How Stupid Can Metro Be

Reckless Metro.jpeg

While Metro has been touting its Get Back to Good (“Back2Good“) plan and campaign, unfortunately, it is still continuing to mess up big and stupid. 


Part of Metro’s hailed upgrades is to the new 7000-series trains. 


They look better than the old crappy and filthed up train cars from before–including the extremely worn and ripped icky orange seats and carpets.


In that respect, the stainless and more modern-looking replacement trains are most welcome.


However, check out the negligent and hazardous middle doors on many of these train cars. 


Do you see the absolutely stupid handle bars that jut out into the oft busy entry-exit passenger doors. 


Yesterday, I got caught in a mob racing out of one of the train cars, and my upper thigh got danged and good on these ridiculous and reckless handlebars in the doorway! 


Who would put these jutting out into a doorframe???


Anyway, my leg is red, swollen, painful, and I am limping good from this. 


Hey, is there a good personal injury lawyer out there on the web that works on commission (lol, I think)?


I am so grateful to G-d if this doesn’t end up messing with my hip replacement. 


What is it about Metro that they just seem to act brainless with the basics. 


This was supposed to the year of getting back to track safety and train reliability (getting the trains on time), but I guessed they seriously missed the train safety part!


Oh by the way, the reliability isn’t all that “good” either (forget great…they gave up on that a while ago)!  😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

The REAL Problem Is NOT Healthcare

Healthcare.jpeg

Why can’t all the really smart people in this country solve the healthcare crisis?


The democrats tried and it didn’t work out to well. 


And now the republicans are trying and sort of the same thing so far.


Is it politics?


Sure, that is what it can easily look like. 


One side wants to give more to these folks and less to someone else, and the other side vice versa.


But I don’t think that is the truth!


Wouldn’t we all like to give health coverage to every single man, woman, and child in this country!


Seriously…doesn’t everyone have a heart and soul somewhere in there.


And we all know and/or fear what it’s like to be at risk, without proper coverage, and without the medical care and medicine that can be lifesaving!


So here’s the real problem folks:


It’s not healthcare, nor any of the other social or national security issues we face–whether the military, space exploration, environmental concerns, jobs, or anything else. 


This is what it is…


It’s called the national debt, which stands art $20,000,000,000,000


And that doesn’t even include ANOTHER 127,000,0000,000,000 of unfunded liabilities for things like social security and medicare etc. 


This is a nation that collectively doesn’t save–it spends–and it spends not only it’s current purse, but it’s future one too!


In fact, total U.S Household wealth in aggregate of $90,000,000,000 is eclipsed by our overall national debt!


True, this doesn’t include trillions of dollars of other significant business or national assets, but it does point to the overall severity of our highly-leveraged financial position.


So where does this leave us?


We can’t really solve healthcare or any of our other problems–if we are BROKE, busted, and a debtor nation. 


Yes, it takes money to invest, and money to pay for solutions for now and for the future. 


But how can you possibly solve anything, if your pockets are not only empty but have a big f*ckin’ hole in them. 


So folks, the lousy decisions of the past and present are coming back to haunt us. 


It’s a tidal wave, a tsunami of debt–of unbelievable corruption and kicking the can down the road–of fraud, waste, and abuse–of shortsightedness and lack of real leadership–and the time is coming to pay the piper!


If you think the political infighting–liberal and conservatives–tea party and progressives–alt left and alt right–socialists and dictators–is bad now?


But unfortunately, unsolvable problems lead to accusations and recriminations–finger-pointing all around–calls for impeachment–calls to let the other party or some independent lead us out of this mess.


Do you think being in such a challenging situation could also lead us to make rash and stupid mistakes or even go to war? 


In the end, how do you lead us out of a dead-end caused by generations of recklessness with our country’s finances?


Some say perhaps we can grow ourselves out of the debt–maybe we need to go back to school and all get our MBAs and start the whole messed up story all over again?


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

USA Surrendering The Internet

Cutting Off Limb.jpeg.JPG

So here we go again, we cut off the hand (and arm) despite the face.


We are recklessly giving up control of the Internet, specifically of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), which oversees the Domain Names Servers (including all the DNS root zones like .com, .net, .gov, etc.) that handle all the addressing of our Internet traffic.


Despite repeated cautions from many in industry, academia, and government not to do this, we are moving ahead anyway with tomorrow being the transition date!


Why would we give away anything, let alone control over the awesome technological power of the Internet that we depend on in some way for virtually every activity we do these days?


Aside from non-explanations of “fulfilling historic promises” to cede control (i.e surrender the Internet out of fear that other countries will challenge us and set up their own alternate DNS’s) and nonsensical talk of “protecting Internet freedom” by giving it away to authoritarian regimes and despots–there seems to be no REAL reason to do this drastic action that weakens our country and puts our technology, commerce, critical infrastructure, and national security at risk!


Rather than defend the Internet that the USA invented (specifically DARPA), here we go again in fear and weakness going in the wrong direction–surrendering and giving up control of the web.


If you love the Internet and recognize how important this asset is to us, then like an FCC Commissioner said this week, you should be worried about what the h*ck we are doing to the freedom (vice censorship) of the Internet and to ourselves . 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Deserving To Be President

Good Deeds

I took this photo this morning of this guy in a shirt that says, “Good deeds eventually are rewarded.”

My question is whether the corollary is true, and are bad deeds eventually punished?


Watching this horrible election play out, this shirt helped me to figure out what was bothering me about the alleged crookedness of one or more candidates. 


And it’s not just that they seem to have done corrupt things, because there are a lot of bad people out there that have done really terrible things.

Rather no matter what horrible things the candidates do, they don’t seem to get punished for it, but rather they bask in more money, more fame, more honor, and now potentially the highest office of the land, the very President of the United States itself. 


Do people like this who are allegedly involved in the following types of activities deserve to win the election (and rule over almost 320 million Americans)?

  • Rigs the election and commits voter fraud against Bernie Sanders
  • Colludes and conspires with the DNC 
  • Money launders millions, if not billions, of dollars through a “charitable” foundation
  • Uses political office for personal benefit and conducts ethical violations with “pay to play” donors and cronyism between the public and private sectors
  • Manipulates the media “echo chamber” 
  • Gets off child rapists and laughs about it
  • Keeps secret servers and destroys email
  • Lies and commits perjury
  • Recklessly handles and endangers national security
  • Doesn’t enforce “red lines” against regimes using weapons of mass destruction
  • Embraces and makes bogus deals with our sworn enemy, Iran (the #1 state sponsor of terrorism and human rights abuses worldwide)
  • Leads from behind in world events in the face of dangerous regimes
  • Wastes our nations blood and treasure in the premature retreat from Iraq
  • Sows rapid violence, refugees, and crises worldwide
  • Oversees the weakest U.S. economic recovery in history and a doubling our national debt to $20 trillion
  • Takes this nation in the wrong direction with an 80% dissatisfaction rate
  • Enables racial divisiveness and the shooting of police officers in the U.S. 
  • Has dozens of opposition members show up in murder-suicides? 

If G-d ultimately rewards the righteous and punishes the wicked, then should such candidates be promoted to the be the leader of the free world?


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Shut Up In Shul

Menorah

So today, I went to synagogue for Shabbat. 


I sat by one of my friends and in between some prayers was catching up with him from the week. 


Okay, I know that I shouldn’t be talking (so much) in shule, but it is an important way for me to connect with other Jewish people and community. 


Then all of a sudden, another person says to me without any warning, “Shut up!”


At first, I thought it was a joke, then he says it again with a serious face, and I was so embarrassed. 


And only partially for me, but maybe even more for him.


What type of person uses that type of language to someone and in synagogue. 


He didn’t say, can you keep it down or let’s focus on our prayers or something human and kind. 


Instead, he talked to me like an animal and I couldn’t believe it and tonight is Tisha B’Av, when Hashem twice destroyed the Jewish temple in Jerusalem (in part it is said because of hatred of Jew against Jew). 


It reminded me of how I saw some horrible videos on Facebook this week of Chasidim from Neturei Karta and Satmar protesting against Israel and their fellow Jewish people…what a complete sickness to wish evil and destruction against your own brothers and sisters, rather than helping them to build and grow a beautiful state in service to G-d and a light unto nations. 


In synagogue today, while I was silent before this person’s horrible words of rebuke, my friend said to him, “This is how you talk?  You say shut up [and in shul]!”


I appreciated that he said something, and the other guy actually apologized then.


I hope Hashem can forgive me for talking in shule and the people who treat each other badly. 


I am sad at how twisted religion has gotten to some, and know this is not the way it is supposed to be. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Building An Appropriate Wall

Border

Ok, let’s be honest, Trump is right about the border.  

And no, I do not believe that he is fascist and evil like the social engineers in politics would like you to believe for their own motives. 

Let’s face it, the border needs to be appropriately secured once and for all from illegal immigration. 

We need to support our law enforcement agents such as the Border Patrol and Immigration and Customs Enforcement in protecting this great country. 

Why all the argument about “illegal” Immigration…it’s illegal!

By all means, provide amble and robust ways for peaceful-loving people to come to this country legally, especially for family, refuge, asylum, and to escape violence, persecution, and war.  

But if someone is here illegally, then Trump is right, we need to see that valid moral law and order is reestablished and not permit violence, crime, and chaos to continue by edict, closing our eyes to it, or even tacit permission. 

Whoever calls this fascism is either a liar or possibly some sort of anarchist and dangerous to a civilized way of life, plain and simple. 

How do any of our politicians who take the oath of office and swear to uphold our constitution try to get around this?

Here are some statistics relevant to the issue of secure borders:

Human Trafficking: There are 29.8 people in the world trapped in modern slavery or 1 out of every 236!  And there are 60,000 victims reported in the United States of America.  

Drug Trafficking: Drug trafficking in Mexico is a $50 billion business, and as of 2009, 23.5 million people in the U.S. age 12 and over needed treatment for illicit drug or alcohol abuse. 

Deadly Terrorism: The deadly toll of Terrorism has increased 800% since 2010 with an average of 30,000 people killed annually. “More attacks are happening and they tend to be deadlier than ever.”

Violent Crime and Murders:  In the five states of California, Texas, Arizona, Florida, and New York, illegal aliens accounted for 38% of all murder convictions, equating to over 7,000 of the murders. 

Economic Effects:  While undocumented workers do obviously help perform work particularly in some important lower wage jobs for us, there are also many negative economic effects of illegal aliens to consider such as undercutting wages or taking jobs from other who are legally entitled to the work. Additionally, the cost for their healthcare and education that is covered by the American people contributes to the overall staggering national debt. 

Overall, while “who we are” and want to be is a compassionate and generous people, there is no reason to circumvent the law and to let people into the country who have not duly applied and been permitted entry and stay.  

Shenanigans of “catch and release” or not to deport illegal immigrants “who don’t have a criminal record”–is completely nonsensical since being illegal is criminal!

We need to secure our country from human trafficking, drug trafficking, terrorism, murders, as well as the negative economic effects of illegal immigration, while at the same time opening our hearts and the process for vetted legal immigrants to make their way here and become productive citizens. 

We are and should be good people, but that doesn’t mean we need to be stupid and irresponsible and put at risk our nation’s security through unnecessarily reckless open and porous borders. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

It’s Not About The Regrets

Drowning

So a teacher recently gave her students a scenario with the following moral dilemma:


An important and talented surgeon who has saved many lives in the past and will surely save many more in the future runs across an old man who has slipped and fallen under the cracking ice into a lake after trying unsuccessfully to save his puppy from drowning.  


The old man is trapped and will freeze to death in short order.


Should the surgeon walk across the breaking ice and risk his own life to try and save the old man?


The vast majority of students’ responded…that the surgeon should try and save the old man.


When asked why they thought that, most said because otherwise he would feel guilty afterwards. 


Thinking about that it seems like a funny reason to do something dangerous, heroic, and maybe utterly stupid…so as not to feel guilty. 


I guess that I would’ve thought people who would advocate for trying to save the old man would say something like


– Every life is valuable!

– Saving one person is like saving the world.

– Helping people even at our own risk or peril is what we do for our fellow human beings.

– We would want others to help us if we were in trouble, so we should do that for them. 


While we can’t judge someone else for how they react in situations of genuine moral conflict, we can teach the younger generation that doing something good for others is about more than just not feeling bad or guilty afterwards (for being lazy, selfish, or making the wrong call in the situation).


Making moral judgements is about choosing in every situation to try your best to do what’s right, help people, be a good influence, take responsibility, and generally act selflessly, but not recklessly. 


Regret stinks (and can be truly painful), but missing opportunities to live a good, meaningful life is much worse. 😉


(Source Photo: The Blumenthals)