Saturday, December 31, 2022

Happy New Year! No Resolutions Needed Here

I don't know who came up with the stupid idea that making New Year resolutions after a night of drunken revelry should be an annual tradition.

I exaggerate. A lot of people make perfectly sober resolutions that they normally break within days. 

There are exceptions out there that resolve to do positive things for the new year - like lose weight - and actually follow through with them.

I assure you I've only met a few in my lifetime.

As Oscar Wilde so aptly put it, "Good resolutions are simply checks that men draw on a bank where they have no account."

As Andy Borowitz succinctly suggested, "Out with the old, in with the new is a fitting expression for a holiday that is based on vomiting." 

My favorite quote on resolutions comes from the master himself, Mark Twain, "New Year's Day now is the accepted time to make your regular annual good resolutions. Next week you can begin paving hell with them as usual."

Nowadays I smile nicely when friends and family tell me in all sincerity, they made some new year's resolutions.

I don't outright mock the poor deluded souls because I know they still haven't learned some basic things in life and are bound to keep repeating the habit until they are struck with an enlightening epiphany.

As it stands, I start every new year off with no grand expectations for the year ahead, but ready to celebrate good news should it occure.

Friday, December 30, 2022

With Weary and Wary Eyes Americans Prepare for Another Chaotic Year

As the last hours of 2022 lapse into history Americans are girding themselves for the challenges that lie ahead in 2023.

The dark pall threatening our democracy may dissipate when Trump is finally held accountable for at least some of his crimes next year and in 2024.

But the deep divide between political parties is growing wider every day. It's verbal MMA in Congress with rules and traditions being body slammed by competing visions for America.

To be clear, there's going to be good things happening next year. It's that delicate balance of possibilities that gives us the strength to face another year in our contentious society.

The chance for positive changes like new medicines to fight cancer, are ripe with promise.

One of the biggest challenges facing Americans next year is the mental health crisis. Two years of lockdown because of the pandemic took their toll on people. Suicides were up and crime increased across the nation.

A shell-shocked public has to come to terms with the fact that public massacres - from schools to grocery stores - aren't going away soon. Not until there's a unified nationwide effort to treat the thousands of mentally ill in our society.

Facts are facts. With no honest guiding lights in Congress, we're doomed to repeat this year's mistakes on nearly all counts. 

With Republicans as the new majority in the House there's going to be very little (if any at all) progress made because they don't have an agenda of serving the people who put them in office for 2023. 

GOP lawmakers plan on conducting frivolous investigations with their long-awaited Revenge Tour plans. Meanwhile chaos will reign in The People's House.

As Franklin D. Roosevelt once said, "We have always held to the hope, the belief, the conviction that there is a better life, a better world, beyond the horizon."

As it stands, "Hope for the best but be prepared for the worst." Maya Angelou

Thursday, December 29, 2022

There Are No 'Norms" in Our Weather Now

Weather records were shattered so far this winter and the season just got underway.

We might as well get use to unprecedented climate events throughout the year unless a miracle happens and all the countries on earth take serious steps to mitigate the damage.

Multinational oil and gas corporations along with the fossil fuel industry have successfully fought off climate change bills in most of the major countries in the world.

The billions of dollars they generate assures their continual obstruction of any laws to restrain the pollution they create.

Scientists are saying that the climate challenges we currently face are happening sooner than ever predicted. What was once 50-to-100-year projections are happening now according to world climatologists. 

Therefore, we will no longer be able to count on milder winters or summers ahead. The writing is on the wall in places like Buffalo, New York. As of this writing 39 people have died due to the extreme winter conditions. That number is expected to go up in the days ahead.

I wish things weren't like this and mankind wasn't so stubborn, greedy, and destructive. My only wish now is that I won't be around to see the last days of humanity.

As it stands, I'll do my best to enjoy whatever time is left to me and my family.

Wednesday, December 28, 2022

The 'Lame Duck' Days of 2022 Remind Me of 'Groundhog Day'

Have you noticed?

With two days remaining in 2022 we're stuck with endless loops of yesterday's news. 

Year in Review stories are circulating on all the mainstream and social media outlets. All showing the same images carefully selected by a secret board of wealthy censors.

Where's the real time news? 

It's getting compacted into small segments as images from the past take precedence in every broadcast. 

It's like living in the movie "Groundhog Day" as viewers are fed the same images over and over again for days.

Why? Its traditional media historians say.

I don't like that. We should live every day like it's our last and not dwell on the past.

I don't have a problem with celebrating the past year on New Year's Day. One day of remembrance is sufficient. 

Full disclosure...

As a newspaper journalist I know how it makes work easier for editors doing their best with minimal staffs because of the holidays. 

I've done it myself as an editor but always felt a little guilty about using fillers like Year in Review in the lame duck days of the year.

As it stands, now long retired, I cherish each day I have left and live for the moment.

Tuesday, December 27, 2022

Who Are You Going to Call? Reality Busters!

When you don't like the results of an election who should you call?

The Reality Busters aka the Republican Party.

Did you lose the midterm elections despite the fact that you think you won?

Are you a Trump minion fighting against the Deep State?

Do you think Trump is still president?

Don't worry. Reality means nothing when you have a cabal of election-deniers and outright liars.

That's why Kari Lake (GOP candidate for governor of Arizona who lost the real election) is declaring herself the governor-elect in spite of losing both court cases trying to disenfranchise valid voters.

It's common knowledge that the Republican controlled House of Representatives is morphing into the new Reality Buster headquarters in January.

Now that the last 2022 midterm election denier Kari Lake has failed in her attempt at voter suppression the Reality Busters are turning their wrath against Democrats by holding endless Kangaroo Courts to please their fact-free supporters.

Under the supreme Reality Buster poohbah Trump, the last six years has been a steady denial of facts and truths. His minions can no longer think for themselves, choosing instead to embrace a world of lies being spoon fed to them.

Ironically Trump's loyal base is also a dependable source for grifting as they willingly send him donations that seldom - if ever - go towards the stated goal. He squeezes them like lemons every chance he gets.

Meanwhile Democrats and Independant's are tasked with keeping a grip on the real world by bringing truth to combat the Reality Busters agenda against our republic.

As it stands, historically there's consequences for cults like the Reality Busters, and they're seldom good.

Monday, December 26, 2022

Surviving Our Winter of Discontent in a Rough Year

Parts of the United States are enveloped in a mini- Ice Age as millions of Americans struggle to survive one of the most brutal winters in memory. 

As of this writing 55 winter-related deaths have been reported.

This biblical winter seems to be a fitting end to a tough year in America and the rest of the world.

It's been a year of discontent.

* Wars and famine. 

* Viruses and coups.

* Domestic terrorists attacking our energy grids.

* A bitter year-long campaign for the midterm elections. 

* Trump and QAnon. 

* Political indictments and convictions for seditionists. 

* A record number of fearful immigrants trying to escape their countries and find a better way of life in an America not ready to receive them.

* Truth has been under siege from the Republican party wing that follows Trump's bidding.

My point here is simple.

Despite everything I listed above... here you are. You survived these challenges to our quality of life and are probably looking forward to a new - and - better year.

As it stands, hope springs eternal in all of us, it's keeping the faith that's the hard part.

On Naps and Blog Breaks

I've always thought taking a nap during the day was the way to go even though Americans are not known for the habit. Taking daytime nap...