REVISITED: Predictions for 2017 – 2020

mp900314250UNFORTUNATELY, THE PREDICTIONS I MADE 5 MONTHS AGO ARE COMING TRUE FASTER THAN EXPECTED.  HERE THEY ARE AGAIN.

Napoleon, who fought to protect and empower the populace, proceeded to crown himself emperor and take the spoils of his own country.  This happened with 2 different Napoleons.   I predict Trump will follow in their footsteps.

I predict Trump’s friend Putin will manage Trump as if the President is a 2-bit hustler.  Trump will destroy Russia’s enemies without the Russians having to foot the bill.  Trump will arrange for Snowden to be extradited, prosecuted as a traitor and executed.

I predict Trump will appoint 2 or 3 Supreme Court justices who are right of right, who will destroy abortion rights, the separation of church and state, voting protections, civil liberties and privacy protection for the individual, and who will make wholesale changes to constitutional limits of presidential powers for the sake of eliminating threats to Trump and his regime.

I predict sexual predators will receive societal acceptance and endorsement from the media, entertainment, Trump, and his followers.  But homosexuals will be branded as deviant, and their marriage will be disallowed, especially for tax reasons.

I predict the US government will go bankrupt.

I predict the US military will flourish.  There will be popular uprisings, which will be stopped quickly, and the best of the rebels will be enlisted into the national military.

I predict corporations will shrink in number and grow in strength, enjoying extraordinary tax incentives.  The Congress will back this.

I predict lynchings will be ignored.  The police will grow more confident.  Riots will erupt and be silenced.  News blackouts will occur.  The KKK will continue to grow, with off-shoots under new names.

I predict congress will consider bills to make the US a Christian nation.

I predict more news blackouts will occur, replaced by “announcements.”

I predict Trump will get mad and push the nuclear button.  If he can time the event properly, he will cancel the 2020 election.  I will be in the wrong ½ of the world when the explosions happen and will be maimed or dead, but the fallout will eventually kill the rest of the population too.

I used to be such an optimist.

Maybe 4 years will not be enough time for Trump to achieve this list of predictions.

We will see.

Contagion

     Yesterday, I listened to a woman passionately defend the U.S. administration and vehemently denounce all Muslims. Clearly, she had caught a contagious illness. She had listened to the rants of a man holding the presidential office, which in turn ignited her own rants.

     She felt justified because she was agreeing with the top dog. For her, it was like agreeing with god. Yes, god was on her side, because she was out of work, because her father was a drunk, because her mother was an invalid, and because she never got what she deserved. Any excuse supported her self-righteousness and dissolved her intelligence.

     Self-righteousness: I am right; you are wrong; I hate you and I want you dead.  Or at least I want you to disappear unless you change as I demand.

     The self-righteous bug feeds itself, because it feels so good to be better than others and to be RIGHT. We are all susceptible to this bug. The contagion is not a new phenomenon in human history.

     In the 19th and 20th centuries, licenses were printed and sold: “FEDERAL NIGGER HUNTING LICENSE” which specified “[name] having paid the license fee is hereby licensed to hunt & kill NIGGERS during the open search hereof in the U.S. This license must be carried on person when hunting NIGGERS and gives the holder permission to hunt day or night, with or without dogs.” Lynchings were accepted in certain circles, and today they continue in the imagination and plans of some.

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     Replace racist America’s language with “Jews,” and we hear the Nazi message. Or substitute Japanese, Mexican, Catholic, Feminist, LGBT, Muslim, Planned Parenthood, or any number of other groups, and voila, there is the hatred du jour, self-righteousness gone viral.

     The passionate rage against blacks in the 19th and 20th centuries is equaled by the passionate rage against immigrants now. I do not understand it. No matter how much someone explains why we must protect ourselves, why we must cleanse our borders, why we must take action to exterminate the threats, the words seem to me less an explanation than a confession of self-righteousness.

     When people hear insane rage, they grab onto it, as onto a life-preserver that will keep them afloat in the swamp of hatred. Even if one agrees with a leader’s politics, it is a mistake to support a leader with unhinged rage. It is better to follow anyone other than a maniac.

     It is clear how NOT to solve our world problems. Over-reactions, perversions, greed, manipulations, misogyny, stereotyping, and lies – these are not solutions. They are the worst representation of human capacity, and they are dangerous, igniting more and more self-righteousness, reversing our progress toward tolerance and respect, draining our energy for creating a safer and saner environment for future generations.

     Bright people may find solutions despite today’s contagion of hatred. Let us all be leaders who think, analyze, confer, and act with wisdom.

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The First Time

     I grew up in a family that hunted deer, ducks, quail, and rabbits. I learned early how to shoot a rifle and a pistol, and I am still a good shot, though I would never think of owning a gun. I am a vegetarian and pacifist. So, besides the logical arguments against gun ownership, such as shooting myself by accident with or without an aggressor in my home, such as endangering children, such as avoiding the temptation of killing someone in the heat of an insane argument, besides those things, I believe in non-violent solutions.

     With the epidemic of mass murders by Americans, it seems prudent to require people to register for a gun purchase, to demand a background check to prevent felons and emotionally handicapped individuals from buying a gun, and to have a waiting period before someone receives a gun. This certainly does not stop a sane person from owning a gun for any legal purpose. In fact, it ensures that qualified gun owners have their rights preserved, rather than tarnished by crazy killers.mp900315556

     For similar reasons, assault weapons and arms with the sole purpose of military usage are exempt from 2nd amendment protection. My neighbor next door does not need a tank in the driveway.

     However, for the first time in my life as an educated liberal, I can understand needing an AK-47. Under the radical regime which now rules Washington D.C., the possibility of a military junta to change the presidency into a dictatorship is within the imaginable scenarios for the U.S.A.  Americans would fight against that.

     As I understand the 2nd Amendment, it was composed to ensure a national militia could stand up to protect the country against a tyrant who wanted to overthrow the government. Hunting was not the issue at the end of the 18th century.

     I will not buy a gun. I will not become a gun advocate. I will continue to believe that citizens of the United States can protect their constitutional rights through protest, through judicial recourse, and through the strength of human logic.

     But still, just saying, who knows….

 

The Beast with Breasts

     Helmut Newton’s pictures of the female body show her to be an animal. Not an animal of the Playboy Bunny ilk to aggrandize masculine egos, although his oeuvre includes models wearing rabbit ears. No. His female animal is a palpitating splendid creature like her male counterpart. Communicating such life in the two dimensions of photography is quite an art.

     In the current exhibition of works by the portraitist and fashion photographer for Vanity Fair, an assortment of pubic hair is made public. Most of the pubic hair is untrimmed, or trimmed only a bit. It is good to see real pubic hair instead of tweezered, plucked, shaved, waxed nothingness.

     Newton’s subjects often seem like animals caught in the glare of headlights during a private thought or action.  The physicality of the models is extraordinary. Several of his models had breasts and showed them.

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     Well, of course. What is extraordinary about that? Generally speaking, women have breasts. To a certain extent, men also. Newton presents breasts belonging to young, healthy, beautiful white women, and still the breasts range in size and shape dramatically, like dogs, as different as Chihuahuas and Saint Bernards.

     Add in breasts of women of different ages, weights, and colors, and the variety is astounding. The diversity includes nipples. Big, flat, dark, minuscule, beige, poofy, you name it, and it exists.

     How is a girl supposed to know if her breasts are within the range of “normal” as she matures? Someone must tell her that no matter how she looks, she is perfectly formed. She has breasts that fit the standard gamut of women, an array so broad it is surprising we are a single species.

2017 version of Napalm

She left Vietnam to live in Tunsia when she was 9 years old.  She moved to France when she was 17.  She is 58 now, a full-time physical therapist, with a son preparing to go to university.

She visited the United States in 1999.  She toured New York City and loved it.  Then she went to Minnesota.

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Minnesota.  She has cousins who live and work in Minnesota.  Like her, they were refugees, fleeing their homeland destroyed by napalm during the Vietnam war.

She remembers living in fear.  She remembers living with a military curfew.  I remember being against the war.

She does not blame me or other individuals for the war.  She rationalizes that governments ruined her country.

If her cousins needed asylum now, the great expanse and the heart-warming opportunities in the United States of America would not be their choice, and probably not an option.  After all, the U.S. is being dismantled, one element at a time:  Freedom of speech and press, Freedom of Religion, Separation of Church and State, Department of Education, Environmental Protection, Social Security, NEA, Parks and Wildlife.  The list continues.

Canada, perhaps, still aware that people are the most valuable resource in a country, Canada would open its arms to them.  And Australia.  Maybe Sweden.