Short Takes Norm Home
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Norm's Soapbox-
My corner of Hyde Park
Read, don't just listen to what they say, because that will change. I leave items here long after they fade into the past, just so I don't have to say "I told you so!", but you can say "You said that!", be it an accurate prediction, or dead wrong.


Why would you go to a hospital to save your life if you do not believe in medical science? Get Vaccinated! That is what medicine says can save your life and others. ----

If Joe Manchin wanted bipartisan legislation, he would support returning the Filibuster to its pre 1975 requirements and support the voting rights. Republicans would have to negotiate to be relevant, and not follow McConnell's sworn blockage of Biden with "negotiating" and then blocking everything approach. ----

It is abundantly clear that the Republicans are only interested in power, from Joseph MacCarthy, Richard Nixon, Donald Trump, through MacCarthy and Mitch McConnell, they oppose democracy claiming it is socialism, equating it with communisim. They oppose one man one vote (democracy), economic fairness, or anything that represents equality.

We know the right does not believe "All Lives Matter" with over a quarter of a million Americans dead. They refuse to follow measures we know stop Covid-19.

A Trump is not approved by the world. They know he opposed an effective response to Covid19, fought against responding to climate change, attempted to railroad the UN against Iran, tries to control trade, opposes anti-fascists, and fought against democracy in the election, a significant minority ruling against the majority. US leadership in the world was deminished.

Prop 23 requires dialysis clinics have a Doctor on site. DaVita, Inc., and Fresenius Medical Care have threatened to close clinics and have spent close to $90 million to prevent that. And spent over $100 million in 2018 against the similar prop 8. They threaten to close clinics to protect their profits and scare patients into supporting them.

Prop 22- Lyft and Uber have spent $186 million to keep from treating their employees from being treated as employees to save profits, keeping and illegal advantage over taxis, and threatened them with eliminating their jobs.

Trump's "herd immunity" approach means 4.475 million more covid deaths. There have been 217,ooo confirmed Covid 19 deaths out of 8+ million infections, a 2.7% rate. If only Half the U.S. gets infected, creating immunity, that means: 1/2 of 330 million Americans at 2.7% is 4.475 Million Dead.

Trump hates "Antifa", which is as much an organization as independent voters. He is a Fasciest. We fought WW II against Fasciests.

The rioting is a Republican problem with the majority feeling unheard and unrepresented. Republicans acquired the presidency with Only 77,744 votes total in three states, with active voter suppression, clearing voter registrations, moving and closing polls, and other ploys with the help of the Russians, made the electoral college win, in spite of three million more votes for Clinton. Trump has encouraged the far-right, the white supremacists, praised agent-provocatures, and encouraged police violence such as killed George Floyd. The response has been protest. In keeping with the unlawful acts of the Republicans, Trump has retweeted white supremicist propaganda that encourages looting and violence. The covid-19 problem was exacerbated by Trumps trying to keep his "numbers good" and refusing to act costing over 200,000 lives. The compounding problems are costing lives. We are paying the price.

I find it unacceptable that many of the "essential workers" require government and food assistance.

We know the appointment of Barret is unethical, and for a number of "Christian" Senators immoral (false witness) because they promised not to confirm a Supreme Court nominee during an election year:

GOP Senators Who Promised Not to Confirm a Supreme Court Nominee During an Election Year
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas)
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.)
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.)
Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.)
Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa)
Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Col.)
Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas)
Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa)
Sen. Thom Tillis (R-N.C.)
Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.)
Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.)
Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wisc.)
Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Penn.)
Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.)
Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.)
Sen. John Hoeven (R-N.D.)
Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio)
Republicans promise Not to Confirm

Republicans claimed Democrats want to undo the 2016 election, disrespecting the will of the people. Think Republicans respect elections? Trum has said that if everyone votes Republicans will never be elected. Trump lost the popular vote by over 3 million. Only 77,744 votes total in 3 states, with active voter suppression, made the electoral college win. Parnas and associates are under inditement for election finance violations supporting Trump. Trump junior illegally solicited funds from forgein Members of Parlament. A North Carolina election was rerun due to Republican fraud. Republicans have fought against invalidating illegally Gerrymandered districts. They welcomed and are welcoming Russian support of Trump. we know what Trump did for the 2020 election.

It is a violation of the Constitution, created to establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty. Even Generals appointed by Trump say he is in violation of it.

Briana Taylor's death was a crime. Violence is not the answer because it supports the bigots' propaganda. The ballot box is the place to force change. It is unacceptable for an American to be killed in their home for no crime by police. Killing in the name of law and order is a crime. Shooting an incapacitated person is murder, so 17 bullet wounds is evidence of murder.

I remember a white business man in Ventura being killed by police in his underwear in his bedroom in his million dollar home with NO crime found, except for the fraudulently obtained no knock warrant. No one is safe from this. We must all demand correction.

Why does Trump hate anti-fascists? He likes Fascists! Vladamir Putin, Xi Jinping, Dutarte, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Kim Jung Un

If you are white, you probably haven't been beaten or killed by police, unless you protested against Vietnam, protested for the environment, protested against police violence, have long hair, on strike picketing , were LGTBQ, homeless, mentally ill, comitted a crime or looked like someone that did. You are not immune to police acting as judge an punisher. We are not safe. No one should be above the law.

Portland Trumpsters armed with bear spray and paint guns evaded police to confront protesters. They were seeking conflict.

I dream of Kenosha citizens silently lining the streets, unarmed backs turned to Trump as he passes by, his worst case- shunned.

Trump's values? Look who he likes: Vladamir Putin, Xi Jinping, Dutarte, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Kim Jung Un

I knew that if the unjustifiably fearful rookie Costa Mesa policeman killed me with his shaking gun, it would not result in any action against him. It said that his fear was more important than my life. When any life can be so devalued, it endanges all. It does not matter if the person is black, brown asian, homeless, mentally ill, or white. No matter how egregious, police are rarely held to account, and we are rarely aware. A few names we need to remember... Ruben Salazar, Rodney King, Kelly Thomas, Philandro Castile, Eric Garner, Tamir Rice, Sean Bell, Fredy Gray...

How can you stop the injustice if you do not address what drives racist prejudice? Asprin drops the fever but not the infection, symptoms need the cause fixed.

The Deplorable Truth

The Republicans in the Senate will give Trump another pass, just as they did for his adultery, emoluments, obstructing justice, supporting war crimes, obstructing Congress, a total lack of ethics, and innumerable lies. Hypocracy seems the rule. While claiming to be for "law and order", they see no use for either. Hassert, Foley, and a laundry list of Repblicans soliciting bribes, disenfranchising voters, pedophiles, embezzlers and other felonies have been defended by Republicans. Many staunch conservatives have left the party, like George Will. We need the party of George Will to replace the current degeneracy. Some Examples


Bret Kavanaugh's high school and college drunken blackouts and sex games do not make him unacceptable for the Supreme Court; his lying under oath does. The FBI's brief limited "investigation", ignoring primary and secondary sources to please the President impune it. As under the felon J. Edgar Hoover, it is not now an impartial searcher for truth.

The Second Amendment

Contrary to the current noise about the second amendment, the point of it was to prevent a standing army, for the Founding Fathers feared a standing army would result is foreign involvements and a self serving force as it did in Europe, and could be used against states and citizens. The standing army has 58% of the federal discretionary budget and been involved in foreign actions that were or are not defensive actions, as feared.


The increase in "defense spending" should go to defending Americans, not arms merchants. Real defense would be CDC (Ebola, flu), NOAA (flooding, blizards), NASA (near earth asteroids), EPA (lead in water, BPA), health (most bankrupcies due to medical costs with job loss), Education (use Americans instead of H1-B), and slow climate change.


Sanctuaries do not exist in the U.S. The monicer "Sanctuary City" denotes a city that does not cooperate with ICE, since an undocumented person is not likely to report or act as a witness to local crime, making local law enforcement less effective. The Trump claims ring hollow when you know that federal investigations into drug organizations spend years before an arrest, with know undocumented criminals involved.

Tax Reform

Actual efforts to help the middle class do not include shifting the tax burden from the highest incomes. A simple $1000.00 across the board tax credit would have helped more without the debt incurred by the Republican gift to the rich, and passed very easily with support from all. Anyone can be poor, but it requires government to be rich.


Find it odd that Trump admires Putin, Kim Jong-un, Duterte, Assad, Erdogan, Farage, and strong-man politicians and claims a great mandate while loosing the popular vote by about 2%?

Constituion Originalists

I find it very ironic that Constituion Originalists who supported Trump would not have succeeded if the Founding Father's intent had been followed and the Electoral College been elected by district and had the responsiblity to deliberate. Read the Constitution and Ammendments, especially the 14th.


Does it seem impossible that the FBI, NSA, etc. could find 10,000 refugees that just want to survive and work in the millions fleeing the the war and killing we helped start? That don't want to shoot up a school or Planned Parenthood?


Why does Trump remind me of the early NAZI party? Is it the blaiming ills on others? Or the hate and fear of others? Or bombastic claims of greatness?


The same people told us atmospheric nuclear testing was OK, and tobacco was fine, asbestos did not cause cancer, money would trickle down, and the bank speculation in the markets were going to make us all richer. Now they say the geometrically increasing CO2 from fossil fuels has nothing to do with climate change. Can you believe them now?

Safer Where...

Since we can safely imprison Manson, Dalmer, Ramirez, etc., does'nt it suggest we can imprison terrorists in the U.S. instead of giving ISIL and their like Gitmo as a propaganda point demonstrating hypocricy and supporting a claim of a religious war? And save a lot of money on top of eliminating some propagand and a blot on our reputation?

Who's Going To Pay?

Strangely, there is one group primarily responsible for the biggest current problems without paying for them. When the democratically elected government of Iran showed signs of wanting Iran to get the profit from its oil, the Western governments, primarily the U.S., overthrew it and installed the Shah, who owing the west, preserved foreign oil profits and severely repressing those who objected with his secret police, so only the most radical mosques sheltered them. When the dictatorial Shah was overthrown, the radicals were in power, promoting more extremism, which spread with the hate of foreign powers controlling and profiting from their poverty. Bush 1 smuggled Saddam Hussein into Iran to keep control of oil. Bush 2 said that oil would pay for the second Iraq war. Arms were poured in by both militaries, first to Osama bin Laden and his like against Russia, then in opposition when he learned he could chase a super power out. With plenty of arms, current and historic conflicts have escalated, creating millions of war and economic refugees. Add to them refugees of weather exacerbated by human induced climate change with five times the fossil energy in reserves than can be used without more disastrous results, and we can identify the source of the problem. Fossil energy profiteers deny their roll in ads while they have suppressed much knowledge of their admitions of responsibility in court and to each other. These super capitalists continue profiting while the taxpayer pays for their damage to land, water, air, people, politics, and our future.

Gay Marriage

Great emotion has been involved in gay marriage. The truth is shown in the the fact of a Marriage License, a government function of assigning responsibility. They were established for royalty to control inheritance. Marriage has been used to prevent wars, gain wealth, citizenship, and relatively recently for children and love. Government interest is in establishing responsibility, hence a marriage license. Religion and sex are solely the participant's interest, not government. Mutual consent for the responsibilty is the point, so government must say you can't marry a rock, dog, or baby, and must not involve religion, sex, race, or adult age.

Gay? So What?

Much ado is made of homosexuality, with much fear. We have learned that sex involves many differences and hormones, with multiple effects. The upshot is that there is a continuum. While a heterosexual may find the naked body of their own sex as arousing as a brick, and that of the opposite sex very arousing, the opposite may be true for a homosexual. There are also bisexuals aroused by both, and asexual people that just aren't interested. It really does not matter if you are not aroused by what arouses me. So what? I don't like lite beer. You got a problem with that? That would be Your problem.


Republicans say Obama "poisoned" the politics by his executive order to not deport 5 million immigrants for 3 years. Considering the Republican leadership swore to oppose the President on everything in 2009, I say they did it then. The House had over 500 days to vote on the bill passed by the Senate but never did. They say immigration is broken but refuse to fix it. It looks like employers who paid the undocumented below minimum wage were the prize, for deporting that 5 million would destroy the economy again, as Bush did.


McCain now says we must fight ISIS. Last year he said we must arm ISIS to fight Assad. The Republican approach again in evidence, just as Bush senior aided Osama bin Laden against Russia.


Snowdon's statement is most important: "These programs were never about terrorism: they're about economic spying, social control, and diplomatic manipulation, they're about power." Note that we do not know the NSA/DHS budget, and DOD gets 58% of the discretionary budget, which is funded in part with SS taxes. Social Security Trust funds were included in the general fund to help pay for Vietnam.

State FDC Managment

Current Fairview Developmental Center management appears intent on closing all Developmental Centers by mismanagement with routine violations of the contract claiming over the last half year is an emergency, forcing mandatory overtime shifts (working 16 hours straight) with a threat of charges of felony endangerment and insubordination. I shall be out of state employment, and I hope the managers as well, by year's end. [I Succeeded, State failed. 12/'13]


Much indignation and protest against Zimmerman is a backhanded insult to Trayvon, ignoring the obvious. Trayvon bloodied the nose and back of Zimmerman's head. Attacking after seeing the gun would be stupid, so Trayvon initiated the attack on a man he could beat up. The hot headed watchman should have stayed in the car, but got beat up, and in rational fear, used the gun. Both were aggressive and pay a price, but beating a man with a gun will likely cost your life. Mutual aggression is the cause, as usual. The color is Red... Herring.


Since the publication of the existence of the splitter on international communication lines in San Francisco, and the FBI's Carnivore program, any terrorist, militia man, and half the Libertarians, liberals, and people living outside the US have assumed all communication in the US is monitored. As such, Snowdon did not help any enemy, unless the enemy is the American people. We now know the FBI and NSA spy on and lie to the American people. Manning told us the military lies to us. And now the Congress confirms lies are the rule.

Class Warfare?

Republicans are again calling any increase in taxes paid by the wealthy class warfare. Warren Buffett says 30% is fair so his secretary would not pay a higher rate than he. Financial terminology suggests what the problem is: Capital gains, known as Unearned Income, is taxed at 15%, a rate lower than for earned income, with the claim that is needed to get investment in business. The very rich will not allow their millions to inflate away, but will invest to try to grow their money faster than inflation. Fairness says EARNED Income should be taxed at the lower, or same rate as Unearned Income, and the rich will still profit from investment. After all, the Capital Gains are the result of the work of those who get Earned Income for doing something. The deficit will be reduced by increased economic activity, not by cutting out supports for workers.


Republicans want to simply cut, harming the least able to deal with economic grief to give benefits to the rich. Social Security is intended to be solvent, but they have used SS taxes to fund the government. It should be a separate fund, not part of the general fund, and decisions for SS should be JUST SS. Using my SS taxes to give oil companies a tax break when they have record profits is not acceptable. Business with the very rich have profited from the war (kept out of the budget by Republicans under Bush), the real estate bubble with fraudulent mortgages, and fraudulent markets with banks and hedge funds unregulated due to Republican objections to restricting them to legal transactions. None dare call that treason, although it harmed the nation and world economy. With Social Security removed from the fray, the military expenditures, more than double the rest of the world combined, will look a lot more dangerous to the US than any NGO. They are terrified of a truly business like approach, which would get funding from the most lucrative sources and aim expenditures where the greatest return on investment is available and most vulnerable parts needing strengthening.


The surprise of finding Ossama in a luxury compound in the military garrison town of Abbottabad, possibly for five to six years, near the capital does not surprise me. "Keep your enemies closer" applies here, for a high security facility amid others by some rich guy does not stick out that much, and there was doubt that the US would touch a Pakistani military town, or that close to the capital. As well as a belief that Pakistani operation would be known, with a credible identity, it suggests it was the safest place, under the nose of the military. In a poorer area, or more civilian area, it would have stuck out, an inverted prison. Maybe you really want to know who your neighbor really, really is!


Those that say the government should be run like we must run our own budget better use a mirror- it has. With Americans owing an average of $8000.00 in credit card debt on top of a mortgage and a second, we do not manage money well. The loan shark is next.

Budget Cuts

The Republicans are demanding budget cuts, saying the national debit is too big. They insisted the tax cut be extended for the very richest. They prohibit medicare from negotiating with pharmaceutical companies. They refuse to cut subsidies for agribusiness to not grow crops while food prices rise. They refuse to eliminate subsidies and tax breaks for oil companies enjoying record profits. They tried to spend money on the Pentagon on items that it did not want.
Instead, Republicans cut spending on infrastructure, education, health, and welfare. Headlines demonstrate we are aware infrastructure maintenance has been deferred too long to the point of failure, we lag in education when we need to lead, health is defense of the public, and many suffer economic disaster due to the malfeasance of Wall Street corporations which have been rescued by the public funds.
Republicans want to cut Social Security and Medicare which receive funding from worker's pay checks to pay for their priorities in the military, corporations, and the very rich. With 90% of the wealth in the hands of 2%, the defense expenditures are predominantly protecting the few at the expense of the many.

A modest proposal:

Solve the illegal immigration and the budget problems by enforcing the law. Deport every illegal immigrant and prosecute the employer, imposing the $10,000.00 fine for each. The jobs thus made available would eliminate the unemployment problem, the fines would cover the budget, and the market efficiency would eliminate inefficient companies that can not operate without illegals by bankruptcy.

Religious Extremists

We are having quite a time with religious extermists, ranging from Ossama bin Laden to Terry Jones. Both enrich themselves by enlisting religious hatreds, trying to force their will on others. They do violence to people and their claimed religion. Why are the three peoples "of the book" responsible for more killing, especially of each other, in violation of their claimed belief, than other religions?


We have two Republican ex-CEOs running for office that are yelling "JOBS!" who were responsible for shipping jobs abroad. The notion that executives that were fired by their boards are the best for the state of California is less than reasonable. I wish imprisonment were an available recourse for flagerant "truth in advertizing" violations. Meg Whitman has demonstrated the most remarkable disregard for the truth, government, and liable and slander laws. should be checked for everything she says.

God and Country

Any surprise here? "God and country" invoked against the "God and country" of a soldier called a "camel jockey", and then sending him to help in a war some of his brother soldiers say is against "towel head Muslims". When he finds his reports of what he believes are war crimes, and exhibitions of prejudice against Muslims are ignored, military justice is compromised. This is what I call an obvious problem.

Peace Prize

"He had not done anything in the first 11 days!" How about ordering the closure of Gitmo, ordering the closure the secret CIA prisons, and ending torture, and reversing the entire course of the Super Power's foreign policy to CO-operation instead of edict and demand? Who do you help, the tough guy that says do it or else, or the guy that asks for and offers help? "Can I help you push your car into your driveway to fix it?" or "GET THAT HEAP out from in front of my house OR ELSE?" Who starts a fight, who avoids one?

Endangering National Security

We hear claims that we should not investigate the interrogations by the CIA because we will "Endanger National Security" and they were just following orders. In the Nuremberg trials we prosecuted those who "just followed orders" and those who gave those orders, and imprisoned them.


While the case of Phillip Garrido, Jaycee Dugard's captor, has led to clamors for greater prison terms and greater restrictions, it truly reinforces my call all along for a more intelligent approach. Realistic parole monitoring would have caught this act, and can mean a safer society with less imprisonment. If the parole officer's case load allows and requires adequate supervision, we pay less for prison and we get tax payers with a chance and vested interest in keeping a job and not re-offending.
We deny the truth in our own lives, for most teenagers have tried shoplifting, but most grow up to be useful citizens without very long prison terms, and pay for the prisons. The broad brush could prove much more destructive, for in truth, isn't EVERY John a violator of our sex laws, and therefore a sex offender to be kept 2500 feet from any school? Is hitting a hooker the same as raping a child?


Kenny MacAskill freed Abdel Basset al-Megrahi on compassionate grounds because he is dying of prostate cancer. Conservative Christians in the U.S. have berated him for an act that Jesus exemplified. He has single handedly saved the Scottish government the cost of cancer treatment, prevented claims of martyrdom, and shown a true christian value inviting a less contentious view of the developed countries.

Gas Tax

The argument that raising the gas tax will make it impossible for people to drive is false. The proposed increase to $0.28 from $0.18 is less than the oil companies raised the price in a week, even when the cost of oil is dropping. The percentage of the price is less than a decade ago. Raising the tax to 20% would not raise the price of gas according to the free market theory, since the oil companies charge what the market will bare. The difference would be that more money would be available to repair roads, and raising prices would not be as profitable since reduced demand would offset the profit sooner. Why shouldn't the public benifit, since public roads make the market?

Power corupts...

For the past administration money has ruled. Oil companies were allowed to raise the price of gasoline from a dollar a gallon to over four times that while the price of oil did not quadruple and other expenses did not rise. Bank CEOs, who's job is to guide and protect their companies, allowed and encouraged liar's loans (only criminals have a stong reason to avoid proper documentation) and hid toxic assets to sell them to the world, but were rewarded with millions. The rich seem to believe "steal a grand and go to prison", steal a million and it is OK. Damaging the world economy is Not a crime?


The pro prop 8 ads tried to raise the specter of kids being taught there is such a thing as same sex marriage, their religious freedom endangered, and churches might loose their tax exemptions. Did the Later Day Saints note that the Bush administration tried to eliminate the tax exemption of a church that preached against an aggressive war as being politicly active, and we now know the LDS took an active role in raising a major portion ($12 million+) of the pro 8 war chest?


George W. Bush seems to think that being "saved" means he can do as he damn well pleases without any consequences. This was NOT founded as a Christian nation (see Treaty of Tripoli) and he hates and wishes to kill Muslems, in conflict with Christ's Sermon on the Mount admonishing followers to love their neighbors and enemies (Matthew 5:34-44). If impeachment (without conviction) was appropriate for Clinton, what is appropriate for a man that violates the constitution and his oath to defend it, lies to the American people, congress, engages in an unnecessary war killing mostly innocent people, and eliminates a court decided penalty for a crony (in a crime his administration is implicated in)? I think he needs to get born again...