how they didn't put in as much as you.  So what?  Put in as much as they do.  If that happens to be nothing, don't beat yourself up over it.  Move on.  There are actually people that are good at being friends out there, and it's not your fault you are a better friend than someone you are "friends" with is.  Leave it at that.  If they come back wondering where you've been, they might just want something--using you--or they might have been too busy for a little bit.  Life does tend to get in the way.  

Oh what do I know about friendship?  I've got a best friend that he and I have been friends for over 42 years.  I've got 3 other best friends that I have been friends with for over 25 years.  I've got several great friends that I've been friends with for years too.  I make friends and I'm loyal.  True friends are genuinely loyal and everyone of my friends that I've been friends with for years are just as loyal as I am.  Loyalty and trust make a long time friend, and sometimes even long time friends will screw up.  But how much they screw up is the sign of where you stand with them and where they should stand with you...slide down a level or out the door altogether.  Friendship is all on you.  What you will put up with, what you won't, and who you choose to call friends.  All on you....

Sunday, March 6, 2016

I wanna be President....

It's ridiculous that most people have no idea what they are or aren't voting for.  Seriously.  I talk to so many different people all the time, and lately people that have no idea about why or what they are voting for seem to be voting.  I am always very for the idea that more people get involved, understand the process, and make an effort to have their voices heard.  The only thing that I totally never expected was the onslaught I was hoping for to be of people that would listen to one liner sound bites and the extent of their involvement would be to the most shallow level of following cartoon character, reality television--"I'm not here to make friends"--type so faithfully...and blindly.  Worse yet, I didn't expect that I would be more concerned about some narcissistic moron than a man who was not "natural" born.  Who knew?  So a few months ago I was doing a Bill of Rights series.  Yet, now, we have the ultimate "Manchurian candidate" running for President and professing his absolute love for this country and yet somehow oblivious that he should not be running for President.  That would be fine, except for the fact that he's considered one of the finer attorneys in this country so how could he not know???  So let's not mince words.  Ted Cruz wants to be President, but why?

Ted Cruz has used utterly nasty political tricks.  He wants it bad.  His father, former fighter for Castro, somehow now has found God and runs around the country like some great evangelical.  I'm always leery of anyone that wants to be an "evangelical".  They are self proclaimed and I'm not sure how that works.  For all the religions that I've been exposed to, the "evangelicals" always seem to be almost cult like.  So Ted Cruz's father has definitely helped pull some far Christian right votes for his son.  But here's where it gets strange.  His father was a "freedom fighter" for Castro...aka. a communist.  When he supposedly fled Cuba, let's assume that's actually true, he loved the USA so much he went on to Canada and became a Canadian citizen.  He married an American and they had a child in Canada, at a Canadian hospital, and that allowed that child duo citizenship until he was 18.  Ted Cruz has served the people of Texas pretty well overall.  Not as well as Rubio served Florida, but Rubio was the son of two immigrants and born in the USA.  There's no question about his eligibility.

So some novice told me that Cruz running was the same as McCain running.  "Really," I inquired. "How so?" Because the Constitution would allow McCain so therefore it would allow Cruz.  I laughed.  He was serious.  I asked him if he knew what the Constitution said.  He said that any citizen could be President.  No, that's not what it says.  Then he said it said had to.  No, that's not what it says either.  It was obvious he was guessing.  He was going on the little sound bites.  So I looked up on the internet what it states and read it to him word for word.  He looked at me dumbfounded.  That's not what it says, he kind of said under his breath.  I showed him.  It's too easy wording.  Yes, it is; the Founding Fathers wanted anyone with an 8th grade education be able to understand it.  It's not that complicated.  What does it state?  Well, within Article II Section 1, it states:

"No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President;..." 

The first part applies to all persons after the Constitution applies--the red part.  The only allowed exception was when the Constitution was first adopted--that's the black part.  The blue part is well self explanatory.  The red and black apply to who can be President of the United States of America.  "Natural born".  McCain was born to a US Naval Officer and his wife, also an American citizen, on a US military base in a US military hospital.  By definition, a US military base is considered US soil and thus "natural born".

So, last time I checked Canada is still a different country.  Born in another country does not apply to the above statement.  A liberal Supreme Court might, and I think this would be a huge stretch even for a liberal court, to allow an American citizen born in another country to run for President.  A conservative court would most likely not allow it.  Justice Scalia's death, the most conservative Justice on the current SCOTUS, becomes kind of timely for Ted Cruz.  The Court could split 4 to 4 and he could be President before anything is decided.  By then, it would be too late.  However, I don't believe liberal or conservative Justices will side with Ted Cruz on this one.

Why?  I explained to the guy sitting there.  If Ted Cruz becomes President, then it means anyone in the world, born to an American parent, even if born and raised in China by a Chinese parent or a Russian born and raised in Russia, could be President.  Yes, that's what that decision, the decision to allow him to be President, would create.  The media could care less.  They are more worried with ratings and creating as much conflict as possible.  Plus, the majority would prefer another Democrat in the Presidency.  That's not any kind of secret.  Conflict and a Supreme Court decision against Cruz would supply plenty of ratings and guarantee a Democrat wins.  So, is there a possibility that SCOTUS would vote in Cruz's favor he asked?  I would think he would be more likely to win the liberal Justices--liberals tend to give a more expansive interpretation.  The conservatives would be more likely to bend the rules for a proclaimed "conservative".  Not someone like Scalia.  A far right conservative Justice would be very vocally opposed to bending any rule, even for someone of the Republican party.  His death, and in Texas, seems awfully timely.  Coincidence?  Maybe.  I'm not much for conspiracy theories.  So it probably is a real possibility.  There's little secret that a large portion of people in power, both here in the US and globally, would like to create the New World Order.  Ending the Constitution of the United States would have to happen for the NWO to become a reality.  The first step to that is side stepping one of the major clauses in the original Constitution.  Making it so anyone in the world could become President.

He looked at me sheepishly.  Then said boldly, that's why he voted for Trump.  No, I said to him.  He had voted for Trump because he appeals to the angry white man in him.  He looked at me and said that it wasn't and that it was because Trump says what he thinks.  So do I, I told him.  But I'm not arrogant enough to think that makes me qualified to run for President.  He then admitted that he was embarrassed by Trump egging on people to hurt protesters.  He couldn't believe a veteran was videoed slapping a young woman and pushing her.  Now he was thinking he should have voted for Cruz.  And now that we talked, I inquired.  He didn't know.  He all of the sudden was worried that he didn't know enough about how everything worked.

Perhaps, no absolutely, he did not know enough about how the system was designed by the Founding Fathers.  He had never actually read the Constitution.  No one had ever told him that it was written in fairly simple language.  He thought it was super complicated.  I told him that it wasn't and it isn't even that long.  The Founding Fathers weren't trying to make it difficult for the average American to understand and the average American in the 1770s could usually read and understand simple language.  The Constitution was written for all Americans, not just the educated or the rich.  Do I think he'll read it?  I have no idea.  I imagine since he and I converse every month or so that I'll eventually know if he does or not.  If he does, I expect he'll want to discuss it and see if I agree with what he thought it said.  And that is exactly what I hope for.  Then he can have his own opinion and decide with a better idea of who he really wants leading the process and the Nation.

All that being said, he now was a little concerned that Cruz was running for President.  And we are on the same page.  Why is Ted Cruz, who supposedly loves this great Nation, running for President?  He has to know the risks that would follow.  I suspect Ted Cruz is a true "Manchurian Candidate".  He opens a can of worms if he wins a nomination, Republican or Democrat.  And there will be no putting those worms back in the can; he has to know that too.  Hell at this rate, I want to be President.  If anyone can be President, why not me?  As if.  And Daffy Donald and the Cruzanian Candidate don't belong there either.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Start paying attention rather than jumping on the bandwagon...

I put off writing this.  I had faith that Americans are not that stupid.  I'd love to tell you that I'm thrilled that South Carolina didn't want Trump to win the Republican nomination.  At 32.5%, I can't.  I'm just as angry as anyone is about how Obama has screwed up my health insurance.  I'm just as angry about him apologizing to various portions of the world, tanking the private jet industry with no consideration the effect it would have on the economy or American jobs, Benghazi, his lack of respect and protocols when he first took office, the fact that he pretends like he had nothing to do with the gridlock in Washington.  The list just goes on and on.  

But the truth is that it's time to stop and I mean stop being entertained by Trump and start thinking about what you are doing when you think about casting a vote for him.  Donald Trump is the biggest liar of all the candidates out there right now and that includes Hillary Clinton.  

What is Presidential about:

1.  Saying Jesus was a loser?  Seriously for those of you that are Christian, you should really be doing your homework.  

2.  Saying a woman was bleeding because she disagreed with him? 

Just his record on women all the way around:

"Schlonged" really?  Is that Presidential?  Can you see Reagan saying something like that?

3.  Refusing like a two year old child to participate in a debate?

4.  Using veterans to raise $6M and putting it in his own bank account?

5.  Attacking an American War Hero who voluntarily stayed with his men in a Vietnamese POW camp even though his family had the political clout to get him out?  (Senator John McCain)

5a.  Being a draft dodger?
5b.  Insulting every American soldier, sailor, Marine, airman, and veteran by claiming his little prep school was more military than anything we went through?

Definitely not, moron.  

6.  Using the word "pussy", let alone encouraging someone to say it multiple times?  Can you actually picture Ronald Reagan or FDR doing this????

7.  Screaming during a debate over another candidate?  Maybe he didn't want you to hear them because he actually has no plans himself.  

8.  Defrauding thousands of people of $40M in California and New York with "fake" college degrees?  This is still in litigation.

8a. Being investigated for possible criminal charges associated with that fraud?

The good news is that if he's President all that criminal investigation will go away (because he can make it as President by pardoning himself)...

9.  Being a racist?  Think about that hard for a second.  If a racist appeals to you that much, what does that say about you?  

10.  Threatening to have journalists killed?  Joking?  Because Putin is a "great leader"....Someone else threatened journalists...

And you don't get less American President than that...

10a.  Having to "clarify" statements like threatening to kill people?  Really shouldn't a President be thinking before he talks?

If that finger pointing in the air like that looks familiar, it should.  Hitler used to do it all the time. 

11.  About literally having a to claim bankruptcy for casinos?  How exactly does that happen??  Casinos literally make their money by getting people to give their money away with little to no chance of winning.  

12.  Not knowing anything about the GNP?  How does he actually think it's below zero?  How stupid is he really?

13.  Attacking a woman because she doesn't look Presidential in his mind?  Really, because he looks Presidential with that fake tan?

14.  Attacking a woman for breast feeding in front of him?

I don't particularly care for it either, but let's face it....I'm not running for President of the United States.  And neither are you.  He is.  How Presidential are any of the things he says....Read on...

15.  Bragging constantly about how much money he has?  Money doesn't make a good man.  

Hell, this statement doesn't even make sense...he just likes to brag about his money...

16.  Incest?  Really he said this:  

17.  Claiming bankruptcy at all?  How exactly is that Presidential?  Well, not taking ownership of that Presidential?

Of course, according to him, he didn't go bankrupt, because America, we bailed him out 4 times....

18.  Bragging that literally that he is smarter than everyone else?  Ronald Reagan said "I'm not a smart man."  This moron tweeted this:
19.  Thinking people are so stupid that you just have to flash a "nice ass".  Wow.  Just think he really thinks this about the people who are supporting him.  We're looking at the next Monika Lewinsky fiasco right here.

20.  Not even knowing who actually ran for the Presidency???  That was Romney.  What a moron.
By the way, Senator McCain's support of veterans and our military has always been unwavering. Seriously, this is the biggest liar out there.

21.  Not even understanding what the word "immigrant" means?  
Yes, actually they did make it all the way here as immigrants to find jobs and the American Dream...imagine that....

21a.  Is going to be hard on immigration?  

Yea, sure, and I bet you still believe in the tooth fairy, right?

22.  Praising Putin for killing reporters?  

Sure he is.  He's been murdering his opposition in Russia.  He ordered attacks on Georgia that resulted in a commercial airliner being shot down and over 200 innocent people's murders.  NATO wants to stop Putin's expansion plans.....How is it Presidential to want to praise this Stalin wanna-be? 

23.  Offending all of our American Allies?  

UAE:  "The Trump name was stripped off of a multi-million dollar golf course located on the outskirts of Dubai...Dubai business mogul Khalaf Al-Habtoor,..., “I had to admit I made a mistake in my supporting Mr. Trump.”"

Turkey: “We are assessing the legal dimension of our relationship with the Trump brand,” a statement from Kural said." 

France:  French Prime Minister Manuel Valls via Twitter: “Mr Trump, like others, stokes hatred: our ONLY enemy is radical Islam.”

Israel:  Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu denounced Trump's racist comments, resulting in Trump cancelling a scheduled visit to the country.

Pakistan:  “This is the worst kind of bigotry mixed with ignorance. I would imagine that someone who is hoping to become president of the US doesn’t want to compete with an ignorant criminal-minded mullah of Pakistan who denounces people of other religions … "

New Zealand: 

While our biggest ally is calling for him never to allowed in their country again:
Britain:  "Britain’s Prime Minister David Cameron said the call to ban Muslims from entering the U.S. is “divisive, unhelpful and quite simply wrong,” while “Labour’s home office minister Jack Dromey called Trump a dangerous fool who should not be allowed within 1,000 miles of British shores.”  Meanwhile, a petition to ban Trump from the UK received over 300,000 signatures in just one day."

Sunday, February 14, 2016

The GOP debate in the Upstate SC...highlights...and low lights

First, Justice Scalia's death made it start pretty somber.  As a sign of respect, they started with a moment of silence for the Justice.  Five of the six bowed their heads in a sign of respect.  Donald Trump didn't.  Basically, shows his lack of character and respect for others.  As far as the overall debate, well, there was no clear winner.  Jeb, Rubio and Kaisch tied for the "top" spot, although Kaisch talked over his time consistently.  Rubio was extremely impressive and far better than the rest of the stage.  Jeb was really the only one that consistently had plans, not just talk.  Rubio also stuck to his plans, while Trump and Cruz really didn't have as much substance.  I'm not even sure why Dr. Carson hasn't bowed out.  They didn't give him much talk time, in his defense, but he's just not that charismatic, and well, we really need a leader that can represent us in a "big" way.  Perhaps that's why so many are drawn to Trump.  But we need a leader not a buffoon.  Another thing that annoys me...All but two of the candidates continually broke the debate's rules which were clearly presented at the beginning of the debate.  Rubio and Jeb were the only ones that consistently tried to remain within the rules of the debate.  So here's my evaluation of the debate:

Trump--attacked the Bush family and got booed.  He actually got booed a lot.  Actually made me very proud to be from South Carolina.  His attacks and poor behavior were not applauded like it was elsewhere.  Maybe that's because people are getting tired of the show and are actually starting to take the election seriously.  Trump was asked point blank what he would do to pay for his ideas and all he did was jump up on a soapbox and say he was going to "make America great again".  So basically, he has no idea how to do any of the "great" ideas that fly out of his mouth.  Other than the attacks on the other candidates, he has no concept.

When he was called on his liberalism, contributions to the Clintons and his very, very typically democratic answers that call for more government and more taxes that would be needed for his crazy plans to build a wall and free healthcare for everyone, he didn't have an answer but another attack.  It's not a boxing match and frankly I wanted an answer.  How does he think he will pay for these crazy ideas?  An $8M wall?  Seriously.  A Great Wall worked so well for China trying to keep the mongols out that mongols took over the country and ruled it for over 400 years.  Moronic.  Let alone the cost of it.  He's like a little kid who starts screaming when mommy says no.

One thing he did offer up a plan, sort of, was when he kind of touched on what he would do as far as ISIS.  He suggested that he would work with Putin.  Is that the same Putin that is being compared to Hitler and Stalin?  Who has illegally shot down a commercial jet airliner in Georgia?  Who has been invading surrounding countries and is trying to rebuild the USSR?  Yes, one in the same.  Great, just great.

One side bar, he also didn't follow any of the debate rules.  He interrupted the other candidates on multiple occasions which was clearly not only rude, but made it difficult to hear what they were saying.  He seemed like he was going for the entertainment factor rather than substance.  Of course, whenever he was asked for substance, he delivered rhetoric and attacks.  He attacked every single candidate on the stage and the entire Bush family, including Barbara Bush.  Just wow.  So his wife is free game.  He's been married 4 times.  Every time he's been divorced because he's screwing the next wife.  Three of 4 were not even American citizens.  His current wife is naturalized but she has ties to the Russian block, the old KGB, aka. the Russian mob.  Since he's actually suggesting we work with Putin, maybe he's already in the old KGB's pocket.  Sure as hell has been careful about not advertising the fact for all his border rhetoric it obviously doesn't apply to his own household.  

Cruz--well, he seems to know what he's talking about, but he's again telling everyone what they want to hear.  He didn't do very well either.  He's got a whiny nasally voice and he's Canadian born to a former Castro fighter who loved our country so much when he came here he went and became a Canadian citizen.  Arguably, not eligible for the Presidency.  Almost lucky for him that Justice Scalia died.  The most conservative, down to the letter of the Constitution interpretation, would definitely have denied his candidacy when it's challenged if he makes it that far.

Unfortunately, Cruz also said that he fought amnesty and attacked Rubio.  The thing that blows my mind is that he himself benefited from amnesty.  We have given amnesty to Cubans for decades.  Cruz also has proposed an increase of green cards and other increases in immigration policies in the past, and by past I mean during the current Presidential administration.  So it's a little confusing what he is proposing now.  He brought up his dad washing dishes and now travels the country as a preacher.  He left out the part about his dad went to Canada and became a Canadian after he came here because he loved this country so much.  It just seems like he's full of it when he talks on immigration.  He's benefited from it, so as an American, wouldn't he want others to benefit from it?  What he's saying doesn't make sense based on his background and his record.

He also got called on his lying about Dr. Carson during the Iowa primaries and all the additional flip flops and he floundered there too, excuse the pun.  

Kasich--He claims that Ohio is doing really well.  Not so great an example.  Ohio isn't doing that well.  He's actually one of the lowest rated governors in the country right now.  Next, he did say he was all for Obamacare, not doing away with it.  Then when called on it by Jeb, well, he flip flopped right on the stage.

He overtalks but he sounds decent on immigration.  He, Rubio and Jeb are all on the same page.  There is no way financially, let alone logistically, to deport 11.5M people.  Who would round them all up?  Who would process them all out?  How do we pay for all that and then pay to send all 11.5M back to where we need to ship them?

He did sound Presidential and for the most part, he avoided the Christian religious zealousness that has been dividing the Republican party since the Reagans.  (Incidently, for those of you severe right wingers, the Reagans were pro-choice.)  As a moderate Republican, I'm looking for a candidate that avoids cramming Christianity down my throat.  I don't try to legislate my religious beliefs and I'm getting sick and tired of having so-called conservatives making it their number one reason to vote.  So Kasich avoided making any blanket statements that might cause more divide in the party.

Rubio--He's a strong debater and definitely follows the rule of the debate as given.  I'm a little worried about his youth, but he's got a far more professional and mature posture than most of the group.  I really liked that he highlighted that we need to instill a sense of optimism and leadership like Reagan did.

He's followed what he says and in most cases he's a moderate.  Except when it comes to gay rights and women's rights.  He made it very clear that he is a far right winger on those two issues.  As a moderate Republican who is not Christian, my religion doesn't agree with his.  I believe in the First Amendment. My religion doesn't teach a defined woman and man marriage.  My religion defines life as when the soul enters the body which most in my religion view as after the heartbeat and brain waves start.  I cannot support a Christian that wants to cram Christianity down my throat.  That's not what the First Amendment says--hell, Ben Franklin was an atheist.  Not all the Founding Fathers believed in Christianity either.  So I'm loath that I have to say I wouldn't vote for someone that otherwise is a moderate.  I just can't go backwards on those two issues anymore.

Jeb--He highlighted his plans every opportunity, and yes, unlike most of the others on the stage, he has real plans that he described.  He is actually standing on his record.  Florida did actually become one of the more successful states under his leadership, and he did a good job of highlighting his record.  What I thought was idiotic was people were searching on the internet how tall he was when he talked.  What in the world people?  Like that defines a President?

On the attacks from Trump, he very successfully blocked the blows against his father, brother and mother.  The fact that he even had to defend his mother is completely ridiculous.  Trump just has no couth. I'm not sure that anyone that has such a blatant lack of class should be President.  What an embarrassment.

Jeb is probably far more well versed in immigration issues than any of the other candidates and he took the moderate conservative position on the issue.  Florida is one of the states with a lot of immigration issues and he pulled no punches when he was attacked by Trump on this also.  He defended his record and explained poignantly what the issues were and how they had successfully dealt with the issues in Florida.

As far as foreign policy, he knows more because frankly his older brother and father have been Presidents.  I would have been disappointed if he hadn't.  Again, his moderate approach appealed to me.  When attacked  yet again, he was direct as to how he would handle the Middle East, the European NATO region--working to restrengthen our allies, and the issues North Korea and China.  No other candidate even had a plan for the Middle East, let alone addressing the other elephants in the room.

Carson--He's talking some sense about how to get people out of poverty.  He was very ignored during the debate, and perhaps that is because he's not really doing well so far in the first two states' primaries.  Unfortunately, he is a complete outsider and that hasn't been working either.  The system works because there is some seniority that needs to be in tune with how things work.  If you want to change a system, you first have to learn the system and then change it.  You don't win at chess by moving the pieces like they are checkers.  You win at chess by learning the game and then changing the game within the rules.

He lost me completely when he quoted Stalin about how to take America, the United States, down.  Since Stalin failed miserably, Stalin had no idea what it takes to break Americans and America, and while Dr. Carson proved he was well read and educated, using that quote proved that he doesn't have a good concept of what America is as a whole, just like Stalin didn't have a clue.

So after watching the whole debate, here's my final thoughts.  Jeb has taken the lead in my mind from Rubio.  I like Rubio.  I like him a lot.  But I just cannot in good conscience keep voting for the religious right.  I'm not Christian and I'm sick of the Christian right telling me that the laws must reflect their religion.  Kasich made an impression, but not enough for me to follow, especially when I checked Ohio's record.  Just another politician pushing lies to get what he wants.  So basically, I'm now hoping for a Jeb/Rubio for 2016 on the Republican ticket.  When the primary rolls around on the 20th here in SC, I'll most likely be casting my vote for Jeb.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Value Add....or Auf Weidersehen...

I often think about various things.  I'm a walking, talking dilettante version of an encyclopedia.  I can't tell you how many things I think about.  My mind races most of the time.  It's kind of cool.  I get a lot of stuff done when I'm busy.  It's also kind of annoying at other times.  My mind literally needs to have multiple things going on at the same time in order to focus.  Music is usually my favorite background noise to keep that part of my mind that likes to take off running so that my focused mind gets, well, focused.  Over the years I have met people similar, but I've always been a bit of the odd duck.  That oddity has on more than one occasion been the target practice bullseye for some of the more shallow people on the planet.    

For one, I can usually listen to two conversations at the same time and absorb all of both conversations.  I can even participate in one while listening to another.  I've had people swear up and down this is not possible, and yet, in meetings taking notes of both conversations has often proved that I missed little to nothing from either conversation.  So it tends to annoy me when someone says that I don't listen.  I often heard what they said, but what they said had no value add to my life.  An aunt used to lecture me about who I was, more over who she thought I was, and what I should be doing.  I always tried to ignore her, but that annoying gift of being able to absorb and understand two things going on around me at once, meant that I was catching all of the hockey game and all of the belittling things she was saying to me.  While it bothered me when I was younger that she often thought of me as her own personal "whipping post" during family gatherings, as I got older I just ignored it.  And by ignore, yes, it still registered, but I chalked it up as words that were not value add to my life.  If it made her feel better, so much the better for her, and who cared?  

So over the years, I've developed that same "who cares" what someone is trying to tell me that they know who or what I am when they don't even know who they are themselves.  Recently, I met a pretty blatant racist.  He didn't think he was.  He parlayed himself to be a fancy, true Southern gentleman.  The first time I met him he made my skin crawl.  Immediately I knew he would not be that great of a person, although it took me some time to figure out what was "wrong" with him.  At first, I thought it was maybe that he didn't actually like independent women.  No, after some observation, it was apparent that if this had been his problem in the past, God had given him daughters to rectify that shallow mindset.  More observation showed a man that was way too gregarious when dealing with minorities, particularly when any form of an audience was around.  But, that wasn't what tipped his hand; it was the putting me down and insulting me when there was no audience, no witnesses coupled with overly buttered up, sweet as molasses act when there was an audience.  Honestly, when he put me down, at first, I did a lot of self exploration.  I realized after three or four days of self analysis that this guy had no idea who I was whatsoever.  He had put forth zero effort to actually understand who I was other than a stereotype that he had in his head from the moment he laid eyes on me.  Every one of the conversations that he and I had ever had were already predisposed to his opinion that I was not "good enough".  I couldn't figure it out.  Until there was this really sweet black gentleman that he was equally ridiculously gregarious with.  It hit me kind of hard and then I saw how he acted all the time.  The gregarious with people he didn't like, the normal with the people he did.  Basically, this jerk had made up his mind about me from the time he had laid eyes on me--I was obviously mixed with something and didn't fit his version of the world.  Therefore, I was less and since he didn't want to look like the asshole he was, well is, to others, he was very overly nice--as I stated, gregarious--in front of people.  Yet, a complete insulting rude jerk when there was no audience.  Of course, once I realized that, his opinion of me and anything or anyone else became utterly worthless.  It was non-value add.  He had no idea who he was talking about, not just because he was an ass--some asses will take time to know people regardless--but simply because he was a bigoted racist fossil who had failed to grow with the times.  

Unlike this educated asshat, I have a friend who is a high school dropout, the epitome stereotype of redneck who can be so overly honest and blunt that some people fail to see the diamond in the rough.  Yet, I've never known her to ever be a racist or even make snap assumptions and have the audacity to assume they are fact.  Unlike the educated, self proclaimed "Southern gentleman", she is his exact opposite in every single way--female, high school drop out, not from a "proper family", but also unlike him, with a heart of gold, without a drop of judgmental prejudices to skew her initial opinion of anyone, and certainly not so phony as to become so totally gregarious around people she doesn't like to hide it.  If she doesn't like you, she's not trying to hide it, but she's not trying to be sneaky while insulting you either.  Just a straight up, good hearted person with no prejudice to skew her from liking or disliking anyone.  Obviously, I think the world of her.  But also unlike him, she's not worried about what others think of her or what she thinks.  She doesn't hide her thoughts.  If they are inappropriate, oh well, that's who she is unlike that asshat who knew his opinions were inappropriate to the point he played himself off as super gregarious when dealing with people he knew his true opinion would be inappropriate.  Of course, with her no one has to worry about being "good enough".  We are all equal in her eyes. 

Obviously I respect her more than I respect him or my one aunt.  That aunt did me a great big favor at a very young age.  I learned that other people's opinions are just that--based on their own follies and their own desires, experiences, always on who they are, but not necessarily based on who you are.  Honestly there are very few people that I don't like.  That's not to say that I like everyone, but there are just very few people that I bother with the concept "to not like".  If I don't like you and I am willing to state it, there is a guarantee that I have a solid reason that others would find understandable--if I even would bother to explain it to them.  I'm not very fond of the asshat aforementioned.  Can I say I don't like him?  No, actually I can say I feel sorry for him.  How sad is it to still be living his life in the 1950s, 60s and 70s version of the South?  It's pathetic that at his age he hasn't grown passed those ignorant racist things that control his behavior.  How many truly wonderful people has he missed out on simply because he lacks the depth to grow passed racist stereotypes?  Not that it matters to me.  He's like one of those blips on a radar screen that disappears into the Bermuda Triangle.  

What's the point of this blog?  Well, I know so many of my friends, all of us already in our 40s--some moving into their 50s--and they are still sweating what other people think of them.  I have to admit I feel far less fettered than they do--or at least in that sense I do.  I don't care what someone thinks of me that has no value add in my life, and while it's a little mean sounding, if someone has no value add in your life, why would you?  Of course, if someone has no value add in your life, a normal person cuts them out of their life.  My aunt was always tuned out and eventually was completely cut out of my life because she simply couldn't show the respect that she demanded.  If someone consistently proves that not only are they not value add, but they are value detrimental, it's time to consider severing or at least minimizing ties to them.  Sometimes we are forced to be around people that have no value add to our lives--work, family, etc.  We have to be able to tell ourselves what their opinion is worth.  Usually zilch.  But if you are lucky enough to find people who are honest with you and provide value to your life--to improving yourself, to being the best that you can be, to your growth as a human being running in this human race--well, hold on to those people.  They are as priceless as you are.  

And you thought you were having a bad night...

Ok, so I've gotten completely bored with politics, but I promised a funny blog.  So here goes.

So there have been times in my life that I just can't help to point out the very, very obvious.  Some people are dense, and by dense I mean, well, let me explain.  So in spite of swearing off internet dating ever, and I mean ever, again.  It does make for interesting reading.  This time though I refused to put pictures up.  No reason to put up any pictures.  If I want to get hit on because of the way I look, I can go to a bar.  So, amazingly, without pictures, this has yielded very little interest.  However, I'm not getting the stupid emails like "hey baby, you're hot" or "you remind me of my refrigerator because you've been running through my mind all night"....Gasp....

No, but I did manage to meet one guy.  Seemed nice enough online.  Nice looking guy online.  Now, let's clarify for everyone, because I've been picking up new readers.  I'm an uber goober geek, who happened to be raised like a fashionista.  So the uber goober geek is a bit of a nervous nelly when meeting people.  Not that I can't talk with just about anyone, but dating is kind of a pain in the *ss.  I'm fine in my comfort zones, much like anyone else, but meeting someone new for a drink or two is a bit nerve racking.  So I get there on time, and he gets there a bit after.  He's actually better looking in person than in his pics.  Sits down next to me and we order a couple of beers.  We start talking and it's a little cold in the bar.  My arms are crossed but my legs were crossed towards him and he commented on how tense I seemed because I had my arms crossed.  I explained that I was cold and that the arms crossed didn't actually have anything to do with my nerves.  As I start to relax, I'm talking and I'm pretty high energy.  He starts telling me over and over and over and over and over and over....and over and over to calm down.  I'm not really not uncalm.  I'm a little uncomfortable, but now, well, I'm becoming more uncomfortable.  I tend to babble when I'm uncomfortable and he's still telling me to calm down.  But now it's on the borderline of condescending.  Trying to make conversation, we talk about family and I tell him that people call my brother in law "asshole"--that it's his nickname.  He explains that he doesn't call anyone something like that until he knows them.  Ok, I guess he missed the nickname part, but that seems pretty nice, right?

Ok, so far, not so funny.  Then a really good friend of mine calls and then texts.  I sent her a text back that I would call her back in a bit and she responded with "OK".  Out of this guy's mouth, and I joke not, "Tell that bitch to quit texting and calling.  Call her back if you have to and tell her you're busy."  WOW.  Just wow.  So that not calling people names until he knows them only must apply to men?  I didn't ask.  The hell you say!?!?  No, really, I didn't waste my breath.  Of course, those of you that know me, once I get a bit pissed, I'm done talking.  I didn't bother with a second beer, and thank God my friend Angela tried to call as it gave me a way out of having dinner with him.

I know I never lie, and I technically didn't lie to the guy.  I did have 3 friends having birthday parties last night and I was genuinely planning on hitting at least of two of them.  So I explained that I didn't plan on dinner because of those birthday parties and I bailed faster than the Road Runner saying "meep, meep".  Of course, by the time I got home, I didn't feel like going anywhere.  It kind of made me not want to be around anyone.  Now, I'm backlogged on birthday drinks to at least one of my friends.  Ok, so it wasn't that funny of a blog.  Ah, well, better luck next time.