Homeless DC

So aside from all the Washington, D.C. weighty monuments to our esteemed values of democracy, freedom, and human rights.

And aside from all the prestigious institutions and people of great power that formulate the policies and rules and keep us abiding by them. 

This is what I see in D.C. 

The plight of the poor, homeless, and downtrodden. 

Those that have fallen by the wayside.

People who are down on their luck.

Human beings–that’s right human beings–that need and deserve help or even just a chance.

Why does anyone have to live–if you can even call this living–like this a couple of blocks from the White House. 

I know there are people all over the world who are hungry, homeless, sick, and abused.

Yet, nowhere is this more stark an example than in the U.S.A where there is such an enormous divergence between “the haves” and “the have nots” and where our values are supposedly bound up with equality, human rights, charity, and kindness.

Yes, we are supposed to be equal in treatment and in opportunity, but we all know that is not really the case. 

Sure, some work hard and others are perhaps lucky/blessed, but then are those that are born with a “silver spoon in their mouths” and excel through a tight weave of corruption, narcissism, nepotism, and abuse.

Yet a real chance for everyone, a living wage, and basic dignity and respect should be afforded to all.

Money and power is ephemeral.  

Those with it, that abuse it, shall see it pass between their fingers ever trying to clutch unto it with dear life. 

Only the way we treat others will last in this world and in the world after. 

Everything goes around and comes around. 

This is the cycle of life and the lot of those who abuse their good fortune as well as those that harness it. 

G-d will judge with His mighty hand and bring to bear the deeds and intentions of those that mock His holy will. 

Because His children lay in rags and heaps, while others dance their folly jig. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


Politics On A Cow

I saw this “Antifa” (Anti-Fascist) symbol on this painting of a cow in Washington, D.C. 

As a child of Holocaust survivors, I certainly understand and can even sympathize with the view of the anti-fascist movement–certainly, we should all unequivocally appreciate, love, and want to protect freedom and human rights!

However, I think throwing around labels like fascist, perhaps where it is more about political disagreements doesn’t help to identify the really bad actors out there in the world and what they can and even would like to do to harm all of us. 

Anyway, I am pretty sure that this cow is no fascist.

I would also like to say that the red and black with this symbol here is way too close to looking like how the genocidal Nazi’s themselves portrayed the dreaded and infamous swastika in red and black.  

It would be great if we use symbols and labels carefully, and let the cows go back to being cows. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Improv, Let’s Do it

What an incredible experience today. 

We went to the Atlas Theater in Washington, D.C. and did Improv (no script). 

For a Jewish kid from the Bronx, this was not something I was used to, but I loved it. 

– Say your name and an animal with the same first letter and act it out.

– Say something you love or hate and everyone gravitates on the stage towards or from it based on whether they agree.

– Repeat a word and action from someone else and pass it on.

– Act out an action that someone else calls out after yelling “Let’s do it!” 

– As a group, answer a question from the audience, by each person adding a word to the aggregated answer. 

– Give your neighbor a pretend object and after they identify what they think it is and thank you for it, you explain why you gave it to them.

– Stand on an emotion (happy, sad, angry, scared) and act out a scene with someone else rotating through the feelings.

– Pretend you’re a hitchhiker and infest the emotion with everyone else in the car.

I was really amazed at how good so many people were with doing these exercises. 

And I felt it was so freeing to be doing it too. 

I feel like I really learned a lot about being comfortable with yourself and just letting your inhibitions go and even though it was scary and hard, I would like to do this again. 

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Washington Democracy

Nice photo of the Capitol, the Reflecting Pool, and the Botanical Gardens.

Even in cold January in Washington, DC, it is a mighty impressive sight. 

Some of the most important lessons for me:

Democracy never ceases as long as the people rule, freedom is protected, and human rights is respected.

Those in power have an even greater responsibility to ensure they do the right thing and maintain the utmost integrity.  

We have a lot to live up to!

Hope everyone enjoys their weekend and MLK holiday.  😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

My Contribution To Love

So I saw a casual work friend the other day doting around what looked like his girlfriend. 

They looked really cute together.

And this guy is in his 60’s and lost his wife a number of years ago to cancer, so I was really happy to see him happy, and playful in love again. 

After a while, I took the opportunity to play cupid best I could. 

I told her how nice this guy was and how well he takes care of his customers. 

I ended by saying how we really love having him around and how it wouldn’t be the same without him. 

I could see him behind her smiling ear-to-ear–this lady really meant something to him.

When I saw him again today, I asked innocently, “so was that your girlfriend?” and like a young teenager in love, he smirked and nodded. 

It was obvious how much it meant to him that I spoke well of him to her. 

What can I say, I am really happy to make a little contribution to love–and I am really happy for them. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Dysfunction Society

So the world is continuing to go nuts–and it’s like everyone is behaving like Negan from The Walking Dead!

North Korea has achieved ICBM capability with a missile launch yesterday to 2,800 miles altitude—11 times higher than the International Space Station—giving Axis of Evil, North Korea the ability to now hit Washington, D.C.!

At the same time, a career civil servant tries to pull a fast one on the Trump Administration—challenging the President’s right to appoint an Acting Director over the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau, which is part of the Executive Branch of government—and hoping that the Senate then won’t confirm Trump’s new appointee for Director, all of which would leave her in charge of CFPB for the next 3 years!  Of course, the courts don’t see it her way, but as the Wall Street Journal noted her coup attempt is definitely something to take note of in democratic, America.

In the background, the Democrats and Republicans continue to beat each other silly and senseless, and not only with stalled legislation on almost every front from Healthcare to Immigration, but now minority leaders Schumer and Pelosi are even refusing to meet with the President over enacting a government budget leading us to another looming government shutdown in December…we can’t seem to keep the government functional or even running for the most powerful nation on Earth.   

Finally, Bitcoin—an artificial computer-generated currency, advanced 1,000-fold this year to hit $10,000! Talking about another financial bubble reminiscent of the manic investment in tulips in the 17th century. What’s the value of Bitcoin or sunflowers? Whatever you want it to be! It’s not about the technology, which may be great, but rather the phony valuing of cryptocurrency, which few understand, and we all know how these bubbles end.  

So overall, we have national security, the administration of our government, and economic stability all in grossly abnormal territory. 

When things get this crazy, eventually you can be sure that something will first start to crack and then potentialy really break, and when it does, will we see more Negan with his brain-bashing baseball bat, Lucille? 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)