100 Days of Failure

Ever since FDR the first 100 days of a Presidency has defined the whole term.  Those that accomplished right off the bat have become noteworthy while those with slow starts have faded into the oceans of obscurity. It’s kind of silly but we do lots of silly things, like the two-party system.

The current Administration seems to be overflowing with failure and the goodwill normally in this system is abnormally absent.  The party in power can’t manage the Washington system (billionaires, such as this one, are only as competent as their aides) and the party out of power (more competent at running things) can’t get elected because they’ve squandered decades long goodwill of the American people.

It is silly there even is a contest.  All the beloved programs in this country were pushed by and voted in by the support of the Democratic Party.  Medicare, Medicaid, healthcare, minimum wage, Social Security – whatever the faults that any of these have they were created to help the American People.   Help people, not exploit them. Yet for the most part the Democrats run from their successes.  It is good the Democrats are the catalysts for each social good previously mentioned and the Democrats should have pride in what they have done.

Until they do they will remain small-timers.

100 Days of Failure

“Trump keeps doing this. As former Mitt Romney adviser Lanhee Chen told Politico, the tax reform fight is shaping up to resemble the recent healthcare debacle, which was marked by Republican infighting and poor planning by the White House. (The latest on that, by the way, is a new GOP proposal that would gut Obamacare protections for Americans with pre-existing conditions but allow members of Congress to keep those protections.) Yet Trump’s rushed tax plan also looks a bit like his impulsive attempt to jam funding for a Mexico border wall into congressional budget negotiations this week. That swiftly backfired, resulted in a Trump retreat, and allowed Democrats to claim a minor victory.

More than a dozen of Trump’s top advisers and cabinet secretaries will launch a regional TV and radio tour on Wednesday, giving more than a hundred interviews to put a positive spin on the administration’s lack of accomplishment. Ultimately, though, they don’t have much to work with. Trump’s desperation to prove he’s had a productive 100 days is causing only further failures, a vicious cycle of insecurity and ignorance that likely won’t end well for America or the world.”  https://newrepublic.com/minutes/142281/trump-cementing-100-days-failure

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Neurotic Man Nature Boy

This Neurotic Man is quite the Nature Boy.  I’ve seen it all as long as you only count what you can see from a bus, van or car.  I’m not into fanatical exercise, thank you.  As I am very fond of researching all of my activities I went to the bookstore and looked for a title that would help me.  I found “The Dangerous Book for Boys: Wonders of the World” after an exhaustive fifteen or twenty minutes of looking I thought if any book could help me it surely was this.

When I got home I cracked it open and read the preface:

“A pocket-sized book of wisdom based on the bestselling phenomenon, The Dangerous Book for Boys, this portable edition includes some favorite activities from the original book, along with some even more dangerous new ones! With everything from how to win at poker, to how to make a paper hat, from skipping stones to writing a note in secret ink, the Pocket Book of things to do will appeal to all men and boys with an appetite for danger!”  https://www.amazon.com/Pocket-Dangerous-Book-Boys-Wonders/dp/0007281803

Neurotic Man

 

What a disappointment!  Even the Donald wouldn’t be scared!  Of course, I didn’t return the book because you should never do that.  But I did learn a lesson.  Read a bit of the book before you buy it.

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Bail

There’s all kinds of things in our society that favor the rich and Bail is one of them.  Bail, like other economic burdens played on the poor, help chug along the justice choo choo that is anything but.  A defendant that is poor often must choose between using their meager funds for defense or for bail to get out of jail.  If they stay in jail and use their money for defense they stay locked in jail, a terrible, dispiriting place to be.  A depressed defendant is hardly any use in his defense at all.  A defendant that uses his money for bail is unable to mount much of a defense with competent help.  And of course, those defendants without any money get the double whammy.

The justice system is not one of equality – the system likes poor defendants.  Before a trial, before the first bit of information has been presented, almost all defendants have already been beaten down.  That thing about justice being blind – it really is about the size of her wallet.

Bail

Low-income defendants who do manage to pay bail can also face severe long-term consequences since they are forced to sacrifice basic necessities and incur ongoing debts. Even when charges are dropped, defendants can still be on the hook for their debts with bail bondsmen, the private companies that collect non-refundable fees to post the initial bail that allows people to be released.

“You really can’t understate the downstream peril and hardships that the criminal justice system imposes on people, sometimes for the rest of their lives,” said Tom Hoffman, a former California police chief and prison official who supports bail reform efforts.

Ato Walker, a San Jose man, said his mother had to pay $8,500 out of her retirement money to bail him out of jail when he was accused of resisting arrest, a charge that was later dropped.

Ato Walker said his mother had to pay $8,500 out of her retirement money to bail him out of jail.

“It made me sick to my stomach to sit there and see my mom come up with that money we know we are never going to get back,” he said, noting that he felt targeted for being black when prosecutors argued he was a threat to society. “That was very humiliating. It was very racist in my opinion.”

Reform activists argue that people accused of crimes should by default be cited and released, and that those facing serious felonies should be considered for pre-trial detentio

on an individual basis based on the danger they pose.

“Once we make the commitment that the justice system is going to be about justice and not punish people before they are convicted, the solutions need to be targeted towards honoring the presumption of innocence,” said John Raphling, senior researcher with Human Rights Watch and author of the recent bail report.”  https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/apr/25/california-bail-system-tiffany-li-joseph-warren

 

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Island? State?

The thing that throws me about A.G. Sessions is his confusion as if an Island (or group of them) can’t be a State.  And that one (a geographic description) is different than a political one.  And that it matters in what State resides a judge who issues a Travel Ban – quick, what was the judge’s location in all the other travel bans?

It is troubling how inexact the Trump team is apparently on all matters.  Policy, bills regulations should be created as a fine art, not mediocre messaging.

“Trump’s travel ban order was his second attempt to impose drastic limits on travellers and refugees from six Muslim-majority countries. In March, Derrick Kahala Watson, the only Hawaiian-born federal judge now serving on a bench, issued a nationwide stay against it.

Watson found grounds for a violation of the constitutional prohibition of discrimination on grounds of religion. His ruling, like those by other judges that stayed Trump’s first attempted travel ban in January, prompted furious complaint from the administration about supposed judicial overreach.

“This order is lawful,” Sessions said on Sunday. “It’s within [the president’s] authority constitutionally and [his] explicit statutory authority. We’re going to defend that order all the way up and so you do have a situation in which one judge out of 700 in America has stopped this order.”

A federal judge in Maryland also issued a stay against the second travel ban, although with a more limited scope.

“I think it’s a mistake,” Sessions said, “and we’re going to battle in the courts and I think we’re going to eventually win.”

The controversy over Sessions’ description of Hawaii erupted on Tuesday. In an interview with the conservative radio host Mark Levin, the attorney general said: “I really am amazed that a judge sitting on an island in the Pacific can issue an order that stops the president of the United States from what appears to be clearly his statutory and constitutional power.”

Attorneys and legal experts reacted with alarm that the country’s top prosecutor would question the authority of the judiciary, as the third independent branch of government to the president and Congress. Trump has repeatedly questioned the motives of judges who have ruled against his efforts, raising fears that he might undermine the legitimacy of courts”.  https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/apr/23/jeff-sessions-hawaii-gaffe-sense-of-humour

Island? State?

 

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It’s Sunday

It’s Sunday and also my day off.  At one time it wasn’t – I would write this column seven days a week.  But I found like so many other things in life, pacing myself was important.  I told myself that I needn’t burn myself out.  Sadly the problems I address will be still here tomorrow.  But it makes me a bit nervous to leave this column, even for a day, so for several years now I post a Sunday column explaining why the my Sunday postings do not follow the format found here for the rest of the week.  After all, It’s Sunday

It’s Sunday and I’ve tweaked this Pulpdiddys Permutations column that appears on Sunday again but the story remains the same – I take the day off.  I have taken to use this Sunday space so that it is a little bit about me and a whole bunch about what I am trying to do with this blog.  It has become apparent to me that the roots for the blog come from three things.  First of all, I love to write.  I enjoy the process and especially how attempting to communicate with others forces my thought process to focus in a way that not having the writing would not cause.  Secondly, I have been fascinated with how we interact with each other from an early age.  My political and social precociousness led me to turn away from the almost brutal focus on scholasticism and athleticism that dominated my early years.  In my case, this break was a good thing as it expanded my interest in understanding my empathy.  And last of all I realized I had developed a way of looking at the world that focused on want. When I explained this to others I found they often shared my thoughts but that for the most part they did not desire to consciously understand or express the theme of want, or if they did, found they had shuttled it off to the recesses of their mind – a way of living that contained the shuttling as an inconvenient truth.

The inconvenient truth is that we drown in want.  The want may be the search of fame or sex or health or power or toys but these wants ultimately have the same catalyst and that catalyst is money.  Some theorists and analysts think we only see that want in our dreams and that dreams are healthy.  The problem is that this want invades our day to days and we make decisions based on that want that often has far reaching and sometimes tragic consequences.  The want may be quite basic such as the quest to survive or quite advanced like controlling politicians or having a lobbyist team to market your ideas of law.  The thing about want is we largely are embarrassed about it, especially if the want becomes public and obvious and though at times we may expose our want it is often done in a non serious game show sort of way.  The other thing about want, especially in the most unconscious of us, is that we trample our fellow human beings in an attempt to achieve whatever it is that is our want.

I have found that magazines, blogs, and newspapers don’t understand want but instead focus on an agenda even if that agenda is to work hard in not appearing to have one.  Somehow the media has failed to see that in reality their own agendas are full of fiction and as such, are as much want as that of anyone else.  As for these agendas, most are political in nature.  The problem with an agenda is that it blinds you to certain realities – at least for a while.  For example a journalist at the Washington Post almost fifty years down the road realizes the paper missed the mark by ignoring Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech when it was delivered, instead focusing on crowd control that day.  Or journalists at the New York Times realizing that they were too enthusiastic in support of the Vietnam War.  Or ditto for the enthusiasm of both papers when the misdirected terrorist war known as the Iraq War took place.  Of course this is an over-simplification and I mention it only as an illustration.

As I do my research for what to write at Pulpdiddys Permutations I think about the want that each of us has – the want we may not know exists.  Hopefully I can glean enough of the want to make an intelligent observation.  While personally I remain far more liberal then not regarding economic, political, and social issues I bring up the question of want in my analysis of issues and how the issue will affect all, most, or some of us.  So when President Obama does something that I find wrong I am not loathe to mention that wrongness at this site.  No person or accepted belief is sacrosanct.

Love of writing, looking at the world with empathy, and focus on want are the triumvirate that has brought about Pulpdiddys Permutations.  Though I believe I am eventually found out to be correct more often then not and certainly more so than any pundit I know that’s out there, I certainly am not infallible.  But I give you my pledge that I’ll continue to do the research, continue to consider the matter using the frame of reference of want in the material posted by me at this site, and correct myself when my opinion eventually is shown to just be wrong.  And if you’d like some lighter reading there’s always my e-book: http://www.amazon.com/Neurotic-Man-Richard-Georges-ebook/dp/B00A6TOK24

It’s Sunday

 

 

 

 

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Earth Day

Today is Earth Day but every day recently is Bad Earth Day.  It is bad Earth Day because the President has waged war against the health of the planet.   Even with all the gains of the last few years we were behind where we should have been in doing our share to deal the planet.  With the Donald waging a war against climate health, the one thing the Donald has accomplished so far is dangerous to the planet.  Earth is a fragile environment which lets us support human life on it.  A little change here and there and our ally, the planet, ceases to be so.  Happy Earth Day.

Earth Day

“Before he’d even been sworn in, Trump nominated several climate deniers chummy with the fossil fuel industry to his cabinet, including former Texas Gov. Rick Perry as the head of the Department of Energy and Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt to head the Environmental Protection Agency ― a man who had sued the agency 14 times over industry regulations. Pruitt recently claimed, in contradiction to overwhelming scientific consensus, that human activity ― i.e. the burning of fossil fuels ― is not definitively the primary contributor to climate change.

On the day Trump took office, a page devoted to climate change action on the White House website disappeared. Four days later, Trump signed executive orders reviving the controversial Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines, a move that set the tone for a series of swift and sweeping changes to the nation’s climate and environmental policies that were soon to follow.

Dismantling environmental protections is one area where Trump has made quick work. “Donald Trump’s foreign policy and legislative agenda may be a confused mess,” wrote the Los Angeles Times’ David Horsey earlier this month. “But his administration’s attack on the environment is operating with the focus and zeal of the Spanish Inquisition.”

On Saturday, April 22 ― Earth Daythousands of scientists and environmentalists will be marching on the National Mall to push back against what they say is Trump’s blatant disregard for science and his assault on the planet. Here’s an abbreviated timeline of some of the major environmental actions Trump has taken in his first 100 days.” http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/trump-100-days-environment-earth-day_us_58f87b68e4b0cb086d7e3175?0u&ncid=inblnkushpmg00000009

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Breaking the Bond

It’s not just the ramblings of a bleeding heart but one of the costliest acts that our city does is breaking the bond of families.  It happens like this – a family member is sent to prison and not only does the inmate end up in prison but so does the rest of the family.  Kids like to brag about their mommies and daddies but when your parent or mate is in prison there is just shared shame.  Many non-violent crimes are not repeated.  The ramifications of the act make a prisoner re-think the future.  Paying you sentence through social acts benefitting the society seems far wiser than paying a private corporation big bucks to house your people.

“In the half light on a quiet street on the edge of west Philadelphia, Kristal Bush shut her front door and hustled down her stone steps. She crossed the street and pulled her slim frame into the driver’s seat of her shiny, black 12-passenger Sprinter van. Juggling two phones, she turned the key. The engine chugged awake, and she started tapping out texts to her riders. A few minutes shy of 6am on a summer Sunday, Kristal was already late.

About six years ago, when Kristal was 22, she and her mother, Crystal Speaks, decided to try their hands at turning circumstance into opportunity. Crystal was going broke from the expense of the visits to see her son, Jarvae. He was serving a 10-year sentence in Huntingdon state prison, 200 miles from Philadelphia. Opportunity came in the form of thousands of Philadelphia families like theirs who have someone locked up far from home.

In the years Jarvae was at Huntingdon, Crystal got to know some of the other regulars well enough to start giving them rides. She’d pick them up from their homes twice a month in her white Nissan Armada. They’d pay her $50 for her gas and her trouble. It was just $5 or $10 more than the bus a local nonprofit charged, but they had to meet the bus in downtown Philly before daybreak. What Crystal didn’t spend on the trip she’d put on Jarvae’s commissary account, easing the prison’s bite into the paycheck she brought working long hours as a nurse’s aide.” https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/apr/20/philadelphia-bridging-the-gap-van-service-prisons

Breaking the Bond

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Neurotic Man – To Trip or Not to Trip

This Neurotic Man doesn’t care for the Donald very much but he does admire anyone who can appear to be working but is taking vacations about half the time.  That is definitely someone who is able to provide less with less.

While this Neurotic Man has never held a job for very long I have come to learn from the President it does not help to work very hard or very long.  When I get fired or quit I don’t get paid very much so I guess it’s better to stay employed and not do very much. Now the Donald – even a Senator can’t prod him into action.  That’s when I realized this was all on purpose on Donald’s part.

I knew the Donald had a hidden skill.

Very hidden.

Neurotic Man

“Ernst was holding a town hall in Wall Lake, Iowa, when a constituent inquired about the cost of Trump’s trips to the “Winter White House,” as Trump has called it. The president has spent seven of his 13 weekends as president at the estate. According to the Associated Press, cost estimates for each trip have ranged from $1 million to three times that.

“I agree with you,” Ernst responded. “I do wish that he would spend more time in Washington, D.C. That’s what we have the White House for.”

The senator also alluded to similar concerns among other congressional Republicans, and said they may try raising the issue with Trump.

“I have not spoken to him about the Florida issue yet,” Ernst said. “But that is something I think that has been bothering not just me, but some other members of our caucus. So I think that is going to be a topic of discussion that we have when we get back to Washington, D.C.”  https://www.yahoo.com/news/gop-sen-ernst-says-trump-spend-less-time-mar-lago-estate-204724483.html

 

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Ivanka – Ethics in Business and Politics

For Ivanka – Ethics in Business and Politics and for our system of law this Presidency will be a trial – lasting four years.  The question is how far is far enough for a business owner to dismantle their life while working for this (or any other administration).  The reality is if one holds one to a business or businesses there is not a distance that is ever far enough.

For how could a business fail to prosper (or be damaged) by a public show of ownership and all the innuendo attached?  It is best not to attempt the impossible and the individual should divest themselves of all business interests.

Ivanka – Ethics

“The commercial currents of the Trump White House are unprecedented in modern American politics, ethics lawyers say. They have created an unfamiliar landscape riven with ethical pitfalls, and forced consumers and retailers to wrestle with the unlikely passions now inspired by Ivanka Trump’s mid-market collection of ruffled blouses, shifts and wedges.

Using the prestige of government service to build a brand is not illegal. But criminal conflict of interest law prohibits federal officials, like Trump and her husband, from participating in government matters that could impact their own financial interest or that of their spouse. Some argue that the more her business broadens its scope, the more it threatens to encroach on the ability of two trusted advisers to deliver credible counsel to the president on core issues like trade, intellectual property, and the value of the Chinese currency.

“Put the business on hold and stop trying to get trademarks while you’re in government,” advised Richard Painter, who served as chief White House ethics lawyer under George W. Bush.

To address ethical concerns, Trump has shifted the brand’s assets to a family-run trust valued at more than $50 million and pledged to recuse herself from issues that present conflicts.”  https://apnews.com/d9e34f23a64947d99e4a7d757012c509

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Trump’s Regulation Death

The days that Donald Trump has hailed as the golden era of American history has also led to Trump’s Regulation Death and that has led to the indiscriminate death of workers.  Lead, Asbestos, Silica, are just three of the things that workers used and paid with their lives.  Of the three, Silica still needs regulating.  As the development of silica regulation came from the Obama Administration, the Trump Administration has said no to what Obama had previously said yes to.

The worker’s agony is ignored as leadership is happy about the profit margin.  Does Regulation in Trump World kill?

You betcha.

Trump’s Regulation Death

“Ward’s father spent several years working as a sandblaster in Michigan. It was most likely on that job that he breathed a lethal amount of crystalline silica, a carcinogenic dust that comes from sand and granite. Excessive silica has been ruining workers’ lungs for as long as rock and concrete have been cut. Frances Perkins, U.S. labor secretary under Franklin D. Roosevelt, spoke publicly of the dangers of silica back in the late 1930s.”

 

“After numerous efforts under other presidents failed, the Obama administration finally tightened the regulations covering silica last year, further restricting the amount of dust that employers can legally expose workers to. The tougher standards were 45 years in the making, the subject of in-depth scientific research and intense lobbying by business groups and safety experts. When the rules were finalized in March 2016, occupational health experts hailed them as a life-saving milestone.

But now the enforcement of the rules has been delayed ― and the rules themselves could be in jeopardy.

Last week, the Trump administration announced that it was pushing back the implementation of the new silica regulations. For now, the delay is just three months ― from late June to late September, since “additional guidance is necessary due to the unique nature of the requirements,” as the Labor Department put it. A spokeswoman said the agency wouldn’t comment beyond that.

But to occupational health experts who’ve waited years for the tighter rules, the new delay casts a cloud of uncertainty over their future. The leading home-building trade group and other business lobbying groups have sued to halt the regulations, saying they are too costly for employers. Defending the silica rule would now be the responsibility of the Trump administration, which has eagerly dismantled one Obama-era regulation after another at the urging of corporations.”  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/trump-rollback-regulations-cost_us_58f1375be4b0bb9638e3f72c?bc&ncid=inblnkushpmg00000009

 

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