Message Behind The Message

In our home, we often talk about this  — “the message behind the message”. Don’t just look/listen to the surface of what is being said but consider the deeper meaning, the reason why someone would be making that statement.

 

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Everyone’s seen this video by not. Many people have talked about how the video encourages children to snoop, to break the law but I haven’t seen anyone mentioning a deeper, more disturbing meaning to the video.

To me, and maybe everyone instinctively gets this and doesn’t feel the need to comment, but what does it say about the family, especially the parent(s)?

Kids, don’t trust your parents but agents of the state are okay to trust to do the right thing!
I see this as a continuing effort to demonize all gun owners. Aside from them not securing the firearm (deliberate on the filmmaker’s part), what in the video would make the young man say “Can you take this away. I don’t feel safe with a gun in my house.”?

Was there any signs of physical or emotional abuse? Was there signs of neglect? Drug Use? Failure to provide?

No, to any and all of them and more. The house was clean, neat, the Mom even signaled intellectual reading a book and not obviously a trashy romance novel instead of watching television.  The only thing the filmmaker could have done more to show a classic nuclear family was to have the dad arrive home from work to find dinner on the table.

Nor can the filmmaker point to the firearm itself malfunctioning as an excuse to get it out of the house. The statistics just aren’t there and he didn’t present it that way – obviously the young man felt the firearm was safe enough to transport through the school building without unloading it, without putting it in a holster. Nope the only reasonable conclusion is he fears what someone in the family will do with the firearm.

Maybe it is just my impression; what do you think?

 

Scattered Thought with a 40% Chance of Coherency

Been one of those weeks; while it’s settled down from the first part, still difficult to find my groove on getting new posts up.

 

Traffic

It has been bad in the evenings; seems many Texans loose the ability to function behind the wheel of a vehicle when any amount of water is on the ground, falling or about to fall.
Wednesday coming home took twice as long as usual; 90 minutes is just too long and that is avoiding the congested freeways.

Cuba

My thoughts on the subject?   — What is President Obama trying to distract us from.

Job

It’s going great and travel has slacked off for this month. Already planning a couple of trips for January though. Great to have a job for the holidays, bad part is no chance to build up P.T.O.; so while the rest of the office is out for a shutdown, I’ll be there. Oh Joy.

The Interview 

Hopefully Sony is playing this for big stakes. Would love to see them “change their mind” and release the movie nationwide over the Christmas break. Maybe it is cynical of me but I can’t imagine not taking advantage of the huge amount of free publicity they are getting; unless there was something taken in the hack that is truly damaging.

Humanity

Why is it people don’t accept that violence is a part of the human condition as much as love or kindness?
A blogger I read was bemoaning the fact we’ve lost our humanity because we keep going on after such atrocities as happened in Pakistan. Sorry but through out our history that has been the way it is. Life Goes on.
People can be loving and kind. People can be cruel and evil. Most are some where inbetween and often exhibit some aspects of any position on the spectrum at at the same time. We really haven’t changed our nature, just improved the tools we used.

And that gives me hope.
And that makes me weep for us.

 

To Paraphrase A Movie….

…..‘you don’t need no stinkin’ privacy’!

 

This week, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced the release of the Federal Health IT Strategic Plan 2015-2020, which details the efforts of some 35 departments and agencies of the federal government and their roles in the plan to “advance the collection, sharing, and use of electronic health information to improve health care, individual and community health, and research.” The plan is illustrated with the following graphic:

The ‘community’??? Just what information is the ‘community’ going to know about my health – or yours?

Nor do I think the government has any business knowing my health issues or status.

Each step of the plan includes three-year and six-year goals, and the various goals, depending on their focus, require the involvement of department and agencies as disparate as the Department of Defense, the Federal Trade Commission, and NASA, in addition to the expected participation of entities such as HHS, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and the Indian Health Service. The report includes a comprehensive list of all departments and agencies involved:

The Department of Education? Justice department and Bureau of Prisons; just exactly what is the government planning on doing with my medical records, eh? Look at the agencies that will be able to ‘share’ your medical records, consider the number of people that will be able to access it. Consider the number of potential security weak points that hackers could use to gain that information. Then tell me how it will benefit me in the long run or at all?

I’m the only one feeling a little distrustful of our government now days?

 

 

On Selling Loosies –

Can we do away with the idea that ‘selling loosies’ is just some minor violation of a city ordinances

The truth is much more complex than that. First and foremost, the people selling ‘loosies’ often place themselves in front of retail stores. They cost those stores customers. Customer who might go in and purchase other items besides just a pack of smokes. So between the revenue lost from selling singletons and the impulse purchases, it can be a hardship on stores. And let’s be realistic, it ain’t cheap to run a business in New York City.

How bad is it ? I don’t know. I did find a site that helps determine what permits or licenses apply

NYC Tax and Permits

I had to include the cigarette vending machine — probably doesn’t apply but the site is kinda wonky about the questions asked. — but that is 10 or 11 requirements someone selling a ‘loosie’ fails to comply with. I  wonder how much money the city, state and federal government looses every year to unreported income. How many people aren’t helped because the tax dollars aren’t to run the shelters, feed the homeless, or keep a medical clinic open. And how many people with unreported income are still getting welfare benefits that could be used to help the lives of others?

I wonder how many times the courts are clogged with low level arrests like this instead of dealing with aggravated assaults, rapes, murders; think of the number of hours dedicated to stopping people from this type of  crime.

And that doesn’t even address federal law either.

 

FDA Flyer and page

What a minute ! It’s against federal law to sell ‘loosies’? yep, appears so. Now again, I don’t agree with the laws in place, but as we gun owners are so often reminded; we have recourse to change the law without resorting to violence. This is nanny state government at it’s most inane; we pass laws that have good intentions (we will make you be healthy) and forget those laws are enforced with violence as the ultimate resort.

Guess it just chaps me to see this issue downplayed. It isn’t a simple traffic violation — running a stop sign in the middle of the night when no one else is around — it is an economic crime. One personally I don’t think should be on the books, maybe this will help drive a few more people into the libertarian/conservative ‘small government’ camp.

Please join the discussion.

Why Can’t We Get Along?

Because we can’t even agree on the meaning of basic and common words.

The last time Frank Rich had a conversation with Chris Rock was in early 1996, when they and the 1950s teen heartthrob Pat Boone were thrown together in a New York television studio as panelists on Bill Maher’s old show Politically Incorrect. This time they had two conversations in a New York hotel lounge as Rock prepared for the release of Top Five, a bittersweet film comedy in which he does triple duty as director, screenwriter, and star.

We’ve just come through an election that was a triumph for Fox News and a fiasco for Obama. What do you make of it?

Jon Stewart has said the reason Fox News works better than CNN is because the people at Fox News figured out how to make themselves into victims.

Fox News portrays themselves as victims? I can see some of that; a few of the commentators play that aspect (cough** Bill O’Reilly** cough) too often for my taste. Which is why i don’t often watch that show. But come on, CNN specializes and positively luxuriates in throwing out the victim card so often the writing has worn off it.

 

So will it now be harder for Republicans to play victims?

They have no problem playing victims.

Even in victory?

Even in victory. America — not black America, but America as a whole — started in England and was ruled by kings and queens and had a class system. I’m almost of the mind that that’s what America wants at the end of the day. Maybe America wants monopolies.

Chris, do you know what the word ‘monopoly’  means? Perhaps you were thinking of “monarchy”?

They always seem to want a Bush or a Clinton.

Maybe they just want a Bush. Maybe they want no regulations. It’s hard for me to figure out people voting against their own self-interests. At some point you go, Okay: Is that what they want?

 

Two points on this really stands out. First the straw man argument that we want no regulation. Makes it easy to say ‘Hey, it is just one small regulation/law/restriction” and ignore the thousands of others already on the books.
Seconds, not everyone only votes based on self interest – perhaps that is a little insight into the mind of Chris Rock ? A psychological slip letting us know what is his primary focus when voting.
Most of the people I know don’t just vote for what works best for us; we consider society in general, we consider the history and values of our country, we consider the principles upon which America was founded and try to vote for the candidate or positions that best reflect that.
Sometimes it is directly contrary to our best interests; we vote that way because it is good for us in the long run but also because we know there has to be some give and take in the process. Frankly, I wouldn’t want to live in any place that voted only for the people’s own self interest; be the people conservative or liberal.

 

Is it possible that they’re just angry, whether it’s anger at Obama or Washington in general, and they just want to lash out? If you’re angry, you don’t rationally consider what’s in your self-interest.

Maybe. But we had Bush for eight years. They saw what that was. Apparently a lot of people want to go back to that. A lot of people think rich people are smart.

 

Another straw man argument…..unfortunately only partially. Yes some people want to go back to ‘the Bush years’. Personally I would love to go back further than that but let’s start with Bush and then repeal the PATRIOT Act and other grievous harms to our rights. Let’s roll back the ‘War on Drugs’, the “War on Terror” took too many cues from that power grab. Let’s roll back the restrictive regulations that keep on growing no matter if there is a -D or -R after the Presidents name. Yes, I want to go back….but not in anger. Not at any race, not at any political party, nor any social class (which is why the liberals amaze me at how focused they are on class warfare — often attacking the rich.)

And notice also the implication that conservative = rich.

For all the current conversation about income inequality, class is still sort of the elephant in the room.

Oh, people don’t even know. If poor people knew how rich rich people are, there would be riots in the streets. If the average person could see the Virgin Airlines first-class lounge, they’d go, “What? What? This is food, and it’s free, and they … what? Massage? Are you kidding me?”

Again this is a case of absolutely not understanding what a word means. Chris if you think that food in the lounges is ‘free’ you need to go back to grade school; learn the meaning of words and then take a few business or economic classes. just for kicks and grins; I priced a trip from Dallas to LA. on Virgin Airlines.

Main Cabin — $268, Main Cabin Select – -$603, First Class – $903.

Guess that pays for that food in the lounge Chris?
And if you are so concerned about income inequality what are you doing about it? $70,000,000 would go along way in helping a lot of folks out.

 

What do you make of the attempt to bar Bill Maher from speaking at Berkeley for his riff on Muslims?3

Well, I love Bill, but I stopped playing colleges, and the reason is because they’re way too conservative.

 

Colleges are too conservative in their views ! Do you even know the difference between conservative and liberal !!!!

 

In their political views?

Not in their political views — not like they’re voting Republican — but in their social views and their willingness not to offend anybody. Kids raised on a culture of “We’re not going to keep score in the game because we don’t want anybody to lose.” Or just ignoring race to a fault. You can’t say “the black kid over there.” No, it’s “the guy with the red shoes.” You can’t even be offensive on your way to being inoffensive.

 

Speech codes on college campuses are very much a liberal mentality and policy !! Come on Chris, if you are going to blame the conservatives; at least make it something remotely connected to conservatives.

Victimization, Free, Conservative, — just a few of the many examples of words twisted beyond all belief. Now I know this isn’t just a liberal trait, some conservatives do it also. I just see it more on the left side of the political spectrum then the right side. How can we possible learn to get alone if we can’t even agree on the basic meanings of the words we use?

Please join the discussion. 

 

Same Story, Two Different Verses

First off we have a department taking action (thankfully) about an excessive force situation.

Back in June, Officer Jesus Martinez was caught on camera by a witness straddling and handcuffing a panhandler who was face down on the ground.

Martinez was seen roughing up the man, and later told the department that he had to use pepper spray because the man was resisting arrest.

Police say in the video it’s clear that the man is in extreme pain. A second witness told police that Martinez tackled the panhandler after they exchanged words.

An investigation by Internal Affairs found that Martinez used unnecessary and/or inappropriate force. He was arrested and charged with Official Oppression, which is a Class A Misdemeanor.

Martinez was also fired from the department, where he had worked since 2006

 

Of course not mentioned is what has happened to other people in the city since June. I applaud the city of Dallas for taking steps to right the wrong. But I do have to ask the antis “Do you think the police would be LESS violence, LESS brutal if the people were unarmed?”

I don’t think so.

Next up we have news from my home town

ARLINGTON – The Arlington Police Department has opened an internal, criminal investigation into the possible illegal sale of accident reports to lawyers and injury clinics.

One department employee has been placed on leave as allegations swirl about an illegal business-solicitation ring.

Yep, seems some ‘unnamed employee’ was providing attorneys and medical clinics with information they shouldn’t have.

I also applaud the city for acting on this. Given the time frame, this really is acting fast on information. Still makes you wonder what other information has been compromised, what other data has been passed on to unscrupulous people?

So I’ll ask the antis “Do you think the police would be LESS corrupt if the people were unarmed?”

This types of problems are not unique to America, they are not unique to this time and place. Time and time again we’ve seen that basic human nature has not changed, not in this country and not in the thousands of years of documented human history. These are just two of the many examples of why the average person should not be disarmed. There has to be a final check on the abuse of power; that check has to stay in the hands of the individuals.

 

Please join the conversation.

It Is Not “Just….”

…poverty. Or ‘gun control’ or health care.

A recent exchange on another blog really highlighted this for me and I believe it is one of the greatest issues with people who blog only occasionally about issues. And even some of the people who delve deeply into the issues either don’t get it or gloss over the fact.

The issue on the other blog was about poverty and how we, Americans, aren’t doing enough to address the issue. Well, rarely is a problem singular or isolated in nature.
I pointed out how the laws, regulations, rules, etc create such a huge hurdle and administrative burden that few people can successfully start a new company or keep one going for more then a few months.
I pointed out how our education system is failing; due to the leftist policies implement over the decades.
I pointed out how our tax system is already skewed heavily and that increasing the progressive nature of the system moves our country toward socialism.

Many people forget to consider the impact or the direction which the moves takes our country. Or they deliberately discount the foundation behind our objections. “Oh come on, who doesn’t want to help feed the hungry”. No one but if it means we exist in a socialistic society the price is too high to pay.

I’ve started trying to point out this when I engage online. Maybe this is something that should be obvious and is to many others but I think it needs to be done.

Which brings me to my last “Just….” as in “Just another blog saying the same thing as many others”.

Please don’t let that stop you from saying it anyways. Don’t let it stop you from commenting; either on blogs or news media sites. All too often the silent majority is just that- silent. We need to speak up; to show those that have the same beliefs they are not alone. To show those who believe differently that we are paying attention, that we do oppose their ideas. Not their right to have them but where those ideas will take our country.

We need to raise such a strong consistent voice that it can not be ignored.

Speak up folks, don’t be afraid of sounding like an echo chamber. I’ve been amazed how one person can phrase things in a way to encapsulate the problem or solution better than everyone else has…..on a subject that just about everyone talks about.

Speak up folks, if for no other reason then the fact we can say “We told you what we wanted, we told you what would happened if you did this” if the time comes.

 

Please join the discussion.