Tag Archives: politics

Stay Awake

tumblr_mctl04mveM1rabieto1_400People never cease to amaze me! Just when I thought it was safe to be line at the grocery store, something changed. Little did I know that someone, most likely the Fox network, must be dispensing portable soap boxes to their loyal listeners. This is what I’m going with since I have no other answer.

Hey, I am a huge fan of Free Speech, but for the love of God I can not tolerate when it is abused. Why on earth would a complete stranger feel that a hateful political rant would be a good way to strike up a conversation with ME of all people on this planet? guess the days of “hey baby what’s your sign?” are long gone. 

There I was minding my own business in the check-out line, reading the headlines on all the rag magazines, catching up on all the Kardashian bull shit news, when out of nowhere this person decided to egg me on while he ranted over everything under the sun. Maybe my peace sign bracelet set him off…who knows.

Well, that’s all I can say is THANK GOODNESS I’ve been graced with the gift of having my face come8a83b3cdb5d142b58ffcf58f0c7d9487 up with a quick response long before my mouth has a chance. Sometimes this can be a curse, but not this time. 

I have no idea what my face said, but I can only imagine it was something like “WOW!” or “Shut up you bigoted ass!” or perhaps both since I was then referred to as “one of them” shortly after my face had spoken.

There really were no words to respond, well I did think of two, but I wasn’t going that low. One would think that having a 5′ 9″ cricket as his only audience member would make him stop.

34f61adfcaba647773cb17bf7c5b7071Oh, this guy had all the answers. He was explaining everything that should be getting done “down there in Washington” and everything that would be getting done if “all the idiots” didn’t come out to vote. Can you feel my pain?

At this point I began chanting the ole “if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all” lecture in my head for sanity purposes. I’ll be honest, after the 3rd time there were F-bombs tossed in to keep me out of jail.

I stood in silence wondering what would happen if this guy spent a quarter of his energy actually contributing to something good instead of spreading his relentless mouth farts all over the place. Hmm, maybe … just maybe, it would loosen that padlock on his mind. 

Since that didn’t seem to be happening any time soon, I continued to silently ingest his gases while loading my groceries at the speed of light. As if food shopping wasn’t enough to suck the life out of me…seriously. 

“All of us wish at times that we lived in a more tranquil world, but we don’t. And if our times are difficult and perplexing, so are they challenging and filled with opportunity.” Robert Kennedy

As you can imagine this left me with a huge social hangover by the time I got home. You know that wonderful feeling you get when you’re around exhausting people for a long period of time. It was going to take something much stronger than CALGON to take me away from this one!

I decided that the toxic remnants of this encounter had to leave before they did any more damage so I went out on my deck, flopped onto my swing and turned on some tunes. I was swinging in the silence when out of nowhere BAM! Teddy Pendergast saved the day. Thank you higher power, thank you very much!

I’m glad I didn’t waste my words on someone who didn’t deserve to hear my voice. Sometimes the most powerful thing you can say is nothing at all. Stay awake and Enjoy the Ride! 

Revolution? Nobody Has Time For That!

0050_soap_box3I’ve been trying to get up on this damn soap box all week, but I kept getting distracted by one piece of insanity after the other. So here I am, finally **tap pssh tap** I hope you can all hear me out there in Blogosphere and beyond. Ok, here we go…..

I need to address the escalated chatter I’ve been hearing lately in regards to a Revolution of some sort that is prompting people to run out and purchase firearms. People, I might add, who have NEVER owned a gun in their life. Everyone suddenly wants a weapon for “protection” for this Revolution. Really? Have these people ever tried to organize a group of people for a cause? Please!

You can call me crazy, but I’m going to provide you with a little scenario explaining why I believe there will NOT be a Revolution.

SCENE SETTING: The rally is being held in a large arena with red, white & blue balloons strung across the large stage. The PopsOrganizer is in jeans, a tailored shirt with dressy work boots, hoping his outfit will appeal to all classes in attendance. Flags are waving, lady Liberty is being erected through the center of the stage just as the Uncle Sam dancers make their way up the aisle high-fiving the crowd. The speaker appears at the podium and everyone is asked to move down closer to the stage due to the poor turnout. Just keeping it real.

REVOLUTION SPEAKER:  Good afternoon. Thank you all for coming out today. I’m sure it wasn’t easy pulling yourselves away from your busy lives to make history, but I’m glad you chose to make this sacrifice for your country. Roaring Applause. I know everyone is feeling a little unsettled these days with the direction our country is taking, but this has been happening for a very long time. Between the chaos in the Middle East, school shootings, slow economy, healthcare issues, Social Security issues, Medicare issues and our everyday life issues we are all on edge. So, I thought it would be a great idea if We The People got together to form a Revolution. Enthusiastic applause. In order to do this we will all need to share in the responsibility of organizing events all over the country. Applause seems weaker. We will all need to do our part to make this a successful Revolution. The crowd begins to shift in their seats. We will be setting up tents throughout some of the largest cities in America. This means you may be living in conditions that you are not accustomed to for long periods of time. If your want change, you have to be willing to make some sacrifices. Section A leaves to use the restroom, they never return to their seats. We will organize groups to get the word out via the Social Media, but let me be clear, we will only use Social Media outlets to invite more of the We The People to join us. The majority of our mission will be held on the ground. Whispers are heard amongst the attenders. We need to show our strength in numbers by physically attending these events. A hand is raise and a question is asked from the crowd. Can we just “like” this Revolution on Facebook? Applause. No sir, this is real life. Forefathers begin spinning in their graves. 

SCENE SETTING: The sounds of “This Land Is Your Land” is playing in the background. The Uncle Sams’ and Lady Liberties exit to man the tables and serve refreshments.

SPEAKER: Are you ready to take your country back? Weak applause and unrecognizable mumbles. We have information tables set up right outside these doors, so please, enjoy the refreshments while you decide how your talents can serve this Revolution best. Crickets can be heard chirping in another county.

WE THE PEOPLE: The crowd heads out to the lobby. We begin to whisper while avoiding eye contact with the organizer and aggressively search for the Exit signs.

SCENE SETTING: Long tables are set up outside the arena. Women dressed as Lady Liberty are patiently waiting to be swarmed with anxious Revolutionary participants, while the Uncle Sam clad men are serving refreshments. The free red, white & blue Revolution pens are waiting to be picked up to fill those sign-up sheets. Some curious potential participants begin to approach the table.

WE THE PEOPLE:  First: Are these pens free? Um, is this Revolution thing going to be during the week, because I work?

                                          Second: Is there any way we can revolt on a Saturday? Oh, wait make that Sunday Jimmy has practice on Saturday. Oh, no wait Sunday isn’t good Mary has dance. Can I get back to you? Are these pens free?

                                          Third: Can I revolt from home? I work every other day, so I can revolt on my days off after my errands.

                                          Fourth: Do you think this Revolution thing will take long? I can commit to 2 weeks of my vacation time, but that 3rd week is mine. Are these pens free?

                                          Fifth: I really, really want to revolt, but Idol just started so, if your still revolting when the season is over I’ll be happy to help out. Hey, can I have this pen?

Instead of filling our homes with weaponry in preparation for a Revolution that may or may not happen, why don’t we figure out a way to honor the gift of American democracy. Impossible? That answer is up to all of us.

It’s time for me to leave the soap box and Enjoy the Ride!

Humanity Cliff

mw_1113_FISCAL_CLIFF_620x350The constant chatter about the impeding doom of falling off of the “oh so precious” Fiscal Cliff, had me crazy to the point of wanting to give it a big fat shove to help it along. Talk about beating a dead horse, or carcass in this case. Since early November we have been held prisoner to term “Fiscal Cliff.” What the hell does it mean?

Well, according to Fiscal Cliff for Dummies this is what it boils down to:

The United States fiscal cliff refers to a large predicted reduction in the budget deficit and a corresponding projected slowdown of the economy if specific laws are allowed to automatically expire or go into effect at the beginning of 2013.

What are we a bunch of wussies? I for one am much more afraid of things like Silence of the Lambs then falling off a fiscal cliff. Maybe we’ll have to struggle or god forbid sacrifice, but we’ll make it..simmer down. Remember the Great Depression? So does my mother, who was born smack into it and is still here to talk about it….you’ll all live. The imaginary money on our portfolios might take a hit, but we’ll all survive. I think some folks in that 1% category might have a much harder time than me…I’ve done struggle. 

The mascot went unnoticed

The GOP Mascot has left the building

While all of our elected officials were sweating over the demise of their tax brackets, a big ole polka dotted elephant made her way to the center of the House floor. Rumor has it she was stunning. I heard first hand that she was wearing a red tutu with flashing lights, but it still wasn’t enough to get her recognized. What does a girl have to do to get noticed on the House floor? Please don’t answer that. 

Her name was VAWA, she would have been 19 this year. Maybe you recognize her by her birth name, Violence Against Women Act. Sadly she is no longer with us since the GOP in the U.S. House of Representatives killed her this week. Yep, once again they will get away with murder. Why you ask? Other than the obvious, because they were too distracted by their own potential financial demise to give a shit, it’s because it would have expanded coverage of the law to more women including immigrants and Native Americans. More coverage, more money needed. It always comes down to the Root of ALL Evil money.

17654260Honestly, if we as a nation cannot recognize the importance of providing vital assistance, to vulnerable women and their children when they need it most, I think we all better take a glance in the mirror and ask ourselves…WHY?

Clearly there is a much bigger problem in this country and it has absolutely nothing to do with the almighty dollar. It’s the shortage of HUMANITY. We as a nation have fallen over the Humanity Cliff long ago. Where is all the hype about this freaking disaster? 

Oh, sure humanity teases us now and then when it climbs back up that mountain, all tattered and torn from its many, many journeys over the cliff. Poor thing is hanging on by a thread. We all see it peaking over the top in the aftermath of some horrific tragedy, but then as life returns to “normal” or what is then defined as the “new normal” we shove it right back down. We can’t survive on these tidbits, we deserve more. 

It’s obvious that the handful of good stories that surface in the wake of a tragedy restores our faith in humanity but it just isn’t enough anymore. These restorations need to be consistent in order to build a foundation that will prevent the fall. 

Do your little bit of good where you are; its those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world -Desmond Tutu

561We are materialistic to a level that is on the brink on insanity. 

Our family units are broken.

Our children are becoming disconnected at the speed of light.

Our sense of community is scarce. We are distracted, divided and headed for disaster if we don’t collectively recognize this huge void in our daily lives. A unanimous Ah Ha moment is desperately needed for the common good. 

It really is the everyday, unnoticed actions of kindness and caring that restore our faith in humanity. Practicing simple acts every 211106301254243494_jTQXJFTk_bday such as using caring words, providing a reassuring hug, lend a helping hand and confirm the acknowledgement of our existence by smiling at a stranger is a wonderful way to get started. Practice make perfect folks…we can do this together.

Remember, in the end that’s all we have is each other. So, take a moment to recognize that our obligation is not just with ourselves, but those who live with and within our decisions.

Keep it simple, make it significant and Enjoy the Ride! 

No Room For Lame Excuses

Election Day 2012 is less than a month away. Time sure flies when you’re having fun. You have 25 days to clear at least one hour out of your day to cast your vote. Get on it people!

I took the liberty to compile some fun election facts to you know, get this party started.  Be inspired, swayed or guilted, I really don’t care what it takes to get you to VOTE on TUESDAY NOVEMBER 6, 2012.  Do It!

Speaking of Tuesday…

Do you know why Election Day just happens to land on the first Tuesday in November? It’s complicated, let me explain.

▪   November was selected because the harvest work was done. Today “harvest work” may be defined as taking down the Halloween decorations…not sure.

▪   Tuesday was selected because many people had to travel the day before to reach the polling place. Since most people did not travel on Sunday for religious reasons, they did not want it to be on a Monday. Wow! This makes the old “it’s raining” excuse seem really lame.

▪   They did not want Election Day to fall on November 1st because it is All Saints Day. Well played forefathers, well-played indeed.

▪   They did not want Election Day to fall on the first of the month because many shop keepers did their books for the preceding month on the first. Now wasn’t that considerate? Let’s reciprocate shall we…thanks. 

A citizen of America will cross the ocean to fight for democracy, but won’t cross the street to vote in a national election.  ~Bill VaughanMore 

Did You Know That….

EIGHT LEFT-HANDED PRESIDENTS SERVED James A. Garfield, Herbert Hoover, Harry S. Truman, Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama.

FOURTEEN PRESIDENTS served as vice presidents: J. Adams, Jefferson, Van Buren, Tyler, Fillmore, A. Johnson, Arthur, T. Roosevelt, Coolidge, Truman, Nixon, L. Johnson, Ford, and George H.W. Bush.

THE TALLEST president was Lincoln at 6’4″; at 5’4″, Madison was the shortest.

THE TERM FIRST LADY was first used in 1877 in reference to Lucy Ware Webb Hayes. Most First Ladies, including Jackie Kennedy, are said to have hated the label.

Why Should You Vote?

Because I said so! Sometimes this is the only necessary argument. 

Because it took 72 years of crusading by women like Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton to earn all women the right to vote. Yes, that is guilt your feeling. Yes, that was the intention.

Because in 1960, John F. Kennedy defeated Richard Nixon by less than one voter per precinct. So yes, we can hunt you down and we will.

Nobody will ever deprive the American people of the right to vote except the American people themselves and the only way they could do this is by not voting. Franklin D. Roosevelt

Because in 1996, among the world’s 20 biggest democracies, voter turnout in the U.S. was lower than every country except Switzerland. Belgium was top of the list with 94 percent. Come on already, do you really want to live down to our lazy stereotype? No, the answer is NO.

Because in 1845, one vote brought Texas into the Union. Oh, what’s that? One vote made a difference..umm hmm yes it did.

Because some have made the ultimate sacrifice for the right to vote. Among them: civil rights leaders Martin Luther King Jr. and Medgar Evers, who were assassinated; Fannie Lou Hamer, who was beaten, lost her job and her house for insisting she had the right to vote in Mississippi; Vernon Dahmer, who died protecting his family and home because he allowed blacks to pay their poll tax at his store; and Andrew Goodman, Mickey Schwerner and James Chaney, who were murdered for helping blacks register in the South. People have died for this privilege. So yea, Bobby & Susie’s soccer practice can wait 5 minutes. 

Because you get permission to complain for the next for years. If you don’t vote, you will need to shut it.

Because about 7,200 Americans died during the Revolutionary War, 8,200 more were wounded and as many as 10,000 died in military camps from disease or exposure. Many soldiers from the Continental Army were never paid for their service. They were fighting for the right to vote. It’s a PRIVLEDGE.

Because you just never know who you might meet in line. Love can be found in the strangest places….just saying. 

The Number One Reason You Should Vote: This the one day when everyone in the U.S. is EQUAL. Your vote counts just as much as anyone else’s. VOTE! Tuesday November 6, 2012…Enjoy the Ride!

Oh Yes We Did!

I loved the headline!

This is an update on my recent post Democracy Is Alive. Looks like a small group of committed citizens certainly can make a difference…Oh yes we did! 

After we gathered the troops to battle the politicians, we utilized our freedom of speech via the press and the good old social media. Fact: Facebook & YouTube scare the crap out of old politicians.

We went old school to pound pavements for signatures and also included an online petition for our cyber supporters as well. No one said it would be easy.

I was fortunate enough to be part of a team composed of like-minded individuals in order to make this a success. We all have talents that enabled us to move this forward quickly. This “project” was in the works for 7 years and we changed those plans in a little over 40 days.

For instance, my neighbor Joe created the video that tugged at heart-strings of his audience … hey now, nothing wrong with jumping on the sympathy wagon … which just happened to spread like wildfire, dubbing him the “Michael Moore” of our project.

Our neighbor Ray was our communicator/informant. He made calls to all parties involved daily to gather our ammunition pertinent information, dubbing him “Deep Throat.”

Deep Throat, Michael Moore & Erin Brockovich

As for me, well I was the digger. I searched until my eyes were burning and my fingers sore. Thank you Google and Public Records search engines thank you very much. This dubbed me “Erin Brockovich.”

The story made an appearance in our local paper The Northeast Times, The Philadelphia Daily News, The Philadelphia Inquirer and Radio Station 106.9 here in Philadelphia. Not bad for a few concerned neighbors. 

Our initial goal was to stop the madness completely, however according to our City Councilman, it was already a “done deal” and although he admitted “I should have notified the community, I take full responsibility.” Let me finish this sentence: However, it was an election year and a lot of you already didn’t like me, so I decided winning for my 8th term was way more important than all of you. 

Therefore, without a long drawn out legal battle we wouldn’t have a chance in reversing this deal. The other “done deal” will be this councilman loosing his next run for office. He has been in office for 32 years…so tootles! 

After numerous negotiations we made the decision to compromise with the business owner and I am happy to report that we made some significant progress in saving a large portion of this land from the asphalt. It’s amazing what a collective effort can accomplish. Hmm, I wonder where this would come in handy *cough* DC. 

The company we were up against has been at its current location for 11 years, with organic growth during that time, however he is getting cramped and does need additional space to expand. The fact that he is able to expand in this economy is a very good sign for our community. 

We were extremely fortunate because just like us, this businessman was also duped by the politician involved. He was promised that “everything was taken care of” and he had nothing to worry about. Poor thing thought the politician was doing the right thing by him. 

We have been given the opportunity to assist in the design of the area that will be surrounding the parking lot. It will now be bordered by natural berms, lined with mature trees to block our view and absorb sound. We blocked the idea of a chain-linked fence and agreed on something that would be safe, but esthetically easy on the eyes. 

There is also going to be a “meadow” constructed using trees and grasses that are historic to the area. The business owner as agreed to maintain this portion of the property for (5) years to ensure this land resumes to its natural state. We were all especially elated about this piece of the plan. 

All in all our efforts were not wasted. We not only gained a voice in the construction of his property, we gained a stronger sense of community, which was long overdue.

This small sliver of the pie opened our eyes to some significant changes that need to be made in order have a successful voice in the decisions that are being made on behalf of “our best interest,” at all levels of  our local government.

Now get out there and make a difference one act at a time….Enjoy the Ride!

Caps Lock Crazy

I’ve noticed a trend recently that has really taken off like wildfire. No, you won’t find  in on the pages of Vogue or on the runways in Paris, but you can certainly find it everywhere else.

Divide & Conquer are hitting the streets hard and the Social Media even harder as we get closer to November 6th. Can you say Caps Lock and Crazy? 

On Monday I made a comment on a conservative friends Facebook wall. I just couldn’t leave well enough alone. She posted a photo, paid for by the Romney campaign, regarding high gas prices. I simply stated “Who holds the largest vested interest in Oil in this country? Hint: He doesn’t live on Pennsylvania Avenue.”  Nothing mean-spirited, just a fact.

Well, hot diggity I never saw this response coming … “Good Grief! What does that have to do with anything Lisa? It is supply and demand, simple economics. Guess you weren’t home-schooled or you know how an economy works. Sorry, but I have had it with people who didn’t bother to learn anything about how things work.”

My parents were not Economists, but they certainly knew how to rob Peter to pay Paul and survive. Hey, looks like I might have been home-schooled after all…so there! 

I must say I was a little taken back by this attack. Isn’t that exactly what I just said without the hate & judgement. Needless to say this certainly had me wondering…What the hell just happened?  Are we really that far removed that we can’t even recognize that we might actually agree on a point?  Maybe she was blinded by my peace sign icon…I don’t know. 

The down right hatred I’ve witnessed over differences in opinions on political views, religious beliefs, race, sexual orientation and the reproductive system of a woman are downright mind-boggling.

News Flash: Conflict and Tension are tearing We The People to shreds at the speed of light. If you want to regain the will of the people, you must recognize the wisdom of Parker Palmer.

“Political civility is not about being polite to each other. It’s about reclaiming the power of “We the People” to come together, debate the common good and call American democracy back to its highest values amid our differences. The civility we need will come not from watching our tongues, but from valuing our differences and the creativity that can come when we hold them well.” Parker Palmer

As for me, well I vow to try not to give into temptation, unless of course it’s necessary. I’m not guaranteeing anything, but I will do my best to be kind when I do it. 

The words you choose have a profound effect on the people they reach, please choose them wisely and Enjoy The Ride! 

Fascinating Friday

 A TRUE STORY EVERYONE SHOULD KNOW

Yesterday a dear friend sent me an email entailing this very important information about the importance of women voting.  I am proud to say that in April, I celebrated my 30th year as a registered voter. To date I have never missed an election. Not that anyone is handing out perfect attendance certificates or anything, but if they were..well..ahem..that’s right.

Remember, it was not until 1920 that women were granted the right to go to the polls and vote. That is only a mere 92 years ago. I know people who have furniture older than that for god sakes!

The women who fought for our RIGHT to vote were innocent and defenseless. They were jailed  for picketing the White House, carrying signs asking for the vote.

They were hell raisers with a cause and willing to do whatever it took to ensure that their daughters and grand daughters would have a say at the polls. This included going to prison and being tortured for nothing more than … “obstructing sidewalk traffic.”

Alice Paul
Rocking the Vote

When one of the leaders, Alice Paul, embarked on a hunger strike, they tied her to a chair, forced a tube down her throat and poured liquid into her until she vomited. She was tortured like this for weeks until word was smuggled out to the press.

Woodrow Wilson and his cronies tried to persuade a psychiatrist to declare Alice Paul insane so that she could be permanently institutionalized. It is inspiring to know that a doctor refused to bend to the persuasion. The doctor stated that Alice Paul was strong and brave. That didn’t make her crazy.

He informed the men that  ‘Courage in women is often mistaken for insanity.’  Hmm, it appears some things haven’t changed. 

Now, doesn’t Alice’s story make your already lame excuses for NOT voting seem …just a tad….PATHETIC?

It’s hard to believe that in 92 short years we went from being put behind bars, beaten, tortured, starved and even dying just to have the right to walk into a voting booth, close the curtain and cast our votes …. to avoiding it like the plague with lamest of lame excuses. 

Come on ladies … even your excuses lack creativity. No flavor..dull..boring and frankly, LAZY!

  • Carpool?  …. You can bring the kids with you, perhaps you could set an example.
  • We have to get to work? … No problem, polls are open from 7am -8pm.
  • Our vote doesn’t matter? … Bush/Gore … yea, it does.
  • It’s raining? … Don’t worry, you won’t melt.
  • I’m so busy …  Solving world peace, on the brink of curing cancer? No, you’re not.
  • I’ve got so much on my plate! … Really?… So did Alice Paul! 
We are not voting in the numbers that we should be, and I think a little shock therapy is in order.
 
What would Alice Do? E      (All welcome…Democrats preferred.)
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