Sarah Palin Belongs in Rehab….

Sarah Palin belongs in Rehab, but I don’t think there’s any programs out there for whatever it is that ails her. Why does she belong in Rehab? Because Rehab is for quitters. This woman is nothing more than White Trash with a bank account. She made that Bullshit speech and quit the Governor’s office to help people? Really? Are you kidding? More like she quit to sell her Bullshit Book and help herself to millions of Dollars. Hey, special needs kids are expensive, and health care costs a lot. She’s a pathalogical liar, and she wants everyone to believe that she tells it like it is. Look at the upcoming Tea Party Convention, where the upright Mrs. Palin is the keynote speaker. She is to be paid about $100,000.00 Dollars. Yet problems about finances and sponsors pulling out haven’t yet sidelined Palin. Even  loose cannons like Michelle Bachmann and Marsha, Marsha, Marsha! Blackburn have decided not to show. Palin says she is honored to be there and send the message to Washington that government has limits that need to be abided by. Talk about the pot calling the kettle black…..Palin also says she is not keeping the money, and will give it to other programs and causes that will perpetuate the message. Right, and she didn’t keep all the clothes the RNC bought, either. How about all the screaming over her recent photo on Runner’s World Magazine, and how they were sexist to use that particular photo, that she posed for. How quickly we forget….Hmmm, I seem to recall during the Republican Convention, weren’t they passing out lapel buttons that said “Vote for the Hot Chick” I guess that’s not sexist, though.

Look folks, Sarah Palin is all about one thing, Sarah Palin. She is the consummate con-artist, re-inventing herself to fool any one gullible enough to listen. Her grasp on the realities and intricasies of Politics, World Events and the economy are miniscule. She gets by on winks, sound-bites, and her dumb-down way of speaking. There is absolutely nothing of substance to this woman, and there never will be. It was even reported yesterday, that some of the Tea-Party folks are angry with her because she is endorsing John McCain in his bid for election over Conservative Right-Winger J.D. Hayworth. It seems the Tea-Baggers are going after anyone, including even Moderate Republicans, who aren’t in lock-step with their Bizarro-World way of thinking. Folks, you just can’t make this stuff up. Keep tuned in till next time.

All I can say is that it still hasn’t gotten weird enough for me.  ‘Nuff said.

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Only Love Remains

Ten Years Ago Today, January 29, 2000. I remember that Saturday like it was yesterday. Rick & Jimbo were working that day, doing some finish electrical work. Jimbo was worried about his 16-year old son, Jason. He was concerned for his future. He didn’t want him to have the hard times he had experienced growing up. He was talking about renting out his home and moving closer to Worcester, to be near family and work, and not have to make the nearly 45 minute drive everyday from Barre. As they finished for the day, Jimbo said he would take the work truck, gas it up and leave it at the shop, ready to go on Monday. Rick gave him the Gas Card, and the 2 brothers said goodbye. Just another normal day. I was working as a night-auditor for Hilton Hotels. You know, that glorious 11pm-7am shift. A few weeks earlier, on New Year’s Eve 1999, Jimbo came down to my house and we spent that evening hanging out, talking, watching the usual New Year’s Eve programs. I had recently purchased a second condo where I lived, and wanted Jimbo to take a look at it, and help me with some renovations I wanted to make before it was ready to rent out. A week or so later, again on a Saturday, he drove down and we looked over the condo and discussed renovations, including painting and some electrical work we could do together. He had just purchased a newer car, a 1995 Pontiac Grand AM.  He talked about how he got a good deal on it, and that he had recently refinanced his home to a lower payment, and he was getting a good grip on his finances, which for Jimbo was a big deal. We chatted a bit more, and decided to get together at some point soon to start the renovations. I watched him get into his car. We waved goodbye to each other, and I watched him drive off. Just another normal day.

At about 8:45 pm on Saturday, January 29, 2000 I was just getting up to get ready for my night audit shift. I was drinking coffee, sitting on the sofa trying to wake up, when the phone rang. My wife had already gone to bed. I answered. It was Rick, my other brother. It was a bit unusual for him to be calling at this time. Our Dad was in a Veterans’ Home in Bedford, Mass, where he had been for nearly 5 years, suffering from Pick’s Disease, related to Alzheimers. He had been ill nearly a decade, and we didn’t know how long he might live. It would not have been a surprise to get that call, saying he had passed away. When my brother called that night, the first thing he said was “Are you sitting down?” I immediately thought about our Dad, and said “Did something happen with Dad?” “It’s worse than that” he replied, to which I immediately thought, what could be worse than that? “What happened?” I said. Then the words that will haunt me forever.

“Jimbo got killed tonight in a car crash”  Stunned silence. Unless you’ve had this shock to your system, it’s nearly impossible to try and explain. My head swirled, my brain heard what he said, but refused to process it. I think I said something like, “What? How could that happen? Are you sure?” So my brother proceeded to tell me what he knew, in a very matter -of-fact, low-monotone voice. I could tell he was in shock as well. Apparently, Jimbo was driving home, and was about 3 miles from there when for reasons not fully understood, he made a hard left turn in front of a large truck hauling some motorcycles. The truck smashed into his Pontiac Grand Am, coming into the vehicle thru the passenger side fender and right into the front seat. Jimbo was killed instantly. A man who was behind him stopped, and ran up to see if he could do anything. Jimbo was already gone, his head back, eyes and mouth open. The coffee he was drinking was splashed all over him, and what remained of the interior. Fortunately, the young man driving the truck was not seriously hurt. My sister-in-law drove to the hospital and identified his body. He was wearing a heavy winter 1 piece work suit to keep warm, and she said he looked like he was asleep.

The State Police investigated, and my brother’s body was sent to Boston for an autopsy, required by law in this case. He was buried at Worcester County Memorial Park on Feb. 3, 2000. His 16 year old son was now without his dad, and his Mom was unable to care for him. Six years later, she too would die, murdered in Worcester. Jimbo also had an older son, James, 24. As if this wasn’t enough, he, too, was murdered in Auburn the year before, in 1999. His killer was caught and went to prison.

It’s been 10 years now. I can’t put into words all the emotions, thoughts and feelings that I have had since. My family is not the same. These wounds never heal. As time goes by, the pain begins to ease, and the good times and fun things start to return to your memory. We can now talk about him without the tears. But So much has happened to us since that time. I wish he was still here. I wish he could have experienced all the things in life that have taken place in the last 10 years. He was only 45. Every family gathering, such as Thanksgiving and Christmas, are stark reminders of what happened.  Approximately 9 months later, I got that call I originally expected on that terrible day in January. My Dad passed away in October.

So what happened to Jimbo? Why did he make that fateful left hand turn? No one knows for sure, but we have an idea. Jimbo had begun having some sort of heart issues, including Angina. He had nitro pills that he took. We think he may have experienced an Angina attack, and needed to get off the road to take his pills, and/or call for help. The road he was on did not have anyplace on his side of the road where he could have pulled over. However, there was an area on the left side of the road where he could have pulled off and stopped, which is where the accident happened. It’s also right at the end of a small bridge, where the road rises and curves slightly. If there was another vehicle coming the other way, they probably wouldn’t be able to see anyone in front of them until it was too late, which is what happened. We think he was trying to get off the road and pull over when the truck appeared and the crash happened, but it’s only my opinion.

So now, 10 years on, I want to say that I love you, my brother, and I miss you so very much. Time eases the pain, but it never goes away. At night, when it’s quiet, and i’m winding down from the day is when I think of you the most.

Along with my many memories, only love remains.

Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap

First of all, a tip of the hat to AC/DC for the title.

Once again, the ultra-conservative braintrusts are at it full-tilt. Seems they’ve been busy little cockroaches, working hard to derail anything that isn’t part of their agenda. I say cockroaches, because when the light got shone on one of their little minions this week trying to disrupt the phones at Democratic Senator Mary Landrieu’s New Orleans offices for yet another expose, they scattered and ran away from this as fast as their hairly little legs could run. Right-wing activist and Model-Citizen James O’Keefe and his 3 Co-horts, Joseph Basel, Stan Dai, and Robert Flanagan have shone the spotlight on yet-another classless act, and the 10 years they face in prison is well deserved. This is the same James O’Keefe that dressed-up as a pimp with Hannah Giles as the prostitute and got some members of ACORN to divulge information on how to avoid taxes and set up a brothel. Now, keep in mind, that this darling of the conservative right was held in such high regard, that Rep. Pete Olson- REPUBLICAN from Texas hailed him in a House Resolution dated Oct. 7, 2009. In it, both O’Keefe and his pretend Hooker/Girlfriend Hannah Giles are commended for their “exemplary actions as government watchdogs” and were “owed a debt of gratitude by the people of The United States.” Incredibly, 31 REPUBLICANS from 12 states also felt so highly of Mr. O’Keefe and Miss Giles, they readily affixed their signatures to it. Mr O’Keefe was also a paid contributor to Andrew Breitbart’s web-site, biggovernment.com, as well as a frequent guest on Fox News, and hailed as a hero by Glenn Beck, who has completely gone off the deep end and sold himself out, sowing lies, decit, and dis-content like some modern-day right wing Johnny Appleseed. Of course, had Mr. O’Keefe not been caught and arrested by the FBI, his felony-laden stunt would have once again been hailed by all things Conservative as sheer genius. Folks, this all goes to the core of who and what these folks are all about. The United States is truly the greatest country on the Earth, mainly because of the unending generosity and goodwill of it’s people. In a nut-shell, we help everyone who needs it. The Founding Fathers of this nation truly had the best interests of it’s people at heart, and the documents and standards they set forth are among the the greatest achievements of mankind. If our fore-fathers were even 1/10th as mean-spirited, narcissistic and clueless as these conservatives, then the United States would have never even happened. The fact is, folks, that these town-hall screaming, fear-mongering, holier-than-thou wack-jobs have systematically stolen the Republican Party, and robbed it of any sense of decency. They continually stall, split apart and run roughshod over any other opposing viewpoints, as evidenced by the Republican Party in Washington. Divisive and steel-trap-minded, the Party of Ronald Reagan has re-adopted his wife Nancy’s slogan of “Just say NO !”. Because of their stubborn as a mule like contentiousness, they are so blinded by rage, they can’t see the forest for the trees. On the other hand, the Democrats need to get their act together and start using the majority of votes the people of this country gave them, and get the people’s business accomplished. This means, among other things, passing meaningful Health Care, Going after the big banks and recouping some of the billions we gave them, eliminating  George Bush’s Tax cuts for people who make over a quarter of a million dollars a year, and continuing the stimulus programs until our economy improves. If they don’t, the public’s anger and outrage will “focus like a laser-beam” (thanks, GHWB) on them and  they’ll be out of power again.

Never in my life have I witnessed such a mob-scene mentality that these folks have. Look, I’m all for having vigorus discussion and debate. But let’s look at some of the facts, which some of you people out there seem to have become completely oblivious of. We had a $200 Billion-Dollar surplus when we entered the first year of this millenium. Right, I said $200 Billion SURPLUS. Then you elected George Bush. I say you, because I can say proudly, that I have never, ever, in my entire life as a registered Independent, voted for any Bush. This imbecilic, moron and war criminal, along with his evil-twin, shoot-em up Cheney, nearly destroyed this country. Apparently you really liked what you saw, because you came back for seconds. I lovingly allude to this second term much like a battered spouse who keeps taking their abusive partner back, knowing the damage and abuse will continue, but they somehow believe the pack of lies their abuser keeps telling them, that things will be good. Drunk with power, the Republicans went on a spending spree that would make Bernie Madoff look like a pauper. For eight years they held the keys to the kingdom. Look where we are today folks. It is a direct result of everything Bush and his party did. Because you elected him, you are also responsible for a lot of the misery that we as a nation face today. When “W” was finally set-free, we were left with a mess that has been unparallelled in history. I won’t list everything, because it would take too damn long. Let’s just say the Republicans went on an 8-year bender, and this was the result.

So, to all you Republican Neo-cons, Tea-Baggers and holier than thou right wing lifers, don’t try to convince me that you have a shred of decency.  This latest attempt involving Mr. O’Keefe is nothing new.Your dirty tricks and deceitful ways have been going on for decades. Your blinded alleigances and refusal to act with any spirit of fair-play or bi-partisanship only continues to hurt this country, and suggests a level of immaturity that is unmatched.  Well, You’ve had your shot at it. We’re trillions in the hole. Most of it from Bush’s drunken orgy, and we now have to spend another trillion or so to try and stop the massive bleeding. You act as if nothing bad ever happened before Jan 20, 2009, and that all was right with the world. Maybe in your bizarro-world , but not mine. It’s laughable that you blame the current President and the Democrats for what you’ve done. Your utter lack of respect for our President, or anyone who disagrees with your slanted view of things simply proves me correct. Raging defecits, out of control spending and an economy in the toilet were your gifts to America. We are now in a very dire predicament, and it will require a lot of smart, passionate people, lots of hard work, time, and lots of money to dig us out of the hole we are now in. If your still reading this, then I challenge you to prove me wrong. I pray that the majority of the American people haven’t become as lazy and forgetful about the right’s ineffective, lying ways, and will rise above all the fear and ignorance, to once again recapture the true American spirit of fair-play, compassion, and good will.  ‘Nuff said.

There’s A New Sheriff In Town, And His Name Is….

Scott Brown. Republican. How Ironic that a Republican was elected in the Blue State of Massachusetts, which has been one the most Liberal Democratic States in the entire country, to replace Ted Kennedy, who championed health care legislation, and he will become the 41st Republican “No” vote against that very bill. I’m not going to go on and on about the high strangeness of the whole thing. There were many factors at work. However, several things will begin to unfold after this election. My guess is the Senate in Washington will try to scramble and get the Health Care bill passed before Mr. Brown is sworn in. Of course, the Republicans will cry foul, and the Dem’s will simply say that until Mr. Brown is officially sworn in (providing there is no debacle like we saw in Minnesota with Coleman/Frankin) that Mr. Kirk is legally bound to vote.

Frankly, I don’t see there being a whole lot to object to on the Dem’s side. They lost the election fair and square. Although I do think the people of Massachusetts have mis-directed their anger and sent the wrong message to Washington. The Republicans will be having a field day on this whole affair, of course, pronouncing the Health Care Bill D.O.A.

The Democrats will have to try and ram this thing through, or they’ll have to go back to the Bi-Partisan Drawing Board. I do believe, however, that at some point this election will come back to them and bite them right in their proverbial asses.

My congratulations to Mr. Brown. On the other hand, Martha Coakley ran a weak, ineffective campaign. In my opinion she lacked the fire and determination necessary to win. She was so over-confidant that she took an entire week off to go on Vacation right after Chrstmas. No T.V. spots, campaigns, meetings, nothing. Mr. Brown took that opportunity, ran full speed ahead and never looked back.

By the time Mrs. Coakley got her act together, it was simply too late. The election was hers to lose, and did exactly just that. So, this sure mixes things up in Politics and will keep things from becoming too boring.

Stay tuned to whatever is yet to come.  ‘Nuff Said.

How Quickly We Forget

I live in Massachusetts. This is where the Revolution started. No, not the one that Fox News, Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck, or that big fat gas-bag Rush Limberger (cause everything that comes out of his mouth is pure shit) would have you believe. I mean The Revolutionary War, which ended with this great country being free from the English Crown. And, When it comes to throwin’ a Tea Party, well, let’s just say been there, done that. Those folks out there who started the Tea Party Organization have absolutley nothing in common with what the folks in 1774 did to protest what they felt was unjust Taxation. You can call your organization anything you like, but it don’t make it so. That being said, why is there suddenly so much national attention from these groups of people? The reason is that there is a special Election taking place here today, to reassign the seat held since 1972 by Democrat Ted Kennedy, who passed away last August. Martha Coakley, who is the Democratic State Attorney General, is going up against Republican State Senator Scott Brown. If elected to office, Mr. Brown would then become the 41st Republican Senator, taking away the 60 Vote majority now held by Democrats. The conservative Republicans smell blood, and have poured a lot of money into Mr. Browns campaign.  Mr. Brown has been passing himself off as just another aw-shucks regular guy, driving around in his pickup truck. He never mentions or uses the word Republican in his television or print Ads. He is fond, however of repeatedly using the word Independent to describe his way of thinking and doing. Well, smack my ass and call me Shirley, but any Politician who votes over 96% of the time along party lines is exactly that. In this case, Mr. Brown is a dyed-in-the-wool Republican, period. He has all the usual Republican talking points about lowering taxes and keeping the government out of your life. Except, of course when it comes to whats between your legs, as in a woman’s right to choose. Then he’s only too happy to get the government involved there. Oh, and lest we forget Wall Street. Oh, those poor bastards. We had to bail their ultra-rich asses out in order to keep our own financial boat from becoming another Titanic. This came after they manipulated, lobbied, and payed off congress for years to keep out any regulations that might have kept them in check. The Republican Congress. Remember AIG?It should have been called what it really was, P-I-G. There’s another 180 Billion Dollars, Gone, just like that. I’m not even going to mention Iraq. Now I can understand why Mr. Brown has worked so hard to distance himself from his own party’s affiliation, considering the trouncing they took during the National elections held last November that resulted in us electing the nation’s first black president. Considering the alternative, I have to admit that we finally got one right this time. Barak Obama is intelligent and articulate. Yes, he can actually put more than 2 sentences together without needing a dictionary. He doesn’t talk down to people. He actually prefers to have discussions and think things through before acting on them whenever possible.

So, why has Republican Scott Brown become so popular here so quickly in a state known for it’s love of Democrats? He was originally written off by almost everyone here when he became the Republican challenger to Democrat Martha Coakley, who by all accounts is a popular, successful Attorney General. The simple fact is, people here have forgotten who was accountable for a lot of the troubles with our Economy and our Country, namely the Republicans, who for 8 years continually ran roughshod over our liberties, our finances and our lives. The people of Massachusetts have allowed themselves, once again, to be fooled into thinking that the same people who got us into this horrible mess will be our savior and make everything right. Can you possibly be this stupid? Really? The first 10 years of this new millenium have been, in most peoples eyes, the worst decade of all time, except, perhaps for the Great Depression, which began when there was another Republican in office, Hebert Hoover.  It took another Democrat and a World War to dig us out of that one. Today, we have become a nation of impatient, spoiled brats. I want it NOW! Fix it NOW! How can people here in Massachusetts be so easily swayed by this wolf in sheep’s clothing?  Because they simply have lost their patients. The economy hasn’t been fixed yet, the job situation is still a mess. There’s no realization that this is a huge problem, and that we need to be in this for the long haul. They’re angry that they haven’t seen a noticeable improvement in their situations, so they start listening again to Republicans, who work off of fear and ignorance.  When are people going to wake up and realize how much trouble they’re in? George Bush and Dick Cheney almost destroyed this country. I could go on and on about those two, whom I believe to be war criminals and should be put in jail.  It’s a shame that people forget who got us into this mess. Scott Brown, if elected, will take us all backwards, and it won’t just affect those of us here in Massachusetts. He will vote against universal health care. He will vote against any oversight of Wall Street. He will vote for any amendment that will harass women over their right to choose to have an abortion or not. He is endorsed by the same organizations that support Sarah Palin. Look, I’m not saying the Democrats are anything great, either. I’ve been a registered Independent my whole life, and have voted for what I felt was the best solution, irregardless of party affiliation. But you have to put the blame squarely at the feet of the ones most responsible for all this trouble, Mr. Bush and his party. I said in 2000 when George Bush ran for office that if people were stupid enough to elect a buffoon for their President, that they deserved every bit of trouble that followed, and boy was I right. Not once but twice. As George Harrison sang in his last album “If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will take you there.” So I say again, this time to the people of Massachusetts, do you know where you’re going? Tune in to find out.  ‘Nuff Said.

Welcome To My World…..

I guess I should start by saying hello. So, here it is….Hello.  Blogging isn’t new for me. I’ve been writing editorials and blogs for years, just on other folks blogs and websites. Before the widespread use of computers, I used to write letters to the editor of my hometown newspaper. I read lots of Commentary and visited lot’s of people’s blogs. Then I got turned onto Margaret and Helen’s blog. They are so down to earth and commonsense about things. Sarcasm, wit, and plainspoken truth go a long way with me. So, if you’re still reading, then good. I hope you’ll enjoy what I have to say, and leave me some feedback, good or bad. It would be nice to know that someone is out there reading this. Anyway, I’m going to have a lot to say about a lot of things in the coming blogs. Sounds kind of funny. Coming blogs….. But, I digress. Let me tell you a little about me. After all, if we’re going to get acquainted here, you should know who you’re dealing with. And no, I promise this won’t be a lesson in narcissism, althought I am writing about my own sense of what I have experienced and learned, or not learned in my time on this planet. I was born in 1961, in central Massachusetts. I grew up in a city called Worcester. That’s pronounced Wu-stah. We don’t pronounce our “r’s” here very much, it just sort of ends up sounding more like an “h”. Comedian/Actor Dennis Leary grew up here, and if you like him, then you sort of get an understanding of what folks from Worcester can be like. I grew up in a nice, middle-class neighborhood, with lots of friends.  I graduated high school in 1979. The one thing that I always felt set me apart from my peers was the fact that I always took a keen interest in news and world-events.  I can remember so many of those events.  Like when I was 12, in 1973, I remember coming home from school and sitting down to watch the Watergate hearings, when all my other friends were outside playing. I remember the Moon Landings, Kent State, Vietnam, The Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, RFK and MLK’s assasinations. Nixon resigning and Ford saying our long national nightmare was over. I remember Disco, and I wish I didn’t. Elvis dying in his bathroom. Reagan and his trickle-down Economics. Big hair and Parachute pants. Gorbachev, The collapse of Communism and The Soviet Union.  Then factor in all the things that happen to each of us personally, and I think you’ll begin to get an idea of how much there is for me to discuss with you.

So, now i’m 48. I’ve had more than my share of hard times, and my share of misfortune. But like Jim Croce sang in one of his final songs “The Hard Way Everytime”,  “Yeah i’ve had my share of good intentions and i’ve made my share of mistakes. And i’ve learned at times it’s best to bend, cause if you don’t, well, those are the breaks” How true. I have a lot to be thankful for. And I see a lot of things that frankly bug the hell out of me. Some of them Political, Some not.  So, I hope you’ll ride along with me, and experience and discuss these things together. As John Lennon sang in his 1971 album, Imagine, “All I want is the truth, just gimme some truth.” Obviously,  you can see I’m fond of musical quotes.  See you soon, OK? ‘Nuff said for now