Monday, June 26, 2017

Of the Affluent, By the Affluent, For the Affluent - A Democracy in Decline

Some pages from the Republican health care bill

“Under President Trump, our country is moving in an authoritarian direction and the very nature of American Democracy is under attack.” – Sen. Bernie Sanders

And so, anxiously we wait for a yay or nay vote on the Republican healthcare bill, the latest manifestation of the acute degradation, rapid decline and possible lengthy, languid, painful demise of our nation. While not actively killing the disabled, the poor and the elderly with their new legislation, the GOP has made it quite clear that there will certainly be no distressed or unsettled hours of slumber among their membership when the inevitable, if not planned on, tally of needlessly lost lives commences, once this massive redistribution of wealth upward, this socialism for the 1% is law. Now, in the name of fairness and impartiality, it’s important to note that there is a diminutive gaggle of Republicans against the bill, including Rand Paul and Ted Cruz, but, unfortunately, they actually find it not sufficiently draconian, and fear it will result in too few deaths of innocent Americans.  

This is the sorrowful saga of modern America, Trump’s America, a bilious and bogus United States of America, an America in name only – a cruel country where the rich eat the poor and the middle class cheer them on; where the disabled are left to fend for themselves and their infirmities are regarded as faults for which they are to be punished;  where young black man are used as target practice for law enforcement throughout the land and for whom justice is just an ugly joke and an unattainable goal; where women and even young girls are sexually abused while their admitted assailants remain free to scale the supreme summits of wealth, power and popularity - an America where value, worth and legitimacy of citizenship is determined by stock portfolio, pigmentation, gender and druthers in deities.

“Health is not a consumer good, but rather a universal right, and therefore access to health care services cannot be a privilege.” – Pope Frances

In the United States of America, our overly-proud population persistently preens and praises itself to the point of pomposity, exasperation and non-stop annoyance with unproven proclamations of superiority over all of the other 195 nations on the globe (despite being one of only three happy to observe idly as man-made climate change renders the Earth unlivable for those who will follow us and suffer for our severe selfishness and stupidity.) But ask any Independence Day reveler and they will exuberantly exclaim, that the U.S of A is the greatest country in the world, never mind the xenophobic reality that 64% of Americans have never strayed beyond our amber-waved fields or purple mountain majesties to even have the slightest hint of what may exist beyond our heavily AR-15’d  confines. 

I haven’t a clue what the criteria would consist of to determine a deserving number one nation ranking, presumably a dance competition is involved, perhaps wrist wrestling, but if the test entails compassion, empathy, selflessness or tolerance, if concern for the wellness and healthcare of our citizens is a barometer, not even George M. Cohan would sing our praises.  In every other industrialized, civilized nation, healthcare is a birthright, not a luxury only the moneyed are entitled to. Medicaid, the lifeline for the most vulnerable among us, is being savaged with an 800 billion dollar cut. Medicaid saves children, the elderly, the disabled, the homebound, the hungry, the poor, those in nursing and other health facilities. Medicaid saves lives. Medicaid doesn’t save rich people money, so it must be severely cut.

America 2017 - police forcefully remove peaceful disabled protestors from their wheelchairs
What the GOP, Trump and his supporters have done to this once great country is tragic. We have become a cruel, ugly, heartless, hateful nation, one in which those that have the most, viciously prey on those that have the least. Our situation is grave and growing grimmer. If Trump is not removed from office, notwithstanding all of his verifiable and even openly admitted to illegalities, if our unique system of checks and balances, our separation of powers, fails us, and he and the Republicans continue stepping on the vulnerable to benefit the wealthy and powerful, what are our options as a people and a country? This is not the United States of America. And this is not a country that we can leave to our children.

“Hey, now it's time for you and me
Got a revolution (got to revolution)
Hey, come on now we're marching to the sea
Got a revolution (got to revolution)
Who will take it from you, we will and who are we?
Well, we are volunteers of America (volunteers of America)
Volunteers of America (volunteers of America)
I've got a revolution
Got a revolution”

Any comments, questions, criticisms, candid confessions, cash contributions?  Contact me at butchersaprons@mail.com

Thursday, June 1, 2017

The Shape of Things – Barbarians through the Gates

“Shapes of things before my eyes,
Just teach me to despise.
Will time make men more wise?” – The Yardbirds

Hatred is an evil emotion that no one should ever experience or express, but I'm at a loss for an alternate, healthier reaction.  I begin this on the evening of the Manchester bombing, and hatred is what burns inside me.  I seethe with anger. I seethe with frustration.  I seethe with the overwhelming feeling of powerlessness that accompanies daily witnessing of malevolence and atrocities, and the inability to alter or improve these unacceptable and corrosive conditions. And, like multitudes, I lack a truly intelligent, constructive, proper response.

I hate our criminal and illegitimate president and those who excuse and enable him as he destroys our republic, and the world, to enrich himself. I hate the spineless terrorists, in every corner of the Earth, who savagely and senselessly kill and kill some more. I frequented a cafĂ© in Paris, just returning to normal business following reconstruction after a terrorist bombing.  I was in Manchester in March. I was in London, the very day of the Westminster terrorist attack, luxuriating in the indulgence of High Tea less than a mile away, when we received the repulsive and unreal reports of the cowardly assault. I reside in New York City, and mourned and cried and raged, along with millions of my fellow Gothamites the morning of September 11th and the days and weeks hence.  I ache, knowing that the people and places I love may never find peace or a respite from the violence.  And I want revenge. I want justice. I want to strike back at all the heinous animals both domestic and foreign.  Crudely, coarsely, vulgarly and, unfortunately, futilely, I long to scream FU to Trump and to those ignorant and intolerant, unpatriotic, America-hating millions, who anointed him and continue to support his dictatorial dictums and unconstitutional creed. FU every worthless piece of human refuse who murders in some perverted, twisted ideology of faith or nationalism.  Please, learn and absorb this indisputable and unwavering truth –

We are all the same. We are all equal citizens of the only planet that will sustain our existence. We either live together or die together, and that choice now appears to be in the hands of the worst of us.

The New World Order
And, face this distasteful morsel of immoral veracity - Donald J. Trump is the biggest, most dangerous terrorist on the planet. Trump is the only extremist fanatic backed by the might of the American military and with the codes to unleash, what is easily, the world’s largest nuclear arsenal.  And this felonious deviant is as ignorant, angry and unstable as any ISIS flag-waver or Al-Qaeda combatant.

Sympathetic thoughts are pointless. Prayers are pointless. Good wishes and hopes are pointless. Deeds matter. Actions matter. And, possibly, most of all, VOTES MATTER! Trump voters, Brexit voters, gaze into the harsh reality of the looking glass, and recognize that you may never be able to compensate or atone for the critical damage your idiocy, prejudice and selfishness has done to humanity, the planet and generations yet born.

We are all living through a nightmare we have never before experienced. A Russian operative and treasonous enemy power is ensconced in the Oval Office, backed by the corrupt, complicit and cowardly Republicans in the Senate and the House, and celebrated and worshipped by traitorous American citizens. The degradation of our culture, our society and our nation endures and accelerates, at almost a minute by minute pace. America and Trump's America are two violently antithetical entities. And, perhaps, should mankind and this exceptionally delicate planet and ecosystem somehow survive, our future history books may summarize our situation so –

“ In the final days of the once great Republic, the ignorant, and the intolerant, elected a tyrant, a self-aggrandizing, self-serving enemy of decency, who vowed to destroy all that they formerly held dear - the values and principles that built this previously noble and equitable society. “

Arrest Donald J. Trump, now, and either incarcerate him or lock him away in a padded room for life.

“Now the trees are almost green.
But will they still be seen?
When time and tide have been.
Fall into your passing hands.
Please don't destroy these lands.
Don't make them desert sands.

Any comments, questions, criticisms, candid confessions, cash contributions?  Contact me at butchersaprons@mail.com