Where has the time gone? Mid-April after my last post here I simply focused on completing my federal and state income taxes to submit before the due date. Then I became engrossed with other life activities and I see weeks have flown by. Here are a few matters that have currently caught my interest.
Local Los Angeles TV news accounts and videos at some of our Southern California area beaches report unusual numbers of sharks, including the Great Whites, in the waters – as many as fifteen adults and young ones at Long Beach today – only 50 yards from the shore. Mostly they’ve not been aggressive but a vicious attack on a young woman last week at San Onofre beach has increased concern.
Aggressive shark behaviors that bring swimmers out of the water and prompt beach closings occur when they bump a surfer’s board, or more seriously as reported today, one shark was circling the surfer. We’re told it’s best to swim where there are lots of people since sharks presence in the waters are of greater concern at more remote beaches.
We actually had snow down to 4000 ft level in the mountains a few days ago – highly unusual – but this couldn’t possibly be indicative of any climate changes or warming as some our illustrious federal government leaders and other luddite-type skeptics tell us.
An enjoyable evening comes to mind which I shared with a number of younger adults aged thirties or forties to sixties. In conversation I had revealed my age when describing a birthday celebration with my children. Not long after I was startled to be asked by a middle-aged member of the group, "Are you still driving?" I responded "Yes". This was unrelated to anything under discussion and the conversation moved on to other topics.
Later after I returned home that question came to mind and I thought, why wouldn’t I still be driving? I have my mind, vision, hearing and physical abilities. I wish I had thought quickly enough to say, “Yes” – adding – “Are you?” I think the individual revealed a stereotypical bias based on age – an expectation that anyone my age couldn’t, or shouldn’t, drive.
Driving ability, like so many other matters, is a highly individual skill. What age each of us reach when we cease being safe competent drivers can vary widely. I would rue the day when an age would arbitrarily be selected to define when a person had to cease driving.
MORE BETRAYALS OF ORDINARY PEOPLE
Our present U.S. Administration continues actions that are counter to the best interests of ordinary citizens and much more in favor of the wealthy few. Those of you paying attention can likely identify some of those acts, too. More are slated to come. One of the most egregious is the Trump Health Care bill the House of Representatives passed. Will those affected remember when voting in 2018 and 2020?
Our President continues to figuratively thumb his nose at the American people by refusing to reveal his income tax information to clearly establish he has no conflicts of interest.
Absence of transparency with the legitimate American Press often continues to be a hallmark of our leader -- partly because the mainstream Press also report truth which is frequently contrary to our leader’s characteristic promotion of obvious flagrant alternate facts.
Did you see our President laughing with the Russians when they met which only Russian press was allowed to cover -- insultingly excluding any U.S. Media in further efforts to discredit any outlet that has reported facts rather than Trump alternate truths -- a classic tactic associated with dictator wanna-bes, just as occurs in Russia, Turkey, other such nations.
Should we just ignore the continuing flagrant promotion of our leader’s family members businesses -- violating ethical behavior with these adults offering the equivalent of, “Gee, I didn’t know….” it wouldn’t be ethical to promote a connection to our nation’s leader – also saying you get special access to the U.S.?
DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC AT RISK?
Our Democratic Republic continues to require persistent resistance against forces that would alter our form of government by solidifying power in the executive branch as other branches are gradually compromised, legitimate news media discounted.
Israel’s leader (click link) seems to have chosen to address news dissension in his nation much as dictators do – by suppressing other points of view, even actual facts. Our U.S. leader’s actions suggest he also aspires to allowing only his alternate facts in our news, also – his taking control of information distribution.
There’s much to be concerned about in light of the recent firing of the FBI Director. Our government systems checks and balances are being systematically whittled away. Hopefully the Senate and other investigations will be able to either complete their work as needed, or an independent special prosecutor will be appointed to determine the facts about any Russia and Trump campaign relationships, plus wherever else that might lead.
We may need government whistleblowers now as we’ve never needed them before.
Most recently we see how fragile democracy can be as Turkey’s leader has consolidated the once promise of democracy under his centralized power – much like Russia’s dictator Putin who calls himself, President.
French voters have refreshingly survived the onslaught of populism and nationalism in Europe. Now, the young politically inexperienced just-elected leader without a political party must meet his citizens expectations. He will likely have to turn to Germany for support since our U.S. leader is not one to emulate if the new French leader seeks the values which have been those of our nation and which most of our populace still embrace.
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MOTHER’S DAY THOUGHTS on the link -- scroll down to Sun., May 11.