Today in cities across the nation, there was yet again another protest for raising the minimum wage. As someone who has worked more than a few part-time jobs, I get it. I really do. Your time is valuable, and to be working in a thankless fast food or cashier job for several hours a day dealing with rude customers and demanding bosses can be soul crushing. You think of the time you could be spending with your family and friends, the meaningful projects you could be completing, the pile of dishes and laundry waiting for you at home, and you think, “There’s got to be more to life than this”.
Here’s the thing, there is. Being a store clerk, or a fast food worker, was never meant to be a career choice. Those are starter jobs. The things you do as an after school job to gain experience in the working world. It’s what you do to supplement the family income, or help stretch the pension. Flipping burgers and bagging groceries isn’t supposed to pay enough, to pay rent or a mortgage, or feed and clothe a family of four. That’s what professional and skilled labor jobs are for.
Again I get it. Going back to school, means sacrificing even more time away from friends and family. It’s expensive, (though if you are working in a low wage job you probably qualify for some form of tuition assistance). It means finding family and neighbors who will watch your kids for next to nothing because daycare is expensive. It means juggling your schedule around those who are helping to support you in your endeavor. No one should underestimate the difficulty in trying to work, go to school, and raise a family all at the same time. So raising the wage to $15.00 an hour would be such a relief because it could raise some of that burden from you.
But remember, those blue-collar and semi-professional jobs that pay a higher wage, the kind of wage you would like to receive, require a higher level of professionalism. As a consumer, I am the one who will ultimately be paying for your wage increase. If I’m paying more for that already expensive basket of groceries, or the number six jumbo meal, I am going to expect more from the person behind the counter.
When I walk into your establishment, I will expect to be greeted politely, if not enthusiastically, with a smile. Even if you are on the phone (and that phone call better be with your boss or another customer and not your boyfriend). I expect my order to be taken correctly, charged correctly, and correctly communicated to the kitchen. I expect the kitchen to assemble my food with a little love, no more cheese half off the patty and patty half off the bread. I expect you to know your products and work place. If I have a reasonable question about a product, I expect you to know the answer, and if I ask you where something is I expect you to be able to tell me, or better yet, take me there. While I’m standing in your check out line, I do not want to hear about your colonoscopy, your rash, your kid’s rash, that your boss is a bitch, your cousin couldn’t make bail again, or how you had to stay late because someone else didn’t show up to work. It’s not that I’m not compassionate, but there is a such thing as appropriateness.
The idea that you can increase wages at the bottom by lowering them at the top, is a lie. Ultimately a business prospers and its employees prosper when the customer is given a good product or service at a fair price. Where much (of my money) is given, much is required.
There are a lot of terms used by politicians and the media that may not mean what we think they mean. Political correctness is after all, an exercise in deception. Below is an attempt to cut through the crap and define what these often used words and phrases really mean.
- Amnesty: As it pertains to the illegal immigration debate, amnesty has three different meanings. To those favoring open borders, amnesty means that every illegal alien residing in the United States has a right to stay regardless of his circumstances or behavior. To these people, amnesty is a good thing. To those favoring closed borders, allowing anyone who comes over illegally to stay, regardless of his circumstances or behavior is considered to be amnesty. To these people, amnesty is a bad thing. To the politician, amnesty is a term to be avoided and the term “limited path to citizenship” is preferred. This means that certain illegal aliens who meet prescribed criteria will be allowed to stay while they seek citizenship. How difficult these criteria are to meet depends on how far to the right or left the politician is.
- Women’s Health Issues (aka “Reproductive Rights”): These are blanket terms covering many existing and proposed regulations, serving the purpose of giving women complete sexual freedom, unburdened by consequence, at no out of pocket cost to her.
- Raising Awareness: A Liberal Progressive device that allows a person to obtain the self-satisfaction of addressing a problem or issue without expending any substantial sacrifice of time, money, or resources. The act of “Raising Awareness” is not actually meant to solve the problem, but to deflect the solving of the problem to others who are now “aware” of it.
- Creating a Dialog: Another misleading Liberal Progressive device designed to instill guilt and contrition while masquerading as an open discussion.
- Racism: This term explains that any and all misfortunes incurred by non-whites are the result of the attitudes and ignorance of whites. This term has gained popularity because addressing the attitudes and behaviors of non-whites is difficult and not politically expedient.
- White Privilege: This is the idea that white people, by virtue of the color of their skin, and not because of attitude, work ethics, morals, or economic factors, are magically granted all types of social and economic advantages.
- Unequal Wealth Distribution: Another “divide and conquer” Liberal Progressive device. Those who favor the redistribution of wealth, are motivated by several misconceptions. All wealth is a finite resource unfairly accumulated and horded by a select few at the expense of the majority. Most wealthy persons have obtained their wealth by unfairly exploiting the poor. Once you reach a certain wealth threshold, you no longer have the right to the fruits of your labor. Hard work, ingenuity, and wise choices do not matter, the poor are not able to obtain wealth on their own because the wealthy game the system to keep the poor and middle class down.
Remember the good times we had? Back in the late Seventies and early Eighties, when we restored the country from the policies of a President who gave away assets that we worked hard to build. Who capitulated to our enemies, and pandered to the poor. Back when an abiding faith, a solid work ethic, and strong nuclear families were something to aspire to. When standing on your own two feet and making something of yourself, by yourself were values to be admired. We shared so much in common back then. Our belief that The Constitution was the law of the land. That our government functioned best when it got out of the way, so people could have equal opportunities, instead of piling on regulations to equal outcomes. That lower taxes were the gateway to a robust economy, and that a strong American defense was the key to world peace. You were my first, my only, and it felt so good to be proud to be an American again.
But darling, since you have been hanging out with that progressive crowd, you’ve changed. You invade my privacy, and then tell me it’s for my own security. You’ve sought to expand governmental control of our daily lives. You cower to big businesses and deep pocket donors, even when abiding by their wishes harms our relationship. You criticize the Democratic Party, but offer no solutions to the damage their policies have wrought, and when the current administration tries to circumvent the Constitution, you stand by and do nothing. It’s like I don’t even know who you are anymore.
You never listen to me. You take me for granted. You think that just because I’ve always been there for you, have always stood by you, that I always will, but I can’t go on like this anymore. I’ve had enough. This shouldn’t come as a big surprise. We both know that it’s been over for quite sometime now. I only hung on this long because of a hope of a brighter future for our children. But I must do what’s right for me now.
In case you are wondering, no, there isn’t someone else. There is no one who shares my passions, my desire, for a proud America, a strong defense, secure borders, a fiscally sound government, less governmental interference in our daily lives, and a strict adherence to the Bill of Rights. I know now that I must fight for these things on my own.
If you ever return to your former self, if you embrace once again the values that made us such a formidable team, you know where to find me.
The Conservative Voter
Sometimes it seems that the only thing Liberals and Conservatives have in common is their mutual mistrust of LEO’s
You may be my friend in real life. You might just be someone who knew me when I was a child. Maybe we grew up together and we follow each others life through social media. You see pictures of my child and I get to watch as you navigate your way through life. You see my status messages that talk about how my family and I just took our 3 year old to the park or that my husband was just promoted at work. Maybe you witness a birth announcement or the death of a family member as you look upon my life via a social media platform. Either way, I have, for some reason or another, chosen to allow you to be a part of it.
You know I’m a police wife or a police husband. Maybe I’m even an officer and we’re friends outside of my job. You…
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So Howard Schultz, Chairman and CEO of Starbucks thinks we need to start a conversation about race. Just where has this man been? The discussion of race is everywhere, TV shows, mainstream media, talk radio, the classroom, the pulpit, the street corner. My suspicion is that the #RaceTogether campaign is nothing more than a clever marketing ploy, glomming on to the latest social issue to draw attention to the company and there by driving up sales.
If Schultz, and all the others that keep racial tension at the forefront of our collective conscience, really wanted to foster understanding and unity, they would be addressing the real cause of societies’ downslide.
The conversation should be about character, accountability, personal responsibility, and good old common courtesy. The lack of these, is evident everywhere, from the checkout counter, to the highway. Right and wrong are malleable according to the situation, our behavior is never our fault, and for every injury or insult against us, someone must pay. We continually cry out for “justice” when what we really want is vengeance.
This isn’t a black vs white, rich vs poor, man vs woman, Democrat vs Republican issue, it’s an American issue. We have bought into the “it takes a village” ideology. We believe that it is the “village’s” responsibility to take care of us and our children rather than assuming that responsibility ourselves, and have thereby become a self-centered nation of victims. Always ready to demand that we be treated the way we want to be treated, but never willing to look deep within our own psyches and our communities, to correct the bad attitudes and moral deficiencies within ourselves. We must have the courage to stand up for right and justice, but we must also develop the wisdom to know when a grievance is really worth taking a stand for, and when we should just toughen our skins and walk away. We should be willing to accept the truth, even when that truth is uncomfortable to face and puts us or our loved ones in a bad light.
The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.
Here’s an excerpt:
A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 370 times in 2014. If it were a cable car, it would take about 6 trips to carry that many people.
Last night justice was served. The Grand Jury in Missouri demonstrated once again that a jury of randomly selected private citizens could to look objectively at the facts and reach an unbiased decision. Over the past few years we have had several high profile cases where the verdict was not what the public expected or even wanted. These cases do not show a broken justice system. They demonstrate that the system is working as intended. Juries should not be swayed by raw emotions and threats of violence. They should only judge a case by the facts presented. This is exactly what happened here. It is a comfort to know that an overarching media that now seeks to shape the truth, rather than it’s intended purpose of simply reporting the truth, does not have the power to influence a verdict after all. Darren Wilson’s no bill verdict does not only exonerate him, but his profession as well. So ingrained in the black community is the perception that young black men are gunned down with impunity by the police, that nothing short of a public lynching of a police officer will convince them that our justice system works. Factual evidence is ignored, replaced by conclusions only proven by emotion. The attorneys for Michael Brown’s parents felt that the verdict was not in their favor because of the way the evidence was presented, that the tone of voice and verbal inflections were what persuaded the jury rather than the preponderance of the evidence. Because Grand Jury proceedings are held in secret we cannot know what verbal nuances were used. But we can know how carefully placed emphasis and verbal inflections in the way the mainstream media reported this story, influenced public opinion against Darren Wilson. Black parents worry about what will happen to their children when they have an encounter with the police. The solution is to teach them not to engage in behaviors were they will have such encounters. We hear so much about making the system fair and holding officers accountable. But who is holding young black men accountable? Where are the black leaders who are working to strengthen black families, and encourage young black men to take responsibility for the children they father? Where the politicians who are working to bring jobs and educational opportunities to black neighborhoods? Where are the rap artists, athletes and celebrities that condemn, theft, rape, drug addiction, and assault instead of glorifying it? Who is teaching black children the self reliance, self respect and respect for authority necessary to succeed in civil society? It is a tragic truth that young black men are in danger. But that danger is more from other black men than by the police. No parent should have to live with that kind of worry, but the solution must begin at home.
Homophobe, Islamaphobe, intolerant, racist, bigot, woman-hater, backward, ignorant, redneck, cracker. If you are a white, Christian, Conservative, you have probably been called at least one of those words, or something worse. Here’s a word for those who are quick to throw out the aforementioned terms, hypocrite.
I don’t know about you, but I am getting weary with being told what I think and how I feel from people who have no idea who I am or what I stand for. People who are content to be told by the entertainment industry what to think, not how to think. People who are too quick to believe what they are told, by a media more concerned with pushing a social agenda, than seeking the truth.
I watch everyday, on the news, on the web, and I am astonished that people blame racism, and bigotry in all its forms when they are faced with the consequences of their behaviors. Common sense and civility have been driven from the public square, and I shake my head and wonder, at what point did the Bill of Rights, specifically the First Amendment, become so twisted and perverted that it is now the instrument by which I am stripped of the very rights it was meant to preserve?
Conservatism has always been about protecting the rights of the individual. Every individual, no matter what your personal philosophy. In spite of the picture painted of us, Conservatism is about compassion and compromise, within a framework of self-determination and personal responsibility. It is clear now however, that the Progressive movement, in spite of the narrative pushed for it, is not about compromise, it is about control.
Every generation has it’s defining moments. Those events where you can remember where you were and what you were doing at that time. I can remember three such events during my lifetime, the moon landing, the Challenger explosion,… 9/ 11. I know we all have our recollections of that day. Here are mine.
We were stationed at RAF Lakenheath, in England at the time. There were two other bases nearby and we were living in the housing units just outside of one of those bases. The circular street, called a close, had about twenty-five, neat brick houses surrounded by a fence. It was just outside of the main gate of RAF Feltwell, just outside of a village with the same name.
“G” was taking his nap and I turned on the TV to CNN. It was nearly two o’clock in the afternoon. I watched what I thought was a report about a terrible airline accident. Then, live on the TV I watched as a second airliner circled around and crashed into the South Tower. As I sat transfixed watching the events unfold, it still hadn’t sunk in that this was a deliberate attack. Then came the crash at the Pentagon. I know at some point during this time I must have prayed. Prayers for the people at the Pentagon, prayers for the safety of my family and my husband’s family even though they were thousands of miles from New York and DC. And prayers for the people trapped inside a house of horrors as I watched through the TV screen as the South Tower collapsed. I knew life on base was about to get very complicated. My mind turned to some mundane thoughts. “Did I have enough milk and bread? What about diapers? Heaven forbid I run out of diapers.
It was just after three pm, school had just gotten out and “A” came rushing through the kitchen door. “Mom, I left my back pack on the play ground and we have to go back and get it.” “We’ll have to hurry before they lock the gates” I told her. “Why would they lock the gates? “ She asked, unaware of what had just happened. “I’ll tell you later.” I knew that any minute the base would be going into Threatcon Delta and if the base was locked down we might be stuck there for hours. I grabbed “G” and buckled him into his stroller, grabbed my purse and a couple of diapers, just in case. We ran a block to the street that separated the houses from the main gate of the base. As I showed the guard my ID, I asked him how long we had before he would be locking down. He gave me a strange look and said he wasn’t closing the gate. Obviously he didn’t know yet. We ran to the playground, found the backpack, then ran the couple of blocks back to the gate. We crossed the street just as the guard pulled the big iron gates, that would block vehicles from coming on to the base, closed with a loud clang.
Why did we have to run? Why did they close the gates? How do you tell an eight-year-old child that we are at war and maybe in danger? I had to be straightforward. “A” would not accept a half-truth. We sat down and watched as the events continued to unfold on the TV. Some people thought that it was wrong to let a child see the coverage. But I have never lied to my children even when the news might be hard to bear. The phone rang. It was the hubs calling to say he would be home late. “I know,” I said. Then hung up the phone. I know at sometime during the evening I called my family. Even though I knew they were fine, I need to hear it from them, and “A” needed to know that they were OK.
The next morning, the gates to our housing unit were locked. In front of the pedestrian gate where the kids would meet the lollipop lady that helped them across the road, was a Humvee with a .50 caliber machine gun on top. For the next three days we were locked in. Only the active duty military members were allowed in or out on their way to and from work. No school, and very little information about what we were supposed to do. This was new territory for us military spouses. Some kept their blinds closed, others kept their lights off after dark. The BX was closed, the Commissary was closed. After a few days the walls began to close in. We decided it was safe to let our kids play outside. Under the watchful eyes of the guard, we walked by the gate. There on the other side of the street in front of the entrance to the base was a mound of flowers. Our English neighbors showed their support in so many ways. The Queen even ordered that “The Star Spangled Banner” be played at the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace. The only time another country has been so honored.
Slowly we settled in to what was now the “new normal”. The Humvee was replaced with a portable guard shack. The gates were open, but were filled with iron obstacles that resembled giant jacks. The kids having to show ID’s to the gate guard, the vehicle searches and the dogs became routine. As we once again returned to the villages we were often greeted with, “we’re so glad to see you out and about”. It wasn’t the greeting of shop owners, glad for the returning business; it was the kind of greeting you would give a friend who was finally outside after recovering from a serious illness.
The whole experience was surreal. As I went about my normal routine, it seemed somehow inappropriate to do so. After so many had lost their life, it seemed wrong to go to the market, to go out to eat or to the pub, or go to London to do some Christmas shopping. But carry on we did, because to do otherwise, was to let the terrorists win.
My most poignant memory of that time did not happen on 9/11 or the days following. It came several months later. “A” was learning patriotic songs in music class. In her backpack I found a paper the music teacher had given them, and this was what she had doodled on the page.
The patriotism, the pride, the tribute of an eight-year-old girl. There is hope for this country after all.
It has been a year since I first published this post, and now we face the very real threat of another attack inside our own borders. Our enemies are emboldened by an American President whose entire political career has been immersed in Liberal Progressive ideology. An ideology grounded on the belief that there is no such thing as true evil. Therefore, there are no principles worth fighting or dieing for. In spite of a tough sounding speech, I have very little confidence that Obama will have the will or the means to “degrade and destroy ISIL“. His use of the term ISIL instead of ISIS shows that he is willing to afford this group a measure of respect. In his speech he mentioned, once again, his imagined authority to act without Congress. This should worry every American citizen, because Congress is supposed to function as the representative of the people. Whenever Obama says he will act without the approval or coöperation of Congress, what he is really saying is that he will act without the approval or coöperation of the people. His reluctant conclusion that something must be done about ISIS is not seated in his love for the United States or its citizens, but for political expedience only. I still believe there is hope for this country, but we face some uncertain times ahead.
We are truly living in an upside-down world. Faith, family, patriotism, and self-reliance, were once the moral bedrock of our society. Now, people who live by those precepts are seen as weak-minded, or eyed with suspicion. People of faith, and Christians in particular, are seen as anti-education and anti-science. Unable to think for themselves, they turn to an invented superstition to make up their minds for them. Women who choose to become single mothers* are heralded as trend setters. They are heroines who are breaking down the fettered bonds of matrimony. While women who choose to make the sacrifices necessary to have a loving marriage and a two parent household are seen as ignorant and dependent. Husbands and fathers are gleefully portrayed as abusive tyrants, or bungling buffoons. Those who love our country and the Constitution, those who are willing to fight and die for the freedoms we have left, are seen as dangerous revolutionaries. Backward crackpots who are worthy of suspicion and avoidance. Living by the consequence of your choices used to be a basic understanding, taught from childhood, but now millions of us are willing to trade our hard-won freedoms for a government controlled lifestyle. Free from worry or want, we neither know nor care how our lifestyle is funded and we are satisfied with mere subsistence.
We didn’t get this way overnight. There has been a slow eroding ever since the Communist Manifesto was published back in 1848. It kicked into high gear when the Baby Boomers came of age. It seemed for a brief period in the eighties that we had beaten back the hippies, but it didn’t last long. Now under the progressive control of the current administration, it looks like the Liberal Progressive movement might finally claim victory.
“From each according to his ability, to each according to his need”. This quote, popularized by Karl Marx, doesn’t seem so wrong at a first look. After all, don’t those who have plenty have a moral obligation to help those in need? This would have made perfect sense to those living in early industrial Europe. Working class people who because of their social status, had no political power and were never truly allowed to prosper from their labor. Ironically, the Communist philosophy that sought to equal the field by eliminating private property and distributing it equally among everyone, could only work if that property and the division of labor were placed under the control of a limited number of individuals. These people would then dictate the balance of the labor force between manufacturing and agriculture. They would distribute resources as they saw fit. The Communist Manifesto that promised that every laborer would earn his subsistence from his labor, delivered only that. Everyone could survive, but no one, except those in control of the labor force, could prosper. The Proletariat would go from being controlled by the industrialists to being controlled by the government. This system of government that promised economic freedom, instead took all freedoms away.
In spite of the historically documented failure of Communism in every country where it has been tried, the Liberal Progressive still insists that governmental control produces a better standard of living than personal control. This is not what our Founding Fathers believed. The Founders sought to create a society where individuals controlled property and the government. There were no royalty, no titled gentry. Without government interference, every man was free to succeed, but he was also free to fail. In a free society, it is the risk of failure that compels the individual to better himself. The harder you work and the better you educate yourself, the lower the risk of failure becomes. To the liberal progressive, any risk of failure is unacceptable. It is better that no one prosper if it means that anyone might fail. Complete equity in the whole of society is the Liberal Progressive goal.
The most dangerous way this goal manifests itself is by the Liberal Progressive’s belief in moral relativity. There is no good or bad, no right or wrong. No lifestyle, personal choice, or belief system is better or worse than any other. The man who sits under a shade tree all day deserves his daily bread just as much as the man who toiled in the field all day to produce it. An Al Qaeda terrorist is just as much a freedom fighter as a Minuteman who fought in the American Revolution. Stealing from others is acceptable if they have more than you. The only evil the Liberal Progressive recognizes, is the discernment of evil. This is how a terrorist attack on an American military base can be called an act of workplace violence. It’s how Israel can be criticized for the heavy-handed defense of their country, while the brutal acts of the Palestinians against the Israelis, and even their own people, are ignored. It’s how a police officer can be labeled a racist murder with no evidence proving that is the case, while a young man, who moments before his death was robbing a convenience store, is lauded as a hero. It’s how an unborn child can be regarded as a parasite in its mother’s womb, and how mankind at large can be regarded as a parasite on the earth. It is this defective moral compass, that compels the President, a man steeped in Liberal Progressive ideology, practically from birth, to travel the world apologizing for the country he is supposed to lead. So warped is his thinking, that he truly believes that Islāmic terrorists are not evil, just misunderstood.
Perhaps the only truthful words uttered by this man, were his campaign promise to “Fundamentally change America”. It’s frightening how much he, and the Liberal Progressives have succeeded.
*This passage is not meant to include women who were abandoned, widowed, or escaping abusive situations.