MIND YOUR OWN DAMN BUSINESS!

Posted in Uncategorized on August 27, 2014 by Bob Emery

MIND YOUR OWN DAMN BUSINESS!

I heard NBC’s crack political reporter, Chuck Todd, make yet another reference recently to the uproar over President Obama’s recent vacation in Martha’s Vineyard. Obama was playing golf after an American citizen was brutally murdered by terrorists, He needed to bomb Syria, the Ukraine was falling into the hand of those dastardly Russians, and Ferguson, Missouri was disintegrating before our very eyes—yada, yada, yada. Todd did make the point that George W. Bush had the same criticism leveled at him after his remarks about something or other when he too was out playing a round of golf (although it was safer to have George W. on the links than in the Oval Office). In fact, accusations have been leveled against all of our presidents whenever they had the audacity to take time off from the job. Horrors!

Do these presidential vacations rankle the public, or is it the news media and the opposing party spreading this insidious crap? The real question we should be asking is, do we have the right to be informed of every little detail of what a president and his family might or might not be doing while on vacation? Are we so juvenile, so insecure that we need to be informed of every move a president makes while he’s simply trying to recharge his batteries? For me, the answer is a big no. For the news media, it seems, the answer is a big yes in lieu of actually reporting worthwhile news. Often the media spends more time on the president’s recreational comings and goings than actually reporting a domestic or world event that the president might be engaged in while doing something recreational. Cable news is guilty of trotting out an endless stream of paid know-it-all talking heads to be sure we get that message.

And here’s a news flash for the uniformed: the Oval Office is wherever the president happens to be, so he’s never really off the job. All this for a meager $400,000 a year. There’s many a corporate CEO’s and hedge fund managers who wouldn’t roll out of bed for that kind of money.

We can solve this foolish time-wasting hoopla with a simple new rule; ban the media from ever again showing the president or his family at leisure. Frankly, it’s none of our snooping business how a president chooses to spend his down time. We don’t own him or his family; we just hire him to run things for a while, which doesn’t give us the right to follow him around every minute of his vacation, even though many believe that to be our God-given right. And just because there is something going on in the world that concerns us, it doesn’t necessary mean presidents are required to sit in a darkened room, worry beads in hand, doing penance on behalf of all American’s until the crisis, big or small, has passed.

On the other hand, if we really insist on being jerks about this, we could have Congress pass a bill (if only we could get them to work) allowing presidents only two weeks a year paid vacation just like the rest of us. And those two weeks would have to be recorded on an I-phone by his Secret Service agents and posted on social media.

Consider how silly—dare I say stupid—that sounds.

Consider what presidents have to put up with every single day while serving the paranoid American masses: a barrage of criticism from the opposing party, the daily Chinese water torture from a clueless press, foreign enemies—you get the picture. Sadly, it has all been reduced to social media hype; an MTV formatted reality program aimed at acne challenged teenagers!

I’m willing to bet a dollar to a Dunkin’ donut that every president ever to occupy the Oval Office has been tempted at some point to call a press conference and suggest in no uncertain terms—in a very loud and angry voice—that the news media and his critics take a flying you-know-what.

I honestly wish a president would do just that so the media, critics and the gossip-loving public would finally grow up and find another way to validate their lives.

LIST OF SHAME

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on April 18, 2013 by Bob Emery

LIST OF SHAME.

For those interested in which Senators voted against the common sense gun registration bill, here is the list of “Nay’s.” Let’s just call this the list of “SHAME.” These elected officials decided in favor of self-preservation and their reliable stream of money from the gun industry rather than the will of the American people. Keep in mind that this “minority” kept the United States Senate from doing its work, whether it would have been a vote in favor or against.

Let us respond to each of these cowards when they come up for reelection and let us send them packing to a non-democratic country.

THE LIST OF SHAME:
Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), John Barrasso (R-WY) Max Baucus (D-MT), Mark Begich (D-MO), Roy Blunt (R-MO), John Boozman (R-AR), Richard Burr (R-NC), Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), Dan Coats (R-IN), Tom Coburn (R-OK), Thad Cockran (R-MS), Bob Corker (R-TN), John Cornyn (R-TX), Mike Crapo, (R-ID), Ted Cruz (R-TX), Michael Enzi (R-WY), Deb Fischer (R-NE), Jeff Flake (R-AZ), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Orrin Hatch (R-UT) Heidi Heitkamp (R-ND), Dean Hellwer (D-NV), John Hoeven (R-ND), Jim Inhofe (R-OK), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Ron Johnson, (R-WI), Mitch McConnel (R-KY), Lisa Murkowski (D-AK), Ran Pal (R-KY), Mark Pryor (D-AK), Harry Reid (D-NV), James Risch (R-ID), Pat Roberts (R-KS), Marco Rubio (R-FL), Timothy Scott (R-SC), Jeff Sessions (R-AL), Richard Shelby (R-AL), John Thune (D-SD), David Vitter (R-LA), Roger Wicker, (R-MS).

THE BRAIN APP!

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on January 14, 2013 by Bob Emery

THE BRAIN APP!

STRESS YOUR BRAIN NO MORE—THE INCREDIBLE BRAIN APP IS HERE!

Announcing the revolutionary new BRAIN APP that automatically kicks in for those times when your brain is just too lazy or unable to figure things out for itself. The BRAIN APP provides a common sense approach to problem solving by transmitting an electronic signal that gently encourages the brain to comprehend and accept facts before attempting to make decisions—especially those concerning political matters. It increases blood flow to the area of the soft, convoluted mass of gray and white matter that deals with empathy and reduces blood flow to the weaker parts that affect ego, selfishness, intolerance, and rigid ideology. Critical decisions can easily be made for you when using this amazing electronic device. Simply place it in your ear as you would a hearing aid. It’s virtually invisible and your friends will never know you’re wearing it.

The BRAIN APP is available at electronic stores everywhere (May be surgically implanted behind the ear if you prefer—surgical charges not included).

THE REVOLUTIONARY BRAIN APP—FOR THOSE CRITICAL TIMES WHEN SERIOUS THOUGHT IS A MUST!
$29.95 (plus S&H). Must be five or older to purchace. Quantities limited. Batteries not included. (Add $3.00 surcharge if you are a member of Congress.)

SHOOT TO KILL

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on December 21, 2012 by Bob Emery

SHOOT TO KILL.

I retrieved the newspaper from the driveway this morning (12/21/12) and was shocked at the big bold headline: “GUN SALES RISE IN FLORIDA – REQUESTS FOR BACKGROUND CHECKS FOR NEW BUYERS HAVE INCREASED – ESPECIALLY FOR ASSAULT RIFLES.”

From last Friday through this past Tuesday background check requests totaled 31,149 – and that’s just in Florida. Total insanity!

My thoughts are of no influence but those of Warren Burger (1907-1995), the late Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court, may resonate with gun advocates who fight against any and all restrictions.

“Americans have the right to defend their homes, and we need not challenge that. Nor does anyone seriously question that the Constitution protects the right of hunters to own and keep sporting guns for hunting game any more than anyone would challenge the right to own and keep fishing rods and other equipment for fishing – or to own automobiles. To “keep and bear arms” for hunting today is essentially a recreational activity and not an imperative of survival, as it was 200 years ago. “Saturday night specials” and machine guns are not recreational weapons and surely are as much in need of regulation as motor vehicles.

Americans should ask themselves a few questions. The Constitution does not mention automobiles or motorboats, but the right to keep and own an automobile is beyond question, equally beyond question is the power of the state to regulate the purchase or the transfer of such a vehicle and the right to license the vehicle and the driver with reasonable standards. In some places, even a bicycle must be registered, as must some household dogs.
If we are to stop this mindless homicidal carnage, is it unreasonable:

1. To provide that, to acquire a firearm, an application be made reciting age, residence, employment and any prior criminal convictions?
2. To require that this application lie on the table for 10 days (absent a showing for urgent need) before the license would be issued?
3. That the transfer of a firearm be made essentially as with that of a motor vehicle?
4. To have a “ballistic fingerprint” of the firearm made by the manufacturer and filed with the license record so that, if a bullet is found in a victim’s body, law enforcement might he helped in finding the culprit?”

Some will read this blog and ask: So okay, what is your point?

It is estimated that there are three hundred million personal guns in the U.S., just about enough for every man, woman, and child. It is also estimated that 40% of them were purchased without benefit of a background check or registration. Does that mean that there are over one hundred million guns floating around that no one knows about? The population of the United States comprises 5% of the world’s population but accounts for 50% of all the personally owned guns in the world.

The issue of reasonable guns laws goes far beyond Justice Warren Burger’s insightful words or the horrific tragedies of Cleveland Elementary School in Stockton, Calif. (1989 – six dead), Columbine High School (1999 – 15 dead), Virginia Tech (2007 – 33 dead), Tucson, Ariz. (2011 – six dead), Aurora, Colo. (2012 – 12 dead) and Newtown, Connecticut (2012 -27 dead). The issue is: is this the kind of society we really want to live in? Why is it that the smallest, loudest, vilest, radical voices (the NRA has only 4 million members) are the voices that always seem to rise to the top and somehow rule our lives? I personally believe that the NRA is a legitimate gun owner’s worst enemy.

No one wants to do away with the 2nd Amendment least of all legal, responsible gun owners. But it strikes me as logical that those who do enjoy responsible gun ownership should be the first to rise up against the insanity that has invaded our culture. But far too many are silent fearing that if they speak out they too will be accused of doing what is right for our nation, and that’s the last thing the radicals want. Radical thinkers view life as something to be feared, and they want the rest of us to fear it. So let’s try a different approach: Parents need to show up – talking about child protection works – marches are not enough – change happens from the ground up – movements work when old and new work together for a common cause.

Let the debate begin.
______________________________________________________________________________
Robert J. Emery is an award-winning film & TV Producer/Director/Writer whose work has appeared in movie theaters and on Lifetime, MSNBC, PBS, Starz/Encore, Discovery Channel, Reelz Channel, and the Learning Channel. He is a member of the Directors Guild of America and the author of the novel IN THE REALM OF EDEN. He is currently writing the trilogy NIRVANA LOST, NIRVANA FOUND.

LESSONS LEARNED.

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on November 19, 2012 by Bob Emery

LESSONS LEARNED.

If there is a lesson to be learned from the recent election it’s that the three areas that rule our politics— conservatism, liberalism, and radicalism—do not work individually. No one ideology has the gravitas to propel us forward. No one group of thinkers controls this country. Voters made that point a few weeks back.

Ever since the election one party, the Republicans (could just as well have been the Democrats), have been doing the moonwalk in a last ditch attempt to disassociate themselves from all the craziness that surrounded their candidate’s campaign as well shunning the candidate himself. The hand-wringing and backstabbing within the party reminds me of the shootout at the Okay Corral. A footrace is on within the GOP to create ways that would make the party more attractive to all those citizens they worked so hard to alienate. I have no idea how any political party can say “forget all that stuff we swore we believed in” and then reinvent themselves as something new and trendy. It doesn’t pass the smell test. It’s more like a sharp turn toward the center in an effort to attract more voters in future elections. Hey, go for it!

The truth is that when something gets accomplished in this country it gets done in the middle, not on the right and not on the left, but in the MIDDLE—history has proven that. If you harbor any doubts wait a few weeks and watch how the “fiscal cliff” gets settled. I promise you it’ll be accomplished by both parties meeting somewhere in the center to forestall what has been described as self-imposed economic suicide. Party leaders on both sides of the aisle are huffing and puffing and posturing, but in the end they know that “compromise” is a must (not a dirty word) and holdouts will be shutout. It is counterproductive—downright criminal— to separate our country into good and bad for political gain. It has to stop (you heard it here).

For the foreseeable future the American dream is PAY DOWN DEBT. We all know that (whether we admit it or not). Let’s hope the brain trust in Congress takes appropriate steps to make it happen. I have my doubts despite early reports of a bi-partisan effort. I spend many sleepless nights anytime the 5th graders in Congress say they are going to do anything bi-partisan.

Congress has to pull their collective heads out of their collective butts and do what’s right for the citizens of this country and politics and ideology be damned. Recriminations, sour grapes, name calling and speculation of who might run in 2016 is over, done with, kaput. It’s all bull manure (not the word I wanted to use but I try to keep this blog clean).

So, the message is clear: the whining has to stop, the name-calling and finger-pointing has to stop, sour grapes have to stop, and childish behavior has to go. There is only one choice and maybe one chance: grow up, act like intelligent adults, and get on with it.

Of course, if the election did not go the way you had hoped—if you just can’t seem to get that chip off your shoulder—there’s always Texas, the next great sovereign country where you could live the government-free life you always dreamed of: no currency that anyone wants, no Social Security, no Medicare or Medicaid, no border patrol, no FDA, DOD, DOT, EPA, FBI, CIA, FAA, FEMA, and definitely no disaster relief or any of the other services provided by the federal government that keeps our lives humming along.

Do we live in a perfect system? Hardly, but we can certainly make it better just by stopping the endless bickering.

One giant step toward a greater America would be to stop watching the 24-hour flow of misinformation on cable news.

I’M DEAD!

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on September 10, 2012 by Bob Emery

I’M, DEAD!
(Please take a moment to read the P.S. at the end of this blog)

***

A young man walked up to the locked gates of a cemetery and said to the old gatekeeper who was leaning on a shovel: “Let me in.”
Gatekeeper: “Sorry, son, I can’t do that.”
Man: “Why not?”
Gatekeeper: “Only dead people are allowed in.”
Man: “How do you know I’m not dead?”
Gatekeeper: “Well, young fella’ you look very much alive to me.”
Man: “I’m dead, I tell ya’.”
Gatekeeper: “Check your pulse—go on, check your pulse.”
The young man placed his thumb on his wrist.
Gatekeeper: “Well.”
Man: “There’s a faint pulse.”
Gatekeeper: “There, you see, you’re alive. Now, get out of here and leave me alone.”
Man: “But I’m dead, I tell ya’.” The young man hesitated. “Or I might as well be.”
Gatekeeper: “Why’s that?”
Man: “I lost my job, my wife left me, and my kids won’t speak to me and I’m flat broke.”
Gatekeeper: “Whose fault is that?”
Man: “The bloody government’s, more specifically, Congress—maybe Obama!”
Gatekeeper: “Listen wonder boy, one guy in less than four years did not bring this country to its knees, maybe in eight years, but not in less than four.”
Man: “Then who did?”
Gatekeeper: “Humanity, son, humanity.”
Man: “I have no idea what that means.”
Gatekeeper: “And therein lays your problem, kid. You’re a member of a select group who live in a clueless bubble, lacking involvement existing one day at a time and allowing others do your thinking for them. My guess is that you don’t give much thought to tomorrow until it gets here. Well, tomorrow is here, kiddo, time to pay up.”
Man: “I didn’t do anything wrong. The government screwed my life up—simple as that.”
Gatekeeper: “And just who is the government?”
Man: “I told you, those jerks in Congress.”
Gatekeeper: “And who sent them there?”
Man: “Well, I, ah …”
Gatekeeper: “And once you discovered they were screwing things up, who reelected them?”
Man: “Ah, I ah …”
Gatekeeper: “You’re mumbling kid I didn’t understand a word you said. Say, did you vote last time around?”
Man: “No, so I’m not responsible for what’s happening.”
Gatekeeper: “I see, maybe you have a point—a stupid one at that.”
Man: “What was I supposed to do?”
Gatekeeper. “Well, you could have gotten involved.”
Man: “In what?”
Gatekeeper: “In life, you nitwit.”
Man: “But I didn’t do anything wrong!”
Gatekeeper: “It’s what you didn’t do, Sparky! You sat on the sidelines and let others send some nut cases to D.C., and they screwed you. How did it feel?”
Man: “Not good.”
Gatekeeper: “So, what have you learned?”
Man: “Ahhhh …”
Gatekeeper: “Yeah, that’s what I thought. Look, why don’t you go home and—”
Man: “I told you, I don’t have a home.”
Gatekeeper: “Oh yeah, sorry, I forgot. Okay, why don’t you go to the library and read the Constitution and the Bill of Rights and while you’re there, The Gettysburg Address.”
Man: “How is that going to get me back on my feet?”
Gatekeeper: “If you have to ask you really are dead.”
Man: “That’s what I’ve been trying to tell you!”
Gatekeeper: “I’m losing patience with you, kid. Now get out of here, I got things to do like bury people who are really dead. You, on the other hand are only brain dead and it’s not terminal.”
Man: “It’s not?”
Gatekeeper: “You’ll recover as soon as you get in the pool and get wet.”
Man: “I never learned how to swim.”
Gatekeeper: “I didn’t think so,” he sighed.
The old gatekeeper slung the shovel over his shoulder and strolled away leaving the young man bewildered and wondering what that conversation was all about.

***

P.S. I recently came across a photo on someone’s Face Book page of a Blackhawk helicopter in flight with its side doors open. Visible were three men in full battle regalia. The G.I. in the center was holding a rope that snaked a dozen feet below the helicopter. Attached to the rope was an empty chair, an obvious reference to Clint Eastwood’s distasteful performance at the RNC. It was a disrespectful display by a few G.I’s who found humor in mocking their Commander in Chief. I spent four years in the Air Force and two years on the reserve rolls and I can assure you that back then this kind of childish display would have culminated in a sever reprimand. I hope these juvenile delinquents were identified and dealt with appropriately. I assume that whoever posted that photo had never served his or her country in uniform.

VOTER RIGHTS SCAM.

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on August 13, 2012 by Bob Emery

VOTER RIGHTS SCAM.

Anthony Watson, author of “Progressively Restoring American Greatness,” began his book with these words.
“The ideas of freedom and individual liberty have never been more under assault than they are today. The Founding Fathers laid the groundwork for a society so forward thinking and revolutionary that moneyed power had a hard time accepting it, even back then. Within a few generations, the Founding Fathers’ ideas and framework were under assault by those elected into power after George Washington. These elected positions of power, in concert with wealthy private citizens and corporate entities, have ever since constantly sought to curtail these rights.”

Mr. Watson was speaking primarily of terrorism and domestic spying. And yet one could easily attach his words of caution to those who would tamper with voter rights. Dare I suggest that such a movement—voter suppression—is in itself a non-violent domestic terrorist attack?

A number of states controlled by Republican Governor’s are attempting to force-feed voter restriction laws to curb (they say) voter fraud when in fact time and time again voter fraud across the nation has proven to be miniscule, often by people unaware that they were ineligible to vote in the first place. In fact, statistics show that over a 10 year period only 340 cases of voter fraud were reported, a mere 7 cases per state.

The current attack on voters does not pass the smell test. Not when in Ohio and Pennsylvania elected officials were caught publicly stating that voter restrictions would help get their candidate (Mitt Romney) elected. Fox News reported: “At a recent meeting of the Pennsylvania GOP State Committee, the top Republican in the state House of Representatives, Mike Turzai, declared that a new requirement for voters to show identification with a photograph on it “is going to allow Gov. [Mitt] Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania.” Mr. Turzai drew wild applause from lemming Republicans in the crowd that clearly disrespect the basic right on which our democracy is based.

Judith Browne-Dianis, co-director of the Advancement Project, a Washington, D.C. nonprofit that advocates for voting rights had this to say. “Make no mistake the non-citizen voter purge is part of the continuum of the voter fraud story that has given us voter ID laws. This is part of a broader effort to limit the influence of immigrants, who are also quite likely minority voters. What we are witnessing is the mainstreaming of the language of xenophobia and fear.”

As an independent, I find Republican attempts to suppress the vote draconian at best. And lo and behold, guess what? Voter’s rights challenges are coming only from Republican governors and legislators and not a single state with a Democratic governor. Do we need to be slapped up side of the head to figure this one out? Makes no difference whether you are Republican, Democrat or an independent, voters rights are basic to our democracy and must be respected.

The governors and legislators attempting this coup should take a moment to read (and respect) The Voting Rights Act signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson in 1965: The Act established extensive federal oversight of elections administration, providing that states with a history of discriminatory voting practices (so-called “covered jurisdictions”) could not implement any change affecting voting rights without first obtaining the approval of the Department of Justice, a process known as preclearance. These enforcement provisions applied to states and political subdivisions (mostly in the South) that had used a “device” to limit voting and in which less than 50 percent of the population was registered to vote in 1964. The Act has been renewed and amended by Congress four times, the most recent being a 25-year extension signed into law by President George W. Bush in 2006.

A lawsuit before a Pennsylvania court may be a pivoting point. Civil rights advocates and the Justice Department are attempting to stop the GOP’s ongoing attempts at hobbling “certain” voters from voting. However, if the GOP is successful, it will clearly spell the decline of democracy as we know it. Without the absolute right of those eligible to vote there can be no true democracy. We might as well consider our voting process the equivalent of North Korea or Iran or China or anywhere else in the world where elections are rigged.

Our country is known as the United States of America, not the Independent States of America, and if these jokers succeed with their tearing down of our system our national election process will have been turned into a joke—a very destructive one at that.

So, in the end this whole voter purge nonsense is nothing more than a political power grab; a way of insuring that a particular candidate gains an unfair (illegal?) edge over their opponent. So call it what it is: voter suppression not voter fraud.

Democracy is under attack whether we recognize it yet or not by a political party who requires a President with five working digits, able to hold a pen, and to sign legislation created by special interests. But first they have to get him elected by any trick possible.

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